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How our memory plays tricks

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Description: Link to cool article
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StevoMuso
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« on: September 20, 2010, 09:06:53 AM »

My daughter sent me a link to a cool article on how our memory can play tricks on us. I found the part about so-called "repressed memories" being "bullshit" rather interesting and well written.

You can find the article here: http://www.cracked.com/article_18704_5-mind-blowing-ways-your-memory-plays-tricks-you.html
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GCG
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« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2010, 09:25:46 AM »

i can personally vouch for 'introduced' repressed memories.
according to my mum, i was allways this bubbly, happy, obedient child, then, suddenly, i became morose, sullen, angry and rebellious.
my sister recons i was molested by a neighbour, and that idea, allthough i didnt heartily believe in it, the guy was kinda creepy, and i spent loads of time with him.  and when i read up about sexual abuse, the boxes ticked.  i didnt explore it greatly.  and i eventually let it go.
i have huge intimacy issues, but i dont think it was really anything to do with molestation.  rather living in a cold, unloving, repressed and joyless house, being slapped around, and, i think, i turned sullen when i was blamed for a friend of mine falling off a horse i was leading, and breaking her arm.  i had no say as to my own defence, or the fact that it was her own choice to ride the horse.  so that, along with a horrible home environment, and puberty, made me sullen and rebellious.
and believe you me, till this day, my family accounts evertyhing i do, be it cutting my hair, to getting a tattoo, to being in a homosexual relationship, to being sullen, rebellious and looking for attention.

so i can totally  get the whole introduced repressed memories thing.
i think that one can alter you own memory too.
for the sake of sounding cool, i told people that i had taken martial arts, and i eventually convinced myself that, and i told people like that was my life.  i had convinced myself that i had smoked, and i had coughed up blood, and had to stop smoking, just so that i didnt have to be uncool amongst the smokers.
you convince yourself all sorts of shit.  i had since seen the folly of it, and i am now the most anoying honest person you will meet.  i call a spade a spade, and generally people dont like that.

on the other hand, i remember very little of my childhood, pretty much up to like matric, if i try and recollect memories, its a general blur, and only a few point stand out enough that i can relate it.
for example, my mum told me, i would sit in the car while they went shopping, and didnt open a window, and sat in the sweltering heat.  or when it rained, i would sit with the rain splashing on my face, as opposed to closing it (i like rain, so i cant see the issue there).  but i dont remember any of it.  she relates events to me, that now, after having tried to imagine them, i had 'created' memories, but there were never any memories to access.
maybe, if i went to go see a shrink, they might dig up crap that might just upset the living shit out of me.  so i think i'd rather just leave it there.
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Brian
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« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2010, 15:47:48 PM »

sometimes its just good to let things be if your OK in your skin GCG and learn to love yourself (that's if you don't already)...this guilt trip people want to put on other people is often a reflection of their own insecurity
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Faerie
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« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2010, 16:56:54 PM »

sometimes its just good to let things be if your OK in your skin GCG and learn to love yourself (that's if you don't already)...this guilt trip people want to put on other people is often a reflection of their own insecurity

THIS....

Most people dont like themselves GCG, and they transpose that  upon anybody that seems happy with themselves, attempting to convince them that THEY are the ones with issues as opposed to themselves. The process of accepting and liking yourself with all your own issues and warts can be a tedious one and people dont like a mirror reflecting themselves. You appear to be comfortable with yourself, and that is the ultimate joy in life, because then you dont need a crutch to lean on, you dont doubt yourself and dont sweat the little things. Embrace your issues, they belong to you and you might as well like them. So what if you dont recall your childhood, most of us only remember snatches anyway, and those snatches are generally significant only in the context it happened.

All of us (my brother's and I) were adopted, but my Mom will tell all and sundry how hard her labour was with us (it varies who was the worst experience), so go figure, she probably believes it took place, and who am I to say anything about a memory she desperately wanted to experience but were denied the opportunity to do so? It doesnt harm anybody, so it doesnt matter.
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Michael Meadon
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« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2010, 17:48:57 PM »

Ah, Cracked. Well worth following regularly...

You guys familiar with Tavris & Aaronson's Mistakes Were Made (but not by me)? They go over a whole bunch of research demonstrating just how crappy our memories are. The person most responsible for taking on the whole repressed memories bull is Elizabeth Loftus. See her SI article: http://www.csicop.org/si/show/remembering_dangerously/
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