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· Registered
1,146 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
long before i ever asked for reassurance on whether or not i was going crazy

[which by the way it turned out i wasn't going crazy ENOUGH]

long before that,

i was:

checking doors to make sure they were locked

looking behind me to make sure i didn't leave any stuff behind when i left a location

over-worrying that my car would be stolen

afraid a family member would die if i didn't check up on them


then again i don't know if crazy-reassurance was my "forte" anyway.

but i think it's kind of symbolic, you know...

if we are USED to constantly checking on and making sure of things, and if those constant checks seemed to give us control in the PAST, then obviously we would think constant reassurance would give us control in the present.

say, for example: checking that you didn't leave your purse behind. here's a dramatisation:

"I always checked and double checked that i gathered all my belongings when i left a restaurant or school, and as a result i never lost anything!"

the problem there is in the logic: the person is saying that:

A) I always double checked to make sure i left nothing behind.

B) I never lost anything due to leaving it behind.

C) therefore, my ability to never lose anything is due to my overly cautious behavior, and i must continue it.


well, A and B could be related in that everytime the person double checked, they didn't leave their purse behind. however, the idea that A LED to B is not necessarily true. the person could have probably been OK without so much necessary checking and re-checking to make sure they didn't leave anything behind. in fact, leaving one's stuff behind is more the exception than the rule.

so what i'm saying here is this: if you have any type of ritual that you did to make sure reality was OKAY, and you believed that reality was okay as a direct result of you doing something to influence it, then you will believe that asking for reassurances on your DP symptoms will be an effective mechanism. But this shows that what you did to control reality in the past didn't work. You didn't have such control over securing your house, ,keeping your family alive, making friends, as you may have thought. But that you thought you had ANY control was the problem. now you think you have control over the DP. it feels like there's no control but you still think you can do something to control it. Because you feel that something YOU do will lead to stopping a result that wouldn't have happened anyway (such as going crazy).

basically, you believe (i know janine said this once) that you can magically keep yourself SANE by asking people for reassurance on this. and you may be like "oh, that's not why!" and try to see yourself as the victim of this disorder, but that says even more about your psyche.

Many people on this board, myself included, believe the following things:
A) that we need some kind of ritual or reassurance or tactic that will help control reality
B) that whatever ritual or reassurance we performed or asked for actually WORKED to prevent a disaster (like going insane)
C) that, in begging for reassurance, you will likely deny that you deep down believe that you have some kind of magical ability to control the DP or anything else in life, or that you are willing yourself sane or that you are willing yourself into anything else or that you are willing people to like you or you to like people or whatever. but you do believe that somewhere.
D) that we cannot let ourselves know our REAL motives [see above point], not because we are bent on avoiding the truth, per se, but because if we fully recognized what we were doing [magical thinking] we could no longer claim to be "victims" of this disorder. and we would have to admit that it is not HAPPENING to us, that WE are doing it, and the only way to NOT do it is to relinquish control of EVERYTHING and admit we really don't have control.

[but then of course whenever we get close to this revelation we meet a new significant other or make a new group of friends or have something else happen that we feel will only happen RIGHT if we control it.]

does that make a shred of sense?

[you can't control anything]

· Registered
788 Posts
Good post person3. I'm one of these people that is obsessed with being reassured I'm not going crazy. I found myself at the medical library again the other day flipping through books on derealization/panic attacks, going straight to the section on derealization to assure myself I'm not going crazy. Finally, I was like this is absurd so I put all my books on the shelf and walked out. And of course, I have to be reassured by my therapist and doctor everytime I see them.

But my thing is, I somehow feel like I've prevented myself from going crazy by avoiding certain things such as travelling to far from home, driving to long of distances, etc. And of course I logically know this isn't possible that I've prevented myself from going crazy, but in the midst of a big panic/dp moment, I go back to "well I managed to escape it last time, but this is the big one." It's just frustrating. I'm sick of being limited by all this crap.

· Registered
1,146 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
But my thing is, I somehow feel like I've prevented myself from going crazy by avoiding certain things such as travelling to far from home, driving to long of distances, etc. And of course I logically know this isn't possible that I've prevented myself from going crazy, but in the midst of a big panic/dp moment, I go back to "well I managed to escape it last time, but this is the big one." It's just frustrating. I'm sick of being limited by all this crap.
this is the illusion. the idea that you have somehow CONTROLLED and PREVENTED an unpleasant attack is what is keeping you sick.

see, the thing is, you are trying to prevent the BIG one as you say. if you step out of your comfort zone and go those distances and go far from home, you may experience preliminary anxiety (it's the "control" calling you back, really) but once you get out there you feel MUCh better. It takes time though. You have to just DO it, just sign up to go on a vacation (i did a retreat this weekend with strangers...something i never thought i'd do or be interested in, and it turned out to be the best weekend of my life in a long time, dp/dr not a problem.)

you don't realize how exciting your life can be, now that you HAVe to push yourself. before DP you could go about your daily routine and feel comfortable, now you're stuck with no choice but to shake things up and try new activities, people, locations, etc. I have done 2831902783 million things in the last few years that I would have NEVER NEVER NEVER ever done had i not had the crucial need to get out of the dp zone.

you're making you life miserable by limiting yourself. truth is, you NEVER have to limit yourself and sit at home and wait for the dp to go away. that actually makes the dp worse.

do something, anything. if you ever liked art, sign up for a local pottery course. if you NEVER liked art, sign up for a local pottery course. do things you would normally not like. do things you would like. it doesn't really matter. the answers you need to live life lie in going out and experiencing new things and new people, that is where the learning takes place and the getting to know yourself takes place.

you know what the cool thing is? because of dp/dr, it's actually EASIER for me to go try a new thing or hang with a new crowd of people. why? well, if i have the gates of mental hell enticing me every five seconds, the fear of speaking in front of 500 people is really nothing.

this stuff didn't come over night. but i absolutely HAD to do it.

but my oh my, i can have fun and go out and read and write papers [sometimes] and keep appointments through all this. it really doesn't matter.

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1,146 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
you're only as limited as the extent of your control
the more you control, the more you're limited.
the more open you are, the less you are limited.

also another thought is that often i would feel that being able to sit quietly would mean that i would have to master how i was feeling, to understand it and whatever...i think now it means more letting the stuff of life float across your brain and nto really latch on to it.

· Former Moderator
1,084 Posts
I enjoy your posts too PersoncubeD, and i think it's funny that they just seem to come out of nowhere. I can just picture you lounging around, listening to music or twiddling your toes or whatever it is you do, having a thought strike your pretty little head, and then proclaiming, "Eureka!" as you hurry to the computer to spew it all out in essay-form. I haven't noticed you very often describing things subjectively unless you reference some experience you've had in the past. Very Janinesque. More and more you seem to talk about this stuff from an omniscient vantage point, detached and scientifically probing the disorder, disassembling it bit by bit and heaving it under the microscope. It's interesting to see, and is a refreshing bit of madness for all of us to enjoy.

Keep up the interesting work,

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