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  1. #11
    Another awesome member. Curator's Avatar
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    well, now that im less tired, after getting a small amount of sleep, id like to state that some of what you have said seems to relate directly to some of the issues ive had with PTSD, especially the numbness and disconnect...ive gotten a lot better, but it took awhile... and sometimes I fall back into it a bit, but that is becoming more and more rare... im still not sure what advice to give you, but just thought id let you know you arent entirely alone...*more hugs*
    You are not powerless, you just need to accept your power for what it is, a part of the whole, no one man can save the world, but you can be a light to those who envelope themselves in darkness, The candle that sparks the inferno.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Curator View Post
    well, now that im less tired, after getting a small amount of sleep, id like to state that some of what you have said seems to relate directly to some of the issues ive had with PTSD, especially the numbness and disconnect...ive gotten a lot better, but it took awhile... and sometimes I fall back into it a bit, but that is becoming more and more rare... im still not sure what advice to give you, but just thought id let you know you arent entirely alone...*more hugs*
    Thanks. It does look a lot like psychological trauma, I agree, though not necessarily PTSD any more than the other types of trauma. Just two days ago I went over my memories in chronological order, trying to identify negative experiences I've had throughout my life. I did it a second time yesterday, remembering even more. Simply reliving them, acknowledging my reaction, and then gently trying to let it go. It was surprising just how much came to me with a bit of thought and memory technique.

    I felt strangely irritable and stressed after the first time. Literally as soon as I hit work an hour later and for the whole next day. Rare for me to get like that, so perhaps going over negative experiences in my life undid a knot of sorts (hopefully).

    Anyway, here are three ascending examples of repression/psychological guarding I found:-

    1. In the past few months two of my childhood cats died. I've known them both since they were kittens, one died at 14 years of age, the other at 17. I was much closer to the 17 year old, yet my reaction was much stronger when the 14 year old died. In fact I've had no negative reaction whatsoever to the 17 year old, so far.
    2. When I was 15 I had major surgery that put me in hospital for 10 days. There were three very painful experiences I had during that time. One was being turned on my side to change my epidural, another standing and walking for the first time. Those two I specifically remember in detail, especially the pain I felt (I remember the actual pain, not just that it was painful). The third however, was when I was on self applied morphine. I had a button to press for a morphine shot and a button to call a nurse. My mother and stepfather went out for dinner, since I was looking quite well, so I was alone. The morphine had already made me weak, but I became too weak to press the buttons, and too weak to speak. I was lying on a bed with no more morphine, unable to get help for several hours. I remember that it was painful, but have very little recollection of the event, nor the pain I felt during it.
    3. My dad died when I was young, yet I didn't have a negative reaction. I specifically remember having to pretend I was upset just to stop people thinking badly of me. Now I was very much a daddy's boy until then, so I would have expected a much stronger reaction. Using my response to people I "sort of know" dying, friend of a friend type of relationships, as a gauge, my reaction should have been very strong indeed.

    So there are three examples of repression I know of. Yet when facing them, I have no idea how to undo them. I hope I can, because it seems similar to what happened with sungazing. Maybe even part of what happened.

    I'm still gathering that list of potential solutions. This is actually one of them, which I'll put at the top of the list.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    Thanks. It does look a lot like psychological trauma, I agree, though not necessarily PTSD any more than the other types of trauma. Just two days ago I went over my memories in chronological order, trying to identify negative experiences I've had throughout my life. I did it a second time yesterday, remembering even more. Simply reliving them, acknowledging my reaction, and then gently trying to let it go. It was surprising just how much came to me with a bit of thought and memory technique.
    Oh, yeah, I didn't remember that, but yes, this was helpful for me too. I actually built a timeline of my life and tried to fit all of my childhood memories on it. It was a big revelation for me back then. Many things had changed places and combined themselves with other memories, and some things that were actually dreams had been interpreted as memories. Make a timeline, then ask someone who knows what actually happened. You can't trust the memory as such, but you can see that what you choose to remember are part of who you are.

    Oh, and don't let go of things before you're sure you have realised their importance. I remember going through some memories with a hateful attitude, but as I went through it, they started to be interpreted in a different way and the hatred disappeared. Shame is maybe the hardest, though...

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    Oh, and don't let go of things before you're sure you have realised their importance. I remember going through some memories with a hateful attitude, but as I went through it, they started to be interpreted in a different way and the hatred disappeared. Shame is maybe the hardest, though...
    I'm not sure what their importance is supposed to be?

