A question about consciousness, literal consciousness

I have a question: has anyone ever experienced or heard of anyone losing consciousness while in a dissociative state? I mean actually passing out or something?


About CimmarianInk

Abuse Survivor Diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder PTSD and Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) also known as Multiple Personalities
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10 Responses to A question about consciousness, literal consciousness

  1. roseroars says:

    Hmm…I’ve suddenly gotten very dizzy and hit my head on walls or doors. I thought it meant that I was switching. Sometimes it happens with particularly nasty flashbacks, too. Starting around age 5 I did faint quite often in restaurants, other people’s homes, school, etc.. I wonder if I was switching then, too.

    Did you find yourself on the floor? Could it be low blood sugar?


    • CimmerianInk says:

      Ouch for you!

      I don’t think it was low blood sugar. I’ll describe it. I wasn’t standing up and I haven’t completely lost consciousness. I’m either sitting up or laying on my stomach reading the workbook. Every time it’s happened, I’ve been doing work in The Courage To Heal Workbook or I’ve been writing in my new secret ‘sexual abuse’ journal. I get to the parts of the workbook where I’m supposed to fill in the blanks on the pages and answer questions about, what I do remember, what I don’t remember, am I ok with the thought that I may never remember, what do I need to do to take care of myself right now (after the exercises), etc.
      I start to write in the spaces and suddenly wham! I feel like I’m losing consciousness. It’s the same when I’m writing in my journal, actually it’s worse when I’m writing in my journal. It’s like someone cut the strings on a puppet and knocked me upside the head at the same time. It’s like I’ve been unplugged. My head falls forward and I fall on my face. Sometimes I have a second to drop the pencil before I fall over. When it happens I feel extremely tired. I can’t even describe the feeling, it’s like I can’t move a single muscle because I feel so tired all of a sudden. But it’s different than any depersonalization or dissociation I’ve felt before. I don’t know what the deal is. It’s not a matter of time. It happens even when I’ve just started on the workbook or writing in my journal, so it’s not like I’ve been at it for an hour and I’m working too hard and it doesn’t matter what time of day it is either. I don’t know. Is it my imagination? This didn’t happen when I was just reading stuff.

      • roseroars says:

        Sounds like switching. Maybe your brain is just trying to protect you. Something similar happened to me yesterday before I left for therapy, and during therapy. We were talking about a memory I’d always had, but when I remembered more details I went bye-bye. Still don’t have the entire memory……..which is okay.

        Or……the book is haunted.

        Definitely one or the other. I am so tired today. Sorry.

      • CimmerianInk says:

        Goodness don’t apologize! I’m so sorry that you had to go therapy while you’re recovering. That must be so hard! Please take care of yourself as best you can. *Big Hug* 🙂

      • roseroars says:

        I’m fine (really), so let’s get back to you.

        What was your gut feeling when it happened? Did it feel like you should stop reading? Was your mind wandering, doing anything not to focus on the words?

      • CimmerianInk says:


        My gut feeling was…I don’t know how to describe it. I was writing and I was just overwhelmed by this intense sense that I was going to lose consciousness. My head fell forward, my body slumped. My mind kind of blacked out like I was going to faint. I’ve never fainted in my life so I don’t know how it feels before you actually pass out. I felt, overwhelmed? That may not be right. The best I can say, is that it was a combination of physically shutting down and being overwhelmed mentally by something outside of myself. It was a definite loss of control of my body which was freaky. I never actually lost full consciouness and I didn’t feel the presence of any alters. When I started to fall over I just let my head lay down until the sensation passed but I had to close my eyes because physically I wasn’t able to fight it. Then, when the sensation passed, I sat up and tried to go back to writing. I would get a few words or sentences down and then it would hit me again. It finally got to the point where I couldn’t write and I had to stop trying. This happened on several differnt occasions, all involving writing about the “abuse” (yes I just put that in quotes, still in denial lol).

  2. castorgirl says:

    It sounds like some heavy duty protection going on. Sometimes when I get this, rather than an immediate switch, it’s to act as a warning that I’m going near heavy stuff and I need to tread carefully (and slowly).

    You might also want to try changing where you are when you’re working on the book. If you’re on your stomach, parts of you might find that triggering or vulnerable. You could try working in different rooms, different postures and check the house before you start the work. Sometimes, I have to do little checking rituals before I start the healing work – but then, I’m mildly OCD, so it might not be an issue for you. Just a suggestion 🙂

    Take care,

    • CimmerianInk says:

      Ha! OCD is my middle name, even though I’m better than I used to be. Do you mind saying a little more about the physical sensation you feel? If you’re not comfortable talking about it then don’t worry. 🙂
      What I mean is, do you feel like you’re going to lose consciosness? How does it feel for you?
      This whole ‘whoa I’m going ot pass out’ thing is not the way I feel when I’m switching, unless of course it’s a new thing. I usually feel my brain pull stright up out of my head and then I go to la la land for a while. If I’m co-conscious, I’m aware but not in the driver’s seat and I’m observing from far away and I can’t feel my body. This is almost like what I’d think blacking out is like with a feeling of fainting or something thrown in. Thank you for the other insights too though I will need to think about that.

      • castorgirl says:

        I’m not quite sure how to describe it. It usually starts with a pulling backwards or derealisation/depersonalisation; and then a feeling like I’m bout to fall forward into a black hole. Sometimes I get tingling at the back of my neck – a sure sign I’m about to dissociate. They’re all the warning signs, then there’s the tipping into the void.

        I don’t know if it’s what you experience, but it would pay to get it checked out. If you are losing consciousness, then there could be an underlying medical condition happening.

        Take care,

      • CimmerianInk says:

        I’m not losing consciousness. It feels like it I might but I never actually pass out or anything. My mind kind of goes black and my head drops, I feel like someone’s unplugged me. At that point I have to put my head down until it passes. Like I said the part that gets me is that it’s only while writing, either in the workbook or in a journal that I’ve set aside just for this particular subject. The sensation passes and then I try writing again and it happens again until I stop trying to write, then everything’s ok. And it doesn’t happen when I’m reading any of my books about this subject, only during writing. I wrote a little last night but I kept it surface and nothing happened. I should mention too that when it happens, I don’t have any signs of panic or anxiety. My breathing doesn’t get faster, my heart doesn’t race, it’s like I just shutdown. I do get icky type feelings. I have a tic that I know about that tells me I’m reacting in a dissociative manner to some type of trigger. It’s a head tilt that’s very specific. Isn’t that interesting that we have different physical feelings that tell us were dissociating or about to? Thank you for describing yours. 🙂

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