You Can Recover! It Took a Lot of Hard Work But I Did.

I battled with Depersonalization after drug mis-use and a series of abusive relationships. It began with an enormous panic attack that woke me in the night, I didn't feel real, my heart was racing and I was experiencing a feeling of dread and pure terror. I went to the bathroom to wash my face and realised I didn't recognise myself in the mirror, It was so scary. The following few days It remained at the same level my head felt like it was expanding, like I had a tight band around it, I felt at a high level of alert all the time. Then one day I lost all the feeling, I felt dead inside, I had no emotions apart from fear of the emptiness and nothing appeared real, particularly me, I didn't know who I was I kept having to repeat my name to myself this went on and on and I thought I was going insane. I researched my symptoms on the internet and I stopped going out I was in a constant state of misery, I was lost in myself.

Now, however, I have recovered and I remember what it feels like to be in that place and I really want to help others find their way. this is what i did and I hope it helps.

* Cut out coffee, tea, chocolate, alcohol and any other stimulant this only increases the anxiety. (I can have these things again now so it's not forever!)

*Limit your time researching on the internet and thinking 'What is Wrong with me!?' If you can cut it out completly, having DP means you spend most of your time lost in your head anyway so do not constantly ponder on this thought when it comes gently let it pass.

* Distract your self, i found crosswords/sudoku type things good.

* congratulate your self, even if only for a minute you feel slightly normal CONGRATULATE YOURSELF this is really important!

* Tell other people about it, share with them how you feel be honest it'll take a load off.

*write a diary but don't talk about your DP just write down what you've done that day.

* GO OUT! another important one! You don't feel like it because it feels like everyone knows there is something wrong with you and your anxiety levels get worse and you feel worse but its important to keep living. Your DP will go with you but just power through!

* I had a few sessions of counselling which were invaluable in supporting me. it taught me techniques such as focusing out, when the DP gets really bad focus your attention outwards concentrate on the details of things around you. Inner voice - find a place where you feel safe and secure and see the colours, smells, sounds in detail, really concentrate on it and then choose a calming phrase to go with it such as 'I'm ok it will pass' develop this sentence and use it when you feel panicky or detached I still use mine today and its so powerful now it calms me immediatly!

* Allow negative feelings and thought to pass by like clouds let them come but do not allow them to effect you, know that they will pass.

* Take a small dose of anti-anxiety I took 10mg of AMPTYTRIPTYLINE i'm off it now but it took the edge off the panic for a while.

I really hope this helps! if anyone wants to get in touch then please do as I am more than happy to help. another little thing that helped when I was convinced I was slipping into insanity was when the doctor pointed out 'People that go insane don't sit their worrying about it, they have no worries at all as they are insane!'


poppyfield poppyfield
2 Responses Feb 27, 2009

That is exactly what happened to me I can't believe it !! After a weekend on the drugs a few days after I had the worst panic attack of my life ... I thought I was going crazy and since then I've felt so spaced out it still hasn't left me and that was over a year ago.... How long did yours last?

Thank you so much for sharing this... I recently just started experiencing episodes of DP and it's scared the hell out of me. My episodes only have lasted an hour at most, but it's a horrible feeling. It really helps to know that others experience the feeling of being "unreal" too.