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With the realization and understanding that every one experiences symptoms, thoughts, emotions, etc. differently and no two cases are ever completely the same; what do you personally associate as your normal symptoms involving DP or DR?

Specifically curious about derealization because that's moreso what I've primarily had experience with, or so I thought. Opinions, guys?

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Back before I was diagnosed with depersonalization disorder, I was experiencing very similar symptoms as everyone else I've read about here (again, mainly DR).

I'll go ahead and list those so you get the gist;

• Thoughts and belief that other people were not real - as if they were an actor in a movie who were just playing out their role.

• Feeling as if I was in a puppet show or in some sort of fucked up game that some sick person created as a way to torture me.

• When I looked around at the world, my surroundings, it felt as if I were in a dream. Sometimes it seemed a bit blurry, sometimes sort of cartoonish? Other times it just looked odd in a way I can't explain.

• Re-occurent, obsessive existential thoughts: how this world or universe came into existent, if it truly did actually exist, what's the point of all of this, do we really have a purpose to be in existence, is there life outside of the one we have now, is there a God and if there is, how did he come into existence and why. Etc etc.

• Excessive sleeping patterns. Sleeping anywhere from 10-16 hours a day because it was as though in my dreams things felt more real, I felt more alive, than how I felt while awake.

• Horrible concentration.

• Speech or communication issues - getting tongue tied, not being able to get a word out correctly, or losing my train of thought mid sentence.

• Emotionally numb. I knew that with certain circumstances I should be feeling some sort of way, but I couldn't. I was unable to feel anything and this led me to panic, which brings me to this..

• Terrible anxiety and panic attacks!

• Lack of emotion to memories. I can think back to things, past events, that have happened. I can remember some of them in great detail - but I feel no emotion tied to them. It's as if they're just scenes I remember from a movie I've seen. I can recall what happened, but it doesn't affect the way I feel. And some times, I wonder if some memories are even actually real, or maybe I dreamed them up?

• Temporary memory loss (?). For example, one day when I was feeling extremely dissociated my grandfather and I had stopped at some gas station. I went inside (still don't remember for what or anything that happened in the store) and when I walked back out the doors my mind went blank. I felt extreme confusion - I didn't know where I was at, what I was doing there, how I got here or if anyone was with me. It lasted a good few minutes as I stood there on the verge of panicking and then all of a sudden it all came back to me.

• Complete loss of motivation.

• Isolation from family and friends - social anxiety arose with this, as well as severe anxiety of even leaving my bedroom.

• Bursts of rage towards the ones I cared about in fear of them thinking I was crazy because I couldn't describe what I was going through.

• Crippling depression which worsened the motivation issue to the point I didn't care any about even taking care of myself.

• Mood swings. One day would be great and I'd be happy, adventurous, etc. and the next few days I would lose all sense of hope, would devalue myself in my head to the point of having a meltdown, just generally so depressed it made functioning difficult.

• Changed perception of time - as though time was passing extremely slow.

• Severe issues concerning self image, or self-esteem. An intense hatred for myself.

• Suicidal thoughts, leading to multiple attempts.

• Self-harming issues: cutting (deeply or repeatedly) my thighs and wrists, burning the bend of my arm with lighters or heated metal, pulling my hair out, slamming my head into walls or hard objects, punching or slapping myself as hard as I could manage in the face, head or ears.

Honestly there are probably more that aren't coming to mind but there's quite a few for you!

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Now here's my issue.. within the past year, the normal symptoms of derealization haven't been affecting me as often as they used to - truthfully they almost aren't even existent. While it's nice in a way, there is more going on in my head that's making me lose it..

- I barely ever feel that dreamlike state (that used to be the main thing that happened, almost daily).

- Sometimes, instead of normally being totally numb, I feel unbearable emotion that I'm unable to fully process or express.

- I have such a strong urge to push every one close to me away. I feel like all I do is ruin them, hurt them, and that I don't deserve them in my life. I love them so much yet I want them to get away from me to the point I am hurtful and cold towards them.

- When they have had enough and they do try to leave, I frantically figure out ways to manipulate them to make them stay because if they were to actually go, I couldn't live with myself. Yet at the same time, I continue to push them to just go.

- Realizing what I am doing and how I am negatively affecting them, and even myself, to where I get myself even more upset and have even more reasons to hate myself. And continuing the behavior bc I feel at this point I've passed the line of trying to fix it and I deserve whatever the outcome is or whatever hurtful thing I push them to say.

