Dissociation is a biological protection



From the Complex PTSD Workbook:

“Dissociation is a biological protection that disconnects you from threatening experiences.

It exists on a continuum from relatively mild sensations of fogginess, sleepiness, or having difficulty concentrating to feeling numb or cut off.

In the most extreme situations, you might have lapses of memory or a feeling of lost time.

For instance, a neglected or abused child may learn to dissociate from, or tune out, threatening experiences.

In adulthood, this dissociation can be perpetuated as you push away the parts of you that hold emotions of fear, shame, or helplessness.

Here you might say, “It’s just too much to know what happened.”

Derealization and depersonalization are two key aspects of dissociation.

Derealization refers to ways in which you feel surreal or as if you are living in a dream.

Depersonalization is when you disconnect from your feelings or thoughts as though they are not yours.

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