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blitzkrieg
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12 Jan 2022, 5:14 pm

Okay, so, this is very weird, but, due to the nature of brain damage I accrued in 2005, I cannot see anything in my own brain. I think a thought of a picture (a vague, emotional ball of a picture that is poorly formed), and then I translate that into something that is a video on a video website, like Youtube.

People assume that I have vivid pictures in my mind because I post Youtube videos, but I am completely void of the ability to be able to form visual imagery without the aid of external devices like a computer.

It's like being visually blind and typing out braille....

Just another thing people get wrong about me.


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Edna3362
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12 Jan 2022, 5:19 pm

Aphanthasia?


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blitzkrieg
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12 Jan 2022, 5:21 pm

Edna3362 wrote:
Aphanthasia?


Yes, this is the thing.

Unfortunately there is no formal diagnostic criteria for it currently, in my country.


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blitzkrieg
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12 Jan 2022, 5:25 pm

I remember people emotionally, but I cannot see them in my mind. A big advantage for not being overly traumatised by traumatic events that keep happening over & over.


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blitzkrieg
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12 Jan 2022, 5:27 pm

I know the facts of a situation, too, and can play a situation out in my mind, but it is more of a computer process rather than a formed, visual image...

Kind of like a 3D grid like this, as an appropriation:


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blitzkrieg
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12 Jan 2022, 5:34 pm

How I approach incoming alien threats: :lol:


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Lost_dragon
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13 Jan 2022, 7:37 am

blitzkrieg wrote:
I remember people emotionally, but I cannot see them in my mind. A big advantage for not being overly traumatised by traumatic events that keep happening over & over.


I'm at the opposite extreme (hyperphantasia). Typically, I can see people in my mind in high detail (it's not perfect though, I might misremember small things and I need to see someone at least twice in order to be able to visually recall them). However, I tend to find that my traumatic memories are noticeably more distorted than my usual thoughts or memories. I'll remember background information (such as tables, chairs and what the room looked like in general, sometimes a phantom sense of smell if it's noticeable - for instance if wet mould was a memorable aspect of the memory) but I can't recall foreground information (such as the faces of those who hurt me). Apparently this is common. Watching my traumatic memories is like seeing a corrupted video file on a screen.

My thoughts aren't always visual, I switch to an audio format if I need to be aware of my surroundings and focus, but sometimes I do accidentally visualise without meaning to do so. Especially if someone is graphically describing an intense visual scene, such as a horror movie plot. Then I'll see a flash of visuals based on that description in my mind even though I very much did not mean to do that. Sometimes if I see something horrible in a film, it'll keep repeating as a visual in my mind when I either see something that reminds me of it, or in nightmares. One time I had the same nightmare with the same visuals three times in a row until by the third time I was able to go lucid and take over. Then the visuals stopped. Being a visual thinker does have some disadvantages.

However, there are some advantages. I like that I am able to visualise the stories I read and that I am able to visualise various different scenarios or mentally visit my favourite places.

Can you imagine other types of information, such as smell or taste? Do you dream? If so, what's that like?


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blitzkrieg
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13 Jan 2022, 7:43 am

Lost_dragon wrote:
blitzkrieg wrote:
I remember people emotionally, but I cannot see them in my mind. A big advantage for not being overly traumatised by traumatic events that keep happening over & over.


I'm at the opposite extreme (hyperphantasia). Typically, I can see people in my mind in high detail (it's not perfect though, I might misremember small things and I need to see someone at least twice in order to be able to visually recall them). However, I tend to find that my traumatic memories are noticeably more distorted than my usual thoughts or memories. I'll remember background information (such as tables, chairs and what the room looked like in general, sometimes a phantom sense of smell if it's noticeable - for instance if wet mould was a memorable aspect of the memory) but I can't recall foreground information (such as the faces of those who hurt me). Apparently this is common. Watching my traumatic memories is like seeing a corrupted video file on a screen. My thoughts aren't always visual, I switch to an audio format if I need to be aware of my surroundings and focus, but sometimes I do accidentally visualise without meaning to do so. Especially if someone is graphically describing an intense visual scene, such as a horror movie plot. Then I'll see a flash of visuals based on that description in my mind even though I very much did not mean to do that. Sometimes if I see something horrible in a film, it'll keep repeating as a visual in my mind when I either see something that reminds me of it, or in nightmares. One time I had the same nightmare with the same visuals three times in a row until by the third time I was able to go lucid and take over. Then the visuals stopped. Being a visual thinker does have some disadvantages.

However, there are some advantages. I like that I am able to visualise the stories I read and that I am able to visualise various different scenarios or mentally visit my favourite places.

Can you imagine other types of information, such as smell or taste? Do you dream? If so, what's that like?


Somehow, I am able to instantly recognise a person even though I cannot see them when I close my eyes. Like, I don't forget faces.. at all. I can go years without seeing someone & I will remember them, even though I cannot visualise them. It seems very contradictory and nonsensical, but that's me, I guess.