- My urge to hurt myself when I have an episode of anger, or when I make efforts into pushing some one away, or when I can't stop telling myself how horrible of a person I am, has increased drastically. When I get upset my first impulse is to do everything in my capability to knock myself out, to feel the same amount of physical pain that I am experiencing emotionally.

All of this, plus a few other things I don't feel like mentioning rn, has taken such a great toll on the relationships and friendships I have - or had.

Don't get me wrong, sometimes my relationships/friendships have been absolutely amazing! But then again, when I have one of these horrific episodes of whatever, they can get so so bad.

This isn't my typical depersonalization or derealization episodes that I had gotten so aquatinted with for the years that I dealt with it. This is seemingly so much worse, and it is scaring the fuck out of me. I don't know how to stop it.

Has anyone else had this type of experience? Is it possible that maybe the DP/DR has just gotten this bad and out of hand? Am I losing my damn mind? Opinions and advice, please!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Ugh, I'm so sorry how long this post turned out to be. Actually kind of embarrassed, or feeling guilty, that I even posted it and have this weird stuff going on with me. Maybe I'm just over thinking everything, haha.

But thank you for the ones who take the time to read it! Maybe one of you will be able to ease my mind... ;)
 

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Hey no need to apologize, in fact, all the info you provide, including your apology follow-up post, reminds me of me, or at least how I used to be when I was still actively trying to live a life and have friends and relationships. I have these same impulses in relationships and friendships, and I don't know where they come from or what to do about them. I've decided that while i still feel this way, it's best not to have close relationships. I rely on my parents for emotional and support for my basic needs (I can't work or go grocery shopping, at least not consistently enough to live independently), but that's pretty much it. I've had this all my life to some degree, and kept pushing forward up until about 6 years ago (I was 28 at the time).

I was diagnosed with neurological Lyme disease and was treated for that, but it didn't seem to help much. Currently trying out some migraine meds, as I feel like I have broken glass in my brain most of the time.

Which brings me to ask you: what physical symptoms do you experience, if any?
 

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All of thats normal dr with probably some depression. It'll get better with time if you actively try to fix it. Basic self care and socialization with other people is gonna help yourself a lot. You're not gonna get fixed instantly, but 1 week you'll be normal for an hour, next week you'll be normal for half a day, next for a day, etc etc. And dont worry about the existential thoughts. The more you get out of this freaking out portion of dp you'll be able to logically think about these things and even learn a lot about the world that you never would've even considered pre dp. Dont mean to brag but i feel like I've had some of the worst thoughts on this forum, but as i recovered I thought through them and either figured "oh theres a flaw in this conclusion" or "oh theres a book on this EXACT subject and i can learn even more about it". Nothing is scary unless you make it scary.

It'll all pass in time. Just wait and take of yourself
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hey no need to apologize, in fact, all the info you provide, including your apology follow-up post, reminds me of me, or at least how I used to be when I was still actively trying to live a life and have friends and relationships. I have these same impulses in relationships and friendships, and I don't know where they come from or what to do about them. I've decided that while i still feel this way, it's best not to have close relationships. I rely on my parents for emotional and support for my basic needs (I can't work or go grocery shopping, at least not consistently enough to live independently), but that's pretty much it. I've had this all my life to some degree, and kept pushing forward up until about 6 years ago (I was 28 at the time).

I was diagnosed with neurological Lyme disease and was treated for that, but it didn't seem to help much. Currently trying out some migraine meds, as I feel like I have broken glass in my brain most of the time.

Which brings me to ask you: what physical symptoms do you experience, if any?
Other than an occasional headache, I don't have any physical symptoms.
 

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Ah, gotcha. Then it probably is most likely traditional DP/DR.
I hope so. I've been talking to a family friend a bit, who has had some experience with people who have dissociative disorders and the like. He used to work under a psychiatrist - sort of like an office assistant, I assume. He brought up that a lot of what I am going through, and have gone through since I was a child, seems very similar to borderline personality disorder. I'm afraid he's right in the fact that I do have all of the symptoms associated with it and idk, it's freaking me out a little.

I'm planning to see a new therapist, one who specializes in dissociative disorders within the next couple of weeks. Hopefully she will help me figure out what all is going on and give me some pointers on how to more successfully handle this and live a better life.

Today is definitely not a good day, though - I feel so out of it. Blah... definitely going to sleep the rest of the day away.
 

