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TOPIC: Losing Direction

Losing Direction 1 year 2 weeks ago #4682

  • rumeyj
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My story starts way back from when I was young. I have a good memory, never had problems at school. The only problem I had was with directions. For the life of me I could never find myself to somewhere. I might have been there several times before, but I'd get lost again and again. Sometimes I would get down from the bus and head in the exact opposite direction of where I was supposed to be going (this is to places I had been before). As a kid, I would even get lost in Nintendo games, though my younger brother could navigate them with ease. I've been looking for someone with similar problems on the net from the mid 90s. The GPS (i've so many) is my constant companion.

I've always been surprised by my father's, mates' and my wife's ability to drive back to a place after having been there only once... recently my wife (of 15+ years) wanted to address the issue, and while we talking she said something that, when we went into a bit deeper, made me realise that she could actually see pictures in her mind. I only have pictures of 2 or 3 (still pictures) that I can recall vividly of some highly emotional times. I can't actually "see" a picture in my mind at will, though I do dream in full colour and with stereo sound and acute smell. I can't remember a face (though I can recognise it when I see it again). What I mean is, that if I met my mum on the street, I'd know her, but if you asked me to describe her now, I can't. Does she have wide eyes? I don't know.... I have to look at her to be able to tell.... I can of course write down a list of things her face would look like and remember that list, but i think you get the idea.

It had never bothered me before, and I don't see it as a disability, and it was my wife who found the word "aphantasia" when she was researching what I have. I thought I'd get on the forum and see if there are others like me.

Looking back, I've been compensating for this unknowingly. In my work, I take pictures of a lot of things to help me remember and when i do designs I refer to the pictures often. Far more than others doing the same job.

Anyone with similar experiences?
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Losing Direction 1 year 2 weeks ago #4701

  • Tilma
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Well, that sounds pretty textbook. I think if you browse this forum for a bit, you will find many similar experiences. Directions seems to be a common problem for many here, although my experience is somewhat different from yours. In most cases I can find my way back to a place I have been to before. I couldn't however tell someone how to travel that route or which landmarks he or she would see (unless it is a very familiar route for me). I have to travel the route to know it.
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Losing Direction 1 year 2 weeks ago #4713

  • Robert
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I have no problem with directions, but have a terrible time with memory and organization; I have to take photos, make lists, plot everything out on paper, etc. -- to have any hope of keeping on top of things.

Ironically, my late wife, who had such a vivid visual imagination, a rich and accurate memory, and was extremely organized, had trouble throughout her life with confusing right and left.
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