I am an 18 year old male and I have been a pretty emotionally dead person for...well since my early childhood. And when I say dead I don't mean depressed or really down or anything of that nature. It's nearly impossible for me to feel anything genuine and I can only put a mask of fakeness on so I don't seem so far out. When I was in a psychology class I read about something called anti-social personality disorder and it almost disturbed me how similar the symptoms were to my own character. I've done enough to put myself away for the better half of my life and I haven't felt a shred of remorse or conscience. Anyways, I'm wondering if my lack of emotion is a cause of concern. Nothing brings me joy, pain, or sorrow and I can't even feel love for my own family anymore. NOTHING will make me feel anything and it bothers me. All I feel like is a body and a brain without a soul. Something is wrong with me but I don't know what. I'm a very intelligent person and all it seems I can do is succeed with material things like work while my relationships are built on false pretenses and emotions I never even felt but acted like I did. My question is: If there is anybody somewhat educated about this...what could be wrong with me? Do I have anti-social personality disorder?...and am I stuck with this?
Additional info, added Wednesday April 15 2009, 1:02 am: Sorry about the format...apparently paragraphs are easier on the eyes.
04-14-08: I've been reading these updates. Not much has changed since I have posted this (actually I think it became worse) and I've pretty much just learned to accept this the way it is. It's not like I really care one way or the other anyways, heh. To anyone else with this issue, just make the best of it you can - you only live once so you may as well make it a good run.
- And one last thing. Those of us with this should consider it a gift, not a curse. We do not share the weakness of emotion that plagues our brethren, but are masters of logic and cunning. And since we are not bound by traditional restrictions, such as morals, guilt, or love, we are free to assert our will over weaker individuals.
Here are a few disorders that I think you should look into, depending on your situation:
* Apathetic since birth, and generally introverted: autistic spectrum, Asperger syndrome
* Apathetic since birth, and antisocial from childhood onward as marked by early conduct issues, a juvenile criminal record, etc.: antisocial personality disorder
* Apathetic since a significant event after birth: depression, post-traumatic stress disorder
* Apathetic since late teens or young adulthood, accompanied by social withdrawal: schizoid personality disorder, schizophrenia
By the way, if you have one of these disorders, it might not be in your best interest to post any revealing details here. For instance: Cj Canuelas, the self-proclaimed sociopath (firstname.lastname@example.org, [Link](Mouse over link to see full location)). Google picks up a lot of this stuff and employers do a lot of Googling. But if you're already very dysfunctional, I guess that it wouldn't matter too much.
Dp answered Wednesday April 24 2013, 4:49 pm: Hello all it sounds like you all suffer from what I have been suffering for the past 7 years. It's called depersonalisation disorder, in a nut shell it's when traumas in our childhood cause us to depersonalise or detach from our selves in adult good or later life. Information and a great program can be found on [Link](Mouse over link to see full location) I am not affiliated with the site in anyway, just looking to spread the word about what has started my road to recovery. I hope this is the answer you were looking for [ Dp's advice column | Ask Dp A Question ]
kantharis answered Sunday April 14 2013, 10:24 am: Do some research about schizoid personality disorder(SPD).It's not as bad as it sounds.It is not the same as schizophrenia,they share some common characteristics though .Ifeel just like you. [ kantharis's advice column | Ask kantharis A Question ]
KeewiSweeti answered Tuesday February 19 2013, 5:36 pm: I`m a 13 year old female. I honestly have no real advice. At first I saw this as a curse, then I assumed it was a defense mechanism, to dull pain. I thought it might possibly be a gift. I even considered faking emotions. But, at this point, I just see it as who I am, how I am, and I`ve almost moved on. Unlike most of you, I can feel emotions. But it`s never more than a little, and it`s always late. I don`t know why I don`t feel emotions and others do. I`ve never felt concerned, only curious. When my uncle Jacob died, I just stood there, watching my siste3r cry with my mom, and my grandmother looking at his baby pictures. I used to think I thought it was a joke, and I did for a minute, but I never even felt sad at all. I loved him, at that point it was a strong feeling, and I wanted to be upset, to not be odd, to not care, but I honestly couldn`t be upset or cry. I only cried once, for a minute, when I saw my mom still so depressed, five years afterward. I stopped feeling pleasure or pain or anything, basically, because of my dad, and it`s a long story, but basically, he doesn`t want to be a real father. Many people think its wrong to dislike my dad. Some think I should love him, some think I should hate him, but I just don`t like him, but I`m mostly blank. I`ve talked to a therapist about it, and she only told me to "Draw sadness." I don`t know how to sadness, and I really don`t understand sadness much any more. I was depressed, and I guess I still am. I haven`t felt any emotion for about 6 or seven months. For a while, I didn`t notice them slip away, but now its obvious. Hindsight is 20/20, huh? Either way, it`s really upset my parents. They say they want the old, happy, bubbly me back. I guess I just can`t be bubbly anymore. And, obviously, I can`t feel happy, at least not much, or I wouldn`t be here. I`ve been researching, and I think citalopram, the medication I`m on for depression, could be the cause. I don`t know, but medication could be a cause, chemical imbalances in your brain, defense mechanisms. I am almost certain it`s because of my medication. [ KeewiSweeti's advice column | Ask KeewiSweeti A Question ]
giannis answered Saturday September 8 2012, 8:50 pm: Guys i have been like that still i was 12 years old and now i am 18.When i was 16 i found the cure and i got my emotions back it was very hard but there is a way to get them back.Also losing your feelings is a soul problem cause thats where your emotions come from .Even i found the cure i lost them again and now for me there is now way to get them back....I can answer your question guys all of them how you get your emotions back i will tell you .I am really frustrated about losing my feelings TWICE i understand each of you just massage at my email email@example.com i will sure help you .I really hate this fucking situation i am living right now having no feelings it like a curse my parents think that i hate them i cant speak to them they wont understand , any relationship i had till now has based in fake feelings .The only think i can feel when i am looking inside my self is sadness.I dont get and i cant feel the love my parents and other family members give me.All those problems can be solved guys just massage me in my email i willl sure help you.I really found a way to get them back and it works massage me plz i want to help you all ..... [ giannis's advice column | Ask giannis A Question ]
mrcook9 answered Thursday September 6 2012, 8:51 pm: No, this is completely normal...... As normal as I am, anyhow. I'm 17 now, by the way.
My personality isn't quite like yours. I feel, but very differently than most. One might say that I don't feel at all, were they to live their life as me. The real me, not this illusion. What I've done, though it was difficult, was disguise my personality, like you did yours, under another. But I did this a long time ago, over a decade ago, with the intention of making it so my true self was completely buried. Now, it is. Think of it as a shell. My mask is my shell. My true self is the flesh underneath. Sometimes, the shell chips, and parts leak through. I can seal them, but it's hard.
The key is not to make others think this mask is real, it's to make YOU think it's real. Obviously, it's slowly coming back. I'm becoming more reserved, and I'm despising humans more and more. If you attempt this, beware that it may take some time, especially since you didn't start while you were as young as I was. 18 might be too late. Also, be careful not to revert to yourself, no matter what. If it hurts, let it.
My friend died, and I felt pain. But then, for some reason, without my doing, my true self slipped back for just a moment. And it didn't hurt nearly as much as it should have. What others will be like in 5 years after the death, I was in a less than a month. This is because I slipped.
Other than that, I can offer you a cause, but I guarantee you won't like it. Your intelligence. My case is the same, intelligence. I've found that the best way to conceal myself is to hide my intelligence. This pains me, as this is the one thing I want to keep. I'm not going stupid, but I literally don't perceive things as much as I should. More than removing it, I'm restraining it, holding it back, so anything gained is sealed as it enters. On the few times I have slipped, I noticed things I never would have without it. I could tell exactly where someone was going, and simply by watching them walk. It was freaky, and unexpected.
If you intend to use this strategy, seal your intelligence first. And by seal, I think I should clarify that you needn't act stupid or anything, simply try not to notice things that you normally do, things that others don't. Take time on things, try to steer around the answer for a bit. When this comes naturally to you, try to make it so you don't need to steer around the answers, make the path shorter. Then, seal everything else off. But start with intelligence. [ mrcook9's advice column | Ask mrcook9 A Question ]
raniasabbah answered Sunday August 5 2012, 4:50 am: im the same i m totaly dead inside i dont have emotions like i dont have soul just brain and moving body like robots i dont know if you you are the same but this is how im ..all i can do is to continue my prayers even if idont feel them maybe someday my emostions and heart or soul whatever is it will beback to me ...is there any dead inside person please if there is contact me on facebook [Link](Mouse over link to see full location) [ raniasabbah's advice column | Ask raniasabbah A Question ]
nanickore answered Friday July 6 2012, 12:25 am: Let me tell you guys my story now. I'm male, 16. I was born in a small city in Brazil. I'm not poor. I'm from an upper-mid-class family. Then I moved to the capital of my district, which is quite big, when I was 4. I started going to school normally and made some new friends. One day, when i was going back from school, the father of my best friend bought me an ice cream and invited me to go to his house, so we could play video-games and these things. So i did it - went to my friend's house and it was a lovely afternoon. We ate candies, played PS1... it was perfect. I couldn't be happier. Then this started to get frequent. And my friend's dad sometimes did massage at me and my other friends too that came by his house. But with me it was differente. Everytime he did this massage in me was kind of erotic, and he put hands at my genitals and these things. I was a small kid at that time with like 6 or 7 years old. I had a notion about what was sex already, but still couldn't understand all that. Then things started to get more serious and he was REALLY abusing myself (not just touching but blowjob etc), almost every weekend. I didn't tell this to anyone. I kept it to myself, and to be honest, I liked it. This is the part where everyone is gonna judge me for it. You don't know what was to be in the same place as me, and i thought it was normal. I really did thought it was normal these kinds of things happening to me. This kept going for more 6 years. I was 12. I didn't know about my sex orientation and I was really confused. Sometimes I liked girls, but most of the time i liked boys. I had two best friends - one of them was the son of the guy that abused me for all these years - we were like three mosquetiers, always together, no matter what. One day I decided to tell them i liked boys too. From that day on everything was different. They simply stopped hanging out with me and started ignoring me. At that same time my parents broke up, and they always put me in the middle of the fights. ALWAYS. It was a terrible break up, my world was totally falling to pieces. I didn't know who I was anymore. I was changing, my body was changing, my lifestyle was changing, my economic status was changing due to my parents break up, everything was different. In the same year my mom had breast cancer, and she was at the bottom of the hill. She was inbetween life and death, and my dad kept doing shit to her, telling her horrible things. My brother was starting to be a druggie, and gave us a lot of problems. I saw everything happen and I simply couldn't do anything. Time passed and this freaky shit too. My mom cured from her cancer, my brother is better - althought didn't stop smoking weed - my dad is now engaged and everyone made their life go on. The problem is that after it I could never heal from the ill that this phase caused to me. I'm depressed, anxious all the time, and suffer from a thing called derealization. It's like everything you see is a dream, like if the way you see the world is a dream. These things are so frightening, sometimes i don't know how i can get throught it everyday. I still don't know my sexual orientation. I hook up with boys and girls, but from like 6 months ago till now i don't feel attracted to any sex. I've completely lost my emotions for anyone. I don't miss anyone, don't hate anyone, don't love anyone. My grandma died last year and everyone from my family cried. I was the only one who didn't, which made me feel kind of ashamed. I generally hate everything about myself. I hate every act I do. I hate my face, my hair, my body, the way I talk, the way I walk. I hate everything. The only thing about myself that I'm still proud is that even with all the problems I went through, I've never let that affect my studies. I've always did great at school, no matter what - without much effort. I easily learn things. I've never done any english course or anything like that, everything I learned about english I learned only watching movies, listening to music and these shit. My english spelling is the best I've seen, compared to brazilian people. If you didn't know i was brazilian and i had talked to you personally, you would never guess that I'm not american. Anyway, I still have financial problems and I'm worried all the time. Life goes by and I don't feel not a bit like living anymore. Everything has lost sense. I miss the days I was younger, full of hope and perspectives. Now It's just pain. I'm writing this crying because I've had a terrible night. My days on this shit called Earth are counted. Soon I will be gone and people from my family will learn how to live without me. Suicide is my only way out of this hell-hole. If you have passed through many problems either, I hope you are stronger then me and find a way to deal with them, cause i can't do it no longer. [ nanickore's advice column | Ask nanickore A Question ]
SociallyAwkward answered Monday July 2 2012, 8:03 pm: Hello there. Sorry if my english is bad. I'm a 18 year old female from eastern Europe with the same problem. I was looking for something about this on Google and I found this site and read your post.
I just don't know what to do. I'm emotionally dead and indifferent. I'm sometimes very rude to my family members and they feel like I don't love them. Although, I am sure that I love my mother and whatever she does I can forgive her because I know she is the most amazing person who had done so much for me. But my father is a man I couldn't describe quickly. Let's just say we really don't get along well and I don't respect him at all because he is aggressive, ungrateful and evil. I have a sister and a brother too, but I don't know if I really love them. The real problem is - I don't have an idea why I don't feel anything.
Also, I have a boyfriend, we've been together for 2 years and I feel nothing. During sex I am concentrating on him and trying to do everything right and when it comes to my pleasure, it's only physical and it's getting boring. I learned how to fake emotions.
I don't have many friends. There's this girl I've known since we were kids and I hang out with her sometimes and tell her my secrets and she tells me hers, but I don't love her as a friend. I don't love her at all. Furthermore, I think she is a bad person and she betrayed me many times, but she's the only friend I have. She has many friends, though. I'm a extremely shy, I find it really hard to make friends. I'm very quiet. I don't think of myself as an insecure person, actually I always think that I am better than most of the people, but I was never too proud and I always show respect to people. I am humble, but in the inside I know that I don't deserve to be hated, hurt or betrayed.
I often worry about unimportant stuff, I constantly think that everyone disrespects me so I do bad things on purpose just to make sure I am hated (I really don't know why I'm doing this) and I am rude to people because I don't know how to reach them any other way. Sometimes I get angry, sometimes I'm scared. That's all I feel. I haven't always been like this, how to change it? [ SociallyAwkward's advice column | Ask SociallyAwkward A Question ]
NSFCOM answered Tuesday May 29 2012, 5:07 pm: Hi .. I'm 25 male .. I'm just have the same situation .. but i don't call it problem .. some times i don't understand people ..I have no feelings .. only Brain and my evil soul ^____^ ...
so .. its good coz i do what ever i think its good for me and no thing else .. I'm very intelligent .. maybe this is the reason I can't understand people hopeless feelings . [ NSFCOM's advice column | Ask NSFCOM A Question ]
JovanVVV answered Sunday May 20 2012, 4:39 pm: I am male 14. My parents is not together, three years ago i come to live with dad... I think that is the reason... I was so sad that I cried every night a month, I suddenly ceased to feel happiness and sadness, and surprise. Sorry for my english...But a year ago I found a rabbit in a box,I fed him and began to love him but he suddenly died (he was supposed to suck more milk). I cried all day, and after that I stopped feel emotion... [ JovanVVV's advice column | Ask JovanVVV A Question ]
TvGReaper answered Tuesday May 15 2012, 12:44 am: I am currently 15 years old, and i havent completely lost emotion. I can no longer feel pain or sadness, i no longer find joy from amusement parks, videogames, sports, i dont know whats wrong with me and i hate this feeling. I am not depressed but sometimes i do wonder why the universe exists. :P please reply to this i am desperate for an answer [ TvGReaper's advice column | Ask TvGReaper A Question ]
StlCardinals answered Tuesday May 15 2012, 12:21 am: Alright here's my story:
I had (and still do) a loving family growing up. I used to feel emotions sharply. I was a straight A student and excelled in sports. I moved in 8th grade and went from super popular to knowing no one. So I got into playing Xbox. I would live to play Halo. Recently, I smoked weed, which led to spiritual encounters. I realized I have no emotions, and believe video game addiction to be the problem. So, I sold my Xbox and have gotten involved in church. I do believe God is real, but I have trouble following his greatest commandment: "Love thy neighbor." I try very hard to love, but I feel like it should just be, not me have to labor hard to do it.
