Topic: Alexithymia and Memory

English Alexithymia Forum > Questions and Answers

Alexithymia and Memory
06.05.2022 by hapticHivemind

Hello, this is my first post on this site. I am 18, male, and I just took the questionnaire for alexithymia. I scored pretty high, and was really hoping to find something like this to explain why I am the way I am. I have been diagnosed with depression and social anxiety (social phobia), but I don’t know why. I have my doubts about these diagnoses, because when asked questions about these like when was the last time I felt anxious or how has your depression been, I cannot answer. I just say “It’s alright I guess”. It had made any attempt at therapy very difficult for me. I also have a very bad memory, which bugs me. I don't cant remember important conversions I had with my girlfriend, entire places, people, or experiences from my childhood. I am unable to remember what I did beyond last week. I was interested to see if anyone else here had an issue like that. Maybe the lack of identifying emotions can lead to not remembering emotional situations. I have a good memory when it comes to informational things like programming, or stats in various video games, and school subjects. I have trouble remembering stuff like stories, tv shows and movie plots, life events, and conversations with others. My half sister was tested to be on the spectrum, as well as my younger brother. I was wondering if I may also have a form of autism, which would also explain my asocial behavior and inability to cope, identify, and manage feelings. I an currently on Sertraline for social anxiety and depression, but I cant clearly tell what it does, which makes it difficult to communicate to my psychiatrist about if I should modify my medication. At times, it feels like it doesn’t even do anything. I have accidentally forgotten to take it for upwards of a few days, and really haven’t noticed anything change. I have tried therapy with around 4-5 different therapists, and all of them have told my mom that I didn’t cooperate much, even though I was as open as possible about my life. I don’t understand what therapists want from me, and I have explained to them that I cannot identify thoughts or emotions. They just kind of brush it off as me not participating. This had lead me to believe that therapy simply will not work for me, so at the moment I am not seeing a psychiatrist. What I am curious about is why I cannot remember huge portions of my past, and thousands of hours of entertainment or conversations just disappearing from my life. I would be interested to know if anyone can relate to my situation. Thank you.

07.05.2022 by Alexej

HI and Welcome to the Forum @hapticHivemind

Forgetting things is something that I recognise more and more in myself, so you are not alone in that one.

As to autism (ASC) there may be a link, but it is not guaranteed. A lot of folk with ASC have alexithymia but not all fol with alexi are ASC. So have a look at some of the online tests for ASC and see how you get on. Remember that the tests are indicative only and not guaranteed to give you a good answer.

At to the therapists not getting you it may be that the folk you have been seeing are not familiar with alexi; which is quite possible. I had some counselling and the counsellor did not recognise and adapt their style to someone with alexi - which mean that the counselling was not really helpful (or as helpful as it could have been)