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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
You'll never win a chessgame with yourself

To those of us who suffer from terrible and highly bizarre delusional thoughts: one of the biggest traps for us, during those delusions, is that we INSIST it's possible to "think" our way out of them. We keep trying, day after day, hour after hour, trying to reason with ourselves, trying to figure out the one loophole in the sinister little monster. The "if only.." or the "...but if THIS was true, then..." approach is an effort to use Cartesian logic against the world's most formidable opponent - yourself.

It is YOUR mind that conjures up the delusion and YOUR mind that feeds it every day. To then expect that YOU (pitted against your own mind) can "reason away" the very construct YOU created is ...well, to use a technical term, just plain silly.

Cannot be done.


The TRAP of these ruminations is that aspect of you who is entrenched in the delusion keeps egging you on - "come on, big fella...don't you want to fight me? Don't you want to try YET AGAIN to counteract the conviction I fill you with? Oh, come on....I dare ya."

And we bite.

And we fail.

And always will.

If you were literally playing a game of chess with yourself, eventually "one of you" would capture the other's king. But that wouldn't indicate a Winner. It would just have been the natural progression of the number of potential moves finally playing themselves out until one of the two colors' kings stood vulnerable. It would be "game ending" by exhaustion, and no real winner would rise.

And this is VERY important: in chess, there are only so many possible moves - there IS an end, because eventually even playing you against you, the board will block you in - and someone's king will fall. That is NOT going to happen with mental games. There is no limit of moves. The board, the playing field, is infinite. It never ends - as long as you keep playing.

The reason is this: in order to WIN at chess, you need to plan. You need to "see ahead" in your opponent's mind, to predict possible future moves - ideally, many moves ahead - and to foreclose against the ones that could be most damaging. Simultaneously, you must advance your own aggressive position, hopefully providing some red herrings of your own potential future moves, and secretly planning your actual stragegy....changeable at every juncture as you observe and assess your opponent's on-going changing approach.

It's DYNAMIC...and it's one person against the other's ability to predict, foreclose and sidestep the mindset of the other.

In delusions, you ARE the opponent. And trust me, the delusion-maker part of yourself is a thousand times more invested in you KEEPING the delusion than you are in talking yourself out of it.

You cannot "fool" your unconscious. can fool you.

Stop the daily or hourly arguments with yourself. Stop trying to figure out the Answer to your obsession. The only way to get away from the power of the thoughts is to think ELSE - to force your attention away from the challenge. Stop accepting the bait - it you FEEL the delusion is true, tell yourself "okay, well, that's how I feel right now...that's why they call it a delusion, lol" But resist the temptation to get down and dirty with it and try to wrestle it for solutions or Truth.

The way to de-activate a delusion is to make it take a back seat to your cognitive focus. Give that one some thought.


Discussion Starter · #2 ·
LOL I feel like I am somehow concerned with this post :)

I am an obsessive ruminating fool, and I search for THE answer.

God I would like to have half of your rationality, Janine.

Right now I wonder again which med would not crive me crazy, by reading statistics on which med goes with which med, which are the least problematic for the health, etc. I am so afraid to have permanent problems and that my psy will say : we'l, too late, you have a heart problem, because of Anafranil, of you have psychosis, because of Anafranil... let's try to an anti-psychotic to help. Point.

It's terrible. I am terrible. I can't get out of my head the label I have read about Anafranil (can trigger latent schizo), in many books. I am afraid as hell. I hesitate. I am so afraid of that med cause schizo that I invent myself some symptoms, excuses for not taking it. I do have some palpitations, sweating, I talk less because I feel more DP, I feel more dp/dr, but it's was only the beginning... I also have blurred vision and at night,I see nothing in the dark, like if I am blind. My God. What is my problem with those meds.

Anyway, thanks for the post, Janine :) As always.


Discussion Starter · #4 ·
genius! somehow i make myself guilty for ignoring my obssesions, i think they will get worse if i pretend they dont exist. with this advise i can accept how i feel without having to battle. thank you so much janine, i'm gonna try like hell not to try like hell if you know what i mean. Peace and Love and Smelly dishes.

Discussion Starter · #5 ·
My name is Jon, I am delusional, and I fully endorse this post :lol:

Now, if I could only grasp it... (lol)

Seriously though, excellent advice. But, then again, I would expect nothing less from Janine...

I guess the only thing powerful enough to distract my mind at this point would be a gig as a cabana boy for the Sports Illustrated swimsuit shoot...

Perhaps positive delusions aren't as bad (grin)... just joking.

