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Disassociation??

Feinmharu

Tortured Mind
SF Supporter
#1
So recently I have had a bit of free time. Still working, but work is slow. Still a bit stressful. Moving, new state, new job, etc. BUT... I (had to look up term, no health insurance, doc, therapist...) am disassociating bad. Like I dont remember doing work. Still getting things done from what I can tell. This has been going on for quite a while I think since before moving. The reason I am trying to get some insight or something is because I am doing things that I dont remember doing. Not breaking the law, but... getting at trouble at work. Given my work history i should be just fine where I am at. Sleeping moderately well for a rotating shift. Yet I messed up last week and have slowly been noticing strange lapses in time, among other things.

Anyone care to offer some insight? I am curious to see what you all think. Please, if possible speak from experience. I am trying to stay away from being an armchair psychologist.
 

Lostfoundandlostagain

To Live... That is the adventure
#2
I find sometimes my mind is so wrapped up in the things that worry me that I go into autopilot at work. My body is there doing things but my mind is so engrossed in things like missing my kids and marriage troubles that whole parts of the day pass and chunks are missing. Not sure if you are doing the same stressed autopiloting i do but I figured I'd throw in my two cents
 

Feinmharu

Tortured Mind
SF Supporter
#3
thank you for your two cents. part of me somewhere hopes that it is only autopilot. but when I miss up to a week or more memory wise, and usually have a good memory, I get a little concerned.
 

Innocent Forever

Still innocent!
SF Supporter
#4
It is concerning @Feinmharu
I didn't disassociate to that extent ever but what I found could help was grounding stuff, before it got to bad. Mindfulness kinda things. A mindfulness course made a big difference. I think the point is to be aware before you get to that stage and change it from where it can be changed. But that's not always possible - depends on if theres a trigger or if it's just a switch. Sending hugs... I really hope it's just the stress of moving and that it stops on it's own...
 

Feinmharu

Tortured Mind
SF Supporter
#5
I have been sitting here for a while trying to think on, in what way to respond. I know most people dont seem to disassociate quite to this extent. I have tried to ground myself. some days it seems I just cant help it. to be honest 90% of the time I cant seem to stop it.

what do you mean by a switch? as in like a light switch?
 

Innocent Forever

Still innocent!
SF Supporter
#6
There are a lot of people here who dissociate- they just need to find their way to this thread. Although I've friends who do to the extent you describe I didn't ever lose memory or time. Mindfulness really does help but is not a cure.
By a switch I mean that for me there's 2 ways I'll cut off. Either I'll be getting more and more on edge until it's too much and then I just cut off/tune out. Or something will happen that I'm not aware of and I'll switch off with no warning - there isn't the scaling of getting more and more on edge but just jumping there in a moment.
The first is easier to handle.
Why mindfulness helped me is because it taught me to be aware of myself more, so I could see what is going on earlier and do something about it before I cut off.
Is this making any sense?
 

Feinmharu

Tortured Mind
SF Supporter
#7
There are a lot of people here who dissociate- they just need to find their way to this thread. Although I've friends who do to the extent you describe I didn't ever lose memory or time. Mindfulness really does help but is not a cure.
By a switch I mean that for me there's 2 ways I'll cut off. Either I'll be getting more and more on edge until it's too much and then I just cut off/tune out. Or something will happen that I'm not aware of and I'll switch off with no warning - there isn't the scaling of getting more and more on edge but just jumping there in a moment.
The first is easier to handle.
Why mindfulness helped me is because it taught me to be aware of myself more, so I could see what is going on earlier and do something about it before I cut off.
Is this making any sense?
yea. it makes sense. the first one being that because of the buildup your able to catch it. where as the other one your probably much less likely to catch that you are "switching ".
 

Innocent Forever

Still innocent!
SF Supporter
#8
Yes. But even then I've learned that it's not usually a switch (unless there is a specific trigger that causes it) but more of a build up that just not aware of. It's like I used to do things and say that the problem was that there was no 'before '. I'd only know I wanted x because I was in the middle of x. Which logically I I didn't want. The more present in the world I was the more I learned that there is almost always a build up. There's almost always a time to catch it. It just takes lots of time and energy to realise what is going on and means tuning in to yourself a lot, and if you're not present finding which grounding activities help you to come back to reality. Very simplistically... (as in I may be making it sound easy which it's totally not and some people need more help than others to do that and I'm sure there is a whole lot more than that).
 

Feinmharu

Tortured Mind
SF Supporter
#9
Yes. But even then I've learned that it's not usually a switch (unless there is a specific trigger that causes it) but more of a build up that just not aware of. It's like I used to do things and say that the problem was that there was no 'before '. I'd only know I wanted x because I was in the middle of x. Which logically I I didn't want. The more present in the world I was the more I learned that there is almost always a build up. There's almost always a time to catch it. It just takes lots of time and energy to realise what is going on and means tuning in to yourself a lot, and if you're not present finding which grounding activities help you to come back to reality. Very simplistically... (as in I may be making it sound easy which it's totally not and some people need more help than others to do that and I'm sure there is a whole lot more than that).
what are some grounding activities? would you or anyone be willing to share? if they help then great. at least I would have a step in the right direction.
 

Innocent Forever

Still innocent!
SF Supporter
#10
what are some grounding activities? would you or anyone be willing to share? if they help then great. at least I would have a step in the right direction.
I'd suggest making a post asking for that.
Things like looking around and finding things with colour blue, colour green etc.
Things like noticing what you see, feel - hot/warm chair is soft etc, hear, smell.
5,4,3,2,1 - various versions like 5 things you hear see and feel, 4 things you hear see and feel.
There are guided imagery and mindfulness for grounding.
Breathing and feeling, seeing, where you are.
Nothing actually works after only once. It's the doing it repeatedly that you find what works for you. For me these are the ones I do so remember but I'm sure there is so much more.
I used to do puzzles and colour a lot because I was so unfocused and not there and found they helped me because I had to focus a bit.

@Rockclimbinggirl @Nick @Aurelia @Walker
Just a couple people who'd know more than I do.

*hug *hug
 

Nick

☆☆Still Ducking Fantastic ☆☆
Safety & Support
SF Supporter
#11
Hi @Feinmharu so, do dissociate. I'm not a doctor so I can't say for sure that's what you have going on here, but I'd certainly recommend you see someone about that. As for grounding I have some things I've found that work for me. Like @Innocent Forever said, nothing works the first try or right off. I will be back to throw down some more information about grounding. I wanted to drop your a reply though.
 

Lostfoundandlostagain

To Live... That is the adventure
#12
There is an exercise that works for me but it takes a few minutes. You basically sit with your feet on the ground, close your eyes, and breath deeply you then take an inventory of how you feel body part by body part and why those parts might be feeling that way. Brings me back to myself when my mind is driving me nuts
 

Aurelia

🔶🔸✴ 👑 ✴🔸🔶
#13
There's not a whole lot to go on based on what you've said. Like, how do you know you're dissociating besides just missing time? Has anyone else ever told you what you behave like when it happens? What other symptoms have you noticed before, during, or after? There are different forms of dissociation and different reasons for it. But generally speaking, it's the brain's way of protecting you from dealing with/experiencing something stressful.
 

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