Semantic vs Episodic Memory
@Starjo- It is amazing some of the things that your mind represses. I was watching a program that dealt with forms of amnesia. There was one guest on the show that suffered from complete memory loss.
This man did not remember anything before he was mugged and could not remember anything after the incident. He suffered from two different forms of amnesia and because his wallet was stolen the police were unable to identify him.
He actually did not know who he was. This was really incredible because I could not imagine having my past and my future wiped out like that. This man said that a psychiatrist is trying to work with him on some hypnotic therapiesin order to try to help him piece together parts of his life. I just don’t understand how no one ever came forward to say that they were missing a family member.
It was a really sad story. There was another lady that could not remember anything that she was told. In fact, she had to write down directions to her house and keep them with her because she virtually had no short term memory and would forget how to get home. She dealt with her amnesia by taking pictures of everything that was meaningful so that it would help her remember.
Something traumatic happened to my mother when she was young, but somehow, her mind blocked it out. She has specific nightmares a lot, and she wanted to get to the bottom of her dreams.
She went to a therapist for hypnosis. He told her that he could unlock her episodic memory with this technique. At first, she was skeptical, but she desperately wanted it to work, so she gave it a try.
He talked her into a deep state of relaxation. He asked her to remember her life as a little girl and the scary thing that happened. She began sweating and breathing hard, but she was able to tell him the details of the event.
Those memories were still in her brain after thirty years. It makes me wonder if hypnosis would work for things buried in your semantic memory as well. I learned some things in school that I would love to remember.