Jackd20 answered Monday May 7 2012, 3:01 pm: Hi Majj just read your post and it sounds extremely like myself. I am a 19 yr old male and have no emotions watsoever, I've been like this for as long as I can remember my soul feels like its been sucked out of me and I can't seem to find no way back to my oringal self. I have cut off contact from friends and family and take no interest in their well being. I dont go out much anymore because I can't chill out I'm constantly paranoid for no reason, people think I'm weird because I don't socialise as much as I should because I purely don't take no interest in what they are saying because I believe it's just a load of shit anyway. I have become accustomed and enjoy my own company I know this sounds fucked up but it's hard to explain . My girlfriend dumped me couple of months ago over this and I didn't even care I just looked her straight in her eyes and told her to fuck off she said im too cold for her and she needs someone loving. I really want to do something about this but this hold on me is fucking up my life I don't go to work anymore i rarely speak to no one all my happy memories have been erased , to be honest I feel as if I'm dead already and am just waiting for the event of death to take its toll [ Jackd20's advice column | Ask Jackd20 A Question ]
ericsmith answered Monday May 7 2012, 9:25 am: Hi if you are reading this please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org because i have the same problem accept mine just started 3 years ago when I was 23yrs old. all my life I had emotional problems with anger and depression, but in 2009 I became so depressed that I couldn function at work or school or at functions with my friends, I was also having mood swings toward my girlfriend screaming at her and calling her names and saying i never wanted to talk to her again just because she would text me back 15 minutes late sometimes. I also became paranoid and thought people who worked in resteraunts were trying to poison my food. After going through this long enough I completely broke down and stopped going outside and talking to my friends, I stopped going to work without telling my boss why.Ikeep in mind that before this all happens i was a faithful christian who loved God and had strong views on right from wrong. after 6 months I started noticing that I no longer felt anxious paranoid or depressed but I still didn't feel happy or back to my old self either. slowly I started calling old friends back and going back to church. but something was different. I no longer felt the need to be around other people and I no longer felt the need to talk to people. around my friends I became quiet and distanced even when we were hanging out together. though I had went back to church I no longer felt hate and disgust toward the devil and toward sinful behavior. I no longer felt a connection with God or any love for him. when people would tell me crazy stories or when I would see something gruesome on the t.v. or internet it didn't seems horrible to me like it would have in the past.when ever I would try to read my bible or start trying to study old school books from college it would seem useless and pointless.when friends would try to tell me things to encourage me it no longer affected me. it all just felt pointless. I also felt no love or anger toward any of my family members anymore. the people who I loved in the past i didn't love anymore and the people I had anger towards I no longer had anger towards. the first thing I did was leave my religion because I no longer felt love for God and no longer felt remorseful about anything. then I started going to the mall talking to all the girls I could. I now had the ability to approach women without feeling nervous or anxious, because in my mind what they thought about me no longer mattered. the only problem was that I noticed that talking to women was no longer exciting or enjoyable for me and when I finally lost my virginity to a woman the sex didn't even feel as good to me as masturbation had felt just a few months ago when I was still going to church and saving myself till marriage. it was weird. it was like I still felt that sensation in my penis but the mental and emotional pleasure that comes from sex and masturbation was no longer there. and in order to get an erection the woman had to suck me or jack me off. looking at a womans body no longer made me horny and it seemed worthless to try all the sexual positions that I use to fantasize about, it was no longer appealing. I used to be passionate about making beats and writing poetry but that was no longer fun or appealing. my sister had moved to florida a year ago and she was now calling me all the time cause my mom told her what I had gone through but i rarely cared to talk to my sister. I never called her and most of the time didn't pick up the phone when she called, it just seemed pointless to call her and talk. and by the way by this time my mom is constantly saying "u need to see a psychiatrist" but i keep refusing. I nolonger even go to regular doctor appointments for physicals and checkups, I stop going to the cause it all just seems pointless and the idea of getting sick and dieing is still not a good thing to me but trying to prevent it by regularly seeing a doctor no longer seems worth while. after a year of this I finally go to the psychiatrist and tell them about the anxiety and paranoi i faced and about my current symptoms. based on the paranoia anxiety and emotional problems I had at first they diagnosed me with schizoaffetive disorder and prescribed me medication. I keep saying but no I no longer have anxiety and paranoia I fell nothing, no emotion so these pills won't help. but they insist so I have been taking the meds for two years and I still feel no emotion or pleasure or happiness or sadness or anger at all. no matter what happens I don't cry get happy or get angry. life like this is misery because nothing matters in my mind. in my mind life is just a bunch of nothing for a person like me. nothing feels good or pleasurable, nothing catches my eye or sparks a flame of passion in my heart and I can't grow as a person because i have no emotions to help me become a better person as I experience life. no matter what I do or where I go life is the same to me everyday because i still feel no emotion even when Im in a different state with family or friends, even if I go to Cedar Point and get on a roller coaster Even if a pretty woman with big breasts shows me her tits. and the worst thing of all is that no one believes me or understands when I tell them that I feel no emotion and don't get any joy out of life. they think that its just me keeping to myself and not letting myself enjoy life. that is so frustrating, to have a condition that no one believes or understands. I have been thinking about killing myself because I have been telling psychiatrists these symptoms for 2 years and taking medication for 2 years and haven't seen or felt a change. Many times I think, if everything in life is going to feel pointless on bland and uninteresting to me from now and and if I feel no love for God and see no point of going back to him then I am better off dead. I haven't done it yet cause I think i might do it wrong and end up crippled or brain damaged and I still don't really want to die. just seems like there is nothing to live for. so any one reading this please email me a hello or something so I can see what u have to say about it email@example.com [ ericsmith's advice column | Ask ericsmith A Question ]
wafflekitten answered Saturday April 28 2012, 10:55 am: I think I know what you're talking about. I hope you understand what I'm about to tell you without much trouble.
I am not a doctor; I have to medical schooling. I have a pornography addiction that I've been trying to end for three years; only in the last six months or so (since I started seeing a LGSW) have I made much progress. What follows is a process that I have found to be helpful in understanding the way changes in my life can occur.
The first step to regaining your emotions is to realize they are missing.
The second step is to decide that you want them back. Not much you can do about not feeling if you don't want to feel.
The third step is plan a way to get them back.
The fourth step is to put that plan into action.
The fifth step is to maintain the plan and the changes you have made.
The sixth step is to relapse into a lack of feelings.
From there, you go back to step three and try again.
None of these steps are easy. You really do have to want it.
The first two steps are pretty self-explanatory, and while the reasoning behind them varies from person to person, I don't think I need to explain more about them.
The third step requires some pretty deep thoughts on your part - this is where you dig into yourself and try to find the cause of your feelinglessness. I found it helpful to try to pinpoint the exact moment my feelings disappeared from my life - that moment is usually pretty significant in solving this puzzle.
The fourth step, too, is pretty straightforward. You think you've figured out why you stopped feeling, and you think you've found a way to start again. Now, you do it.
The fifth step is the most difficult. Ideally, if the problem was solved, this step would never end. Unfortunately, I have not been so lucky - I've been through here four or five times so far, and I've been trying for less than a year.
The sixth step is the most disappointing.
If at first you don't succeed: Try, try again. You might want to look into find a therapist. Mine has helped me uncover so much from my past that I don't think I would have found on my own. They make their living by helping people figure their own lives out - they're a pretty cool bunch. [ wafflekitten's advice column | Ask wafflekitten A Question ]
JakeOwls answered Sunday April 22 2012, 9:09 pm: If i could, i wouldn't know whether to feel glad or sad that there are many others who experience such symptons. Glad in the sense that i realise that i do not suffer such abnormality alone and yet sad as surely no-one deserves it. It is interesting to read how others interpret the situation and whether they consider it to be a gift or curse.
I personally feel a lack of emotion, thus a diffulty to express it and so struggle to form any meaningful relationships. As such, i tend to portray a happy human under false pretenses (almost like the saying 'hide behind the tears of a clown'), and apparently demonstrate copious amounts of sarcasm (maybe just another way to hide the truth). I often feel like i don't care about anything (whether it be myself or other people), though at the same time try to remain positive yet realistic about life (take everyday as it comes!). Despite the sarcasm, i display cynicism quite frequently too (quite contradictary i know).
Currently doing a degree of which features a fair amount of psychology and as someone has previously mentioned, dysthmia seems to coincide with many of the symptoms expressed by Majj and many others here (obviously i'm no expert by the way). Dysthmia is a psychological disorder of which is a mild form of chronic depression-nothing life threatening! (or shouldn't be anyway). As another has said, i also fear of growing old alone (reminds of Donnie Darko-great film!) though with the right people around us can help us overcome our fears. I suppose the problem is that 'those people' are hard to come by. All in all, try not to let this destroy you (maybe too dramatic, or not) and never give up hope! (easier said than done). Take it easy and all the best! [ JakeOwls's advice column | Ask JakeOwls A Question ]
anonimouse answered Sunday April 22 2012, 3:12 pm: I am so happy I came across this site, I was running out of hope...
I have a similar story, I had really bad emotional problems/anxiety which was undiagnosed for my whole life. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 26, and 3 months later I woke up with no symptoms whatsoever. I don't know if I HAD ADHD, but I was hyper all the time, I was anxious most of the time, I was up and down like a yo-yo emotionally, and had to be drunk before I could socialise with anyone. I was a bit of a loner, and had an addictive personality; drugs, gambling, etc.
3 years ago after getting food poisoning over new year it all stopped. Everything. I felt really calm, all the time. For the first time in my life I could relax; my mind wasn't going at a million mph, I could think what I wanted, I wasn't anxious, I wasn't depressed. It was great. It was only a few months later when I realised that I didn't seem to register emotion. I wasn't missing people any more, I wasn't having feelings for girls I met and dated, I wasn't getting any positive or negative feelings about anything I did.
Don't get me wrong, it has its benefits. I went to Uni two years ago, and am now studying for a Neuroscience degree, and I barely made it out of school years ago with some C's at GCSE and a D at A Level. I could never concentrate and now I can. I also have way more friends than I ever have before, due to the fact I can socialise without the anxiety-I used to have to drink 3 cans of cider before I went out just so I could talk to my friends on a night out. I am just frustrated after more than 3 years of nothing. I don't miss or love my family, I can't have a girlfriend because of my lack of feelings, I never get sad/happy/angry/scared.
When I drink too much I black out now as well, something I never did before, and I apparently get very emotional when that happens. I have no recollection whatsoever of these times, culminating in me coming home with a split lip after a night out last week, with no recollection of when I left or what happened on my way home. I have had arguments with people that I never even realised happened until weeks later.
I can't find any examples of anyone who has gone through this and come out the other side feeling. I am seeing a psychiatrist but I think it is a biochemical thing, such as dopamine, that is responsible, so I think I am wasting my time. At least I have found people in the same boat as me. It is horrible, and I wouldn't want this for my worst enemy. I did consider this as a gift, but the thought that I will never be able to tell my mother I love her and mean it fills me with emptiness...
1207pby2 answered Tuesday March 27 2012, 1:24 am: I'm 15 years old now and I've been dealing with this since I was about 12, at first it was a very confusing and traumatic, considering I had absolutely no idea what was or had happened to me. I spent hours at night searching the internet for something that I could relate to, a definition, or qualification that could explain to me my issues. I found this website and webpage after about 5 months of being personally diagnosed, it gave me great relief to realize there are others out there who feel, or don't feel, my "pain". And after living with this for 3 years I would like to tell at lease part of my story. My condition has not changed since it began, I still go though out my life with the condition that I can only relate to Pyschopathy, even though my exact issues do not completely match up with the "definition" of said disorder. Looking back I'd have to say one of the biggest issues I ever encountered was my depression caused by my lack of emotions. I never actually felt sad, or felt depressed, but I experienced other signs of depression, leading me to believe that during this period I was, actually, very depressed. I have bounced back and forth on whether I am experiencing a lack of emotions, or the fact that the simply no longer exist, or a mental blocking of emotions, preventing them from expression. Both offer opportunities for real emotion to be expressed, but only in small tinges. I have noticed that when I meditate or focus on my emotions I get a better reaction than I normally would. This lack of emotion has lead to some problems in my general life, while I was still trying to get a handle on the whole thing I began to lose interest in my school work, my friends, and my family. I also became addict, which is incredibly easy when you have no emotions to guild your internal judgement. I am proud to admit that I have overcome my addiction, and, now that I completely understand my issue, I have returned to my normal academic actions. I still have not received any professional help with my problem, mainly because it would cost me money I do not have, and it would put a stain on my clean record. But that's enough about me, now about all of us. What we suffer from is a very complex mental situation, which has it's disadvantages as well as advantages. What we must learn to do is not sulk and lie around inactively because we lack that internal drive to keep us going, but to find something to devote to that will contribute to society. A lack of emotion can act in many positive ways. I personally plan on becoming a Navy SEAL, a career through which I can use my lack of emotion to its full potential, as well as serving my country. It is a hard life we have cut out for us, but we can rise to the challenge. We no longer suffer from the holds that prevent others from achieving greatness. But we must be weary, our issue is infamous for its more negative side, words like psycho relate to those members of our community who decided to use their lack of conscience to do terrible acts. We must use intelligence, because we lack emotion, to dictate our every move. I never asked for this, but it was granted to me, and I plan on using it to my full advantage.
-Anom O. nous [ 1207pby2's advice column | Ask 1207pby2 A Question ]
SorrowfulSymphony answered Tuesday March 20 2012, 12:14 am: Saying I am just like you would be an over statement, but I can somewhat relate. I am pretty young, but old enough to be on here, and also desperate for help. I have multiple things that I can list to you; if you wish to read it.
-One.) I no longer feel the motivational pull I had used to feel towards working on homework and hanging with friends for a good time.
-Two.) I live in my own fairytail. One you could say is filled with Anime characters, music, fake people, and multiple personalities.
-Three.) I constantly relive older memories that bring me old feelings, but for a brief moment or two. After that it leaves me feeling pretty damn sad. I don't count that as an emotion, it usually lasts for a few seconds anyways.
-Four.) My friend had just told me that she could have a deadly disease. Is it, perhaps, cruel? to feel no sympathy or remorse? I really want to feel something for her, but I just can't.
It's just a numb feeling...? What kind of thing am I experiencing along with everyone else on this site?
-Five.)Most of my feelings are fake, I don't want people to worry for me, maybe its because I'd rather suffer alone, I don't want anyones sympathy since It'd hurt them (my friends) more than me I think.
