Important Announcement (Please Read)

Hey, guys. I'mma just gonna go ahead with the announcement since I honestly hate it when I ramble:

I’ll be taking a few months off from Tumblr and I will be cancelling all of the roleplays I currently have. For those who have a roleplay with me, expect to receive a message within 48 hours informing you of my intentions and also a link to this announcement.

I have already contacted Mod Crimson and requested for her to handle the blog in my absence and she has agreed to do so. So for the next few months, the ‘mod ___’ footers will be back to avoid any confusion as to who’s reblogging/posting on this blog.

The reason for my leave is too personal to retell in full, but I just need a lot more time than I’ve previously stated to reintegrate, as my school’s guidance counselor put it. I’ve realized that, though I am technically doing better than I did a few weeks ago, there is a high possibility for me to slip back into dissociating, given the amount and frequency of the times I have to assume a character and their thinking as my own.

I won’t be gone long, however, since Mod Crimson still has her education to focus on and knowing myself, I probably won’t be able to stay away from tumblr for very long anyway. My guess-timate for my return is around December or just before 2017 rolls around.

I hope you guys will understand my reasons. As much as I love roleplaying and acting cocky and brash and flirty, those things aren’t me at all. They never were. Sure, the latter one was a bit of a morale booster for a while but in the end, it sort of became its own person in a way, y'know what I’m saying?

I’m sorry and I really hate to take this leave but my health – whether physical, mental or emotional – will always come first.

This is a scheduled post, originally written on October 20th (Philippine time), so any posts made/reblogged after this date are either queued posts or were from Mod Crimson.

I’ll miss you, guys. Truly, I will. I’ll see you in a few months, yeah? But until then…

Try not to miss me too much.

– Mod Shane


**EDIT**: [As of Oct. 21st]
Mod Crimson here!

Since Shane’s leave, the blog has been getting a lot of messages regarding his lack of activity on AO3 regarding his fic, He Seems to Hate Me.

Well, he told me to tell you that it will be continued and finished, just don’t expect regular update. (Though I’m pretty sure he didn’t update regularly to begin with)

He also reminded me to tag his friends and his affiliated group to inform them of his leave, with the message of, and this is a direct quote:

“ Tell em not 2 worry. I’ll be fine. Nothing’s gonna happen to me. ”

@emmarablack @gelinas22 @gott-sein @j3r1ch0-y2j @wwe-smutfics @helluvawriter @amantedelcalcio and the rest of the @allgirlswrestlingclub

–Mod Crimson

I hate how mental breakdowns are represented in film and the media, like excessively physical and violent. Smashing of windows, mirrors and glass, walls with disturbing messages written across, loud screaming and violently beating pillows etc. Because a lot of mental breakdowns are inner and harder to spot that then that and it gives such a false representation of what having breakdown means

“What is Dissociation?”s

I was prompt to make this after answering at least 10 asks about this. During my latest ask about it, I found myself really thinking more about posting it because I was so inspired.
I dedicate much of my blog and much of my study as a psychology student to awareness and advocating for mental health, so I was driven to post this.

However, I also made this post because I see stuff like this around tumblr and social media:
”Omggggg I dissociated soooo baddddd todayyyyyy I was in school and didn’t payy attention!!!!”
”I zoned outttttt! I am so symptomatic!”

Ok let’s stop. There’s all these people who read about it on google and tumblr, then run around acting like they’re “sooooooo symptomaticcc!” and so many people think they have what they read. It’s quite insulting and mocking of the struggle. Some may just need to be more informed.

Dissociation is a general and broad term referring to a lack of and disconnection from reality. It’s a psychological defense mechanism.
Dissociation is not to be confused with psychosis/psychotic symptoms, which is a loss of reality (rather than a lack of reality) in which symptoms outside of reality occur (hallucinations, delusions, etc).

The concept of dissociation in psychology is very broad and very complex. It is based on a spectrum– it can be anything from nonpathological dissociation (”normal” dissociation; not relating to and not caused by a disorder, such as daydreaming and zoning out), to pathological dissociation as a symptom, to dissociation as a disorder in itself.

So while daydreaming and zoning out is a form of dissociation, there is a difference between this nonpathological dissociation, pathological dissociation as a symptom, and dissociation as a disorder in itself.

Compared to symptomatic pathological dissociation, daydreaming, zoning out, among other states, is a nonpathological dissociation. This psychological response is typically minor. Examples of this include daydreaming and kind of zoning out in a convo, dissociating while driving for long distances, and zoning out while watching a movie or reading a book.

Nonpathological dissociation can occur for various reasons, whether it’s a psychological defense mechanism to boredom, fatigue, a lack of stimulation, if someone has a lot on their mind, to disconnect from stress/anxiety, etc.

Now, just because it is common and nonpathological doesn’t mean it can’t be problematic. We can all agree dissociating while driving or when stressed in certain circumstances can be very problematic. There are still grounding techniques to manage this issue.

Technically, as you can see, we all dissociate. Sometimes, every day!

On the other hand, pathological dissociation means it is dissociation relative to and caused by a disorder. This symptomatic dissociation: disrupts one’s life, continues despite efforts to stop it, is autonomous, intrusive, typically very unsettling and startling, and is more chronic.

Symptomatic pathological dissociation usually occurs in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Related Disorders (PTSD) and Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).

