Hi, I’ve had debilitating depersonalization for the past four months. Before then, from Nov. 2017-Nov.2020, I was dealing with derealization, which now I think must have been very severe brain fog looking back. However, I never questioned that it could’ve been sleep apnea, which I blame myself for because maybe I would not have gotten into this position in the first place had I done a sleep study back then.

I have an appointment coming up where my sleep specialist will talk about my sleep study results. My sleep tech gave me vague information but enough to know that the apnea was severe, he said my AHI was around 35 and that I was getting practically no REM sleep. The scariest symptom of all is a chronic feeling of watching myself as if I were in a dream with the sensation of not being in control of my actions, my movements, my speech, etc. It feels as if I subconsciously handle all social situations and I feel like I don’t have a sense of self anymore.

I always feel like I am dreaming and this sensation is accompanied by horrible intrusive thoughts that correlate to the fear of losing control since I don’t feel that I even am in control. It feels as if I am looking through a zoomed out, detached filter and everything looks as if it is a painting or a 3D video game. I have minimum clarity and awareness of my surroundings and it feels as if I’m trapped in some sort of upside down world where nothing makes sense. I also have this numbness on my face and I feel like I am empty and just air that is merely existing.

I feel complete numbness, apathy, and loss of sense of self. Along with this, my sleep tech told me that I’m being deprived of oxygen and said something about oxygen desaturation.

I first started feeling detached from reality in Nov. 2017, however, it recently became much, much worse in Nov. 2020. Considering that I haven’t had any mental health issues previous to 2017, I am assuming everything I am experiencing is because of the sleep apnea. I used to love life and never questioned reality and prided myself on being sharp and had so much clarity and awareness. The worst I’ve felt back then was maybe a little bit of anxiety, just like any healthy minded person.

I am praying and hoping that the root cause of all of this is sleep apnea. Even typing this now I feel as if someone else is doing it and like I’m watching myself do it. Anyone else with similar symptoms? I had an MRI done, which showed enlarged adenoids. I have done blood work and mostly everything came normal. So please, please, give me some sort of hope.

I have so much passion and longing to live the life I want to live, but my perception of reality and myself will not allow me to do so. I am hoping the CPAP will change all of this and that the sleep apnea is the root cause. I’m in my early 20’s and I can’t even enjoy it because I feel like I’m not present for it.

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