Not even the two people I revealed this information too could understand, but I've found this site and I understand that I'm not alone in this world. I submit my thanks, and I hope all of us can relate, although I can't seem to grasp any understanding. [ SorrowfulSymphony's advice column | Ask SorrowfulSymphony A Question ]
Shubham answered Tuesday March 13 2012, 11:34 pm: It happened to me and i healed and now i want so desperately for you allguys to get your emotions back ,first of all waht happened to you? you had such a negative view of world like limitless hoplessness about meaning of life or a continuous negative thought about every thought or any other negative feed back of thoughts that just couldn't let you live with emotions so you had an nervous break down in other words your fuse blowed off okay there are 2 steps first of all since i my short term memory worsened i used brainwave( quantum brain power neaural synergy) as it claim to remove attention deficiency defect so it like started working on area of my brain which was dead and don't worry our brain has super ability to develop at any age even if you are 70-80 years old now second step( am still at it just yesterday got emotions back)neural synergy will slowly slowly bring you back so now don't think of past a bit! and give up your negative feed back habit in my case it was feeling of passing time negative disturbing voices whenever i tried to concentrate , i just now say i believe myself and now this is important even when if you think like you just got few emotions back you think you are not normal but you are wrong! just remember believe that you are normal don't compare yourself with others, neural synergy will bring your emotions back but it will be your tough fight to keep it and more thing now i feel so bad that i was living emotionless i don't even remmber from when i started faking emotions but now am like newborn baby and please add me on facebook [Link](Mouse over link to see full location) , firstname.lastname@example.org okay am editing it still better use brainEVO system it works much faster and better you can find it free in torrents .FLAC version torrents works [ Shubham's advice column | Ask Shubham A Question ]
Eflizz answered Thursday February 23 2012, 8:35 am: Hey for everyone on ere it kinda looks like slowly you're well we are helping each other out I mean if we really didn't feel anything we wouldn't try to find an answer for this. I think we may just have a hard time venting or we have very serious trust issues that we learn not to say a word and just move on like it's nothing. So we basically get everything else that every happens isn't anything and we choose rather not to feel. Ive read some of the comments and it seems at one point many of you say you did feel and most stopped over a good while of dealing with something horrible. I think we all just need to face that horrible thing that happened but we choose not to so we remain the same [ Eflizz's advice column | Ask Eflizz A Question ]
theprodigal answered Saturday February 18 2012, 12:44 pm: I am 37 yo and what you describe is exactly me. Highly intelligent, highly emotional but with no empathy. I agree with what you said except the last bit. We must not try to assert our will over any individuals and eventually wisdom will show you that there is no weaker anyone. We all have our strengths and weaknesses.
I suggest you become philosophical and perhaps try some spiritual work. Learn more about the human being and how our weaknesses make us unique and special. We are not the masters of our universe there is something greater out there and we must be mindful of that. [ theprodigal's advice column | Ask theprodigal A Question ]
LifelessMatter answered Tuesday January 3 2012, 12:27 am: I am like you all, I had a really rough childhood I am now 17. Almost everyone in my family suffers from some sort of mental health problem whether it be Bipolar disorder or simple depression. If what I "have" is a problem or not I am unsure and this is my first-step in reaching out for help or understanding. Anyways back to my childhood, we went from being rich to poor incredibly fast and before I knew it my dad tried to kill himself. Which i later found out was brought on by serious mental health problems, which were genetic and brought on by a traumatic experience at a young age. This started family problems leading to a nasty and bitter divorce. My dad went on to try and kill himself a few more times, which I now think were just calls for help and not knowing what was wrong with him. After he spent many a time in a mental health hospital and receiving shock treatment (which I feel is complete bullshit), this resulted in serious memory loss and created even more family problems. My mom kept me from my dad and told me he didnt want to see me. I was crushed... anyways I am just blabering on, to summarize, much more sad stuff and other family member suicide attempts including my brother and a friends suicide, and I am now rendered unemotional and unable to feel a single thing unless high, which is only making the situation worse. I have a few good friends, a new girl-friend, and am stuck somewhere between atheism and christianity. I want to cry, and I want to feel and everything about me is fake as fuck, I live another life in my head where things are different, but it isnt reality and I have serious motivation problems. I just have no idea what is wrong with me, I cant feel a single fucking thing and no matter how much I try. I know I should feel things to I was at least at one time human, and the people I do care about I cant feel anything! Even if I do make an advancement in a week I forget about it and go back on to sleepless nights, and smoking again...
If anyone feels the same way I want to know, I am on Facebook just message Ryan Chock, or post here and I will try to read but, no promises. Good Luck to you all. [ LifelessMatter's advice column | Ask LifelessMatter A Question ]
petarpwnsuall answered Saturday December 17 2011, 9:37 am: hello! just like the rest of you, i have this too of course. it started with depression and anxiety/panic disorder when i was 13, i am now 19. after crying so much and so much negative thinking, my mind just blocked everything off i suppose. i even remember the first time i stopped feeling...this is the first time i've ever really talked about it, but i've been meaning to write down some stuff on my case anyways. not really doing this for feedback, because it probably won't get any but just doing it for myself. i'm gonna try and create a list with things that i encounter generally in my every day life, see if you guys have some of these..maybe use some of these to show a therapist one day..
- i never know what to say people
- i don't get the feelings from my memories that i used to when thinking about the past
- my memory has definitely worsened..i can't remember song lyrics or anything like that
- i can laugh or cry, but both are really forced and for a split second...i can literally stop after two seconds..
- my thoughts are very sporadic..just all over the place
- i use logic to respond to people
- i forget quickly, i think just because nothing is of importance...even feels like a tad of maybe adhd sometimes
- i can't experience anything
- i live in my mind...i thought of this earlier but it feels like i'm playing a first person shooter game in real life...without the shooting part ha but to the people that don't understand this analogy, basically whatever i do, i, myself don't feel it
- this is one that i haven't seen from the rest of you guys...if i have to give a speech or talk in front of people, i don't feel "nervous" or "scared" i just get a headache...that's how it is with all emotions actually..i think we all have emotions but our bodies just process them differently
- can't make my mind up about anything
- if i ever feel positive or develop a change, i'll wake up the next day and be back at 0%
- i still get negative irrational thinking, which i think is the root of the problem that started all...this is something i think i could figure out with a therapist someday but basically i have trained my mind to give a negative thought to every positive thought. it's like my mind WANTS the negative ones
- i have no emotion connected to negative NOR positive thoughts, and i'm very good at not dwelling
- i have a list of filler phrases that i with people...for instance if someone asks me what's up i might respond with "what's up" awkwardly, but not awkward for me
- i think this is a mindset that i've also created for myself...i'm pretty sure i can change it, but again it's brief
- i really do think something is physically wrong in my brain...back to the headaches, the only part of my brain that experiences anything is the frontal part and it feels like there's a void in there ALL the time
- i feel the same every day
- i'm not very "fun"...i can be but it's not natural...i become fun when trying to impress girls or anything like that..which is why many of us don't have real friends
- i have real friends, and i do feel connected to my parents but it's not the same...i'm only connected to my parents because my parents are such awesome people who try connecting to me
- i don't truly value anything
- i do things like Facebook, play xbox and other things but i don't actually enjoy any of it...i don't really know why i do it, i guess its so natural for me to mask interest that it's become a part of me and i do it to pass time
- i have found that sweating and just general exercise is the ONLY thing that makes me feel a little different..i suppose because of how strenuous on the body is, but it soothes me and a lot of times i look for self improvement after a good workout. one night i even tried meditating..that was a good night!
- i don't feel the real effects of alcohol or smoking weed...i mean i feel different, but i don't experience what other people experience. i just become jittery and less able to speak clearly. no real alter in mood
- my brain is NEVER exhausted! i can study all day, i can sit on the computer all day, my brain will feel nothing. it's 8 am and i'm still up from the day before and my brain feels as alert as yesterday.
- i lack imagination...therefore i don't really say anything with purpose
- i was what i think is considered in love last year with this girl, but what sucks is my body didn't know how to respond to love so i had this very awkward way i was around her and that's basically what ended it with us.
there are tons more and i might make another list soon. but the great thing about it is that i'm STILL able to be successful no matter the circumstances! all my friends see me as a "cool" guy and people always want to hang out with me. sure i don't know where i'm going with my life, nor where i want to but i'm ahead of a lot of people who don't have what i have. and that is common sense, and self awareness. like you guys, for having something like that for this long i start to look at it positively too! oh, and the best part girls most of the time see me as "mysterious"! sorry if this seemed like a rant, but i did this moreso for myself only...hence the run on sentences lol. but yeah, i hope everyone here one day finds what makes themselves "happy" or at least a meaning for this life! if anyone wants to email me to talk or anything my email is email@example.com and i'm Petar Arabov on Facebook. roll tide! [ petarpwnsuall's advice column | Ask petarpwnsuall A Question ]
Construct answered Tuesday November 29 2011, 8:40 pm: I had always been a happy person as a boy always smiling my mother said, always bubbly.
I'm 20 now and that was before I had an unpleasent time at High school after being bullied for a couple of years I convinced myself that everyone there hated or were always looking to hurt me emotionally. It was irrational but in my mind it was pure reflex to close up.
I developed a kind of mental emotional armour like a thick skin and I didnt realise until later that this armour I had developed I had no way to switch off or take off, it was or is like a callous. It didnt protect my own emotional self but it protected my mind from my own emotions it was like a partition on a hard disk and I had no magic tool to fix it.
But it somehow didnt protect me from my darker emotions anger, fear (which kept me wary), rage suspicion. So I continued to feel anger and rage and fear at near enough everyone I knew at school, and if I didnt it was more like a neutrality or association.
But the fact that I felt mostly unpleasent emotions didnt make me a bad person I couldnt even contemplate hurting any of them, it hurt me to hurt them...if I ever got into fights which was a couple of times I would always feel bad about it later guilt was another I wasnt defended from.
It wasnt long before i just stopped feeling, and like a drone I just went about my school career getting my qualifications. I developed this weird social awareness the ability to just see and feel group dynamics without even trying, I started see who was alpha deltas etc. How the hierarchies worked, how everyone fitted together and what their standings were and it was all effortless.
I could analyise like I was an old man or somthing even my mother who is one smart cookie was amazed at what I could see and understand of social dynamics without even studying the subject at all. Yet be so stunted at acutally fitting in.
Let me clarify my mind defendeded my emotional self and viewed things with suspicion and becuase I can be irrational when it comes to the feelings I can't feel, things get lost in translation.
I had a few friends but I always kept them at arms length maybe I didnt fully trust them. So I didnt realise I was in such a bad place until later after I left school. It was then that I realised how closed off I had become I only had my parents that I was really sortof normal around.
I went to colledge and it was then that I realised the full extent of the damage that had been done to me I was emotionally stunted completely, it wasn't a dead end for me though, I met some great people there, nice poeple especially one girl it particular..she helped me more than she knows, I should thank her one day properly.
I had begun to heal after that I got more confident I interacted socially for the first time without that seathing suspicion plaguing my mind.
But it wasnt quite as simple as just getting over it, I still have the armour just linguring there silent and quite letting through just enough to function but still in a way cut off and cold.
In a way my experiences didnt make me stronger and more resistant emotionally they just made me super sensitive to everyone words and actions with regards to me, if someone says somthing to me and my mind takes it the wrong way it blows everything out of preportion. But it also makes me super sensitive to the way people interact with each other.
But the problem is I'm still dulled to my own emotions and I have no idea how to crack that armour completely, trust I think is the key but I don't know how I can trust somthing as amorpheous as humanity at large. The only emotions I can feel with any regularity is anger rage and fear. Funnily enough hope is another I can feel and know, a lifting of the spirit, not sure what that means though.
I don't think its exactly what everyone here has, but its a dulling of emotion I find it very hard to trigger emotions (not of the darker variety) harder still to recognise them, when I do have them its like I classify them as "pleasant feeling number 1" number 2 etc...its like the've somehow lost meaning and I'm rediscovering them one step at a time. [ Construct's advice column | Ask Construct A Question ]
pyrol answered Tuesday November 15 2011, 10:38 pm: well... I didn't start the same way that you did, but I ended up in a place similar to you. I tried to embrace it but it plagued me and I couldn't stop thinking about it until I let go. Then I went to college and I understood somewhere in my mind that if by chance things changed in my life, I didn't want to wake up in a world that I created for myself and did not enjoy. Following this logic, I attempted to start working hard but my continuous lack of interest kept pushing me away and made me stay up basically all night to get just a few assignments done ( I procrastinated like a boss).
[I left out the part where I don't remember when the onset of this began, but it was around sometime in the middle of highschool, also I talked to my psychology professor my first year and told him about this condition and he told me that there are two types of depression: the first type is sadness/ you feel down; the second is a emotional void where you dont feel anything, which is what i was experiencing but didn't think much of]
so then at this point I also knew that I didn't want to look like my Dad, who looks old as hell because he just pushed himself and led an unhealthy lifestyle and just stressed himself, so I decided not to do that and went to talk to a psychologist [ I am with Kaiser Permanente] and he said what I described sounded like dysthymia, and I'm pretty sure he is right because these symptoms sound pretty dead on. [I also talked to my primary doctor and she called it "dissociative depression disorder" or "Dissociation" or something like that <PLEASE DO NOT assume that I know what im talking about especially because my session with my primary doctor was cut short, so I have a general idea but no clear understanding. she could have meant a number of things.]
I have not officially been diagnosed yet however I just think that you should know that you may think that these are just the way things are but they can change and to just assume that things will always be one way and to hide this from others and not get help is the same thing as running from it instead of facing it. people will always be accepting especially if they really love and/or care about you and they will try to understand best they can or try to give advice, but if they have never faced what you are facing it would be impossible for them to actually understand [basically I am saying that if there is something physiologically wrong and that your brain is lacking in some chemical or isn't functioning correctly why not try to take some supplements, and if you feel this is detrimental to your pride and or image, well you are forcing yourself into a box.].
oh yea and I face memory loss like a boss, because when I was younger I had no problem in school, etc. but at some point my memory went to hell where I can't recall things the same way I used to, nor can i pay attention to things the same way I used to. I used to be interested in everything and now I am interested in very little and gain very little pleasure and very little satisfaction from completeing tasks. [ I think my Dysthymia may be comorbid [ accompanied by as a result of] with ADHD < I was hyper and couldn't sit still, and have always been disorganized, also most subjects were not a problem because I was always interested in everything - which is why lack of interest due to dysthymia is worse because now I just don't care- >
So if you really just want to live with it I guess that's fine. If you think that makes you strong that's fine. But in terms of inner strength, true strength is the ability to accept and deal with your weaknesses and overcome them; it is also understanding that you and others share or may have had the same weaknesses and that you are willing to help them overcome their inhibitions. Living with your condition and not attempting to overcome it is fatalistic at best and cowardice at worst, because you are trapping yourself and you are too scared to step outside yourself.
third, as a side note, [ I tell myself this all the time but fail miserably at it], fuck what other people think, because if you lived for other peoples opinions you might as well dress as a bum or give them all your money and be a slave, if you really want to do something or change no one has the right to tell you no, only you have the power to stop yourself and if you are stopping yourself then you are failure to those that care about you and/or love you because you fail to be great and share your greatness with those around you, you are also a failure to yourself because you are unwilling to go out and be the greatest you could ever be. If you don't do things because you are scared of failure, you have already failed and in this sense there is nothing left to lose anyways so go ahead and do whatever you want. When you don't hold yourself back, you open the door for others to follow in your footsteps because there must always be someone to set an example whether it be you or someone else, and by refusing to do so you hold not only yourself but everyone else back.
