Topic: Thanks for being here!

English Alexithymia Forum > Personal Experience

Thanks for being here!
20.01.2015 by Fiona

It was great reading all these posts here, as I thought I was the only one. I mean, I have occasional depression, which is fairly common, but not being in touch with my emotions I thought was just me.

I had a fairly traumatic childhood, which not only caused me to shut down emotionally, but which I couldn't even remember much of until fairly recently. I had two memories from before age 16 - one where I was being held up as a toddler in someone's arms, looking at trams, and a second where I was walking across a street of cobblestones - and that was it.

Having depressive episodes, I found psychotherapy, but it was only useful to me in a limited way. I could relate entirely to the person who said in an earlier post they had difficulty talking to their therapist about emotions, that was excruciating for me too. I felt either extreme depression or very rarely the up feeling, or much more usually the no-feeling-at-all. I could talk about what was triggering the extremes, but not about anything else.

I was told to keep a dream diary - normally I don't remember dreams - and found that I was having dreams about killing people - different unknown persons, with a different method every night, but always killing. A bit worrying. However, those types of dreams stopped entirely after I had been doing tai chi for two years, which was a relief. Obviously I had a lot of anger, which is common in depressed people, perhaps due to being in situations that are frustrating, because they have no control over those situations. Certainly my depressive episodes were always triggered by things other people had control over doing, that affected my quality of life adversely.

I have found some of the things that people suggest helpful - I do activities that I can do alone, but find it strange being in social situations. I can cope with these, as I've learnt socially acceptable behaviours, but I don't relate to people in an emotional way, so find it hard to make connections. I have belonged to one group for many years, but still don't visit people in their houses much, or them me.

It doesn't help that I am capable and confident in doing stuff, as I find that people then relate to me only as the "resource", but I have experimented with being unreliable, as I find that helps *me*, since people then start relating to me for who I am, rather than for what I'm doing for them.

Anyway, finding this group is very helpful, particularly being able to read all your past posts, as this does describe how I am, so thanks!