    I just don't want to react negatively to things that have no more relevance, so I'm "letting go" of the negative response and accepting that they happened. I'm not doing this with suppressed memories/emotions though, as there's nothing to let go of. I honestly don't know what to do about them yet, though the internet is helping me out with ideas.

    I'm definitely tracking reliable memories and finding out what really happened. No worries there.

    There is a lot to go through, and I'm not paying any attention to neutral or positive memories. I might look at them in the future some time.

    I know people find different things traumatic to varying degrees, but I don't think I've found any significant trauma. I'm more hoping that by learning to deal with this kind of stuff, I might learn something about whatever happened with sun-gazing, maybe even gaining some skill to help overcome it. It's not like I have anything better to go on.

  5. #15
    Senior Member Onceajoan's Avatar
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    Well, I think your psychiatrist explained it well. It sounded like trauma even before I read the part about PTSD as noted by your doctor. If it's causing you real pain, you could consider taking antidepressants. I have PTSD (memory loss, flashbacks) some books have helped me. It all depends on how far you want to go down this path of figuring it all out. Now that I'm older, I'm content living with some ignorance. I think that can be part of the growth process -- just letting go.
    What if everything's an illusion and nothing exists? In that case, I definitely overpaid for my carpet. - Woody Allen

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I'm not sure what their importance is supposed to be?

    I just don't want to react negatively to things that have no more relevance, so I'm "letting go" of the negative response and accepting that they happened. I'm not doing this with suppressed memories/emotions though, as there's nothing to let go of. I honestly don't know what to do about them yet, though the internet is helping me out with ideas.
    Well, in my case the relevance was that by seeing that I have hatred toward certain individuals made me able to view them in a more neutral light than what was possible through the distortion of repressed anger. Even if I wouldn't associate with these people anymore, there would still be a reason to realize this because similar situations or people might trigger the same defense of repression.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Onceajoan View Post
    Well, I think your psychiatrist explained it well. It sounded like trauma even before I read the part about PTSD as noted by your doctor. If it's causing you real pain, you could consider taking antidepressants. I have PTSD (memory loss, flashbacks) some books have helped me. It all depends on how far you want to go down this path of figuring it all out. Now that I'm older, I'm content living with some ignorance. I think that can be part of the growth process -- just letting go.
    Well memory loss and flashbacks are not things I can relate to. Very minor versions, dare I say normal, that have been around long before all this, but not the kind I see linked to PTSD. Sounds like you've had/have a struggle though, and hope you're dealing with it okay.

    Drugs are on my list, though as a last resort.

    It's not pain, it's lack of pleasure. I'm going to take this far, but there are limits. Out of interest, what are the books that helped you?

    Quote Originally Posted by nolla View Post
    Well, in my case the relevance was that by seeing that I have hatred toward certain individuals made me able to view them in a more neutral light than what was possible through the distortion of repressed anger. Even if I wouldn't associate with these people anymore, there would still be a reason to realize this because similar situations or people might trigger the same defense of repression.
    Hmm. I'll bare that in mind, thanks.

    Anyway, I've had an interesting addition to my list of solutions. I'm going to try being, to put it in this forum's language, the little INFP child I used to be. Not the teenager a little bit before this happened, which has been my failed solution many times before, but several years before that. The dreamy, impressionable, completely-out-of-it kid I once was. This is going by two theories, that sungazing was a catalyst, a lens, or the final straw that caused something built up to be released, or that sungazing altered mental behaviour enough to cause all this. Both of which may well be reversed by such therapy.

    I have holiday time due, and might take a whole week off to dive 24/7 to do it as best I can.

  8. #18
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    I have done some EMDR with my therapist. It sounds bizarre but it does actually work. I don't have any major trauma on a world scale - just growing up as an INFP in a very not iNFP world with the addition of my mom getting cancer and slowly dying last year.

    The concept around it is that when we experience trauma of some sort, our brain stores those memories into a separate part of the brain for protection. If we don't get a chance to process these memories later then they can get locked in there, hidden away.

    A lot of times we can have a negative thought feedback loop running in the background. Frequently this loop dips into those locked areas and we get stuck.

    EMDR helps you unlock those memories and process them into your main brain so that they are freed up.

    I did a session around a bullying episode I encountered in 2nd grade. At the end of the session I was able to see with my adult mind that those kids had their own issues, that I wasn't weird, and that I was ok as who I am and was. It's a small start in the right direction for me

    I hope this information can help you a bit! Much hugs to you on being brave.

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