Why do some incidents shock but not others? - Headway

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Why do some incidents shock but not others?


You think that after several decades of forgetfulness that someone ought to have become inured to finding out you don't remember something but ...

I went to my now local chemist (that's drug store, pharmacy or apothecary for any non-Brits reading) to see if they'd got a prescription ready for me. I have the medicine issued in a doset-box - a package that puts each day's medicine in a separate compartment, suitably marked Monday to Sunday. They hadn't received the prescription but remembered me telling me about why I needed a doset box about a week before. Now I know I'd done this but only in the same kind of way that one might know your grandfather was a steel worker in his youth ... I couldn't remember Anything about the conversation but both the people there did.

As with many on this forum, forgetting things and finding out you've forgotten them is a daily occurrence and normally I just shrug and move on, although I occassionally get irritated with it. Every now and again, though, the realization I've forgotten some event sends a pulse of utter cold shock and nausea through my system and this event with the chemist was one of them.

It would be interesting to know why some events trigger feeling whilst most don't ...

Does anyone else get this feeling when they experience some kind of discontinuity in their life?

26 Replies

Every now and again I come face to face with my own harsh reality and it kicks me hard...and sometimes can send me into a complete spiral to a very dark place...

but the for the most part I am able to shrug things off and struggle on regardless.

I have no idea why this happens, there does not appear to be any particular trigger that we can identify and there is no warning... Thankfully it has become less frequent but when it happens it is horrible.

I think its worse when you cant remeber anything ( incident) rather than just needing prompts or vaguelly rembering things like coming in from shops to find list in your pocket that you thoufht you had left on the side and not buying the one thing you went for and coming back with bag of junk:-(

sporan in reply to richey

The other event is opening a cupboard then turning and walking headfirst straight into the edge of it thinking you'd already closed it! Have to say it does nothing to help the headaches, just a usual part of the daily drama! All you can do is laugh at yourself (or fit sponge edges to all the doors in the house).

richey in reply to sporan

I always do that!! I get angry and punch them back now all my cuboard doors are wonky:-(

nemo_really in reply to sporan

I wish you hadn't suggested that ... doesn't work too well with fridge or freezer doors, they tend to join us in our meltdowns! ;-)

I managed tonight to turn around from putting my dinner on a plate and walked straight into the corner of the fridge and spill my chilli over the kitchen and hallway carpet. :-(

MICH451 in reply to sporan

thats the worst i remember everything wish i didnt,

MICH451 in reply to richey

you should you didnt remember, i think remembering is the worse, even though i knew what happened the realization of it all didnt come out untill years later. then it was a blow to the system, and thats me be honest. why i had a long delyed reaction i just don.t know.

The most annoying things about having memory issues is when you try to explain it to someone else who doesn't have it and all you get is "Oh I do that, we all do that from time to time" as if you're making a mountain out of a molehill and it's a normal thing. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy but perhaps just a weeks worth of it might make them appreciate how frustrating and at times down right dangerous it can be!

nemo_really in reply to sporan

Yes, I've often thought a couple of weeks of head injury, trapped nerve and paraplegia symptoms would probably do a lot of people some good in the empathy department. :-)

Alternatively, I sometimes wish that nature had equipped us with a good external diagnostic display - a couple of flashing red lights or something! "See! I'm not making it up, and you're a steady green, so nyah <raspberry>".

I remember (as a fact, not specific instances) giving a word-pair test to my family and friends after I got diagnosed. I'd got the usual "we all forget something" and was curious to see how bad people were. I don't recall anybody getting more than a couple wrong (i don't recall any results either, though) but I do recall getting frustrated that I still couldn't "pass" the test even though I'd created the particular word pairs. I don't think I believed there was anything really wrong with me until I'd had my nose rubbed in it, so to speak. The odd thing is that if you'd asked me whether my verbal or visual memory was worse before I was diagnosed, I'd have said visual yet my visual memory is actually very good. Weird.

I guess it's to do with one hasn't always had a poor memory, so a part of one/you still feels the loss/differance.

My memory for events/times has always been woeful so the fact that I can't recall some conversation is normal and has always been.

Being dyslexic the "Oh I do that, we all do that from time to time" I reconise very well, as irritating and missed the point it is.

They are generally trying to be nice, but have failed to appreciate the degree of memory etc.

High RogerCMerriman, The bizarre thing is my memory suddenly seems clearer (scarily hallucinogenic at times) for distant events (some that I'd rather forget) it's the short term or the really important things that I desperately try to remember for future reference that just disappear.