Lastly- It may be me being pessimistic but I think I do have ADHD, extremely disorganized,etc. also that last paragraph is my take on Rocky Balboa to his son and to those judges or whatever. ( he is also weak and has others around him always helping him out[he embraces his weakness], and when people turn to him or against him to prevent him from moving forward he tells them off. [ pyrol's advice column | Ask pyrol A Question ]
jamjar answered Friday October 28 2011, 9:05 pm: Emotion is not a weakness or a plague, it is each individual persons ultimate truth and what makes them a 'human being'. if you have grown up in the western culture of worshipping logic and reason as the ultimate way then it is easy to despise emotion as a lesser aspect of our 'selves', however, as a logic driven 'robot' it is only possible to DO but not to BE. "To be or not to be" as someone once said.
I personally am looking for the 'be' in being...no that does not quite express it; I have recently realised that I need to have a fight to the death to regain my emotions, a quest for my very soul.
I have not felt since I was two.
I was assaulted by the person who should have been giving me the 'life-giving breath of love'.
I went into shock to such an extent that I became frightened of people. I could not relate, even when my grandma tried to give me love (emotional re-assurance, ie it's ok to feel) I didn't know what it was!
Through my entire school life I did not make one friend, I stood in the corner of the playground at a distance from the other kids who were running around screaming and 'getting it all out' As I got older I learned to pretend, but that was dis empowering because I did not learn how to defend myself or to make personal boundaries. Other kids fought or did sports but I just stood and watched. (I couldn't even catch a ball)
At 16 I joined a cult.
They talked a lot of love but just taught me more falsehood.
I have had a marriage and kids but I couldn't give them what I didn't have myself.
After all that I still cannot feel.
For example, 2 years ago I did a Jazz singing course, I have a fine voice and good expression. When it came to the performance in front of an audience at the local Jazz Club, I watched the others being really nervous, "silly people" I thought, "what is there to be nervous about, they won't kill you if you forget the words" I was not nervous in any way. After the performance though I became the silly one as I saw each person come off stage after their solo. They were glowing with pleasure which stayed with them the rest of the evening whilst I only had a slight sense of relief that it was over. That is NOT life or living.
I am giving these examples of how it is for me because I want to encourage people with not to settle for less than the truth. What do you want on your gravestone "I came, I saw, I cognated" ? Or quoted by the strange enchanted boy in the song popularly sung by Nat King Cole, "the greatest thing you'll ever learn, is just to love and be loved in return"
It's 2am now in England and I've got so much more inside me to tell, need sleep but will post more.
THERE MUST BE SOME KINDA WAY OUTA HERE, said the joker to the thief!!!
(& we are going to find it Majj and all) [ jamjar's advice column | Ask jamjar A Question ]
Douwi125 answered Wednesday September 7 2011, 7:12 pm: I have a similar problem. I don't have great relationship with my dad and as I got older I realized how unemotional he is and how much he bottles certain emotions up all up inside himself e.g. sadness. I have never seen him cry or even come close because he believes he needs to strong all the time. I used to be a very happy go lucky, jokey, fun person but it has slowly creaped up on me how much I am becoming like him, I'm 17 now. I choose to block out certain emotions like anger and sadness mainly because I see no point in showing them to people because it does them no good to know. But this then leads to me blocking out other emotions like love, sympathy or humor. The first one I realized I couldn't really let out was laughter I felt I wasn't finding anything funny anymore and having to put on a laugh so's not to annoy people and make it look like I had no sense of humor what so ever. Even though this was the first emotion I realized I was blocking out it wasn't the first I had been blocking out the first must have been, sadness because I went through a rough patch with my family when I was 12-13 and I was upset a lot of them time but never used to show it, then as I got older I began to mature and realize certain things which made me angry and people started saying, "Why are you so angry all the time" so i just stopped it completely like a tap. And with anger going so did pretty much everything else. I knew I was become heartless and numb when I was getting told things that should really hurt but wasn't but it really hit home when my brother said I was turning into my dad and I thought to myself I fricking am! And a lot of my really close friends were saying you never really quite let me in there's just one barrier after another with you, which I just couldn't help it. I have also noticed something else about myself only recently that I have many different personalities depending on who I'm with. So when I'm on my own I will evaluate what makes this certain person laugh, what annoys them and what do they really like me doing and when I'm around them I will act like that set version of myself, but if I have a few and them friends of mine happen to come together they get a shit version of me because I just don't really say anything at all and stay very bland. Back to what the main guy on here was saying though, I also have had tests and things like and the results and explanations I have seen have all been scarily close to how my characteristics are! I don't like how I'm dealing with things. I always think to myself RIGHT this time just say what you think, just be me and say what I'm feeling but I get in them situation and either forget myself or just choose to ignore it. Other factors are contributing to this that are to detailed to explain also but I would really like to get help as I really can't talk to anyone I know because they would think I'm either crazy or a dick! Thanks for reading! [ Douwi125's advice column | Ask Douwi125 A Question ]
VintageAZGirl answered Monday June 13 2011, 12:58 pm: Good morning Majj,
Im not sure if you have had any recent changes since this post, as its been a few years now. But, I hope that you have.
Firstly, its a major step to admit that you recognize that something might be just a little "off" about your day to day emotions. I have the same problem. Mine is a little different in that I cant seem to ever feel the emotion of love. I have had bad realtionship after bad relationship, and can only seem to hold on to any of them because at least I can feel the bad in them. Im feeling something so it must be worth holding onto.
The last time I can recall ever feeling really happy with who I was was when I was in the 8th grade, Im 30 now. I feel like I lost a sense of who I was, and that person has been gone for so long now, its scary to think that old you might now ever come back.
This might be hard to hear, as it might make you defensive, but you have to ask yourself if you're ready to make a concious effort in your life to grow, and get back to that person you were before. Typically a tramatic event may have happened to you in your childhood that put you in this place you are in today. Mine was the the loss of my mother. She was emotionally abusive to me growing up, and it was a string of unfortunate events with her that compiled my shutting down of emotions. She has since passed on, so that part I can never get back to recovering that piece.
Getting down to the root of the issue can help you rebuild the pieces of your life. Each tramatic event that happens to people is different and unique in how it shaped and continues to shape us. It can be so tramtic that you may have blocked it out, and it might take professional counceling to deal with trama like that.
I hope that I have been able to help you, better late than never right. :) be strong for yourself, and dont give up Majj. The feeling you get once you can let go of your past and learn from it, rather than become a victem of it, there are no words to describe how amazing you will begin to feel. From one still in recovery, to another beginning his journey, I hope you find solace my friend.
PinaColadaTwist answered Sunday May 8 2011, 3:32 pm: I am frankly amazed that there are so many other people out there that feel (or don't) like this.
I'm 26/F and I know exactly when this started, I was 13. I would look in the mirror and practice smiling and frowning, I would observe people to see how they reacted to situations so I could mimic them. I have been called cold, heartless, overly logical, unfeeling, etc etc. I never thought it was a shortcoming in particularly. I just don't feel empathy/sympathy for other people. Now though I am beginning to wonder if there IS something wrong with me.
I don't understand how people can have relationships, or get close to one another without feeling some sort of disgust or annoyance like I do. I don't understand how they can all be so happy when they live in a world that is so obviously dying. I don't understand how they can mourn people who die because those people have been absolved of all their duties and no longer have to think about anything. I just don't get it.
I don't remember the last time I really felt anything at all. I became a master at simulating emotion so as to fit in with the infamous majority. I can fake anything I want with a level of believability that is so high it is almost always viewed as sincere. There is only 1 person who is fully aware that I only simulate emotions, and that is because he does the same thing.
I used to want to feel something, anything. Now, I don't know. It seems to be a hindrance to most people. I don't have the desire to hurt anyone, though I used to, I now have a high level of apathy towards other people. They just don't matter and don't seem to realize it.
My lack of emotion hasn't ever hindered me in any way, to the contrary, it has helped me. Not being bogged down by emotional responses to outside stimuli I have become able to assess any given situation using logic and objectivity, I have learned to focus my intelligence on learning rather than on useless emotions that lead nowhere. I cannot say, with any amount of sincerity, that I would want to change myself. [ PinaColadaTwist's advice column | Ask PinaColadaTwist A Question ]
warhol answered Tuesday April 12 2011, 10:12 pm: @ifeelnothin, indeed, I am an INTP/INTJ. Interesting.
but it just doesn't feel right. there i was, lying to ...let's call him A, and i knew i should feel guilt, yet i felt nothing. it's so strange, this emptiness... i know i should be feeling a certain emotion, yet i'm not.
when i should be sad, i feel nothing.
when i should be happy, i feel nothing.
when i should be angry, i feel nothing.
nothing, nothing, nothing...
and i'm forced to simulate it all, so as to avoid other people's suspicion.
i must say though, i think a classmate of mine may be the same. even if he isn't, i feel like he knows. just a hunch...but how can i find out if he's the same? got any ideas? it would be my first time "meeting" someone like me in real life. man, this ought to be interesting. [ warhol's advice column | Ask warhol A Question ]
ifeelnothin answered Tuesday April 12 2011, 6:42 am: I believe that what you say is true. That this is obviously not a curse. One thing that i have discovered is that most of us might not even be dysfunctional. We are actually INTJ. this is something from birth and no it's not a disorder or illness in any form. It's a personality type.one of the sixteen personality types.one of the rarest which covers about only 4% of the general population.
INTJs think very logically and usually have a higher than average IQ.so most of us who start to lose more of their emotions basically go through that a little later but the observing and copying has been with us forever.Basically WE're all good liars.
Some of us actually have ASPD but it's not at a very critical state. actually the probability of us having both at the same time is very low so we are alot rarer than we think. we have the upperhand on almost everyone.
So i can conclude that we all are INTJs with ASPD.
The reason why it's so hard to differentiate between INTJ and ASPD because they usually clash.
So basically we are gifted.We wear masks. so take pride in our masks.
I just coined this term recently for our kind which is aniplex. It's latin for animus and multiplex. animus means intellect and emotion while multiplex means superior. There we have a term for ourselves now. [ ifeelnothin's advice column | Ask ifeelnothin A Question ]
trp1 answered Saturday April 9 2011, 11:37 am: Well, I have something similar and it started with being really depressed and having extreme mood shifts. You know being really happy then really sad type thing. As I got older I gained control of these emotions and other things like adrenaline. I began to lose emotions and become anti social. This year things have changed. For instance I have control of my emotions again and am a A+ student, have lots of ambition, and have been extremely happy and have been making lots of friends. It seems that I was just having stress and lack of sleep related problems making me really happy and energetic in the morning and tired and sad in the evening and eventually I just bottomed out and lost it all. I simply got sleep and tried to relax and work harder and began to make friends. I can still control my emotions, others, adrenaline, and so forth but now the emotions are real and I am happy with myself and have real friends. Hope this helps. [ trp1's advice column | Ask trp1 A Question ]
psillyness answered Thursday April 7 2011, 8:59 pm: To everyone:
I understand (from my own experience) what you're going through. This is not a "gift" in any way shape or form. A problem I see, is that most of you have had this problem for so long, that you are defining yourselves by it, and even possibly suspecting that you were born with it. This is not the case, and do not believe for a second that this condition cannot be healed. I assure you, no matter how long you've had it - it can be healed.
The problem is not that you don't feel any emotions, but rather, just the ones your sub-conscious wants you to feel. See, your sub-conscious has caught-on to the fact that something traumatic has happened in your past. Every time your conscious mind 'thinks' of this event (or any event/thought/action/emotion that is related to this event, and thus reminding you of it), you experience a sudden flood of painful emotions. This is not desirable, and thus it is a natural response to receive a 'deadening' of the emotions - and when this happens, every emotion (combination of brain chemicals that create these feelings) is deadened, or lessened.
But there is hope yet, because every time you consciously recall or experience these events, you feel a very fleeting and dampened emotion. This emotion is either fear or regret, and can be categorized by a short-lived, sharp, rising pain in the abdominal area. This is your body-mind communicating to you that you need to confront this emotion. Do something about it (i.e. face your fears, and DONT be so quick to dismiss that you have any!!! It is only the enlightened few who experience life without fear...this state is very hard to attain, and trust me, you are far from it!!). This is the path to healing. We are only as sick as our secrets.
See a holostic kineseologist or chiropractor, and have them perform a neuro-emotional analysis on you (if they know what that is). The physical body (and indicator muscles) can actually give you an answer as to what exactly is wrong with you. This means that your body can actually tell you what event specifically triggered this cascade of problems (if you can't recall it from your own memory).
Don't give up. I know some of you think it's not all that bad - but that only leads me to believe that you have not experienced a life of happiness, clarity and self-fulfillment. When you reach this state of consciousness, you will watch your old self very quickly fade away in your memory. Our natural state is that of happiness and love, unfortunately it is possible to experience a disconnect from our true nature. You are not at ease - do something about it. And most of all, STOP thinking. Thinking (negative thoughts) is the most destructive thing you are doing to yourself. If you don't think this is a part of your problem, think again - try and keep track of the amount of time you spend thinking instead of living in the moment, experiencing and perceiving the world around you. You create your own reality - if your thoughts are rooted in fear, your life will surely take on that reflection.
bloodtrinity answered Wednesday March 30 2011, 10:18 pm: im 16 and I also feel as if i have no emotions. The world i live in feels like a stage and i am an actor. constantly pretending to be someone im not. When my friends tell me things like my dog died or my grandma died i dont feel anything at all when i think i should. so i just tell them sorry for your loss. i feel more emotion when i watch an anime. who knows maybe i am a sociopath. im a teenage boy who doesnt care for a girl friend i think there anoying. When i make someone mad i dont care. i dont see the point in saying im sorry when i dont mean it. so everyone just started saying i have no emotions. [ bloodtrinity's advice column | Ask bloodtrinity A Question ]
Youreastranger answered Tuesday March 29 2011, 10:08 am: Let's see...I will be 24 this year and when I try to think back how far I've felt this way, I can't remember. All I can say is that it's been years since I've felt strong frequent emotions that were normally induced by frightening stimuli--abusive father.
These days, there isn't much that makes me feel anything. I feel more emotion watching a TV show than when a person in real life tells me their woes. Is that just because I've experienced far more than the average person--not that I've done much research into what the average person experiences but I'm making a note of it as I meet new people--or is it just because I'm more capable of connecting to fantasy worlds?
(Yes, I tend to find talking with people is more interesting because I like to analyze them rather than care that they are a human being at all. This is only in people I judge to be mundane. I long for a real connection.)
Sometimes it's hard for me to be polite to people. I recognize the situations in which a "white lie" is appropriate for most people, but I don't feel compelled to lie ever. I don't see the point in lying as it is mostly a product of fear. I don't understand privacy either which is just another excuse to keep your special little problems to yourself. Granted, there are times when someone else isn't qualified to judge your situation because they are not experiencing it first-hand, in which case it makes no sense to confide as you will get no resolution anyways. Venting does feel good though doesn't it?
Sorry, going off on tangents.