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2,710 Posts
Absolutely totally fucking spot on Janine. Good analogy with chess too.

We cannot second guess our obsessions. We cannot 'rationalise them away'. It just don't work. When you recover you realise what a giant waste of energy it was indulging them.

Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Jon, I love the "Delusional 12-Step" quality to your greeting, lol....

The reason you haven't been able to master the words in post above is because you're just too optimistic. You haven't lost hope, yet. Sound bizarre? Yet, t'is true.

You still haven't quite realized that there is NOTHING you can do with logic or reason or inner debate or the search for evidence, or the asking of questions, or the citing of facts. You cannot talk yourself, or reason yourself, out of the delusion.

But, unfortunately, you still have hope.

Once you truly get that, and see the abject futility in your efforts, then change occurs. At that point, and not until, you will finally see that you will NEVER talk yourself out of it. And if that's so, then you are truly faced with the prospect of having to LIVE the rest of your life believing in your "alternate view of reality". That little shock treatment will be enough to make you FORCE your attentions and energies elsewhere..and that's when/how the delusion is finally destroyed.

But hope? Hope is the trickster that keeps the game going. You will start on the road to freedom when you finally face that you can NEVER directly win against this opponent.

Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi Janine and all

I have never really considered my experiences of DP/DR an obssession. Anymore than I would consider my feelings of anxiety, panic, or depression to be an obssession. So I am not sure if i understand your emphasis upon DP/DR being an obssession. Not to say you are mistaken but simply to say I don't quite get the correlation.

I do agree with you and others here when you claim that it is not always possible to think your way out of a state of being depersonalised/derealised. And in fact an over emphasis upon "reason" and "rationality" while neglecting ones "feelings" and "emotional" background in the moment may in fact heighten ones experience of being depersonalised.

For the way in which I experience DP/DR it is not so much a disorder of thought nor a departure from rationality, per se, but rather it is a form of "feeling" misfunction brought on, I believe, by a dissociated condition as there seems to be a "misalignment" in the sense of being emotionally present in the "self" in the moment.


· Registered
441 Posts
I believe (I use the word "believe" not "think"), and I may be wrong, that every though has it's origin.

Everything that goes through my mind has a reason for happening. I think that, if, given the unwanted thoughts (the symptom), I can go back and find the reason. Then understand the reasons that made me think of those unwanted thoughts. And I am free.

I have found a way to go back, but I am not sure if this is an actual therapy. I cannot guarantee that will help. Sometimes it helps me.

What do I do:
1. First, I identify the bad thought. I know it when it comes back. This very useful, especially if you have many kinds of bad thoughts.
2. Then, when it comes, I try to examine all the seemingly irrelative thoughts that I make at the same moment, and may of cource not be unwanted. Sometimes I call these irrelative thoughts, the "side thoughts".
3. I try to associate the unwanted thoughts with these ireelative ones.
4. And then, I find very interesting data.

- Let me make an example to see what I mean:
Let's say that for some reason you get a great anxiety when you think of a specific word. Each time you think of this word, a sum of unwanted and irrelative thoughts come into your mind. Try not to focus on the unwanted thoughts, but rather try to examine (not focus, just examine) the irrelative ones. When you start to feel bad, then distract your attention into something else (for instance: what time is it? what do we have for lunch? what's on television? who was I about to call? wasn't I supposed to tidy up my room?). This whole procedure shoud last around to 1-10 seconds. In some more light unwanted thoughts, it could go for 30 seconds or 1 minute (depending on how much you can stand having in your mind the unwanted thoughts).

There is something that needs special care: the moment of examination. While the only relief that I have found to the unwanted thoughts is to try to think of something else (ditraction from the unwanted thoughts), I need to stay relatively focused to them so that I can examine the "side thoughts". So what do I do? I am acting like I want to drag/draw a piece of metal that is hot. I am touching it for a few seconds and manage to draw/draw it for a few inches. I am focusing on the unwanted thoughts for a second or two (not more than that) and then I think of something else.

Thus I manage to examine it and get the "side thoughts", that may reveal some stuff about the unwanted thoughts. The problem from now and on is how to translate the "side thoughts". There are many ways to combine the observations of months and make a final resume' of the situation.

Any opinions, comments, thoughts are more than welcome.


Notice: I have this (appears to be quite common) thought of harming family persons or myself in numberous ways. These are the "unwanted thoughts" that I am refering inside this post. There are probable another 20 things that are not OK in me, but I would say that this one of the most important.
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