REAL TALK- Dealing with Dissociation
Ciao lovelies! Today's REAL TALK is about something that is usually a symptom of other mental illness- dissociation.
Dissociation is a feeling of disconnect, numbness, not feeling "alive," sometimes not even feeling in your own body. This experience can be scary, sometimes confusing, and usually though not always unpleasant.
Dissociation is often a symptom of bigger mental problems, like depression or extreme anxiety. Sometimes dissociation is linked to Dissociative Identity Disorder, PTSD, or memory loss.
While this may be scary, it is manageable if you know the right coping mechanisms.
A good way to come out of a dissociative state is to have someone you trust ask you simple questions like:
"What color is the sky?'
"Is it hot or cold in here?"
"Can you feel if I tap on your arm?"
"What shape is that table?"
You can also try going on a short walk outside, and really focus on the feelings. Think about the sun on your skin, the breeze, the ground under your shoes. Stop and touch some plants, maybe find some water to run your fingers through. If it's winter, pick up some snow- the cold may shock you out of your dissociating state.
If you suffer from dissociation, let your therapist or primary care physician know, because this can be an involuntary coping mechanism or symptom of other illnesses.
Remember most importantly that you are never alone! According to NAMI (our biggest source in this article,) "Almost half of adults in the United States experience at least one depersonalization/derealization episode in their lives."
Thanks for reading! See you in our next post!