Weekend Wrap-Up

Not much has happened in my world this week. I’m pretty wiped out from coughing. On a positive note, though, I managed to get a prescription for antibiotics, and those have started coughing. I haven’t emerged from my apartment at all in two weeks, and I’m waiting for the cough to stop before I take out the growing lineup of garbage and recycling.

I’m reading a book about DID resulting from childhood sexual abuse (a different book from the one I reviewed this week), and a few things have caught my attention as being a bit odd. One was that the author shared a memory of abuse that occurred on her first birthday, including words that were said to her before and in a different place from where the abusive act happened. I wouldn’t question implicit memories held in the body, but it doesn’t make sense to me that a one-year-old would be able to encode words in long-term memory that way or that they would have sufficient understanding of what a birthday is to be able to encode that in memory at the time the event occurred. Any thoughts?

Maja of Lampelina shared this important message about domestic violence and the #SignalForHelp.

woman blowdrying her vagina

I came across this on Pinterest. I may have been out of the game for a good long while, but I remain sufficiently on the ball to know that blowdrying one’s vagina is not a good idea, and vaginal burns are not going to be comfortable. I didn’t look at the article that it linked to, but I’m guessing it was written by a man.

guinea pig Oreo sticking her face up to the camera

This is kissyface Oreo, pushing herself up with that one little foot you can see beneath her white girl-beard.

How has your week been?

Mental Health @ Home Books by Ashley L. Peterson
Mental Health @ Home Books by Ashley L. Peterson

55 thoughts on “Weekend Wrap-Up”

  1. I’m sad that you’re feeling so sick! Glad you got antibiotics!! I hope you feel better soon!!

    My week has been bad! It’s still bad! I’m on my period and it’s the first period since the vaccine, and it’s dreadful. I should hide!

  2. I definitely agree with you, I don’t understand how someone could remember and understand things like that at the age of 1… sorry to hear you’re still poorly, I really hope you feel better soon 💚

  3. My first memory: I’m lying on a white bed of some kind surrounded by white walls. I feel so tiny, and I’m all alone. There’s no one else in the room. Just me. Too much whiteness everywhere. I feel afraid. I need pretty colors. I can’t handle the stark contrast of this room against the pretty colors I’m used to. Too much whiteness.

    I was eight months old, and my parents took me to the doctor because I was having digestive issues. I think I was left alone on the exam table, or something. But after so much time, it’s impossible to know how accurate or valid that memory is! Strangeness.

  4. Aw Oreo is SO DANGED CUTE!!! I’d be kissing her face, although I don’t know if that would freak out a piggie or not? That whole vay-jay blow drying thing seems rather nasty actually, why not just shower and dry off in a normal manner? Even if one is squeezed for time, a quick shower is far more hygienic. I guess the idiocy continues to spread, hmm? The encoded memory of abuse at one year or less seems a bit fishy to me, something the author may have ’embroidered’ to make her book more interesting or a better seller. That’s not to say some fragments of actual memory might not be there. I’m no expert though. I guess who knows? But I believe your suspicions are well founded.

    1. Oreo is pretty adorable. I kiss my piggies’ faces all the time.

      I figure a quick pee after sex to prevent yeast infections and one is good to go.

      I have my suspicions about some embroidery. I feel bad doubting a survivor, but there are some pieces that don’t quite fit.

  5. I hope you feel better soon. Sorry to hear you are poorly.

    Honestly, thinking back to my own memories, I would agree with you. Although I was a bit older, I had no concept of time at that point and actually pinpointing an accurate timeline, as in what order it happened is a bit sketchy.

    I would f thought understanding search that accurately at that age would have been difficult, I guess it can happen, but I am sceptical

  6. I hope you’re feeling better soon. I do agree that somebody is unlikely to remember something they wouldn’t have understood at the time like language. There is a theory that we can really only recall memories from around the age of 3 because we have no understanding of language to be able to recall and decode them before that.

  7. First of all, PLEASE DO NOT BLOW DRY YOUR VA JAY JAY. What the actual heck? Also, my first memory is from age 3 so I doubt anyone could remember anything from one year.

