Everyone does say that laughter is the best medicine. Your medications are just a supplement.
Disclaimer: we are not medical professionals- we cannot give you a diagnosis or medication advice. Please speak to a health professional for this. If you are in crisis please contact one of the hotlines on our page.
Again I’m just rebloging something I wrote up awhile ago as it is relevant to the last ask. I hope this provides everyone with some extra information. :)
Ever found yourself staring at a computer screen and not taking anything in?
Chances are you just had a little dissociative moment. It’s a state somewhere between sleep and waking, a little of both, simultaneously. Some people feel a bit foggy headed. For others, vision is not as sharp or images are fuzzy around the edges. Some describe it as if they are looking through a veil, feeling emotionally numb.
You’ve probably dissociated but not recognized it. In its most common form, mild dissociation includes day dreaming, “zoning out,” or doing things on “autopilot.” For instance, you may have experienced it while driving (a.k.a “highway hypnosis”). You’ve gone three blocks and you can’t recall seeing anything that you drove past. Or you’re having a conversation with someone and then you can’t remember what you were just talking about.
At other times, you may feel that “something is wrong” or feel removed from your surroundings and/or distanced from people, almost as if you don’t belong. The unseen problem is that dissociation severely limits our perceptions. It’s like being distracted and then some. We are less aware of the subtleties in our interactions with others.
You may enter therapy and be dissociative but be unaware of its presence. You might not even know what dissociation is. However, you are likely aware of the problems associated with being in a dissociative state. Dissociation is a common symptom of depression and anxiety. Many people have sought therapy out for a depressive or anxiety related disorder only to find that therapy and medication don’t do enough. The problem often is because the client’s dissociation is ignored or unrecognized by a clinician.
Trauma survivors and abuse survivors often rely too heavily on dissociation as a defence mechanism. Dissociation is a crucial survival mechanism that protects you during a crisis and afterwards. It helps you stay on task so you can protect yourself. If you are able to function without fully experiencing the emotional impact of an event, you can accomplish tasks until it is safer to deal with your emotions.
Dissociation is a state. It’s a protective mechanism called up by the nervous system when it reaches its maximum capacity to process stimulation (both internally and externally). Imagine having to interact with people all day and by the end of the day you can’t speak another word. You go home to regroup, anxious to get into your latest book. But you can’t concentrate. You keep “floating” away into a thoughtless and timeless void. Oddly enough, your favourite book seems boring.
Dissociation caps the keyed up and restless energy underneath. It numbs the body so that one feels less internal distress. It’s a good temporary back up plan devised by nature for coping when we feel overwhelmed. But it has its drawbacks.
Many people will recognize less severe forms of dissociation in themselves because they’ve been there. Everyone experiences dissociation. Still others who are chronically dissociative remark that it doesn’t take very much stimulation before their nervous system is overwhelmed and dissociation sets in. You may have been functioning in the outside world but the real you went underground to some other place. In other words, you are “just not there”.
There are varying levels of dissociation:
Everyday Dissociation we all experience that is healthy in general:
- day dreaming
- spacing out
Traumatic Dissociation that comes from trauma and is not integrated in the psyche:
- deadened emotions
- leaving one’s body
Severe Traumatic Dissociation comes from major trauma that is not integrated in the psyche:
- derealization - constant experience of dissociation
- depersonalization- not feeling the sense of “Me” or feeling your body as belonging to yourself
- forming separate identities or states
- fully formed identities
- partially formed identities with specific roles
- emotional states that are fragmented