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Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 10643
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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My partner been diagnosed with CPTSD and I'm looking for a

Customer Question

Hello, my partner been diagnosed with CPTSD and I'm looking for a little insight into something that happens every so often. Last night we were talking on Skype and getting on brilliantly, she mentioned that some of her friends wanted to do a group chat which I was fine with, she said she would be 30 minutes and then would get back to me. She has trouble with time keeping so I wasn't expecting her to be back straight away. She kept involving me for the first few hours and then suddenly she seemed to go very distant and I've noticed this change in her before. After around 4 hours I asked her how she was and she said she was fine and asked if I would be ready to chat soon. I said of course I would, but another 4 hours passed before I heard from her. It was as though nothing had happened and she was back to her usual self. Is this a form of dissosociation and what could have caused this? I've read that sometimes it can happen when someone feels happy and relaxed?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 1 year ago.

*This website DOES NOT constitute treatment and only provides information and advice in a Q&A format. For treatment (therapy and/or medications) you must go to a licensed professional in your area. Please note that anything said here is not private or confidential, as this is a public forum.

Hello and thank you for your question. May I ask, what exactly was she doing during the span of those 4 hours? And do you have any examples of possible dissociation while you two are face to face?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She is interested in MBTI and she is part of a group for INTPs, I've noticed when her behaviour changes she goes there's and asks very random questions as though she is using it to venture also noticed that during the behaviour change she misunderstands people's answers and can become quite defensive in her opinions. She says everyone talks about their lives during the group chat and she mainly listens to other people's problems and tries helping them. I don't mind her doing this it's just that I seem to be totally forgotten about during this period and she says she loses track of time very easily which can be very frustrating. I understand it may be out of her control and I don't blame her for it, I just need some insight into what may cause the change in behaviour so that I don't take it so personally. I eally appreciate the fast response
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your response. It does not sound like this is considered dissociation because when people dissociate they usually have a period of automatic thinking or period of time where you are not connected with either yourself or the outside world. It appears that she is connected in these group chats as she actively engages in them, so that would typically rule out dissociation. There is a possibility that she may just be feeling anxious and this can account for a lack of focus, which is why she likes to go on these group chats to help her cope with her anxiety and stress. These group may be a way for her to relax and lessen her anxiety/stress, but overall stress and anxiety can cause a lack of focus and may contribute to her losing track of time. I am not sure what she was like before her trauma, but what you are describing sounds like a lack of focus and absent mindedness that may not even be linked with the Complex PTSD at all. Individuals with poor time management or absent mindedness is typically a predetermined genetic issue like ADHD Inattentive Type for example. If she has this level focus in other tasks than maybe she has an Inattentive Type of ADHD that has not been diagnosed yet.

Expert:  Dr. Z replied 1 year ago.

I hope this answers your questions and gives you some guidance on this issue. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns as I am happy to assist and support you regarding this issue.

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