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TOPIC: PTSD and Schizophrenia.

PTSD and Schizophrenia. 4 months 4 weeks ago #39284

  • jody
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I'm just writing a specialist essay on Aphantasia as part of my MSc Pscyhology studies and a question struck me...

Has anyone in our group personally experienced PTSD or schizophrenia and if so do you believe your verbal thoughts were more severe?

Appreciate some may not wish to state these things on an open forum and happy to hear from people via dm....my thinking is that both PTSD and Schizophrenia have strong visual elements currently controlled via anti psychotics....what if they could be controlled by somehow turning off the mental imagery? Though I do appreciate that hallucinations are not inside the mind's eye if that makes sense.

Happy to consider all thoughts on the subject - though I might not reply until Friday which is when my essay is due in :)

n.b. I think I'm a lifelong aphantasiac (not sure as I can't remember!) but only aware for last 16 months. Given some of my life experiences I probably should have had PTSD on a couple of occasions, but I believe my inability to store mental images impacts my emotional responses.
Shit - if only I'd known!
Last Edit: 4 months 4 weeks ago by jody. Reason: clarification
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PTSD and Schizophrenia. 4 months 3 weeks ago #39294

  • Tilma
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Probably too late for your essay, but a quick thought: I think, I think I don't get PTSD. I was in military service a couple of decades ago and I served with some guys who had come back from intensely stressful situations abroad, witnessing wartime atrocities and as a result we were placed in situations to test us and exposed to some pretty gruesome visuals and test cases (Mind that this was all simulation) and they didn't really affect me. I seem to have a fairly limited, to non-existant, level of empathy and many of the things that others had great trouble with, left me unfazed. I always thought of it as these things not leaving a mark on me, as they would on a non-aphantasiac, if that makes sense? But, admittedly, this is mostly academic. Furthermore, I want to emphasize that none of this is meant as a boast, as in 'I am so much sturdier or tougher than others.' I can get nervous just like anyone else, but it's very fleeting and doesn't stick. Anyway, just some thoughts. Hope your essay worked out.
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PTSD and Schizophrenia. 4 months 3 weeks ago #39305

  • moyer
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I was in the army, and spent a year deployed to Iraq. Nothing traumatic happened to me or any of my buddies while we were there. Upon returning home, the only symptoms of ptsd that I felt were a heightened sense of situational awareness, ducking/flinching at loud bang sounds (more so than civilians), and a pronounced hypnagogic jerk that would begin soon after settling in to go to sleep. All of these have since faded out except on the rare occasion. I have never had any kind of flashback to a traumatic experience. I do believe that aphantasia might prevent one from severe ptsd symptoms, though some aphants experience traumatic memories through other senses.

I identify with what Tilma said:

"I seem to have a fairly limited, to non-existant, level of empathy and many of the things that others had great trouble with, left me unfazed. I always thought of it as these things not leaving a mark on me..."
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PTSD and Schizophrenia. 4 months 3 weeks ago #39309

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Thank you for the responses (and the DMs). I do believe that we are less "emotional" outside of the moment than those who visualise and I suspect that this is because we do not have the visual reinforcement element to our memories. In fact I wonder if it is the visual element that makes the memory, the constant revisualization of an event, the rehearsal is what reinforces the memory or is the processs by which memories are formed - my autobiographical memory is terrible.

I would love to do more research into aphantasia using fMRI....maybe I should do this for my PhD.
Shit - if only I'd known!
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PTSD and Schizophrenia. 4 months 3 weeks ago #39313

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jody wrote:
I wonder if it is the visual element that makes the memory, the constant revisualization of an event, the rehearsal is what reinforces the memory or is the processs by which memories are formed .

Jo,

The problem is that visualizers have the ability to manipulate what they visualize. When they revisit a memory, the visualization is subject to manipulation, even if it was a subconscious act. That manipulated memory can then become real in the visualizer's mind's eye. The last time I got shot a comrade found me after the shooting stopped. Then, forty years later, he was recounting the events to my new bride. I mentioned how the place where everything happened was severely damaged by all the explosions and weapons fire. As a visualizer, he told my bride and me that he can still remember how it looked that following morning and there had not been much damage. I feel that his visual memories had been somewhat altered by the passage of time.

I'll let you be the judge. Was the place still pretty much in tack, or was there some damage. I'll give you a hint. There was no damage to any of the facilities prior to those other folks attempting to take the facilities through the right of adverse possession. What you see in the picture were homes of the indigenous people

Robert


The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.
Last Edit: 4 months 3 weeks ago by ussfa344.
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