Have you ever met anyone with Alexithymia? It’s not recognized as a disorder though a person with Alexithymia struggles to feel emotions as you do. I believe it’s a borderline disorder when someone cannot feel empathy. A person with Alexithymia often do not know they have a condition, it’s not noticeable to them! The funny part is very often people who surround a person in this state can’t identify it either, unless if a person has autism such as Asperger’s syndrome.
Alexithymia is one of the lead causes of marriage failures and relationship break ups. This is when the partner recognizes a problem in communication, feedback, connection with an Alexithymia patient. The connection is hard to form by people suffering because they can’t recognize why you are feeling the emotion that you are. Love, pain, sorrow, resentment, empathy, etc. are deep emotions hard for them to express because they do not feel these emotions on a level that you may. They fail to see a problem in them that’s when they judge and blame the partner for showing imbalance in emotions.
They are Excellent at Work
Now you are asking why is anyone choosing a relationship with the person suffering this condition as such, I mean couldn’t they just tell when something is off? As a partner first thing we look for is a connection! You are right, but how an Alexithymia patient survives their day to day life is by mimicking other personality traits. They are a great mimics and very successful at work. Why successful at work? Ever heard the saying, “leave your emotions at home before coming to work”? Well, that’s exactly what they do and they do it better than anyone. The people who suffer this condition are called “robots”–no really! That’s what they are called because they live a monotonous life. When in a conversation with these people, they will avoid topics that require emotions, they state daily facts and news. They also pick up responds to certain emotions such as “awww”. This makes the other person in conversation believe they are responding and reciprocating but nope, they are just going through their mental list of correct responds!
Who suffers from it?
Everyone has the ability to pick and choose to show emotions and express it when needed but not the person suffering Alexithymia. A person who experienced childhood trauma, or learnt to supress their emotions can have Alexithymia. People with certain autism such as Asperger have it. Also people who suffered Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder can adopt Alexithymia. In a case of Asperger, the condition is innate and permanent but other state Alexithymia can be cured with Therapy.
It’s unfair to say they don’t feel anything, they feel certain emotions but subdued. They fail to express what they are feeling. For example, they will start crying and think their eyes are running because of an irritation. However this situation would create complications, confusion and frustration in any relationship as the spouse would question why their partner would hide their true emotions. In some cases the sufferer fail to express all emotions but anger, they express it loud and clear because if you assess their past experiences they have shut all emotions down, except for anger!
Thanks for reading,