More on ‘flat affect’

When I learn more about my disability, I learn more about myself and I’m still learning things about myself. I know I have flat affect. It is the result of unusual brain activity, slightly more complicated in my case, because my emotions are impaired through cerebral palsy.

One area of my brain that isn’t active is the one which is responsible for emotional response, in other words a function of alertness, level of distraction, vigilance, a direction of attention and stress.

It controls how ready a person is to perform tasks in a timely and effective manner and in response to daily experiences and is what I struggle with. I cannot translate an emotion into a physical reaction.

Others with flat affect may feel emotions, but may not show it on their face or through their actions. I don’t respond in the same way as someone who doesn’t have a brain impairment and who doesn’t experience problems with a lack of emotions.

Flat affect is a symptom of other conditions, in my case Autism that is brought about through cerebral palsy. It is not a condition or disorder on its own.

16 May, 2019

2 thoughts on “More on ‘flat affect’

  1. People don’t have a clue as to what I’m talking about when I mention flat affect, which can be very frustrating at times.

    My flat affect stems from being exposed to traumatic events too many times, whereas yours comes from having cerebral palsy.

    Many people think I’m shy and quiet, but it’s more that I’m hyper-vigilant at times and other times I’m wondering what the appropriate reaction should be at that moment.

    In my case it becomes more of a delayed stress reaction, which means that I am well aware of what is happening at that moment, but it won’t register with me until later.

    It would be nice to know what I’m feeling right at that moment rather than not feeling much of anything at all, because of what I had to survive through as a child.

    1. Thanks Randy. Yes, from what you’ve said Randy about PTSD, flat affect can be part of that diagnosis.

      But I’m not sure I would worry too much about what others think, what’s important is what you think, know or believe.

      It’s easy for others to stand in judgment, but the reality is that no one can know or understand what we have, unless they have experienced the same thing.

      The world would be so different if instead of judgments being passed, people were empathetic towards other people’s needs, rather than them judge.

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