Anyways, I feel like I should be more worried about myself no that I've read all these responses--looking for someone with similar feelings, indeed. I did not read that anyone had feelings of--yes, I realize this is about not feeling anything but someone said something about a hint of feeling that doesn't grab on but, instead, exists as an underlying haze--malice, sadism...I think that's the best way I can describe it. It's not so much a negative or angry kind of violent feeling, but rather a perverse interest and comfort in others' suffering and the sight of blood. I've never hurt anyone, but I've cut myself out of boredom and emotional pain in the past.
I've always been more attuned to a darker side of myself. Approaching it with fascination and embracing it as somewhat of another person. Analyzing it as if it were a stranger. I've honored this part of myself in my art which has always been better if it portrays something violent or malevolent in nature. When I've finished with it, I sit back and look at it thinking, "Did I really make this? Why do I feel like it was someone else?"
These days the only thing that really makes me feel anything is knowing an animal is suffering or in pain. The two times that I've been exposed to it I felt insane. I can't even call it anger. It's more like a primal instinctual rage that rises up. That is one thing I cannot allow myself to feel. I don't know what I could do if I willingly exposed myself to that.
TLDR; I am the same as all of you have been, but with an air of optimism with an undertone of sadistic amusement and fascination with macabre things. Personally, I don't mind being like this now. For a while I was dismayed over not being able to commit, but now that I feel there is no point to anything and that all any of us are doing is waiting to die, I'm comfortable with meaninglessness. I'm also aware that no matter what, we all put on masks when we interact with others, even those that do feel emotions normally. We're not all that different from them. I don't think it should be approached any differently either when you're telling someone about yourself. Don't lie about who you are. Don't pretend to feel things when they aren't there. If the other person can't understand you, it's not your fault. It doesn't even necessarily mean that you have to change. Then again, I've come to the point where emotional moments are precious to me and that any emotion at all is nice to have in small amounts. So whereas the pursuit of happiness is the way to go for most people, for me it's the pursuit of truth and any emotion. Most people don't even know what makes them happy. All right I'm rambling again. [ Youreastranger's advice column | Ask Youreastranger A Question ]
mojoseer answered Wednesday March 23 2011, 12:52 am: I took a large rock off my wife’s head in 2000. We were married for only 2 yrs. I was 30 yrs old. Most call it post traumatic stress syndrome. The 2 sides of your brain stop communicating. The numbness. Emotions & feelings are 2 different things. Everyone feels. Grab a hammer and hit your thumb. You feel. Emotion is the mind’s analysis of a feeling. A judgment of that feeling. Don’t have the judgment? Good. But, the numbness you all experience is exactly that. No judgment. Feeling has nothing to do with numbness. Don’t believe me. Grab the hammer again.
When the towers in NY fell on 9/11 I felt nothing. Why? Dead wife. How to do you feel about Japan? Numbness. The lack of a mind’s ability to classify a feeling that has no file. No one has a brain file for a dead wife. For 10,000 dead people. What’s the file on your desk? The file is open on the desk until you build or make a file for that experience. It’s there somewhere.
Be aware. You create a place to put the feeling and the emotion, as everyone has so eloquently expressed, will indeed follow. Yes, it is a flawed human experience. But, feeling…feeling is indeed the best of what our presence on this spinning globe has to offer. The answer for all of those who want to feel is exactly that. Feel. Don’t judge. It doesn’t come to you. You go to it.
Save a few dollars. Buy a ticket to nowhere and stay for a while. When there, read Carl Jung. Learn. Meditate. Write. Paint. Draw. Play the guitar. Surf. Don’t give a shit. Just be. Be a better you. Whether a weekend, a month, a year or a lifetime you cannot make a mistake. There are no mistakes in this lifetime. Once that is part of your mind frame the numbness becomes freedom and the world becomes limitless. [ mojoseer's advice column | Ask mojoseer A Question ]
Kenpachi answered Friday March 11 2011, 11:16 am: Hi i am 18 years old, recently i am having problems with my emotions, as in they are disapeering for the past 2 years. Two years ago I consider myself over - emotional, i force my emotion because i had full control over any emotions. if i didn't want to feel sad, then i didn't, and if i wanted to feel pumped with adrenaline i would forcefully start shaking with adrenaline and constant shivers would shoot down my spine, my heart would beat heavily,and 3 times faster than normal. Adrenaline is only suppost to last for 15 minutes in the human body but i can make it last over an hour. I would feel like a god if i wanted to. By having full control over my emotions, i lost my personality, i don't know who i am anymore, i look into a mirror and i don't even see myself any more ( i see another person) like another soul. I think i have anti- social illnell too because i am not a people person , my entire life i have obseved people, i can read anyone- but it goes beond reading people- this might sound crazy but it is sort of like reading other peoples spirits, i can easily see what kind of person that they are, and i can make them easily be my friend because i would see what kind of people they are, I simulate emotions, put on masks, play around with people but I don't actually feel what I'm supposed to feel at all. the emotions are getting harder and harder to force, as in they are no longer there.... i don't feel anymore, its all gone... I observe people in order to understand them. Back then when i was 15 years old i could read people and then copy there personality for my own, I BECOME THEM....I sometimes think that i might feel , like a bystander...im on my own in this universe... I'm good at seeing through people, even teachers, psychologists, even parents. I look at things neutraly (everything as equal.... I see animals are equal as humans ... and religions as equal to each other .... and human races as equal to each other) Socializing is killing me because perfoming exhausts me, and people as well, i don't understand why people are so easy to trick.
I went to a psychologist but they think that i am turning into a pyschopath, they tell me that it is impossible have so much control over emotion and that it is immpossible for your mind to produce over an hour of adrenaline forcefully just because i want to. So i can't get any help from anyone... im alone and helpless but i see that on this site other people are in the EXACT POSITION AS ME... i still have a tiny little handfull of emotion left but it is also disapeering... somone plz help me, i want to feel more not less [ Kenpachi's advice column | Ask Kenpachi A Question ]
screwdriver answered Saturday March 5 2011, 10:19 am: Neat, I never would've thought there are so many of us! :3
I'm a 14 year old girl and I'm going to try and tell you about myself.
I simulate emotions, put on masks, play chameleon... I don't actually feel what I'm supposed to feel at a given time. I simply can't.
I've come to accept that I'll be spending the majority of my life in my head. I observe people in order to understand them, and myself, better. I sometimes feel like I'm observing my own life too, like a bystander...kinda difficult to explain this one. I'm good at seeing through people, amongst other useful stuff. I have a completely neutral outlook on things, which helps a lot, but I'm after all as apathetic and uninvolved as they come, it's only natural.
Socializing is like a duty to me. I do my job well and I diligently perform. In the morning - a good daughter and a good sister, in the afternoon - a good friend and the list of roles goes on and on. I enjoy solitude, because I can relax and be myself. Performing exhausts me, as do people in general. I used to think that I'm stuck with a mask called apathy, simply because I've forgotten how my original face looks like. But what if I'm faceless to begin with?
I tried explaining it to my friends and they called it a gift, a good thing. Some even look up to me, asking me how do I do it. So I gave up on sharing not wanting to mold someone similar to me.
I think I lost the ability to feel when I was around 11. All I remember from that time is a chain of sleepless nights, which I spent thinking and then thinking some more. Everything else is so distant, like a dream I dreamt a long time ago. And then there I was, lacking a whole set of emotions.
One thing that makes me feel energized is CHALLENGE. For example, bungee jumping of a bridge felt...real. Another challenge that I've been considering is talking to a psychologist. More like manipulating & toying with one, but hey, it doesn't really matter, does it?
I've also noticed that other than sarcasm and irony, I'm also quite fond of morbid humour.
StarsDontHaveAChance answered Thursday March 3 2011, 3:26 am: I am a 20 year old male and i have had the same issues for at least 6 years or so. I find that i am always wearing a mask and i have told my best friend about this and he thinks this is a "gift" because i can be who i want, when i want. I can make people believe that i really care about them, he even said that im like a "chameleon" because i blend in with whatever surrounding im in. To other people it seems that i always know exactly what to say and thats because every word that comes out of my mouth is chosen very carefully. I have people wishing they were me when im not really anything that i appear to be. I have different personality's depending on who im with, i can make a girl fall in love with me then i can break her heart without a drop of remorse. I feel like people are extremely predictable, i have the scenario played out in my head before i speak my first word.
I do get spurts of a real emotion and it is a extreme but brief feeling and then it goes away and i wish i could have those feelings more often.
theloner answered Tuesday March 1 2011, 11:29 pm: im glad that im not alone with this problem, ive been like this since i was 11 and its been hard for me to deal with it. My father accused me of being crazy because i didnt socialize like normal people. i never told them why because i understand that they'll either think me depressed or seriously ill and would make me see a therapist, which i hate because i always have to lie and think ahead of them so they dont find out. it feels like a curse but i dont have the ability to hate it so i just keep on acting and its making me so tired. My only advice would be to find someone that you make happy and and stay with that person so you can atleast have a purpose to life. something ive yet to come by. [ theloner's advice column | Ask theloner A Question ]
Nate4751 answered Monday February 14 2011, 4:54 pm: I am 15 and have been like this for 3 years. I wondered why and now i know. Its hard to live not feeling anything, and the worse part is trying to keep a girlfriend. I've learn to live with it and haven't been to bad. Its good to know that i'm not alone or crazy ha. [ Nate4751's advice column | Ask Nate4751 A Question ]
Vagabondkitten answered Tuesday January 25 2011, 12:17 am: Ribbonade, this response is to you. I simply have to write this to you. I feel exactly the same way. I feel like most of the time, I'm simply an actor. I just pretend to be, and feel normal for everyone else's sake. The truth is, the idea of someone really understanding how empty I feel is actually kind of nerve racking. I don't think I have a complete lack of emotion, so much as I'm so extremely introverted that it's not even funny. Outward stimuli have no real effect on me, but I do occasionally have those emotional jolts like you said, and it usually happens when I feel like I understand something important. I used to feel so alone and isolated, but I realized now that it was me thinking there was something wrong with being alone, not that I didn't like it. Being alone is the best thing that happens to me. I love when I can be by myself for hours and hours. I wish I didn't have to have a job, and be part of the real world, but at the same time, I know I have to be, and it would be too difficult to continue to exist were I to just do exactly what I want. I really don't trust people, nor will I ever, so I'll just continue to live like this, and be happy by myself. I hope you understand what I'm getting at. [ Vagabondkitten's advice column | Ask Vagabondkitten A Question ]
Ribbonade answered Saturday January 22 2011, 6:21 am: I am 15 years old, I'm female, and I behave like this.
I also have behaved like this pretty much from birth.
I feel emotions sort of hazily, like they're not really there. I don't mean that I ACT like a sloth, moping around all day - I act normal enough, but I can sort of feel a sort of touch of emotion, but they never really "grip" me.
I don't care much about my family or friends. I can pay attention to them while they're with me, and I can laugh and joke, and play around with them, but once I'm alone, I find myself really and truly alone. I realise that I don't really love people the way I should. Fuck, even at my own grandfather's funeral, I cried because everyone else was - not as an outlet for emotion.
I spend a lot of time by myself, reading, playing/listening to music, drawing, etc.... I don't spend a lot of time with others. I find I don't really want to spend time with real people. I like making up characters, or borrowing them from books or poems, etc... so that I can spend my life with them instead. I always thought that this was just selfishness because I'm shutting myself away from everyone else, so I can play around with my "real" friends, where I am happy (for the moment, anyway). I spend a lot of my time daydreaming, too. I perform mindless tasks, like playing single-player card games over and over or lying in bed at night until very late, as I think about all the wonderful adventures I really should be having. I suppose it's never hard to get me to go to bed early - I'm always so eager. I have such lucky parents. ;P
Anyway, about this "issue", I think this could be a big problem in my life, because I am very intelligent, on a variety of levels, and I have been told by family, friends, and teachers that I have great potential when I leave school, but this never really hits me. I KNOW I can do well, but I just don't believe it. (Knowing and believing are two different things entirely). The same goes for my artwork and musical achievements. I have no Idea what to do with myself once I'm out of the shelter of school, because I love music and art more than anything or anyone else (no great feat, mind you), and I'd like to share my own music for a living. Unfortunately, I know that music is purely the language of the soul, cheesy as it sounds, and that it is meant to carry ideas, thoughts, and emotions. If this is the case (and I believe it is), how can I create music? Because of this major insecurity in my future, I'd like to know, do you think the same way at all? Do you ever have your doubts about your future?
*raises hand* I've got a silly question, albeit, it's a genuine question:
I was wondering, do you do this? I think it may be related to our circumstances: Do you just KNOW at a certain event that you're going to remember that moment for the rest of your life? I don't mean like a wedding or a birthday, exactly, but when you suddenly realise something, for example, and you feel a real jolt of emotion for a minute. I do this, and it worries me sometimes, because something truly unimportant makes it's way into my long-term memory. Really, what have I been doing all my life if unimportant matters become my only real memories?
I think I realised I couldn't feel emotions fully when I first started primary school. I was always teased for reasons I still don't understand, but I never felt the pain of being a bullied child. I don't ever remember thinking about the bullying anywhere at home, but I remember being bullied at school. I remember spending hours wishing I was one of the popular girls at school, because I thought they lived blessed lives. Now I'm still wishing to be someone else, just on a greater scale. I suppose the great thing about being a robot is that I can make sound judgement and form my own ideas, beliefs, and opinions, and not be afraid to fight to the death for them.
ShastaIceFire answered Tuesday January 18 2011, 1:46 am: I have experienced much the same thing. Although I have emotions part of my emotional spectrum seems to be missing. I don't miss people. I don't grieve. I don't care if I see friends or not. When people are there I can focus on them and when they are gone it is as if they do not exist. Like you I am not unhappy. I even feel tranquility because I am insulated from so much human pain but something missing in it. I could be cruel but I CHOOSE to love instead, not because I feel it. To me that is strength. Going the path of least resistance is easy. We do not HAVE to be tin soldiers or feral animals. That is a choice. Sometimes I think all those people who love for an emotional high are really the ones who are shallow. I have studied a lot about this and while I do not know you personally I have found that it is almost always an attachment disorder. We have to learn to connect when we are very small. It is one of the deepest survival instincts in all mammals. If something goes wrong at the early stage of our lives it affects all our human relationships. There are other causes. Very often the experience has multiple causes.
Your emotional state does not necessarily make you a sociopathic personality. The very fact that we lack a subjective sense of realty makes it hard to understand what is going on inside. You cannot diagnose yourself because of your condition.