Fortunately I don't have any problem reading but since my problems began writing and speech have become the problem and to have it all just sat there in my head and not be able to get it out either by pen (that's my worst failing - no spell check), typing or spitting it out is annoying.

I just make sure it goes into my memory ie phone/tablet/laptop as frankly how ever much I might think oh i'll remeber that, Its a rare day when I do!

It has taken about six years for me to get the strategies in place to deal with the memory issues and when they work its all pretty good...but a system fail or user error and I am totally stuffed.

At one point I used to get cross when people said "oh I know exactly how you feel I forget stuff all the time..." but now I just think "Bless you of course you know exactly what its like" and I move on with my day.

at least for me, my memory has improved a great deal, but I will still occasionally forget something rather important, and when it occurs I also experience a similar feeling. At least for me, memory lapses usually involve learning & remembering someones name, or leaving something important behind. In both cases my usual memory is to blame. I'm never sure, why, or when it happens, but I agree that it is very bad feeling.

It's a horrible feeling. We're all with you.

Hi nemo_really,

It seems from the number of replies that you've hit a raw nerve and started a really long thread.

The fact that so many of us have been so badly affected by the uncertainty caused by the random nature of memory failure from brain issues shows just how common this is with when you brain function problems.

It should be of some comfort to you to realise that, by there being so many of us with the same issues, you definitely AREN'T going mad. Thoughts that I've certainly had.

It's strange that when people say "it's all in your mind" they don't realise how ironic and yet how accurate they are nor do they have any inkling of how annoying it is to the sufferers that others believe it to be psychological and not physiological!

Spell check really helps my spelling by the way, I don't spell that good lol.

nemo_really in reply to sporan

>>>>> "It should be of some comfort to you to realise that, by there being so many of us with the same issues, you definitely AREN'T going mad. Thoughts that I've certainly had. " <<<<<

That is an important point. Although we experience a wide variety of symptoms to varying degrees, we have a common experience that sharing allows us to KNOW it's real and qualitatively and/or quantitatively different to normal forgetfulness. Furthermore, it's not just Joe Public who think it's all in the mind - is hard for GPs and even specialists to grasp the nature of the problem.

sporan in reply to nemo_really

I'm rather glad the Docs and Consults don't have memory issues, well I don't think they do!

If they did it would be even worse because they seem to find it hard enough to remember your full problems or issues at follow up appoints as it is lol.

It might help of course if the follow ups were on schedule my last one was close, only 4 months late which suggests to me that the admin staff DO have a memory issue lol!

One good thing about my lack of memory is that when I'm going through a bad time, I think to myself...'not to worry. You won't remember this'......lol

On bad day's I have to rely on the name tag on the bathroom mirror to know who I'm shaving.....

I strongly believe a good sense of humour is the best way to get through it, even if those around you get fed up with the same joke over and over and over and over again despite the fact it's the first time you've told them!

I used to get stressed about such things, but I have so many tricks/tools being a old dog and I'm not afraid to ask again and again people's names etc.

Your right of course but when you're used to remembering people it's hard. The weird thing is I sometimes find it easy to remember an old school friends name and face when I meet them (I'm 59 so that's just a little while ago) after not seeing them for first time since school, but someone I've seen recently... poof! gone. If I meet them regularly enough I can 'fix' their name, usually by using it EVERY time I see them instead of the 'Hi how are you' approach.

i had that about putting faces to names for a number of years, not to bad now. i rembember also getting on my bike and i felt so high up from the floor, it was weird, like i was ontop of a double bus,

shock i was in felt like i had hyperthermia, couldnt stay warm ambulance man kept putting blankets on me as i was complaing i was freezing cold. my workmates said they could see my skull, wouldnt come any where near me, the lorry drivers brought me round when i passed out before an ambulance came,

feels like yesterday


I'm getting this (feel sick, vertigo+) most of the time now: every time I get sent a form to fill in, every time I plead for help and get fobbed off/sent elsewhere. Makes my stomach feel so bad and pain near heart worse. Like huge hole in chest/stomach, brain burns, get more absent minded. Terrible. All the time the stress piles on (like another horrid stupid letter I don't know what means or what to do with) I get worse. Gone on way too much now. Not safe where I live, mega fears, too sensitive (in others' opinion) to noise, glaring, remarks. But they each don't know (maybe) how often already heard same things, builds up, makes me want to scream, brain exploding, want to whack them. Hate myself but really I hate what they do to me. Their fault. Tried so hard to adapt/change, done best I can but not good enough for them and docs even deny I was injured at all = all in my head apparently. Want to scream, makes me want to attack myself coz I can't stop them who are hurting me. They protected, me blamed for all of it. Unbearable.

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