Dissociation is a defense mechanism used by the mind to protect oneself from a perceived threat. Witnessing or experiencing a traumatic incident or enduring chronic abuse may result in the development of this mental process. Dissociation is most often developed during one’s childhood, as children are more susceptible to imaginative thinking and escapism during times of stress. Once this method of detachment has been learned it can be difficult to rid oneself of it, thus leading to interference in one’s daily life even after they have escaped the abuse.
Dissociation can be difficult to handle when you’re in a public setting such as work or school, or when you’re around friends and family who are unable to recognize the signs. It’s common to be stuck in an uncomfortable situation dissociating and not knowing what to do. It’s common to dissociate without knowing you’re dissociating. It’s common to feel overwhelmed or controlled by your dissociation.