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I'm sure many who read my posts know some of
my thoughts on psychiatry. Let's just say that I don't believe that "personality disorders" represent true entities that "exist" within people. And BPD is very much the diagnosis du jour these days.

Nevertheless, perhaps you could try DBT (Dialectical behavior Therapy), which was specifically designed for "borderlines." See if it helps in anyway. Didn't help me at all, but when your "mood swings" (for lack of a better term) are at least partially (if not entirely) a result of being spaced out and unable to do simple things anymore, well, there's really not much that you can get out of therapy. That's my unique experience though.

The reason I bring this up is not to stir controversy, it's just that I've seen people being labeled as Borderline, and then reading that "treatment" is notoriously difficult, and then feeling hopeless about their problems. Actually think that's an inevitable consequence of doctors (authority figures) telling individuals they have a disorder of their personality; makes you feel fundamentally broken.

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that labels, especially in psychiatry, are grossly problematic. The advantage to having labels is that we can define certain people's problems in narrow and specific ways so that we can research and come up with treatments that seem to benefit these individuals. But people tend to get freaked out about the label itself (just look at all the posts on here about people freaking out about "schizophrenia"). So just try not to put too much stock into a label, and focus more on what does and does not work for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm sure many who read my posts know some of
my thoughts on psychiatry. Let's just say that I don't believe that "personality disorders" represent true entities that "exist" within people. And BPD is very much the diagnosis du jour these days.

Nevertheless, perhaps you could try DBT (Dialectical behavior Therapy), which was specifically designed for "borderlines." See if it helps in anyway. Didn't help me at all, but when your "mood swings" (for lack of a better term) are at least partially (if not entirely) a result of being spaced out and unable to do simple things anymore, well, there's really not much that you can get out of therapy. That's my unique experience though.

The reason I bring this up is not to stir controversy, it's just that I've seen people being labeled as Borderline, and then reading that "treatment" is notoriously difficult, and then feeling hopeless about their problems. Actually think that's an inevitable consequence of doctors (authority figures) telling individuals they have a disorder of their personality; makes you feel fundamentally broken.

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that labels, especially in psychiatry, are grossly problematic. The advantage to having labels is that we can define certain people's problems in narrow and specific ways so that we can research and come up with treatments that seem to benefit these individuals. But people tend to get freaked out about the label itself (just look at all the posts on here about people freaking out about "schizophrenia"). So just try not to put too much stock into a label, and focus more on what does and does not work for you.
In a sense, I agree with you. People freak out about the labels and what is associated with them rather than worrying more about which treatment options are for that specific disorder. No matter what "disorder" I end up being diagnosed with, I'm still going to push myself with therapy and finding ways to cope in order for me to make my life more bearable.

Finding a form of therapy and possibly medications (hoping it doesn't come to that bc of bad past experience with medication) that have a better chance of helping the ones who are diagnosed with borderline, DP, depression, etc. are my main priorities right now. Whichever they label me as having, it'll at least give me a way of researching what is out there that can possibly help.

Aside from that it would tremendously help me with the issues I have with my relationship and family. For example, if they label me as borderline I can tell my family about it, they can look into it and get a better idea of what I'm personally going through since I've failed at explaining what's going on with me throughout all of this. I'm hoping it would give them a better understanding..

But thankfully my mood swings haven't tremendously affected the majority of things in my life. I'm able to somewhat hold a job, keep friendships and function as a 'normal' member of society. It just affects me as a whole and my more personal, closer relationships such as with my fiancé and family.

I'm holding on to the hope that therapy will help me - learning ways and strategies of coping, meditation and just being mindful in general. I'm prepared to put my all into trying to get better and I know there's going to be lots of ups and downs in the process.

But before every rainbow, there's going to be some rain.
 

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However I do have to send a word of caution with respect to using the label to explain your issue to friends/family. You've stated the good side of doing so, but the upshot is that they may as a consequence start viewing everything that you say or do through the lens of that label.

Just some more food for thought.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
However I do have to send a word of caution with respect to using the label to explain your issue to friends/family. You've stated the good side of doing so, but the upshot is that they may as a consequence start viewing everything that you say or do through the lens of that label.

Just some more food for thought.
Thank you!

They've been extremely understanding with everything that's gone on so far, so I'm hoping they keep the same mindset.

The ones who have had to deal with the majority of my mood swings are the only ones I feel deserve to know more about what's going on - which would include my grandparents (they raised me & are the ones who initially talked me into therapy years ago), my dad and my fiancé.
 
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