I used to be much worse but I have gained a great deal of emotions. Change is always possible
Ahhrexx answered Friday January 14 2011, 3:22 am: Yeah, i have the same thing... when i was little, i used to be a really nice boy. i cared about people, was totally against killing animals. Now i'm 15, and i don't give a sh*t about anything apart from myself. when i'm meeting new people, I have to fake every emotion i should be having. lol i really miss having fun =/ [ Ahhrexx's advice column | Ask Ahhrexx A Question ]
erinleigh25 answered Wednesday December 22 2010, 6:01 pm: i think i know how you feel! i dont really have fun anymore and everytime i laugh i force it. i think i might have post traumatic stress disorder, a mental disorder that occurs anytime from a day to years after a traumatic event has happened to you. is there anything that caused a lot of pain in your life? if there is then you may have ptsd. lack of emotion is a side affect, as well as not being able to sleep or avoiding things that remind you of the incident. for instance, my dad had a few strokes right before i entered middle school that were extremely life threatening. he was in and out of the hosptital for about a month and the entire time i would have to cry myself to sleep and just sit in silence with worry that at any moment we would have a call saying he died. the day before he entered the hospital for the first time we went out for ice cream, and now i never get that flavor i had before the incident, and i feel my bed has to look exactly the same everyday or it will happen again. so maybe you should investigate this option or go see a therapist so you at least know why youre feeling empty. [ erinleigh25's advice column | Ask erinleigh25 A Question ]
emotionRgone answered Saturday December 11 2010, 12:26 pm: I have the exact same thing and I'm 15 years old boy. I feel like this ever since my dog died 2 years ago, I remeber crying a lot for 3 days (she was older than me, been with me all my life). After that I started "loosing emotion", but I only noticed it when my niece was born and I "logicall love" her, and when my brother asked if I wanted to be her godfather and I didnt feel anything, nothing at all, this started worrying me.I still dont see how this could be a gift though, it makes it hard for to also hangout with friends, cause most of the time I just really feel like I dont give a f*** about anything. [ emotionRgone's advice column | Ask emotionRgone A Question ]
langes answered Tuesday November 30 2010, 2:07 pm: Obviously this is a gift of some sort with its many advantages but I do find that the greatest disadvantage though is having to pretend to like some people because you need something from them. My family doesn't understand why I don't go to family funerals its not like I actually care the person died it was their time but anyway such is life right. [ langes's advice column | Ask langes A Question ]
Kelo answered Wednesday October 6 2010, 7:20 pm: I've been through a lot in my life. I KNOW what you are going through. Because ive been through it. I know what it's like to not feel or feel very little and to not have a conscience. I thought i screwed my life up beyond repair. Now, looking back on my life (I'm almost 20 by the way). I did it all to myself and I'm not just blaming myself; In determining cause and effect of what caused what. I found that when i was a little kid people that should have taken better care of me didn't. I held it against them and one thing after anther my life got worse and worse to the point where you are at. I even came out of that and found happiness but, I screwed up again and dove back into my problems face first; I got so broken and destroyed and it's a wonder I'm still alive. The one thing learned in all of this is: to NEVER give up on searching for happiness.
When you get to the bottom of things; ask all of the whats and whys. The very bottom is principals; ALL humans (wether they know it or not) act through principals. In my own search I found what it takes to gain Happiness.
The secret of Happiness:
1.Fatih; Believe in yourself; Believe your life has a purpose
2.Forgiveness; Let all the bad go. People that you hold a grudge against and any grudge you might hold against YOURSELF.
3.Hope; Hope for the best in life but, dont expect it. Hope creates sincerity
4.Charity; Be Humble Be Selfless and Give but, (here's a mindscrew of mindscrew's) It can be selfish to give and selfless to take. The way to tell between selflessness and selfishness, giving and taking; It MUST be Sincere and humble. Dont give, thnking you have to and dont take when you dont feel like it.
5.Love; ,Acceptance,Respect,Frugality,Dilligence and . Each ONE of these creates Joy; which in turn promotes Faith.
You CAN'T have any Joy without Love, Love Without Charity, Charity without Hope and Hope without Faith. So if you are not happy find out where your problem is.
I know this looks like a bunch of religious BS but, you dont have to be religious to try it. Im not trying to convert anyone. People can believe however they want. I just want to help people.
P.S. Dont worry about loosing your logic it will still be there when you find your way.
Rik215 answered Monday October 4 2010, 11:33 pm: I've been like this for a little under a year now. It's on my mind about 95% of the time and no matter what I do I can never shake it off. Last thing I remember feeling is love for a girl (who is one of my best friends) then me being denied and just anger towards her...then everything just went blank. I know have been called cold by most of my friends on multiple occasions. All my life I've been a jokester and that hasn't stopped but I don't get satisfaction from making people laugh like I used to, I just do it to do it I guess. I still feel anger that's the only thing that I can distinguish, sadness is gone along with pure happiness, love, and fear. When people tell me sad stories I pretend to express emotion. When a friend tells a joke I emulate laughter perfectly so they would never suspect anything. I usually can be found listening to my ipod while people are in conversation, staring off into the distance, or cracking jokes all the time. I turn serious situations into jokes all the time. These days It's like I'm forced to use logic but would prefer my feelings to guide me in a way it feels like I'm walking down a forked road using a coin flip to determine my direction of travel (I have no idea where the hell I'm headed). I have a friend who describes me as mysterious she always wants to know whats going on in my head, even if I explain she still won't know... Some call this a gift I guess that's the silver lining but to me its a curse if anything you're just too emotionless to see it for what it is ;). I know this because the only time i feel a sliver of my emotions is when I smoke weed, and afterward I my personality turns to shit and I have heightened anger which is why I stopped. I hope there are still some of you guys reading this, i'm glad I'm not alone. [ Rik215's advice column | Ask Rik215 A Question ]
hayleyxxt answered Thursday June 24 2010, 9:49 am: I think I am this way too and i'm only 15. I'm a female and i don't feel anything for myself. I can feel love for fictional characters but for myself it love fails to appear towards real guys. I do have this motherly instinct towards the people i am close to but other than that i cant feel most emotions. I love to laugh untill it hurts but I dont like to talk much or do much... maybe i should see a theropist. but w/e....... [ hayleyxxt's advice column | Ask hayleyxxt A Question ]
Peeps answered Thursday January 28 2010, 2:19 am: It's very difficult to give you a diagnosis without having at least one lengthy session one-on-one with you, detailing your childhood until present day. It's likely that you are not a "dead" person inside and that you are suffering from an accute form of depression; although, like I said, it's fairly impossible to give you a proper diagnosis without meeting with you about these issues.
There are other things you should think about when considering your current lack of emotion. Thinking back through the years, has anything given you joy? Have you ever felt enraged? Have you ever cried from emotional distress? If so, then you do not have a personality disorder. You did not "grow up" emotionless. You were not born with this "defective" trait.
When I say "think back throughout the years" I truly mean to think about everything. Being excited on Christmas morning is emotion. Crying when grandpa passed away is emotion. Being afraid of the monster in the closet is emotion. Being sad when someone broke up with you or a relationship ended is emotion. Laughing at your best friend's joke in high school is a feeling of joy, even if it's only slight. Fearing that you won't graduate, will fail a test, or are simply scared of growing up into an adult--emotion! You don't have to feel them all though because you're human and none of us have the same feelings towards particular experiences.
It's possible that you had a poor role model growing up that taught you that emotions were a bad thing to feel and express. If this is true then you may not quite understand what emotion is when you do experience it. One person you veiwed as a role model in your childhood can really cause you great emotional damage later in life if they were not well-suited to the role you chose for him/her. It's also a good possibility that you grew a great attachment to someone/something and it/they went away for one reason or anything. It may have caused you to feel lost and confused for awhile and as a way to cope you dismissed all further feelings of emotion that you began to experience.
You must deal with this problem now. You absolutely cannot just accept it as it is. You need to solve this or you will end up leading a very sad life. Nobody deserves to have to go through a joyless lifetime.
I suggest two very major things that you would have to stick by to make them work:
1. Seek out a proper therapist. Meet with him/her at least once a month, preferably more often. Talking things out will help you to figure out what happened and when it happened. You may be able to understand this problem better and overcome the emotional barrier with a good therapist. Sometimes one event can cause a mind to shut off something very vital in the future--something you need to open back up now.
2. Begin to create a meaningful life for yourself. Personally, I suggest volunteerism because it creates a bond with your surrounding community and fulfills our desires to be needed by others. This in itself is therapy and you must view it as such--something you ABSOLUTELY MUST do every when scheduled.
Sit down and find out your local organizations looking for volunteers. You may volunteer at the hospital (keeping things organized for nurses' and help patients cope), an elderly center (keeping someone company in their old age), a child's center or library (reading to the children), at a soup kitchen, a homeless shelter, delivering food to elderly shut-ins, working at the battered women's/children centers, or even raising funds for a foundation. Preferably you should set aside one day a week at the minimum to volunteer at your choice of organization. It's your choice if you want to volunteer at just one organization every friday or mix-and-match every thursday.
Many people now are so busy with their own lives that they lose sight of what it is to be loving and caring. You see, knowing that you are helping others does great things for the self-imagine. You soon realize that you aren't useless and just a blob of flesh bobbing along through life.
It really seems that the problem is our current lifestyles. We no longer "have time" to help others. Nobody volunteers now because they feel that they should be paid money for their time. Nobody goes out of their way to show care for others because that time could be used for something else. Both of these are common and we're taught (it's drilled into our heads) that we are the most important in our lives. This is not true at all: the people surrounding us are the most important.
The people who surround you create your sense of belonging though. Those people help you to see yourself as useful. Those people are the ones that can show care back for you. Without those people, you aren't anything anymore. Without others you cannot create happiness or share fond experiences with another human being. When you were a child, do you remember having an outing with a friend and enjoying it? Just sitting around, eating pizza, and joking maybe? What if you had been alone? It wouldn't have been so memorable, would it? It would have been almost pointless.
The media keeps telling us to only worry about ourselves. Sure, it's find to tend to your own needs--but what happens when everyone is too busy with themselves? What happens when everyone stops worrying about caring for others? They become depressed, wondering why they don't belong somewhere and why they feel lost in society.
What's strange is the more we focus on ourselves and stop helping others, the less we feel good about ourselves. As humans, we NEED interaction. We NEED acceptance. We NEED to know we are important in life. We NEED to SHARE experiences with other people to find the joy!!! Most of all though, we desperately NEED to help others to gain all of that plus more.
Now, you may even consider doing random acts of kindness while you find an organization best suited to your current lifestyle needs:
I suggest you grab a phone book and make a few calls. Sit down with a calendar and set up one or more days a week to volunteer your time at certain places. Don't stress yourself out trying to fit things into busy schedules, but move things around so that your schedule won't be hectic but will have the fulfilling volunteer time in it. It's important to make time for this so start creating some free time to make yourself useful to your community.
Find a good therapist that you can open up to and who can find what the cause of this problem.
Begin creating reasons to feel by helping other people.
Give yourself some time to settle into the new situations. Make new friends. Laugh about jokes with eachother. Listen to how sad someone's life has been or about their exciting youth. Laugh and cry when it comes to you. It will come--just don't push it back and try to hide anymore.
BK201 answered Tuesday January 26 2010, 3:19 pm: I agree with many of the statements made in each of the posts by everyone. It is truly interesting to read about something so similar to yourself, when you have trouble realizing who you really are.
I'm just gonna get lost in my thoughts right now. I'm sure we all do. So don't let my puzzle-like approach distort your interest.
I'm 20 years old, Male. I have been out of school for three wasted years of my life. Though I'm intelligent, and strive to uphold an understanding above the average person.
I've undergone many conflicts in life, I just recently battled social anxiety disorder, which left me focused on this certain void, we all share. (It is usually connected to depression as well)
My parents often ask me if I'm depressed. Because when im walking around the house or doing something im always thinking, deep in my head im gone. I get offended because I feel like I have enough things going on in my life to make me happy, so I might be lying to myself but I believe I am happy, but I lack the emotion to EXPRESS it.
We are very introverted thinkers, and often represent logic and order. Though we can contradict ourselves with our best thought out answer.(For example someone says my friend died and I'm completely drowning in sorrow. And you answer by saying all the necessary compassionate things, but you want your understanding to be perfect so you also say you lost a friend of your own.) - The honest help we provide to others is laced in a fabricated gel to strengthen our opinions.
What does this all mean, I'm a pathological liar maybe. But the way I lie, is for the better well being of others. Little white lies, they all seem to me, though others might think they're vast.
The person I trust the most, is myself. My thoughts go so deep sometimes. I always pair it with purpose. There has to be a reason why I choose to sit and think in an empty room, over going outside and enjoying the sun. It might not even necessarily be the lack of basic emotion, but that understanding is more important to us so we can become something more.
I desire very little. I could be happy living in a small apartment for the rest of my life working an office job. I do have hopes and dreams and passions. I produce uplifting and progressive trance. There's a quote that represents my whole life "Logic is order, passion accentuates freedom"
Wow. The basics of my life, when looked into they become a complex whirlpool of thoughts, and script explaining emotions I wish I could feel. I wish I was stupid, or ignorant, after reading so much about my problems, I have accepted it as a gift, but the greater gift of all is the world we live in, and our souls, our consciences.
Emotions seem so abstract and dull, that I envy normal people. And I shape my life with my understandings of moral, love, guilt, all of that, that I've gathered whilst reading the minds of others, and learning about what makes them tick.
I'm just a hermit, studying the human race, and the brain. I feel like without the knowledge I can't survive in this world, when in fact, the most effective prospect is action. If I'm not able to feel sad, or happy, how will I be able to live. It scares me, and the only way I can make myself feel better, is to do the one thing I love most, and hate at the same time. Thinking and working out new problems. I use it to help people with similar disorders or people who self injure. ( I never have myself) but this place I have in the world, I need to make it good. For now.
Some day soon I might let go of understanding, and the actions I was always scared to to in my past will become a present, and I will become who I should have grown up to be. [ BK201's advice column | Ask BK201 A Question ]
syron13 answered Tuesday January 19 2010, 3:13 am: I am 26 and don't know how many times I wondered if there was something wrong with me for not seeming to feel things like others did. I felt the same way that I was acting a part and putting on a mask for the world. It is only recently for me that I really figured myself out. I am an introvert. Don't know how much you know about that term, but we just have our own set of needs. It is an extrovert world and we have to live in it. The things is we can understand extroverts but they can't understand us. They see it as a bad thing but it isn't. Being introverted doesn't mean you are shy but you need time to recharge after we are forced to socialize. I found it hard to believe that extroverts are energized by social things. They just were me out. Introverts are thinkers; we get our energy from inside. Thinking is what recharges us. We aren't better or worse than anyone else because of this but are talents usually are found in different areas than extroverts. If after doing some reading you find that introvert seems to fit accept it and don't force yourself to try and be extroverted. It only makes you feel as you and others on here have said. That you feel like you are wearing a mask, forcing yourself to laugh just because everyone else is. That there is something wrong with YOU when there really isn't. You just have to know how to care for yourself and your own needs. [ syron13's advice column | Ask syron13 A Question ]
SOML answered Thursday January 7 2010, 4:40 pm: I have been like you for a while, not really sure how long though. I still laugh, a lot, but i think most of it is forced and the rest is just because logical observations can be ironic and funny more than emotionally fueled. Anyway I don't really see it as a problem other than the fact that i don't really care to empathize with people. People who are emotionally fucked up, might think of it as a gift, cause they wish that they did not have to feel "real life", but I don't know about it being a "gift". Any way the best advice that could be given is that you should make the best out of it. I'm an air rescue swimmer, we do shit that most people would be afraid of doing, i have not really met many other people like me. This is probably because we can all read other people like book and manipulate them very easily, projecting what ever we think they want us to be. As for the ANTI-SOCIAL part, I do not believe this to be a correct statement as it implies that we are against social behavior, i honestly do not care whether or not I'm with another person or alone, its all just fine and dandy either way. I think "normal" people consider it anti-social because they are upset that nothing they do really has an affect on us. Any way, the best thing I have learned is to just keep it to your self, if you try to tell people you know they will just be confused and bother you more about it; and since it is impossible to relate to them nothing you tell them will help. [ SOML's advice column | Ask SOML A Question ]
Xehanort answered Saturday November 28 2009, 4:30 am: Hello I'm a 14 year old freshman who has the EXACT same issue as you. I've looked into the same diagnosis as well. The key difference is, however, I remember the last thing I felt. I don't remember what caused it and I've gone through many therapists trying to figure this out, so I'm convinced that I will never genuinely know what caused that pain that made me into the thing I am. Over my time of emotional numbness, I've grown to observe people as they really are. To see past what they claim to be, to see what people really are, and to learn what I know about social interactions so I can fit into society when I need to. It's all so abstract to me, I even normally have trouble comprehending these situations that most would find humorous. I'm a natural musician and a man of theater, so I have no trouble just going through the motions without showing what's really going through my head, it's just understanding it in the first place has me stumped. I can't do therapy considering my entertainment is to fuck with therapists (hence the many I have gone through). I too am seeking an answer to this curse (gift according to you) and if I find an answer if there's a way to give me that which I have been deprived of for probably 12-13 years now (time range based on how well my memory of everything back then is). Just thought I'd let you know of another person with the same affliction as you.
