Causes of Depersonalization Disorder
The cause of depersonalization simply put is; stress -Depersonalization is the escape of a stressful and painful reality.
Why does it happen?
Depersonalization is a protective mechanism by your brain. When feelings become unbearably painful, the brain shuts them down. If you have experienced depersonalization first hand, then you know how scary it can be. Although it is there to protect you, it can cause serious discomfort. In order to fully understand depersonalization you need to understand how the human mind and body works. Humans are made up of energy, that energy is what allows us to have emotions (energy in motion) once our emotions get stuck or hurt, the brain shuts them down temporarily to protect us from further aguish.
Our brain is comprised of many sections, one of them is called the “limbic system”, it is the part of the brain which is responsible for programming emotions. What happens in depersonalization is that our brain temporarily shuts down the limbic system to protect you from feeling any bad emotions, unfortunately because it shuts down emotions that also includes good emotions as well. The limbic system is not only responsible for processing your emotions but also your 5 senses and awareness. This is why people who experience depersonalization often complain about feeling disconnected, head spinning, looking through glass, being in a dream-like state, out of body experiences. All of these “odd symptoms” are due to the shut down of the limbic system. When the limbic system shuts down your painful emotions is also shuts down your senses and awareness, which is also why victims of depersonalization start to question their own reality. Am I real? Is life real? What is the purpose of life? What happens when I die? Am I already dead? Are people around me real? This is due to the shut down of your awareness. What makes awareness and consciousness? It is our emotions. When we take away our emotions we end up living in a emotionless world, emotions are what makes up feel alive. As overwhelming as your painful emotions can be it is best to try to feel them, this will speed up the process of depersonalization recovery.
What are the cause of painful emotions?
- Emotional abuse: name calling, invalidation, denying, neglecting, stonewalling, gas lighting, invasion of privacy, sarcasm, isolating, ignoring, manipulating, scapegoating, ridiculing, silent treatment, controlling and humiliating.
- Physical abuse: slapping, hitting, punching, pushing, pulling, kicking, misuse of medication, neglect, isolation, beating with an object such as a belt or a shoe, pulling hair, burning skin, malnourishing.
- Sexual abuse: verbal harassment, pressure for sexual activity, sexually motivated touching, nonconsensual intercourse, nonconsensual kissing, nonconsensual touching of the private parts, showing pornographic material, penetration with objects.
- Trauma: Car accident, airplane crash, freak accident, witnessing a death, witnessing a natural disaster, witnessing abuse, war, terrorism.
Why do our painful emotions get blocked?
Simply put, to protect us from suffering.
Emotions get blocked by suppression. We either feel painful emotions and actively suppress them to make them go away or we experience painful emotions and our brain automatically shuts them down for us (depersonalization). So now what? Well, now that you know the scientific explanation of your depersonalization the next step is you WAKE UP your EMOTIONS.
This part can be tricky, depending on your level of trauma, you should probably do this with the guidance of a professional doctor such as a psychologist. The reason is because when we start to wake up our emotions we can become overwhelmed by the painful memories which are associated with the trauma and that can send us back into depersonalization mode.
Recovery from depersonalization is HIGHLY common. As a matter of fact, if you have ever experienced life without depersonalization then its is 100% guaranteed that you can go back to that place, even if the last time was when you were 5 years old. To learn all about depersonalization recovery, you can download my e-book with in depth step by step instructions by clicking this link Download Recovery Book.
Chronic Stress and Depersonalization
What is chronic stress?
Chronic Stress is when one suffers emotional and mental pressure for a prolonged period of time in which the individual perceives he or she has little or no control over. In response the adrenal glands produce abnormally high levels or cortisol which can lead to physical as well as mental problems, one of which is depersonalization.
Long periods of chronic stress has the sam effect on the brain as one singular traumatic event, for example suffering emotional abuse, or financial stress for a long period of time can have the same impact on the brain as being raped, or being in an accident (traumatic event)
Just like the brain blocks bad emotions from trauma and abuse, the brain can shut down under prolonged chronic stress.
Therefore to cure the depersonalization is to actually find the cure to the cause, if the cause happens to be chronic stress, finding a solution to your chronic stress is essential in order to recover from depersonalization.
Why does the brain get stressed from drugs such as marijuana & LSD?
Many people turn to street drugs as a way to ease stress, whether it be marijuana, alcohol or psychoactive drugs such as LSD. What most people don’t realize that taking these types of drugs can actually stress out the brain instead of “calming it down” It all boils down to dosage and tolerance. One person can handle large amounts of drugs while another is more sensitive and gets stressed out from them. It has been studied that large doses of THC (psychoactive compound in weed) can actually cause psychosis and stress to the brain, which can lead to depersonalization. This is why so many people who experience depersonalization say it came on after they got high. Stay away from anything that causes your brain stress, this includes all recreational street drugs. There are healthy alternatives to relief stress. That being said, depersonalization and disassociation caused by doing drugs IS VERY COMMON. Unfortunately, as common as it is there people are suffering in silence thinking they have gone “crazy” Learning about depersonalization is the first step to recovery, whether your depersonalization came from stress, trauma or weed, the recovery process is the same.
You can download the Depersonalization Recovery Book here