Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Here We Go! Some of My Thoughts on Dissociation. . .

Wow! We're going straight for the tough questions!

On July 15th, Amber wrote, "I want to know about dissociation and it's spectrum. How does it effect different people differently? What does that look like/feel like?"

Great question! And one that does not come with a quick or easy answer! The phenomenon of dissociation has been studied for decades. The scholarly literature is riddled with leading trauma therorists, therapists, and researchers discussing and debating dissociation. Does it exist? Why does it happen? How does it start? Can it be treated? Will it ever go away? How is it dissociation different from psychosis?

So let's start with the basics. In order to discuss, we need to know what it is we're talking about. What is dissociation?

For the sake of our conversation, let's define dissociation as the lack or loss of connection with a momentary reality.

Implied in our definition is that in order to have a dissociative experience, one must first be connected to reality. This connection to reality can occur as physical sensations, emotional experiences, and thought processes including orientation to time, place, person, and situation. Then, for some reason, that connection to reality is lost. This loss can be short-lived and can return within moments, hours, days, or can be more enduring as in the case of dissociated memories of past experiences.

With me so far?

Okay, so here comes the kicker: WE ALL DO IT.

Did you know you were dissociative?

To be continued. . .

This is fun!