Story by "P of S. Wales"


Where do I start?? 

I haven't been officially diagnosed as a sufferer of Depersonalization Disorder, but for the past five months I've been feeling really weird, and it all fits together!! Here's my story.....

I'm now 24years old, and up until May this year, although I wasn't completely happy with my life.....I felt "normal" and had a sense of "myself" and the world around me.

Age 13, I developed OCD, which started when I forgot a joke I was going to say to my mate....It played on my mind all day, and the next, and the next............I got myself into such a mess over it, and couldn't let go!!! That scared the living hell out of me, so next time I had anything "important" I needed to remember I would write it down. (so what you say, that's normal!!) But slowly over time this developed into something uncontrollable, I would be walking up the High Street and if I heard a song playing from a shop, I would have to remember it, incase I forgot and got myself into that "searching" cycle again!! This went on and on, and developed and developed to the point where I would start making massive lists in my head of my thoughts, incase I forgot what I was just thinking. This was starting to get crazy!! My school books were covered in meaningless words, thoughts Id jotted down/songs Id heard/jokes to tell my mates/images Id imagined...absolutely everything I thought, heard etc would have to be written down. I remember once, sitting at my GCSE exam, and this song came into my head, I didn't know what it was called...and didn't want to forget it!!! It drove me crazy, Id have to develop techniques to jot some lines down on my hand so they resembled the notes in the song I was thinking!! I was in such a mess...but no-one knew!! I still had all my mates, I was still Mr. Popular, but I couldn't tell anybody, I thought i was such a freak!! I moved away to uni when I was 17 (still suffering!) I could see no way out, this was part of me now!! Id got into the habit of HAVING to remember my dreams!! Id spend all day thinking and thinking...even though I had no idea what Id dreamt of...sometimes it would come back to me....and the relief was amazing!!  I couldn't get off to sleep at night sometimes, as thoughts would pop into my head....and Id have to write them down again....silly things, meaningless words...anything! Id take a pen to bed with me. write these thoughts down on my hands at night, when my hands were full Id write on the walls!!! I knew this was insane, but i HAD to do it. It got to the point where Id have to take a Dictaphone to bed, and just record my thoughts onto tape (PS listening to that now is absolutely MAD!!!) Everything i owned was covered in meaningless scrawl, the walls next to my bed, my windows (greasy finger marks), my books, my tapes.......Still no one knew!!!
Suddenly I met a girl, fell in love etc. I couldn't let her see this, shed finish with me!! But it carried on and on and on, she'd wonder what all the writing on my hands was and why I had to disappear every 10 minutes when in bed. I had to tell her........Then as if by magic, it all stopped!!! I just told myself "grow up" and it worked.  It was hard at first, but I did it...Its all in the mind!!! Sorry if I'm going on a bit!! Anyway after 6 years of OCD i was suddenly free!!  I was happy for the first time in ages, i felt normal an life was amazing....for 4 months anyway. All of a sudden my gf fell pregnant, I got really stressed and worried....we completed our courses and moved in with her mother (300 miles away from my home) Then out of the blue, i thought to myself "what did my gf`s room in uni smell like??"  Uh Oh!!! Here it came again!!! For the next 8 months, that was all that was on my mind!! Id go into shops smelling all the fragranced candles she had, all the carpet cleaners shed used, all the soaps, shampoos perfumes etc etc etc......this was one I wasn't getting out of!! each moment of every day, that was all that mattered to me...Id constantly be searching in my mind for that smell!! Then as soon as my beautiful baby daughter was born....BANG!! I let go ( even after 8 months of 24/7 searching).... I started to notice that I was feeling very low and "not really there" but at least i was free of OCD again. These feelings persisted for years, but I was normal, and felt in complete control of myself. I started smoking cannabis then quite regularly, for the past 4yrs in fact. Then one day in May something happened. Id been fretting for months that my parents were going to become ill with cancer!! Out of the blue two of my mums friends suddenly got the disease...This scared the shit out of me!! I had a cannabis joint to calm down, and that was the last moment of "normality" for me. Suddenly I felt really detached from the world, like I wasn't really there, like Id forgotten in 5 minutes what it was like to feel normal!! I glanced at my girlfriend. I recognized her, but felt no bond whatsoever, like id only just met her. It felt like Id been dropped off from another planet and just woken up in this weird world!! My daughter came over "daddy, daddy!!" wanting to play football, but who was daddy?? am I really your dad, I knew who she was, but something was terribly wrong!! I had a massive panic attack, i thought i was going insane, but put it down to the weed. I went to bed. I awoke the next morning, and it was still there. I hardly knew where I was, the though of having to go to work terrified me, what was work?? Life lost all its meaning, I looked in the mirror, something really strange was going on, I couldn't believe that that was me? I got into a terrible mess. I had to go home from work. I felt so weird, I couldn't understand what was going on with me. Once I got home, I couldn't really remember going to work, it felt as if someone else had gone, or like Id watched it on the telly. All of this was terrifying me....I had to go home and see my parents... So, somehow I packed my bags and drove 300 miles in a weird sort of dream like state, and got home....Once i arrived I couldn't remember the drive, I saw my mum and dad, they looked different???!! There was no bond at all, The street i grew up in looked different and the house felt strange and almost unrecognizable. I was seriously doubting my sanity. I couldn't sleep for worry, thoughts and voices were racing round my head, what was happening??? I avoided all my friends because I felt so strange, I lost interest in everything, and became trapped in this world of unreality. I tried Cipramil, but that made me worse, then lustral...same thing happened, Valiums calmed me down a bit, but right at this moment my head is in a mess....I cant think clearly, I cant make any decisions, I feel as if all I do will have no consequence on the "real" world, My life before all of this seems as if it happened to someone else, my working memory is gone, each day I have to wake up and learn to recognize my family, I just feel no attachment to nothing I do. Everything seems so strange...the outside world looks like I'm watching a flat cinema screen, I have no sense of "me" whatsoever , I've lost all my emotions-nothing seems real, if for example my daughter hurt herself I just wouldn't care (even though I know I want to and should!!) im convinced im going schizophrenic, I know something is terribly wrong, I would give anything to feel normal again, My daughter needs daddy back..............Please, if anybody could offer any help, please get in touch, I'm desperate!!  Thanks for listening!! I'm currently trying st johns wort and valium, and Ill keep you all posted. If anybody wants to talk though or needs advise or a shoulder to cry on whatever, please get in touch, I think it would be a real help for both of us!!


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