I want to mention that periods of dissociation may clearly happen more often in disorders like Major Depressive Disorder and Anxiety Disorders. In those mental illnesses, it’s not on the criteria, nor is it typically as severe. It is not a main hallmark symptom like it is for PTSD and BPD, in which it is on the main symptom criteria. Naturally, as stress/anxiety may be a trigger for even nonpathological dissociation, it would make sense to see that if someone has a disorder that causes stress, anxiety, and depression, it may occur more often and more severe than it would for someone without those disorders! While it’s not on the criteria or a main severe symptom, that doesn’t mean there’s no struggle and need to handle it and put it under control through grounding and therapeutic techniques and skills.

Symptomatic dissociation in PTSD and BPD is a psychological defense mechanism that is to a severe extent where it starts to affect multiple areas of one’s life, has various symptoms attached to it, and occurs typically because of triggers. One can almost view it as the fight/flight system “freezing” in response to stimuli or an altered state of consciousness.
Dissociation occurs in these disorders to lessen and fend off the emotional reaction, memory, perception, or occurrence, and defend itself by “blocking it out” and disconnecting from it.
For example, with PTSD, it may be in response to a traumatic trigger or reminder. In BPD, it may occur in response to reactive anger and impulsiveness or a distorted perception.

Due to the nervous system “blocking out,” a series of symptoms occur that cause one to feel detached, disconnected, and separated from themselves, the things around them, and reality.
Overall symptoms include:

  • -Fuzzy/foggy and disconnected vision, hearing, and other senses
  • -Double vision
  • -Difficulty making out objects (smaller/bigger than what they are, distorted, etc)
  • -Fatigue or a heavy feeling
  • -Feeling empty and detached
  • -Feeling as if one is floating or in a dream
  • -Feeling as if one is watching themselves from outside their body
  • -Feeling as if their body does not belong to them
  • -A deja vu feeling
  • -May or may not have trouble with memory (complete lapses or difficulty remembering what happened during the dissociation)
  • -Headaches
  • -Dizziness
  • -Freezing (note it’s not to mean completely frozen. It’s referring to limited movement, a lack of responses, such as someone just standing there not doing much, sitting there, seemingly daydreaming at times).
  • And more

It’s NOT just experiencing one or two of some of these symptoms, either. Someone isn’t symptomatic because they’ll feel deja vu at times or moments in which they may experience one or two of those reactions. Additionally, sometimes nonpathological dissociation may also be worse at times than others during times of fatigue or stress, but it doesn’t automatically make it pathological. Psychological reactions like that would be on the verge of nonpathological dissociation because as you can see, there’s a few overlaps, and it’s a spectrum.
Some of this logic also wouldn’t make sense. If someone was only experiencing dizziness or a headache and nothing else, that’s clearly not dissociation. That’s a headache. I write this because people tend to think they’re symptomatic when they experience some of these responses that can be part of nonpathological dissociation to a certain degree. Pathological dissociation, as mentioned, is disruptive to life, autonomous, typically a trigger, etc.,

Dissociative reactions can be more acute (i.e., dissociating/blocking out in response to an immediate trigger, distortions, etc.) or more chronic, such as if dissociative feelings (i.e. disconnected, floating, etc.) remain for periods of time. Notice how some of the symptoms listed there wouldn’t necessarily last as a chronic dissociation– someone wouldn’t chronically “freeze,” for example.

Additional signs/symptoms of dissociation that typically occur in chronic instances throughout one’s day, may include:

  • -Talking in a monotone, quiet, slow, or dull manner
  • -Talking in a manner that may not make sense or seem disorganized
  • -Seeming very “off” and short attention span for a period of time
  • -Doing things and not remembering
  • -Having brief memory disturbance and lapses throughout their day, etc.

When it comes to dissociation as a separate mental disorder in itself, it occurs with its own set of symptoms/criteria to a severe extent and unique pattern, rather than a symptom of another mental disorder. Dissociative disorders are defined by affecting perception, feelings, identity, and awareness.

Very briefly, this would include:

  1.  Dissociative Identity Disorder (formerly multiple personality disorder): Typically caused be severe trauma or sexual abuse, this is when the individual dissociates as a result of a defense mechanism from the trauma, and there is an alter identity/personality during those dissociative states. Their memory during these states is impaired and they may or may not be aware of the alters. The presentation of the alter differs per individual– there may be extreme changes of behavior, voice, appearance, or name, but it isn’t typically noticeable and may be less obvious and remain hidden, as the point is to protect and preserve the self.
    The individual has gone through so much severe trauma, that the dissociative states have an alter to take over during these stressful states and other triggers to preserve and protect the self– They switch between their alter(s) and themselves.

  2. Dissociative Amnesia: Due to trauma and other disasters, the individual acutely loses memory– may forget who they are, where they are, and/or what happened.

  3.  Dissociative fugue: Amnesia of the identity, which includes perception, memory, and personality. As a result, it includes a sudden change in who they are, which then may result in wandering or traveling to places, unplanned, a make-up of a new identity, etc.

  4. Depersonalization/Derealization Disorder: There are two parts of dissociation. Depersonalization (dissociation of the self) and delrealization (dissociation of surroundings). This is when someone persistently dissociates and is aware it is a feeling and not really occuring, and it is a condition in itself and not a result of another condition like BPD and PTSD.

  5. Dissociative disorder otherwise specified/unspecified

Notice how nonpathological dissociation occurs typically as a disconnection from immediate surroundings from boredom, stress, distraction, etc., and symptomatic pathological dissociation goes deeper into disconnecting from the triggers, identity, intense emotional experience, perception, and awareness.
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