Emotionless or Alexithymia? Learn what is emotional color-blindness


MJ Gonzales │

Usually what triggers people to do something big or revolutionary is the strong emotion they’re keeping in their heart. It’s also why a man decides to leave his bachelor life and tie a knot with his girlfriend or what pushes some women do steps to have physical and psychological transformation.  Well not all human are emotionally-driven as there such thing as alexithymia.

Apparently, being unaware to other feelings is not only down to being insensitive or lack of empathy. In the report of BBC, alexithymia is like emotional color-blindness that an individual suffering from it has hard time to interpret and express emotion.  At some point it’s linked to autism, anorexia, schizophrenia, and chronic pain.   Though they pointed out that there are studies that discovered alexithymia in autistics,   there are more alexithymics or alexes are like us. It just they cannot connect emotions and ideas so they also cannot easily react as normal as everyone else.

“You need that emotional transfer in order to verbalise what you’re feeling,” Katharina Goerlich-Dobre, Postdoc at RWTH Aachen University Hospital shared.  BBC also reported that “abnormally dense connections in that neural bridge” or something like noisy signal are also discovered with Goerlich-Dobre’s brain scans in people with alexithymia.

Credit: Joshua Earle/ Unsplash

Credit: Joshua Earle/ Unsplash

With the world, where folks are castigated based on emotional appeal it is not surprising that alexes and people around them experiencing rifts.   In Huffington Post’s account, partners of alexithymics may also get ‘Affective Deprivation Disorder’ or something they described as ‘attachment panic’ due problem with emotional validation.

“The difference with alexithymics is that they are usually not being passive aggressive.  They genuinely cannot imagine their partner’s experience and feel no emotions themselves, so they are not ‘hiding’ or ‘deflecting,’ but are angry and confused because they literally have no idea what a partner means by ‘emotional support’ and truly believe that the partner is the one with the problem, and is emotionally unstable and irrational,” Huffington explained on Alexithymia, which they also called ‘a disorder of imagination’ because can’t imagine what it’s feels like others.

Though this disorder looks like hard to beat, it pays that Alexithymics and their love ones become aware of their concerns. In fact if they do, there are also find some advantages like in BBC’s report about Caleb, an alex, that shared he could handle medical procedures and his wife find him reliable in nerve-wrecking situations.

“Our ability to detect emotions comes from a really innate place and trying to train yourself doesn’t really work,” Mr Thompson, an Alexithymics, said in an interview with “Someone with alex can’t pick up signs that a grin is sarcastic or genuine.

“They develop a repertoire of potted responses, but there’s always a danger of an inappropriate response, and they’re scared of that. There’s a real confusion they experience, and incredible anxiety. They are aware they’re lacking and worried they’ll be ridiculed or make people angry.”

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