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Take A Depersonalization Disorder Test and Take A Look at Depersonalization

Updated on March 28, 2013
kittythedreamer profile image

Nicole is a registered nurse. She uses what she has learned on the job to inspire and encourage others to take control of their health.

Who is this person I'm staring at in the mirror? Depersonalization
Who is this person I'm staring at in the mirror? Depersonalization | Source

What is Depersonalization Disorder?

You're staring in the mirror but not recognizing the person staring back at you. Your life has been filled with experiences, many of which you have forgotten or passed off as blasé. Your childhood may have been traumatic or just plain unfulfilled. Do you have Depersonalization Disorder?

Many people experience at least one symptom of Depersonalization Disorder at least one time in their lives. But when does it turn into full-blown Depersonalization Disorder? When do the symptoms cross over from simple, passing symptoms of anxiety to a dissociative disorder such as Depersonalization Disorder?

Depersonalization Disorder can be defined as a dissociative disorder in which the individual feels disconnected and/or detached from his or her own body and surroundings at any given time. If you've experienced the symptoms more than once in a short period of time or you are experiencing them consistently, you may have Depersonalization Disorder. In simpler terms, it is an illness that is set into place as a mental defense mechanism...something that your mind does to block out mental or emotional trauma that you might perceive to be damaging.

So you want to find out if you have Depersonalization Disorder? Take the Depersonalization Disorder Test below and keep reading for the explanations of your results.

Take the Depersonalization Disorder Test

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Making Sense Of Your Depersonalization Test Score

0-50%: You most likely do not have Depersonalization Disorder, though if your score was higher than 0, you might have experienced some of the symptoms of Depersonalization as they are also symptoms of stressful mental states such as high anxiety and depression.

50-75%: It is a possibility that you have Depersonalization Disorder. You might want to think about going to a therapist and talking to him/her about Depersonalization.

75-100%: No doubt about it. You probably have Depersonalization Disorder. But don't take our word or advice for it, go seek professional help if you feel you need it.

Dissociative Disorders
Dissociative Disorders | Source

Depersonalization Symptoms: The Most Common

While perception and intensity of symptoms can vary from person to person, there are a few particularly common, basic symptoms with Depersonalization Disorder:

  • Derealization - feeling like you're living in a dream or that everything is 2-dimensional
  • Detachment from surroundings - feeling indifferent to situations and people around you
  • Detachment from personal relationships - feeling emotionless towards others
  • Robotic - feeling like you are a robot, like your body isn't your own
  • Body distortion - feeling like your body or parts are distorted (smaller or larger)
  • Fear of going crazy - having a phobia or constant fear of "going crazy" or "losing your mind"
  • Lack of sensation - lacking normal feelings of sensation and pain
  • Spontaneous OBEs - having spontaneous moments of "floating above one's own body" and seeing oneself act without having control over one's actions

Understanding Depersonalization Disorder

As mentioned before, many people can experience small periods of depersonalization without actually being considered a person who has chronic Depersonalization disorder. The difference between having an episode and actually having the disorder is whether or not the symptoms last for long periods of time and whether or not they affect your functioning in everyday life.

For example, if you have the symptom of derealization that has occurred consistently for two months and it is affecting your performance at work or elsewhere, you may be likely to be diagnosed with the actual disorder. This is in opposition to having a fleeting moment of Depersonalization in which you experience being in a dream-like state once for a period of 5 minutes, then to have it subside and never occur again.

Where does Depersonalization Disorder and its symptoms originate? Dozens of theories are out there on what causes Depersonalization Disorder, but most agree that it is indeed a dissociative disorder.

Depersonalization: You're NOT going crazy...this is a normal symptom to this disorder.
Depersonalization: You're NOT going crazy...this is a normal symptom to this disorder. | Source

My Experiences with Depersonalization

To me, I explain Depersonalization by saying that it is an acquired mental defense mechanism. The whole topic of nature vs. nurture can come into play with this disorder. Personally, I have a difficult time believing that this is something that a person is born with. I believe this is a side effect of some type of trauma in one's life...many times this trauma occurs during childhood.