My dreams give me perfect visualisation, like, full 3D technicolour matrix visualisation & honestly, they seem more normal than my waking reality, which seems more dreamlike.


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FleaOfTheChill
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13 Jan 2022, 9:25 am

I have aphantasia too. I can recall details about a person I know well enough from memory, like I know if so and so has brown hair or freckles or whatever, but I can't see the person in my mind. I've read or heard somewhere that aphantasia makes it easier for people to get over trauma, breakups, deaths and so on because we lack that visual recall. I have no idea if that's true or not, but the idea behind it makes sense to me.

I don't recall my dreams often, but I know I dreams are vivid in imagery when I do have them. I think that's pretty common for people with aphantasia as well. That strikes me as odd...how can our brains let us see things sometimes but not other times..

Personally, I wouldn't mind being able to do the whole visual recall bit in my head. It would make writing much easier, writing too. I always end up googling things or grabbing objects/photos to help me with those tasks.



blitzkrieg
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13 Jan 2022, 9:42 am

FleaOfTheChill wrote:
I have aphantasia too. I can recall details about a person I know well enough from memory, like I know if so and so has brown hair or freckles or whatever, but I can't see the person in my mind. I've read or heard somewhere that aphantasia makes it easier for people to get over trauma, breakups, deaths and so on because we lack that visual recall. I have no idea if that's true or not, but the idea behind it makes sense to me.

I don't recall my dreams often, but I know I dreams are vivid in imagery when I do have them. I think that's pretty common for people with aphantasia as well. That strikes me as odd...how can our brains let us see things sometimes but not other times..

Personally, I wouldn't mind being able to do the whole visual recall bit in my head. It would make writing much easier, writing too. I always end up googling things or grabbing objects/photos to help me with those tasks.


There are pros & cons to everything.


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13 Jan 2022, 10:46 pm

My grampa claimed he had photographic memory, and was accused of cheating in the police academy because he recalled exactly what was on the page they were supposed to study, including the page number. He also used it to learn English and French by memorising dictionaries.

I can't form a coherent image in my mind but I can picture details. If you ask me to recall a scene from memory I can recall a great deal of details but I have to jump from detail to detail to get a sense of the whole scene.



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13 Jan 2022, 11:46 pm

I have aphantasia. I can visualise most things for maybe a flash of time but then they're gone. I can't really picture faces at all and I'm also face blind, meaning if I see a bunch of photos of people, or I watch a movie I can't always recognise people scene to scene unless they're main characters who I know well. I can't picture my own boyfriend. In fact when I first met him and didn't have any photos I was afraid I wouldn't recognise him when we met for walks in public (silly, because no that didn't happen). I can describe things like a room I'm not in but I can't actually see it for more than a quick flash. Most of my memories are sensory related to general colours, smell, and texture.


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blitzkrieg
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14 Jan 2022, 12:17 am

IsabellaLinton wrote:
I have aphantasia. I can visualise most things for maybe a flash of time but then they're gone. I can't really picture faces at all and I'm also face blind, meaning if I see a bunch of photos of people, or I watch a movie I can't always recognise people scene to scene unless they're main characters who I know well. I can't picture my own boyfriend. In fact when I first met him and didn't have any photos I was afraid I wouldn't recognise him when we met for walks in public (silly, because no that didn't happen). I can describe things like a room I'm not in but I can't actually see it for more than a quick flash. Most of my memories are sensory related to general colours, smell, and texture.


Yeah, my memories are mostly like that, but my predominant memories are emotional memories since I cannot visualise them in my mind. When I look at photos on a computer screen or a piece of paper I can get very emotional, which is why I don't do that very often.


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14 Jan 2022, 12:23 am

I don't know if I have this or not, Hard to verify isn't it? :| being so subjective. Intra-psychic perception. I have visual memories, just maybe not that clear.


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14 Jan 2022, 4:47 am

I also have not much visual imagery. I remember fragments of a face. Very small areas. I feel it may also be connected with my small functional memory. To put together a face, I need to be able to hold several pieces of visual data in current memory simultaneously. I dont seem to have space for that.

It amazed me I could have got to 47 years old before realising this about myself!! !


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14 Jan 2022, 5:22 am

blitzkrieg wrote:
Okay, so, this is very weird, but, due to the nature of brain damage I accrued in 2005, I cannot see anything in my own brain. I think a thought of a picture (a vague, emotional ball of a picture that is poorly formed), and then I translate that into something that is a video on a video website, like Youtube.

People assume that I have vivid pictures in my mind because I post Youtube videos, but I am completely void of the ability to be able to form visual imagery without the aid of external devices like a computer.

It's like being visually blind and typing out braille....

Just another thing people get wrong about me.


Is it...that you USED to be able to form pics in your mind (like when you were a child), but cant do so now because of this head injury you had?

Or is that you never had the ability?