So I get the idea is that we have emotions and feel them but just aren't good at identifying them and expressing them, and that fits with what I feel sometimes. But most of the time I don't really feel anything and I just don't care, it's more like I just don't have emotions most of the time. Especially when it comes to other people or when bad things happen, people can tell me things that upset them or something bad can happen to me and in reality it doesn't phase me. Does anyone else feel a similar way?
Fagxin, I fluctuate too, but most of the time (the vast majority of the time) I feel neutral. I was recently told that I'm a depressive; I replied that I'm not depressed, that I feel the way I always feel. I was told that my mood was normal for me, but most people would consider themselves depressed if they felt the way I did. I still don't think I'm depressed because I don't feel depressed; I feel neutral.
Yeah, feeling neutral is the norm for me too, and I get the same idea of it seems like what people would call depressed if they felt the same. But it's just not feeling at all.
I have been tested for psychopathy, because of this very point. I lack the actual experience of social emotions. It's not that I am unable to express or understand them - it's that they aren't there. Someone recently was utterly unable to accept the idea that I had never experienced, nor could cognitively comprehend, jealousy/envy. Just doesn't happen. I operate on ethics, as I've written here before - I would be phased if I had caused harm to another person because I consider it deeply unethical, philosophically.
Neutrality is what I am comfortable with, too. It's a cheerful neutral, just trundling along, not disturbed one way or the other. I think it varies between individuals. I wish I lacked all emotion, but unfortunately some of the prime suspects are still there. We may have some emotions in some circumstances, completely lack others.
I tend to view my emotional state like a still placid lake, which isn't overly disturbed by others jumping in or dumping their problems on me. I also find it odd that being emotional neutral equates to being depressed by normal people. Some seem to have the viewpoint unless you're happy then you must be sad.
It's also interesting that some people who normally have emotions, who have their emotions suppressed (as a side-effect of medication) become distressed that they don't feel anymore. I really can't understand it. If you don't feel anything why you be distressed? Intellectually I know its because they have this feeling of loss and a longing over their previous emotional states. It seems pointless and counter-productive to me.
I guess it's easier if you can't remember what having emotions is like, because you can't 'feel' a loss for them. So yay for us.
Alexithymia - emotional blindness - is a personal trait which affects roughly 10% of the population.
Alexithymia describes the difficulty of people to perceive and describe emotions of others and themselves. Most persons concerned are not aware about this deficit and usually they are just recognizing it in contact with others, especially close friends, within their family or their partner.
These pages should deliver additional information about Alexithymia and offer information for affected persons, relatives and generally interested people.