posted on Feb, 13 2016 @ 11:47 AM
No conspiracy, but it's a topic that gets little attention, and leaves you feeling out of step with the world.
Yes, it's debilitating because if you don't see someone on a regular basis you search for clues when they obviously know you. Stumbling through
conversation looking for clues while trying not to let on that you don't know them on sight can be one of the most anxiety provoking things you go
through with this condition. Usually I find a marker that isn't the face to clue me in to who you are, like hair, a distinctive feature, your
location, clothes, etc...
Change your hair, have a mole removed or some other distinguishing feature modified, and I'm lost. Even someone saying hello on the street is a panic
that sets off a scramble to figure out who you are, and then I'm missing what you're saying. This brings on more anxiety because I can't follow the
conversation while I'm confused.
A perfect example would be a walk in the mall a few weeks ago. The lady called my name and started a conversation about the tot she was with, and how
she was expecting again, with the obvious baby bump. I picked up her little girl, and we chatted for a while as I held this little bundle of joy, but
I had no idea who this woman was. You start using leading question to get a time frame, like "How old is she now?", "Did you change your hair?",
"How's Everybody doing?".
But you still have no clue who you're talking to.
Work is being done in this field, and I know mine was caused by a fall when I was much younger that damaged that small part of my brain, but the
damage is long term.
Can you imagine a life that if you don't see a friend for several days you don't know who they are? Or seeing your brother after several months
apart and having no recognition of who it is? Sure, all the memories of everything you've ever done together is totally intact once you know who it
is, but the face is still a blank slate until you can associate something that makes a connection. And the baby in the mall with her mother, I had
actually delivered that baby and had known the mother for years. I just didn't know who she was when she approached me at the mall.
Many people withdraw from family and social situation, suffer anxiety in public places because of a fear of being recognized, and many just cut ties
with society and hide because of the shame they feel from not recognizing people they have known for so long. Most people I know understand that I
need a clue as to who they are sometimes, like "Hey, I'm Janet from the marketing department, we were going to go over the Chivas ads for the
summer". And that works if I don't try to hide the problem.
I'm not sure how common this disorder is, but if you feel comfortable talking about it, I'm most interested in what you use as coping skills in
daily life that make your life easier, and not so prone to anxiety and panic, or even if you feel anxiety and panic.