-Xehanort [ Xehanort's advice column | Ask Xehanort A Question ]
anonymous12345 answered Thursday November 19 2009, 9:27 pm: well i mean , i started off like that . happy and all that . One day it was my birthday and i woke up not happy . So .. that's when everything started going . If I do not put on a happy face , then my friend will think i'm sad or something . That's when it bugs me and plus when i put on my act it seems more easier . Like im not away from society , and people would like me more because im regular. Like i had a phase for a couple of weeks . about a 1 month and a half where i acted like me ,and i wouldn't really do stuff with people . Like someone died or something and i was still in shock , but no one died and i wasn't in shock it was like me to me not me to society but people thought i was weird so my friends stopped talking to me a bit and such . I'm always deep in thought . i give things much thought about everything , every single second of my life im thinking about this and that , and if not im going to be reading . I think when i put myself out there im making myself a much bigger fool then keepig myself to me because when i talk there's like really no point since im thinking about what to say . it should be a reflex not soemthing to think-and-do . i hardly get angry anymore and when i do it'd be a little spark and i'd chill out . I mean .. i think i lost my anger too :/ . i can tell when people are faking their laughter when im talking . i told my friend abt my ' disorder ' and then we were talking abt it again , and she forget what it meant AND !! she forgot i even had it ... I cann say i have suchhh great friends .. ( sarcasm added ) [ anonymous12345's advice column | Ask anonymous12345 A Question ]
uncommon22 answered Wednesday October 28 2009, 4:28 pm: I have been reading post for days and have decided to share my life. I'm 22 years old and I really can't remember the last time where I didn't have to fake a smile or make myself laugh at a friends joke. I have always thought and wondered if me not having any emotions except for satisfaction of manipulation of someone was a evil thing. I cant tell you how long I have been like this nor why i'm even like this. As I remember my childhood was good and I always stayed active in sports. I guess it started when I realized how the earth really worked and how cruel and decieving people really are. The only way for myself not to get hurt is to not feel anything at all. To me feeling no emotions at all for any persons is worth the sacrafice of me feeling no happiness. It sad that I can't remember the last time I have morned for anyones loss. I have manipulated so many people especially girls for my enjoyment. Im not saying I have done anything terrible besides breaking the heart of every girl I have been with without any remorse at all. Only fear I have is the fear of being alone. Thats why I manipulate girls and give them the feeling that they are loved and cared for just so I dont have to spend a day alone. I have seen more girls cry in front more than you might see at a funeral. The world is a cruel place and is not going to get better. That is probally why we are like we are. We are a very smart and unique kind of people that just see's the world and how everything works differently then your normal person. We are so gifted not to have to feel the emotional rollercoaster that consumes everyday life. If anyone wants to hear more or ask me any questions I'm very open about how I feel. My email is Gbhickman06 @ comcast dot net. Ty for reading. Greg [ uncommon22's advice column | Ask uncommon22 A Question ]
Bill answered Friday October 23 2009, 11:45 pm: Welcome to the fold of rationals. I, personally, haven't experienced much emotion in my life. If you aren't dysfunctional, and you aren't acting like someone you aren't, then that is your natural personality and there isn't anything wrong with it.
Now, a shameless plug for the Myers-Briggs test. You sound like an INTJ, and we are occasionally confused for psychopaths or antisocial folk. Take a look at the test and such online, you might learn something useful. [ Bill's advice column | Ask Bill A Question ]
Reyna01 answered Wednesday October 14 2009, 12:48 am: Hi there, I actually think it is beautiful what you have there. You see professional people would probably say you are ill and that I am crazy. Use it as a shield. If you cannot feel betrayal, pain, fear, happiness or love,it doesn't make you a bad person or like what some would call it ANTI-SOCIAL. Socialize with people, but don't let them get to you, and that is the gift you have. You are on this earth to live, experience life and just grow old. Feelings are complicated, and that's what makes life complicated. You see, our thoughts generate feelings, makes us feel. If I well understood, in your case you do not feel anything whatsoever. That is okay, the important thing is to understand that you are living in a world where people create connections. Thats all to life, you treat others like you would want to be treated and respesct people and value the good important things. If you can't feel, then you are a strong person. You do not have to be like everybody else, from what it looks like, (people that are different to you in your surrounding must have questionned your ways of being and couldn't maybe stand the fact that they couldn't control you). When you make people feel things for who they are and what they do, you can anger them, make them sad, question themselves (your case) and worst control them. You cannot be manipulated. You can see past people's true intentions. WHy you may ask or how come? Because there is nothing worst tahn being blind folded by emotions. Our emotions lie to us most of the time in our life. Use your intuition, and be smart and do the right thing in life. The definition of what is right to you. Have your own code, you are gifted. I was wondering, how do you spend days without feeling. That for me would be a breath of fresh air :)
cpking5 answered Thursday October 8 2009, 4:13 pm: I haven't felt genuine emotion for about six months now. I have instinctual desires and people that I am fond of, but never could I admit to loving someone. It was only when I watched the Showtime series, Dexter, that I realized what it was. The last thing I remember actually feeling was love. The fact that I don't have emotions is my secret. I was drunk one time and told a cousin and a friend. I don't know if they took it seriously, but not shortly after, I thought about killing them because of what they knew. My cousin and best friend, whom I had known since I was born. I know almost for a fact that all of us are atheists, and I know that we are all highly intelligent. We are above. We are not doused with the heavy burden of feeling, but can get a job done more efficiently and all-around better than most people in the world. We have no fear, and no obligations. I have never met anyone else like me, so it is almost a thrill to see this. We all mask our selves, which shows the power of social contract, but we are open to each other. I used to feel very alone because nobody was as smart as I or felt how I did. If we united, what could we do? [ cpking5's advice column | Ask cpking5 A Question ]
Ironhide776 answered Tuesday August 11 2009, 10:25 pm: I too either suffer from this or am blessed by this. I am a 18 year old male. Is something wrong. I mean I just ignored my mom to clean the bathroom three times. She went and cleaned it. I heard her cry and felt nor sorrow no remorse. My dad yelled at me and asked me if i felt bad i said yes i just didnt hear her. After that still no emotion. My mom is up stairs crying and i know that i messed up but i don't really care. I have done alot in my past alot that my parents and friends are worried about me but i dont feel regret about any of them. Also in relationships with women. I nevered loved my ex but said it to make her happy. I didn't know if this was love or if i was just faking it. Well when she broke up with me in twenty min i found another date for that night. Is something wrong can it be fixed? [ Ironhide776's advice column | Ask Ironhide776 A Question ]
T-MaKK answered Monday August 3 2009, 6:24 am: i am one of the people who nick mentioned, someone who struggles to understand.
my friend, 16 year old female, broke up with her boyfriend at the beginning of this year. she had a secret that she would tell me.
Saturday night just gone, we were drunk, and we ended up having sex, and that was when she told me.
besides the obvious tension of having sex with one of your best friends(also with her not remembering it), im trying to understand her lack of feeling.
she has a partner. although its very on and off, but they cant live without each other, its incredibly strange.
does my friend show have anti-social personality disorder? are you born with it? or can it be triggered (her and her old boyfriend were incredibly close, until he cheated on her)
can losing someone that means so much to you, trigger the symptoms of anti-social personality disorder?
is there anything i can do to 'test' my friend for it. i want to help her, she means alot to me, as all my friends do.
CaseClosed answered Saturday August 1 2009, 7:59 am: I cant believe that there are this many people who share the same problem I do. I've had that same numbness since i was a kid also. I'm an 18 yr old male from New York dealin with this on a daily basis. Having to fake a laugh at a friends joke and mimicking popular behaviors I saw on tv growing up. Telling girlfriends about feelings that i dont really have. Wanting to be alone when in groups but wanting someone to connect with. I had a moment a year ago after my ex broke up with me that I actually felt legit emotions, but then i went back to whatever I am now.
It is a form of anti-social behavior, closer to being a sociopath without reason or remorse than an anxiety disorder from having recent changes in regular life. I also first understood it when i took pysch in my first year of college. I've managed to learn a little bit about it so if anyone wants to talk u can contact me:
cjcanuelas <at> yahoo <dot> com [ CaseClosed's advice column | Ask CaseClosed A Question ]
Kromeh answered Friday July 31 2009, 12:39 pm: I've had the same problem before. A few years ago I went through a mental breakdown because my parents had been seperate but my dad still wanted to see me. After my mental breakdown, I felt pretty much the same way you did.
It wasn't untill recently that I broke free. There was a girl that I liked but she just couldn't be with me. It kind of ripped me open I don't know why it affected me more then anything but that was the first cried because of my emotions since my breakdown.
I dont know if this helped you, but I am feeling so much better now, all you need I needed was a little pain to heal me. I had been so scared on a subconscious level of it though that I actually passively tried rejecting people.
lost00000000 answered Wednesday July 29 2009, 2:02 am: i "feel" the same in almost every way but i have a deep yearning for something more but i veiw any and every exploit in cold logic my family calls me indifferent i care only for dad for some reason i i identify we live a lie yet that is why we're brilliant we outhink everything including our emotions that is why we're cold i'm amazed there are others i thought i was the only one [ lost00000000's advice column | Ask lost00000000 A Question ]
be113ve answered Sunday June 7 2009, 3:31 am: I can't believe I found this page.
I'm not sure how much I have to add, a lot has already been discussed here. I just thought I should add my name to the list, and also say, that I would be very interested to talk to some of the people here. Email me if you are game: be113ve <at> yahoo <dot> com
I am a 19 year old male, and have felt this 'numbness' for as long as I can remember. I don't think anyone else has ever noticed, because it took me a while to notice myself. I think I have lived my whole life analysing and mimicking others, only to realise now that I am constantly lying, talking about feelings I don't really have, realising that everything I say is just part of the equation to get the result. Everything is planned and executed, never flowing or reactive. I am lying all the time, maybe even to myself. I dont even know for certain if I am lying to you now.
I appreciate nick11689's comments and advice: "Keep your mask on, wear it proud knowing you don't have to go through the pain of living."
I hide behind my mask, even from myself. I feel I am a differnt person to everyone. I am who I want to be, when I want to be. I dont think anyone really knows who I am. I tried to tell someone once, but it turned weird. It is difficult, because you have to tell a 'friend' that you dont feel anything, that your relationship, even with them, is just an act. How can you tell someone that and expect anything good? So again, I appreciate nick11689's advice, "keep your mask on".
More recently I became bored. Nothing impresses me. I am mostly bored with people. I can make friends really easily, and can get along well with anyone. But now, everyone is just boring. All conversation follows the same rules, the same pleasantries. Again an equation. I am yet to find any activity which really interests me.
Sorry it got a bit long! And if anyone cares: I enjoy recreational drugs (keep it casual and occasional), am in a pretty high percentile at university studying computer science, and dont consider myself sexual.
Again, send me an email if anyone is interested in talking.
escapistgamer answered Tuesday May 26 2009, 4:27 am: Intriguing. And just when I thought I was alone with this...
I'm younger than most of you, 15 years old, living in Australia. I'm pretty intelligent, attending a so-called 'selective school.'
But unlike some of you here, I can't feel anything but one, strangely intense: anger.
I first noticed I couldn't feel much when my grandmother died. She was very important to me, and played a large role in my life. However, when she had gone I didn't feel a thing. I'm pretty sure this problem started before that.
Since then, I've been feigning emotions in public, concentrating on how a normal human being would react if someone asks me something, or does something to me - heck, I can't even let my guard down in front of my parents. My life is built primarily on lies - that lets me conceal who I really am.
The only true emotion I can feel is rage. I can get angry over the smallest things and keep it up for days, sometimes even weeks. I hide the anger from people around me (and my 'friends') but sometimes, when it gets too strong, I get all sorts of homicidal thoughts, just ending the lives of other people around me - though, obviously, I haven't gone that far.
There are a few people I seemingly care for - but that's to keep me looking normal, to make me fit into society. The very fact that I've managed to keep it up the act for this long (self control, maybe) could have pleased me... but it doesn't.
As for some questions some others raised, I have an iPod, and while I can listen to songs and know what they're about, I can't feel the emotion the song might express; I am also a classically trained pianist, but none of the 'emotion' in the piece I am playing ever affects (or 'gets to') me.
And, I've also played my fair share of video games (and remain an avid gamer), but more violent games like Manhunt have a tendency to make me practically enjoy them at one stage or another. It could just be my sadistic personality, but I don't think the lack of feeling has anything to do with desensitisation toward violence or violent imagery.
Whatever it is, there's not much I can do about it. And hell, as Majj said, this could be better than feeling emotions at all. We don't live with regret - if there was a word similar to carefree (but in another context), that would describe people like us. [ escapistgamer's advice column | Ask escapistgamer A Question ]
So I have this same thing. I find it hard to categorize emotions, I do not feel the emotion of 'love' like most of you (even to my family, even though they are all nice people). I am 18 and I don't remember myself being this way, well maybe because I certainly did not think about this ever. But once I got aware of it, I think about it more and more; and now I feel that this is paranoia. I would like to consider myself fairly intelligent, I can have intelligent conversations with people. I get slightly 'vexed'(would be the best word, to describe my situation) at people who infuriate me in a conversation. Also, after realizing that I have this situation I have become anti social for some reason, I don't remember ever being antisocial. Maybe it's just because there is nothing interesting going on in my life, but that is just a hypothesis.
Also, another thing I have realized is that I suffer from a very small attention span and have something similar to amnesia, I have trouble recalling memories. And somehow I remember memories as facts. Thats how I would explain it. They are not memories for me, but mere facts- this and that happened to me on Wednesday.
Does anyone also feel this? Suffering from Amnesia and 'no-emotion syndrome' or whatever they call it?
Another thing, and I might be making all this up. But, I smoked pot like two times and both times I went for a very bad trip. Like it was bad, my mind was racing etc. It was scary and very philosophical. Since then I have given smoking pot, nor do I like to even get drunk. After these 2 bad trip incidents I noticed that I suffer from loss of memory.