  8. I ready that 3-ish is around the time we can start really remembering things… but we can never be 100% certain our memories are accurate. Feel better!

  9. Oreo looks lovely

    I hope the antibiotics help you.

    Not much for my week than work, doing stuff as part of my deputy and taking mum’s belongings to new care home this week.

    Had a relaxing day today. In bed as I type this, so once I send this comment, I am off to bed.

    Part lazy day tomorrow, but I do need to get familiar with something else that’s part of my deputy role, so I need to get set up with that, so I can take a look around, so I am familiar with it.

      1. I have received help from my support bubble with this. So the majority taken by us. I only have a shopping bag worth to take one day now, when they are labelled with mum’s name.
        I also had the offer of a friend to help me with this too. But I had already arranged help with the above.

  10. I agree that a 1yo can store body memories; however, I too am sceptical about exact memories of sounds and locations at that age. Infantile amnesia is pretty consistent into the 3rd year. My week was pretty good. Read a new book that I really enjoyed and am working on the book review of it as we speak. Hope you feel better soon!

  11. I feel like I do remember the experience of eating cake at my first or second birthday, but it’s a memory that has been largely reinforced by looking at pictures from that party well after that. If I didn’t have the pictures my parents took of me eating that cake with chocolate frosting at my party, would I really remember it….I don’t know.

    I have no words re: vaginal blow-drying. Just…no.

    1. Apparently it’s fairly common to have childhood memories that are based more on pictures or what we’ve heard than on actual recollection of the event.

      I just Googled the vaginal blow-drying, and apparently this is a thing, and might reduce the chance of yeast infections. I still say no way.

  12. So sorry you’re still feeling unwell. I hope the antibiotics will improve things quickly.
    That’s a bit strange with that memory, I think… I generally don’t like when people say things like that you only start remembering things from a certain age because while there’s surely some general pattern of development that people follow, it doesn’t mean you absolutely can’t have earlier memories for example from events that had a strong impression on you. I probably dislike it so much because my own first memory is from when I was two and, while it doesn’t have very many details, the ones that I do recall are way too vivid to just be something someone has told me later on that I would have convinced myself to be a real memory ,while some people say it’s impossible to have memories from before age 3. I do actually remember some words from it but I guess one year makes a lot of difference here and I was already talking a fair bit myself by the age of two and my Dad claims I was speaking in full sentences, although I’m not perfectly sure if that was the case because my Mum doesn’t confirm it. 😀
    Anyway, I’m obviously no expert at such things but I’d think the author could have such a memory, like you say on a very rudimentary level, perhaps just some emotional flashback or something, and then she managed to find out more details about that memory later on like what was said or what time of year it was or figure out some details by herself from between the lines at an older age and incorporated these details into the memory. That would make some sense to me.

    1. I think there are a lot of factors that affect early memories, and the book I recently reviewed by Lisa Genova went into that. Part of it is that the brain just isn’t capable of remembering certain types of information, but also, the memory would have to be stored based on what someone was capable of understanding at that age. If you had strong language skills at age 2, it makes sense that you could have memories that incorporated words. But to remember specific details as a one-year-old, even if the one-year-old brain was capable of remembering such details rather than just the emotional/physical component, there would have to be understanding at the time of what those details were and what they meant in order for the memory to be created. There was no information from other sources that came up in relation to that memory. I’m not questioning at all that the author experienced abuse, but there are a number of things that seem a bit off, and make me wonder if she’s somewhat indiscriminately incorporated actual memories with perhaps some pseudo-memories that are extrapolated from the actual memories.

  13. I have no idea whether about the one year old and the long term memory coding. I doubt a one year old would be intellectually developed to define “birthday” by then, though.

    The week was mostly marked by a huge PTSD attack triggered by a political argument that occurred after the first non-Zoom meeting of that men’s group. I was anxious anyway and it wasn’t the right time for a political argument. The rest of the day was trashed. I was basically in my head back in Berkeley getting the shit kicked out of me. I was non functional the entire day, though all right in the morning.

    I might have to make some decisins whether to remain in that group or not. In general, the happiness most people are expressing that meetings are finally going to be live again and not on Zoom is something that I can’t share, nor can I expect to express my preference for Zoom meetings in such a way that other members will understand. They just keep telling me how much they’ll miss and miss my contributions and I’m like, you guys are just NOT getting it.

