#takeonnews: Losing Self

Have you ever found yourself feeling so out of sync with the world that you entertain the thought “you’ve lost yourself”? I thought I had periods like that in my past, especially right after I had the stroke.

However, what I was actually experiencing was being too much inside myself to have a normal perception of my world. Chances are this is similar to what you’ve experienced.

The other day I read an article at the website, Aeon, titled “When the self slips”, making me realize I’ve never lost myself at all, although there’s about 2% of the population who have. They have experienced a phenomenon in which they become an observer of their day-to-day activities. It’s kind of like the “out of body experience”, you briefly die but you continue to function in life.

As a writer who enjoys penned dark drama, this sort of event piqued my interest. What if I had a character with this problem? A problem where he/she had depersonalization disorder (DPD) and was always seeing his/her life in 3rd person? It would make for interesting drama, that’s for sure.

I would think this disorder would be so frustrating and distressful that it could cause a person to end up being psychotic. Though, according to Anna Ciaunica, the author of this article, people with this diagnosis are able to function in their daily lives. In fact, they crave interaction with others in their attempt to feel connected to the world and themselves.

I’m astounded by the fortitude these people suffering from this condition possess. I don’t think I could be the mouse in the corner in my own life feeling like I’m only observing what is going on with someone else who is actually me. I’m pretty sure I’d lose my mind.


The article is fascinating to say the least, although I had to read it several times to grasp all the complicity of this subject. Even with that, I sit here in a small amount of perplexity.

“Now, after so many years, I understand what the Coldness was and where it came from—this sense that everything is lost, and worthless, and meaningless.”
Lauren Oliver, Delirium


10 thoughts on “#takeonnews: Losing Self

  1. That’s fascinating. A character like that could fill a lot of roles.

    I’ve never had that experience but I’ve had lucid dreams, where I realise I am dreaming and observe and sometimes alter the dream experience. I wouldn’t say they are disturbing, but those nights certainly weren’t among the most restful night’s sleep I’ve had.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve had dreams like that too and it wasn’t disturbing. Of course, I knew it was a dream. It was just incredibly weird. But imagine that dream as real life, day in and day out. I would think it would be horrific and mind-boggling.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. That’s a fascinating syndrome. I wonder if I’ve known people with this disorder and wasn’t aware. It’s probable that people who suffer from it may not know and think themselves to be crazy.

    I’ve had out of body dreams – me floating about the earth or standing in a corner, observing me doing something else. But I think it’s a common phenomenon, one that allows our brain to filter out the things that stress our waking hours.

    Thanks for giving us the link to the article.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think most people have had those dreams where they see themselves in action but I also think we’ve known that what we’re observing is in a fantasy state too. I would think we do this so we can evaluate ourselves in a perspective that isn’t quite so bias. However, I would think to have this happen during wakeful hours would be alarming and frightening.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I did not realise it was a disorder/disease but can appreciate why. It reminds me of the movie Memento, where the main character loses memory and time and is told retrospectively.

    Liked by 1 person

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