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Painted Brain | Journal Entry 29 Th July 2019 – Touching The World Through Glass
We're bridging communities and changing the conversation about mental illness using arts and media.
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Journal Entry 29th July 2019 – Touching the World Through Glass


There are days when we can all feel disengaged from material reality. The mind can drift apart from the physical world and take us out into an unknown zone of dissociation. Unplanned feelings like these can just happen sporadically and we are left feeling empty and bereft afterwards even if we appear to outside appearances to be living a full and fruitful life.

When I dissociate it’s as if everything solid around me, including people, is just not real. It’s as if I’m existing on a separate plane beside all that is passing by but I’m not sharing the same space. An invisible barrier separates me from the material world beyond my gaze.

I wrote the small paragraph below a while ago to try to explain how this feels as the world can sometimes feel so alien, like viewing it from inside oneself with a glass pane separating internal reality from external reality. This is how it feels for me sometimes when I am disconnected and dissociated from the environment around me:

Fingertips, pressed cold on a glass pane. Feeling subtle vibration from the movement of glass, warming fingerprints, gently heating the glossy surface, imprinting impassioned subsistence, transparent, yet, resilient, like a wall, cruel in it’s dividing property; can’t get through. Warm breath steaming the glass, creating a mist, damp, tactile, fingertips smudging the developing misty opacity searching for clarity. Need to get through, long to get through, a hunger, thirst, craving, yearning, urgency… can’t get through, only feeling by touching through glass.

When disengaged/dissociated, it’s as if the world is always on the other side of that glass pane, I can see it but I can’t touch it or experience it. This is common with people diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, but I don’t think it’s at all exclusive to that condition, anyone can be affected. Do you ever feel this way?

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