    Makes me feel like an oddball and they probably think I’m “arrogant” but whatever. Got a lot of work to do, too many of these volunteer commitments in the first place.

      1. I usually don’t get triggered by political arguments. Heated but not triggered. But the particular subject brought with it some buzz words that clicked off some memories and it was pretty bad. I kept texting the guy with concerning sentiments — I think it was like, a double whammy.

  14. Hahahah thanks for the laughs with the Pinterest sexual hygiene tip! I have never, ever known of anyone use a hairdryer on their vagina. Kinda ruins the moment, doesn’t it?

    Hurrah for the antibiotics! I hope the coughing clears up soon before you drown under rubbish! One day in the futuristic future, there’ll be a robot that we load the rubbish onto and it’ll take it out to the kerb for us. After bin day it’ll spray it down with antic and bring it back in again. That’s something to get excited about!

    So that book’s author suggests that abuse happened on her first birthday and she’s still responding to words said around that time? Far be it from me to challenge someone else’s experience but I’d be very surprised as I don’t think there are many adults who can remember being a year old, let alone the things said to them or even being able to know what those sounds actually were that were coming out of the mouths of the giant people (which is all you’d be able to fathom at that age).

    1. I like that rubbish robot idea! You could make millions with that!

      At 13 months, my niece can point to her nose on command, and that’s about the extent of things.

  15. That passage from the book about sexual abuse is pretty weird. I would never deny someone’s reality, but I’m suspicious of the repressed memories stuff.

    I tried trauma therapy a few years ago, and the therapist kept suggesting that I was sexually abused as a young child but that the memories were repressed. She was a pretty bad therapist and actually made my bipolar symptoms worse, and I had a hard time believing in the whole repression thing.

    I think repression could definitely be possible, but I also kind of suspect it might be a type of wish fulfillment for some looking for some type of “Ah! This is why I’m so messed up!” Not only that, but I think it’s pretty dangerous to then assume your parents or whomever did such a thing and demonize them and then possibly ruin the relationship if the people are still in your life.

    Lastly, if the repression is indeed real, I’d almost not even want to know. If something that insidious happened to me and it was repressed in my memory, perhaps it’s my brain’s way of protecting me. I’m all about depth therapy, but digging that deep into the unconscious just sounds dangerous!

    I apologize if any of that came off as insensitive. It’s just my opinion.

    1. Yikes, that therapist sounds sketchy. It seems like it would be pretty easy if a therapist was making assumptions or suggestions like that for it to create or at least reshape memories.

      1. Yeah, that’s what I thought. I think the therapist really believed it to be true, but it’s still almost borderline unethical. I can see how it can be especially dangerous if you suggest something like that to someone who’s already vulnerable and in a tough spot.

  16. I’m glad you’ve got meds. I will refrain from reminding you about yogurt (see what I did there 😂). I’m glad the gps are still adorable. I just remembered we had a light brown one in the class in grade two-ish. Much better than gerbils.

    Do you remember the book “Courage to Heal”? The consequences of that book illustrate the problems with “recovered memories.”

    I’m a smart person, and had trauma both for the first six months of life (congenital hip and the body cast) and also some form of abuse at age two, likely sexual. I don’t remember either. I remember what I’ve been told, and I’m aware of consequences, but concrete memories, no.

    I think people with oddly specific memories of very young times are doing what you mentioned, pulling together pseudomemories.

    1. Haha I’ve got yogurt in the fridge. 😉

      I haven’t read Courage to Heal, but I just looked it up on Wikipedia, and I see what you mean. I know that in her book Remember, Lisa Genova said that our level of confidence that a memory is true has no bearing on whether or not it actually is.

  17. Sorry to hear you’ve been poorly – I hope you’re feeling better soon!

    I had to laugh at the heating up your vagina thing – I completely agree it sounds like it was written by a man 😂

  18. I don’t think a 1 year old would be able to remember as even if they could, they wouldnt have the understanding, and or words to put with it.
    thats Very odd!
    Love your guinea pigs!

Leave a Reply