[Note: Didn't mean to make my last two post titles alliteration; I'm naturally cool like that]
I know there have been previous posts where I have tried to describe how it feels to disassociate. I have usually likened it to if you were sat focused on something on your laptop and suddenly someone was saying 'what do you think?' and you realise they've been talking to you that entire time. In actual fact, that's probably similar to a manageable disassociation that I've experienced. For me, I have different stages of disassociation, I'm unsure if that's the same for others...
So, I've attempted to help the average lay-person who I'd imagine to read this blog, to understand the way I experience what I'd deem to be the an early stage of disassociation; now I'd like to tell you about the worst stage.
Have you ever been lost?
Have you ever gone somewhere new and not known how to get to your hotel? Or the train station? Or wherever you needed to get to?
It's kind of like that. Not in terms of seriousness or anything like that; it's a similar feeling. Not knowing. Except it's more extreme. To think about it; it's not so much about not knowing where I am - it's not understanding why I am where I am.
To have the ability to remember a horrible life event, a time in your life that was horrific, a time when you were hurt or upset... That's horrible. And it's natural to try and avoid remembering such a thing. When that thing has resulted in you being diagnosed with a mental health disorder. When the horrible memory makes you want to die, you're not allowed to avoid remembering it. People- Professionals refuse to allow you to because of their conviction that recovery and happiness and safety, come in the shape of talking. Talking through your bad memories. Telling others every little detail about them. In the hope that it'll make them less powerful. That you suddenly won't want to kill yourself because the mere act of telling someone about the abuse you suffered somehow reduces it's affect on you. It's a nice thought.
The other thing that stops your ability to avoid the memory; is your body. That sounds strange. But I think that this is perhaps the crux of disassociation. It all gets confusing when you can smell his aftershave. You can feel his touch. But you're sat watching TV in your empty home. When it feels like every single cell in your body is trying to take you back to that time, that place, that moment, and your brain is screaming 'no! Don't make me! I can't go through that again.'
That, is disassociation. That is why if I notice I'm in a lower stage of it, I take my anti-psychotic medication and hope it doesn't get worse.
Story of my life.
P.s. I toyed with whether it was a good idea to write this post when I'm actually struggling but I decided that it would have a more accurate impact. I hope I was right. Otherwise it would be like asking someone how bad their migraines get when they've just took some pain relief and can happily sit in a lit room.