This past week, I discovered the way I see the world actually has a name. It's called Schizotypal Personality.

Yes. That root word is one shared with Schizophrenia. No, I am not ill. This personality type shares qualities that are exacerabted in those who are mentally ill. If you Google it, you'll find most articles refer to it as a disorder. But then you'll find the few that speak of it in the regular, old personality sense. Meaning, yes this a different way of being and drinking in the world around me, but it is not impairing me (that's what the docs call a disorder, by the by, when it impairs your quality of life).

I share this because a lot of you are writers / artists, and so you may see yourselves in these traits. And you may be just as fascinated as I am to read up on its literature.

What leads to this type of personality?

  1. Being born early.
    I wrote about this a few days ago, but it's important. I learned that being born a few weeks early as I was meant that my head was quite small when it touched the air of this earth. In other words, my brain hadn't fully finished developing. And as such, I have some—shocker—weaknesses. A large part of this is that I'm extremely sensitive.

Ask my mother and she'll tell you about how I screamed about my carseat killing my back when I was younger (it was too rough but all I could shout was "my back!"). She'll also tell you how I couldn't stand tags on my shirts (too rough, too), nor my socks falling down my feet. (I still hate that.)

I also cannot stand bad smells. Nor harsh lighting. My worst nightmare is entering fluorescent-lit rooms. (My eyes!)

These are all now well known as traits of Highly Sensitive People. Being born early can lead to this.

  1. Trauma.
    I almost drowned when I was a toddler, walking straight into a pool. My sister had to save me. I also had a seizure one time from overheating in the summer. That one led me to the hospital. (I was probably also oversensitive to the heat because of my premature, HSP ways.)

  2. Not getting adequate attention from your mother.
    I LOVE my mom, don't get me wrong. But I was a child of four, and my mother's of English descent. Therefore, my extra-needy infant self didn't get quite the doting she needed. This can lead to withdrawal as we get older and have this idea within us that "we aren't good enough" (another can of worms). In essence? My mum's amazing, but I was extra-needy and she couldn't cater to quite that level of neediness.

"Symptoms"
I put this in quotes because symptoms make it sound like a sickness.

  1. I speak and understand the world through metaphors.
    -good for writing!
    -also, I have a tendency toward "magical thinking"

  2. I have a tendency to ramble
    -sorry!

  3. I used to dress very weird.
    -think boas and ruffle tops and soccer shorts (and I thought I could go into fashion..)

  4. I focus on skin and being "whole."
    -something I didn't realize until reading through my novel and then I was like Wow, I do.

  5. I adore psychology and philosophy.

  6. I don't trust people easily.

  7. Anxiety

Okay, I am late to meet a friend and so I leave you with this paper on Schizoid Personality Disorder, a lot of which I DO relate to. (The difference between this personality and that disorder is— you know what? Check it out. If we're similar, you'll find it interesting.)