posted by Hollie-Anne Brooks

Here’s what it is and why we need to know more.

In 2016, Dodie Clark spoke openly and honestly about suffering from a mental health condition called “depersonalisation”. Dodie’s mental health diagnoses included this along with her depression and anxiety; and she claimed she was “so grateful there was something out there to describe what [she] was feeling”.

In the highly emotional video, Dodie talks about feeling “not here” and not familiar with anything; and she spoke of feeling like she was drunk and not recognising herself, as though everyone is human and she is alien. What Dodie describes is exactly how depersonalisation can make one feel, and is a common symptom of the illness.

Whilst we’re thankful YouTube and its creators have opened up a mass of discussion around topics such as anxiety, depression and eating disorders, there’s still a long way to go. YouTubers including Caspar Lee, Pixiwoo and Niomi Smart are currently working with MQ Mental Health to try and fight the stigma; and open up a discussion around young people with mental health issues.

In light of this, here’s everything you need to know about depersonalisation and why we all could do with some help understanding it.


What Is Depersonalisation?

Depersonalisation can cause a person to feel detached from themselves, as if absent from their body and mind. People can often describe their episodes as feeling like a fog over their mind or as if they’re watching themselves in a film. We mentioned it at the start, but Dodie sums up how it feels very well in her video above.


Why Does Someone Experience It?

Depersonalisation, or derealisation, can occur for many reasons including experiencing a stressful trauma. People with other mental health conditions including bi-polar, borderline personality disorder and schizophrenia. YouTuber BigNoKnow explains his experience with depersonalisation in another vlog below.


Can You Recover From Depersonalisation?

According to the NHS “There is no medication to specifically treat dissociation, although medication may be prescribed to treat any depression, anxiety and insomnia.”. Various forms of therapy can also help people experiencing depersonalisation. You’ll find a lot of positive and interesting stories on YouTube from people who have experienced this, or or derealisation.

A lot of YouTube videos discuss how the creators have “cured themselves”; but we’d advise anyone who believes they’re suffering from the condition to seek professional medical help. However, if you’re interested in learning more about some creators’ personal experiences, here are three more videos for reference.