While I did not suffer any physical or mental abuse during my childhood, my childhood wasn't particularly the happiest. I grew up thinking that many other kids had it harder, and I pushed my emotions and problems down deep. I believe my ignored problems and emotional blocks caused a build-up of energy and ignored hurt, which has resulted in recurrence of Depersonalization. I have not been clinically diagnosed with Depersonalization Disorder, as it does not affect my functioning in daily life; however, I can tell you that every symptom of Depersonalization Disorder is something that I have experienced at least twice a year for about the past ten years. I could never put a name to it, and I thought that perhaps the things I was experiencing was normal.

Honestly, some of the symptoms of Depersonalization are rather frightening. You would think that being in a dream-like state would be relaxing. But in fact, it is just the opposite. It makes you feel like you are going to lose your mind, even though you are fully aware that it is your mind playing tricks on you. You are fully conscious of yourself and you can distinguish between reality and non-reality. This experience sets into motion an ongoing fear that one day you will "lose your mind". Sometimes this fear can escalate into a phobia of going crazy, yet another symptom of Depersonalization Disorder.

Another symptom that I have found to be scary is looking in the mirror on occasion and not feeling like I am looking at myself. My eyes sometimes look distorted...they look larger than they should be. Body distortion is yet another symptom of Depersonalization, and one that I could never explain to anyone without someone giving me a sideways look. Then I read about Depersonalization Disorder in my Psychiatric book...and boom! That was it.

Other facets of my life that have been affected by this defense mechanism, this Depersonalization, is the fact that I tend to detach from emotional situations. I usually do this with my family, unfortunately for them. With complete strangers I have the highest of empathy, but with some of my own family members I sometimes feel as though I feel nothing. Again, a part of a self-defense mechanism that I have created in order to defend my mind and soul from feeling too much. As a child, I was always called "overly-sensitive". This is very ironic now that I have turned a 180 and tend to be more emotionless than emotion-full.

I have realized that stuffing our feelings down into ourselves and ignoring our problems do not resolve anything. In fact, it makes it worse. If you have unresolved conflict within yourself from childhood or some other trauma in your life, deal with it now before it turns into something that might take much longer to heal.

Written and copyright © KittytheDreamer (May Canfield), 2013. All Rights Reserved.

Feel free to discuss your experiences and/or thoughts below:

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  • Hendrika profile image

    Hendrika 3 years ago from Pretoria, South Africa

    Thank you for this interesting article. did not know a lot about depersonalization disorder. Fortunately it looks as if I still fall within the borders as normal! Just a little emotionless.

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    ArtQueenFreak 4 years ago

    Hello, I'm young. And 15, I have a problem of not feeling "real" like I'm in a constant dream. And when people say my name I get so happy because I think to myself "I exist? How did they know my name?! I thought no one could see me" Don't get me wrong I have a good handful of friends, but you get those moments. It's really strange, some of my therapists said I had manic. But I don't know, I think that's true. think.. And apathy, in the middle of crying I stiop and feel absolutly nothing. It's strange.

  • bethperry profile image

    Beth Perry 4 years ago from Tennesee

    Whoa, what a sad condition to have. I had not heard of depersonalization before, and your writing was very informative.

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    Denmarkguy - I know exactly what you mean. You're not alone in those feelings. Thanks for reading and commenting!

  • Denmarkguy profile image

    Peter Messerschmidt 4 years ago from Port Townsend

    Interesting, and very informative. I was familiar with DID in a roundabout sort of way...

    There are elements of this I relate rather deeply to... mostly a pervasive feeling that I am "looking in at life through a window" rather than actually being IN it. I sometimes have questioned my lack of emotional investment in many things that seem to get others "all stirred up;" I spent some time exploring Anhedonia... but I do FEEL, it just takes a lot for me to get there; at times other people's "reactions" to tiny things feel like "hysteria" to me.