Or could it also be that playing too much video games does this to me?
rdotson464672 answered Friday May 1 2009, 12:02 am: This certainly is an interesting discussion. I never thought I would find other individuals with the same "affliction". I have known about my apathetic personality since I was eight but i suppose I just thought I was insane. I remember having teachers/friends/family members constantly questioning my emotional state; stating that my face always appeared to be angry. In reality I was simply sitting there, ambivolent to my surroundings. I developed a loose reputation for being the "angry kid". From that time forward I have observed and studied all social situations in an attempt to be able to convey a "normal" appearance and now can read and react perfectly at any time I may need to. I understand what you are talking about and am interested in knowing more about your situations. For now I am wondering if anyone knows what we have is called? [ rdotson464672's advice column | Ask rdotson464672 A Question ]
iskur007 answered Sunday April 12 2009, 7:07 pm: I'm 16 and I too have same problem. I have only just discovered this page. The resemblances with what other people have written and myself are practically identical. If I could I think I would be amazed.
I became aware of this problem about two years ago when my grandmother died. I didn't feel anything at all. It was the first event in my life where I should have been overcome with emotion. I have never had any other truly emotional moments in my life. I found it strange that I wasn't sad or even angry, just nothing. I set to work trying to analyse what was wrong until I eventually realised what was staring at me in the face: I didn't feel any emotions at all and hadn't done so for some time.
I remember when I was about 8 I was quick to anger and frustration, I'm not sure I can remember ever being happy. Since then I haven't felt anything, I learnt to control my anger and all my emotions went with it. It's possible that anger was the only emotion I have ever felt, and it made up for the lack of everything else. Every moment I live behind a mask, I laugh when someone says a funny joke or sneer at the appropriate times at a person who has just said a crap one. I understand humour, what is and what isn't generally considered to be funny, but It does not make me happy. I think I still care about some things such as social status. I'm not afraid of losing my friends, it would just be inconvienient.
I don't really like anyone and I certainly don't love anyone (not even my family), but I don't hate anyone either.
I got hit by some guys a couple of months ago and they stole my mobile. I wasn't angry, I did not regret the loss of my mobile, I didn't feel any hate towards the ones who hit me, just nothing. One of them hit me on the side of my face, I didn't feel any pain. I felt that it hurt but it was as if my body was hurt and not me. I didn't hit him back because I didn't want all the others to hit me.
Everything is cause consequence action reaction and completly empty. The only time I really feel anything is when I solve a complex equation or write a complex program.
I also feel different when I'm high. It's not real emotion but more like an articficial emotion.
I think that maybe because I understand what emotions and feelings are, they lose their importance and become irrelevant.
I do not understand music, I even have an Ipod but I never listen to it when i'm on my own.
I think from what the other people who have answered have written, there could be a relation between intelligence and this condition. My personal IQ is 147. Maybe the fact that you understand emotion means you lose it. [ iskur007's advice column | Ask iskur007 A Question ]
jimmy444 answered Saturday April 4 2009, 5:21 pm: I too can strongly relate to what has been said here. I figured out somehow something was wrong at around the age of 8, but have only recently discovered what it was while watching the show 'Dexter' - a show about a sociopath, followed by some research of sociopathy which cast some light on why I am like I am.
I have always been relatively intelligent, which I think is the reason I've been able to 'get away with it' for as long as I have. I managed to forge many relationships through humor and mimicking and have to date been able to avoid any real suspicion. So I am curious as to whether most of you guys have found yourselves to be smarter than most? Also I am curious as to how you guys view other people? To me people seem simply predictable, almost like robots in that they will react a certain way to certain events or words every time, which is I guess why manipulation comes so easy. It is akin to pushing buttons on a computer to get a desired reaction.
One problem of late for me is keeping the 'mask' up. I am only 18 years old and find the prospect of doing it for another 60 years quite daunting. So to the more experienced here, how do you keep it up for so long? I just feel like beating everyone in frustration sometimes because of how drained i become pretending. So much fake smiling and coming up with the perfect thing to say is exhausting. I sometimes find myself just relaxing around people, forgetting to fake it, exposing my true self for a bit, something which seems to scare the more astute.
Another question I have is have you guys ever suspected an aquaintance to be the same as you? And have you ever asked them about it, and if so what was the result? To answer the question in the post before about music, the only music that provokes emotion in me is usually violent music - with a correlating violent emotion. I don't much get music really at all. It seems so illogical. Except when I'm high. Are you guys the same way?
Another thing, do you guys find the thrill of breaking the law almost irresistible? I myself have only been caught once for counterfeit/fraud a couple of years back. When the cops came to question me the rush I felt was enormous, a delightful surprise, but didnt last long at all and I was soon back to the usual nothingness. Anyway, it's good to see a place where the content is not how to detect and avoid 'these evil' people. cheers guys [ jimmy444's advice column | Ask jimmy444 A Question ]
TheseFewPresidents answered Friday March 20 2009, 2:54 am: I think what Nick has said pretty much sums up what we're thinking. I suffer (well that's not the word, but you know) too. I just wanted to explain myself and then add a point, and hopefully get a response. Now from what I hear, my part hasn't gotten as bad as Nick yet, however I've gotten worse. It started when i was around 8. And it eventually got worse, but I realised that I had to conform to avoid being found out because i knew I was wrong in some way, so I sat back and learned a bit. Well I've come a way from going through the trying to feel phase, like Nick said, haha well I should have really understood not to do stuff in public as well, I cut my arm up with scissors in 6th grade, and tried to feel the emotional side of pain for a while. But there was nothing, all it was was a logical point that it's just nerve cells firing.
Has anyone else had violent thoughts of a morbid sort? I think I might be a lower functioning, as I still have a violent tendency, however I keep it under control. Also has anyone had episodes? I've felt emotions in little bits, but often when I get excited as I'm feeling an emotion, it goes away as soon as I realise pretty much. However contrary to Nick I get adrenaline rushes when.... those who are experienced adn accustomed to suprises I would say, got a rush.
However the main question I would like to ask anyone who looks and has AntiSocial Personality disorder, do you feel emotions rarely from music? I sometimes catch a song, and only a new song, after a few listens the vaguest hint of emotions goes away, but I still feel a little bit depending on the song. When my grandfather died when I was 10, but after that, It felt like I wore out my emotions, as in, my aunt died 6 weeks after and I wasnt sad or felt any grief. And just recently my other grandfather died, and tehre was nothing.
Nick11689 answered Tuesday February 10 2009, 2:51 am: Hopefully you still occasionally check back here to see if your question was answered or not. My name is Nick. I'm going for my doctorate in psychology essentially for the very reason you displayed here. I have felt the same way as you, or rather haven't felt, since I was around thirteen. I can remember times in which I was happy, but I certainly do not remember what it felt like. I've done research in my courses on the topic, but there is a very small yield of people like you and I. The only person I really ever came to about the topic was one of my teachers my junior year, with whom I still have communications. According to him, people like you and I are one in a million (not an actual statistic, just an analogy). Yes, what we have is, technically, antisocial personality disorder, but a very high functioning form of the disease. Most people with the illness end up going of the deep end, so to speak, and harming individuals other than, and including, themselves. I just hope I caught you before you went through the same "trying to feel" phase that I did. Don't do anything risky. In the first 10 years I had this, I earned second degree black belts in two different martial arts, jumped off high ledges into water, drove WAY too fast, all in the hopes that I would feel something. Trust me when I say you are wasting your time for the most part. I gained a basic knowledge of what I could and could not feel. I still can get adrenaline rushes in times of need, but those are incredibly hard to feel. I haven't felt one in four years and the last time I did was from a mild fireworks malfunction in which a locally held fireworks show set every one of there explosives off at once, quite a site. I also still desire, no, not desire, but rather feel more in my environment if I have a companion. The past four years I, have been in a relationship with a woman with whom I thought I could, at times, feel some happiness. I would get a warm fluttery feeling in my stomach around her which I thought I remembered being happy, or nausea, and found myself naturally smiling around her. I became comfortable enough with her to tell her my secret and she seemed to take it well at first, but later became noticeably uncomfortable when I stopped acting like a normal person around her. Regardless, if you truly are like me, I'd advise against telling anyone just for the sake of wondering how they would feel about you. Generally they seem okay with it at first because they don't believe you, but the moment you stop putting on the act you have from day to day, they feel very weird around you. Keep your mask on, wear it proud knowing you don't have to go through the pain of living. I've taken on the interesting distraction of observing those around me and learning general human reactions based on stimuli of every day living. Believe it or not, I truly think people like you and I would make the very best types of psychologists, which is why I have chosen to become a doctor of said science. Because we aren't clouded, we can read people easier, predict how they are feeling better, and ultimately help them through situations. I understand you don't have a desire to help people, but its better to live this life with some use than to float through entertaining your lack of feelings. Trust me on this, I've been doing it a long time. If you ever want to tell anyone, make sure it is someone you know you can trust not to turn you into the police as a dangerous lunatic. If you tell a psychologist, make you also explain to them that you have no urge to kill or hurt anything, he'll become worried otherwise. Keep up the act, perfect the act, hell you may even find it to be the best distraction.
secret91 answered Monday June 23 2008, 11:21 pm: I feel EXACTLY the same way.
Do you feel alone? like your whole life is just an act, like you are constantly wearing a mask and there is no one else in the world who is like you? I do. That is the only thing i feel. i am never happy, sad, angry.... I don't feel ANY emotion. I don't feel sorry about anything i have ever done, good or bad. My whole life is numb.
I think i might have the same thing as you... but since i am 17, it is called something different, concept disorder. anyways... I think it would be interesting to talk to you. I have never met anyone else who thinks like me. It is amazing. email me if you are interested.
jung10012 answered Monday March 17 2008, 8:34 pm: I think you might want to check Dr.Daphne, Simeon's work, "Depersonalization; Feeling unreal and the loss of the sense of self". She specializes in DPD and your symptoms closely resemble those of DPD. Good luck. [ jung10012's advice column | Ask jung10012 A Question ]
BitsandPieces answered Wednesday January 9 2008, 7:52 pm: Talk about a bitter answer below me...and incorrect as well. Higher IQ does not determine or predict social disorder and it certainly does not make it normal or healthy in any case. You have most likely grown up in a very cold or angry home in which you were not allowed or encouraged to have a range of normal emotions or express yourself. This does not mean you will be this way forever. In order not to feel pain, you have turned off your inner self...the flip side is that you cannot experience the joys in life. All emotion is connected and you need to become willing to work on vulnerability and get counseling. You do have all the potential for a normal life and to experience it in full color...high definition if you will...3-d, whatever. Keep learning, growing and opening up in small steps. You are never stuck. Keep in touch and talk to your school counselor for more guidance. [ BitsandPieces's advice column | Ask BitsandPieces A Question ]
WittyUsernameHere answered Wednesday January 9 2008, 4:45 pm: Even being a psychology major I dont feel comfortable diagnosing this or anything of that nature.
However, I have some similar traits myself.
Purely from personal experience and self analysis, I would say that some level of detachment from emotions is normal for an intelligent person. The higher your IQ, the more likely you are to work off of logic and reason as opposed to emotion in your every day life.
In plainer terms, theres a concrete wall between yourself and what you feel. Everyone has some level of emotion, some people's defenses to keep from feeling it are stronger than others.
I hesitate to bring this up, but also severe emotional detachment to the point that you have difficulty relating to other people can be a sign of past abuse and mental trauma. If you want a more complete answer than that you should seek a professional.
You need to crack the wall somehow. I wish I had suggestions on how to do it (well, I do, but in no way are they appropriate for this website or in general). I would just say find a counselor. Someone you can talk to who can point you in the right direction a little better than we can. [ WittyUsernameHere's advice column | Ask WittyUsernameHere A Question ]
icey0990 answered Wednesday January 9 2008, 2:25 pm: I am an 18/f and I too have taken psychology in college. However, I am not a therapist and I doubt many people on here are. I DO know that 90% of people who have seen a therpaist report they feel better. Dont be ashamed for getting help, everyone goes through a rough time soemtime throughout their life. If you go to a psychiatrist, I know it will be beneficial to you. Definitely see a therapist, talk to your family and hopefully they will be supportive of you. Remember, there is nothing to be ashamed about. Having a psychiatric disorder is the same as having a heart problem, tumor, etc. It is a medical condition that can be helped by a professional . It doesnt mean you are crazy, America just has a negative stigmatism or outlook on psychiatric disorders. [ icey0990's advice column | Ask icey0990 A Question ]
Razhie answered Wednesday January 9 2008, 12:03 am: You would probably benefit the most from speaking to a physiatrist. Notice I said physiatrist, not counselor or psychologist; there are fine differences between the three that I won’t bother to get into. If you are taking a psychology course, you can probably deduce the major differences yourself.
There are a host of reasons to experience ‘emotional deadening’; statistically anti-social personality disorder is one of the less likely. Some are treatable with medication; some aren’t so treatable at all. Never the less, no harm can come of being more self-aware.
Do yourself a favor and don’t self diagnose. If you are unhappy or doubtful about one professional’s opinion, seek out another one. Don’t label yourself and decide on your own treatment. A person with a serious mental illness cannot heal themselves anymore then a person with a gapping stomach wound can.
I disagree with Mangy Mamma one point, but it’s purely a matter of opinion… the idea that something ‘happened’ in your childhood is a classic one, but not always the case. I tend to put more stock in the theory that serious mental health issues arise more often from non-typical neurobiology than from acute childhood trauma.
In my life I have had to come to terms with the fact that mental illness is here to stay. I cope with it, I can function and I can be happy and productive, but I will always be 'recovering' or 'in remission'. There is no 'cure' for the way my brain fuctions.
So I have to at least suggest to you that this emotional deadness might be the way you are. An illness most definitely, but an illness like say, a learning disorder. One that can be coped with and managed, but not something that can be ‘cured’ in the traditional sense.
Regardless of why or what is at the root of this problem, it is a problem and one you need to delve into if you want a satisfying life and fulfilling relationships (not necessary romantic, but any kind of relationship with coworkers or friends). It’s important for you to recognize that if you truly aren’t experiencing emotions you are actually missing out on a huge amount of communication between people and a key part of logic and reasoning. You’ll need to learn to compensate if nothing else, and only a professional who can bridge the gap for you will be able to help with that. [ Razhie's advice column | Ask Razhie A Question ]
Brandi_S answered Tuesday January 8 2008, 11:15 pm: Well, I'm not educated in this, but I'll give it a shot.
Yes. I it is a cause of concern. We as human beings can't live a fulfilling life without emotion.
What was it about early childhood that caused you to become "emotionally dead?" I would say that is probably where the root of the problem is. If you can figure that out, face it, and let it go, then you are taking a huge step in the right direction.
I would highly suggest you seek professional help of some sort. Councilor, therapist, psychiatrist, etc. Someone like that can help you find out what underlying problem is causing you to feel... well... nothing.
I say underlying problem, because there has to be something there causing this. Maybe you realize what that something may be, maybe you don't.
Whatever that something may be, it is definitely a something you need to come to terms with so you can start to live the happy, fulfilling life you deserve to have.
Attention: NOTHING on this site may be reproduced in any fashion whatsoever without explicit consent (in writing) of the owner of said material, unless otherwise stated on the page where the content originated. Search engines are free to index and cache our content. Users who post their account names or personal information in their questions have no expectation of privacy beyond that point for anything they disclose. Questions are otherwise considered anonymous to the general public.