Topic: Just Found Out I Have Alexi

English Alexithymia Forum > Personal Experience

Just Found Out I Have Alexi
05.01.2015 by Alexandra

I always thought I was normal. (Is that what most people with alexi think?) I knew I didn't understand why the other girls on the playground wanted to play house, I had an obsession with reading and read a book a day but I thought the characters were stupid for getting angry/jealous/frustrated, and I never had a lot of dreams. Learning I had alexithymia a couple weeks ago made so much sense to me. It explained all the weird quirks, my inability to build long-lasting friendships, my brain going blank when my counselor asked what I was feeling, and my tendency to come across as a sociopath because I'm hard to read unless you know me really well.

The problem is that I know how to fake being normal because you have to. Your family, friends, and church expect you to be friendly and no one wants to be isolated because they veer from societies norms of communication. I was always called "shy" growing up because I was quieter than most. Sometimes people say I look angry/upset/confused/bored/embarrassed/whatever when in reality I'm fine, but I just go along with their assumptions because I don't understand why they think that about me or what my body language is communicating to them.

The one feeling word I use a lot besides "good" or "fine" is "frustrated." I was diagnosed with clinical depression the same day I was diagnosed with alexithymia. I experience a lot of frustration from not knowing what exactly is affecting me: Is it my meds? Is it the depression? Is it the alexithymia? Is it because I'm an INTJ? Is it my anxiety? Is it my introversion and I need alone time?

I have absolutely no idea.

Does anyone else have other factors that make it hard to distinguish what is alexithymia and what isn't?

06.01.2015 _T('by') isk8ff

I feel like you just described my whole life accept I never really read but when people would tell me personal experiences I just never seemed to care or understand why they did so much.

06.01.2015 _T('by') Alexandra

The same thing would happen when I watched movies. The characters would have a big emotional scene and I couldn't comprehend how they did that.

Be yourself
11.01.2015 _T('by') Alan1945

Alexandra, nobody is 'normal' - such a thing doesn't exist except in the minds of statisticians. All 'averages' are made up of extremes - 'normal' is simply another average. You are not average; you are exceptional, and take that in a good way.

The person you have to be in your life is yourself. Nobody else can be you; nobody else can say how you 'should' be. If people have certain expectations of you (or me) then that is nothing to do with either of us - it is only to do with the person who has those expectations.

This is not to say that you do not have to fit in with customary societal mores. You can't decide that today you'll become an ax murderer or anything radical like that. But you can give yourself permission today and every day to think, be, act and speak exactly what you wish to do, without being judged by others. In today's pc world we seem to focus on what others want to hear and often feel obligated to say those things even though we don't believe them. This is not doing anyone a favor. If you need to say something which could hurt someone, and it needs to be said, then say it. If it doesn't need to be said, don't say it. It is not your role to judge how another person will take what you say.

So, as the saying goes, to your own self be true.

Thanks for Sharing
23.01.2015 _T('by') Polyphemus

Hi Alexandra, your post sounds all too familiar to me as well. I just found out about Alexi, and finally I'm able to put a name to this thing. But I've struggled off and on with anxiety and depression as well, which can be quite confusing.

I will say this- as far as I can tell Alexi itself can't be entirely 'cured.' But getting treatment for depression is probably the very best thing you can do. You may find that Alexi is much easier to deal with when it's a part of yourself that you can accept. Yes, we all have to 'fake it' sometimes, because that's how we successfully interact with people day to day. But in closer personal relationships, it's good to be up front and explain ourselves as best we can. And just because we have trouble recognizing emotions doesn't mean they aren't there in some buried, primal fashion. Learning to recognize the symptoms of feeling can help as well, in my experience. Anyway, good luck, welcome.

And Another Thing
24.01.2015 _T('by') Polyphemus

To directly address your question about confusion- pinning down the nature of multiple issues can be difficult, and no one can give you a definitive answer since it's your unique brain we're talking about. But I would say that all of those things are related, since Alexi is often comorbid with anxiety and depression, and probably occurs mostly within introverted personality types. They overlap in many areas. So maybe it's best to sort them by the most extreme aspects of each. Irrational fears are your anxiety, wanting to be alone and finding social interaction to be eventually exhausting is your introverted personality, finding emotions difficult to quantify is Alexi, and feeling listless or as if your normal activities are pointless is depression. I assure you that those main aspects of anxiety and depression can be worked on to much success. The other two may 'improve' along with them, but for the most part they are a part of you.

I also identify with your description of 'frustration,' and I've come to think of that (and I could be wrong) as the Alexi equivalent of a nuanced range of negative emotions for most people. That's sad, angry, everything in between, and we experience it as something nagging, just letting us know that something is wrong.

Faking it
06.03.2015 _T('by') DXS

The problem is that I know how to fake being normal because you have to.

FAKING IT! Boy can I relate to that!

I have "faked it' in every love relationship I have ever had. Some guy would like me, so I "generated" or "manufactured" the feelings. Then, I would get tired of faking it and break it up.