Social complications with depersonalisation.
Apart from practically trying to move about in a dissociated environment, trying to interact socially is complicated. Others are more aware of my physical presence than I am; it is not easy that they can see and hear me. Who are they talking to? I feel invisible yet they look in ‘my’ direction. Where am I, anyway? You feel behind a barrier watching on as others live but they see you, not the barrier. You may feel isolated in a room full of people and envy them for having vivid awareness without DDD.
You can recognise someone yet may still find them unfamiliar, the ‘emotional package’ of your shared times not readily delivered up. It is difficult to maintain friendships like that and it could seem dishonest, but it is not and you are not. Unresponsiveness may replace your genuine interest.
A putative, 'automated' façade of myself 'replaces' me in the world, a world in which I am not feeling directly present. It goes through the motions: ‘it’ talks, walks, and responds to others who may see me as being well, while all seems false to my experience. I feel ‘elsewhere’, retreated into a lost realm. Isolating is tempting - but obviously an unhealthy risk.
You are definitely doing well if prevailing despite Depersonalization Disorder. Compensating for its divide is an effort but you have to cope practically, would want to be fair to others and to represent your true self. Analysis, algorithms, learnt refinements to the outward impression of you, may all be pragmatic so as to get by and avert social complications. They are strategies, not avoidance, but could distance emotion more.
Others cannot see how much vigilant work I am putting in and despite all my effortful adaptations, I can still be misjudged or seem something I am not (occasionally seeming foolish, with no hope of the amused other understanding DDD). At a disadvantage in DDD, mistreatment could happen, then only later can I process the unfair situation. It could be hours or even years later, too late to defend. It is very frustrating.
Usually though, I am open about DDD (since it is what limits me and stigma is daft) and people are nearly always kind and actually interested to know more, not at all awkward or judgemental. So that is a good help.
Next page: depersonalisation as defence.