Wednesday, 12 May 2010


Making Me Feel Like I've Never Been Born

Patient #PMID12672553

RECOMMENDATION: Patient requires intense therapy in a safe, private setting.
SUMMARY: Trauma-induced dissociation; confabulation.

Patient interprets everything she encounters as part of her fantasized, alternate life in London. For example, Immaculate Heart Hospital becomes The Church of the Immaculate Heart in South Kensington, London, popularly known as Brompton Oratory.

Prior to coming to Immaculate Heart patient experienced extreme trauma and grief over the sudden disappearance of her close friend, Emily Blair. Patient response to trauma has been to lose herself in an effort to find her friend. She has retreated into a magical mystery fantasy where everything she encounters has to be put in a catalog of references to obscure songs and lyrics.

On being admitted to the psychiatric ward, she thought our nurse's student assistant was her missing friend. The assistant, Melissa, has been able to establish a fragile bond with her. Patient imagines their conversations take place at "The Hummingbird" which is either a bakery or coffee shop. In addition, she also "sees" pictures of her missing friend on my office wall.

Patient claims she was the leader of an underground gang (the Sunny South Kensington Girls) who infiltrated the "posh criminal class" (her words) in an effort to find their missing friend, by posing as professional party girls.

Patient has created a powerful but safe and benevolent father-figure. She maintains her father is Sir Reginald Thorpe, a highly successful and influential British music publisher, who had business associations with the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, and other music groups of that era, and now controls an empire of "legacy" publishing. In fact, no one seems to know who her father is. Her mother is a civilian employee at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. There is no other family.

I often use google to research the origin of her statements. Her command of pop music iconography and her interior dialogue are extraordinary by any standard and reveal a lively intelligence. Upon cross-examination she will not acknowledge the source but admit only that it's part of her work, her job, to keep up with those kinds of things.  She thinks she's taking care of business, like her father.

I strongly advise continued treatment.

Dr. Pamela Turner

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