Is it possible for a person to stop feeling emotions?

I was raped a couple months ago, Since then, along with other unfortunately events that have occurred, I have been having trouble feeling emotions. It's almost as if I'm a sociopath lacking any feeling. What can I do to change this?

I'm so sorry you've been hurt.  It's very normal to stop feeling emotions as a way to protect yourself after experiencing a traumatic event.  You can think of it as emotional shock-- you experienced something that was so awful that you have numbed yourself (mind and body) as a way to stop the emotional and physical pain of the event.  It's actually pretty amazing that our selves know how to do this automatically.  And, I hear you saying that you'd like to get some feeling back now.

So here are some ideas for how you can change this:

  • I think it would be a great idea to find an experienced therapist you like and trust and/or a good support group so that you can have some allies as you go through this process.  
  • You also could try journaling.  If you're not sure what to write then check out this list of prompts to get you started (it's for teachers, but I really like it).  
  • There's also art journaling.  Pinterest has lots of suggestions.
  • Meditation could be useful.  There are lots of apps available that offer guided meditations.
  • Yoga, tai chi, or chi gong might also help.

I have lots of other ideas, but without knowing more about you I'm reluctant to make suggestions that could accidentally make you feel worse.  IThis protective mechanism of numbing yourself kicked in for a good reason and as you get your feelings back, you may find some pretty challenging reactions coming up.  I guess my final piece of advice to is encourage you to trust yourself and gently go at your own pace in your healing.  I hope this was helpful.

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.

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