Recent VOX Podcast

I just listened to the podcast on aphantasia VOX put out recently and I’m having a lot of feelings. Since learning about aphantasia a year and a half ago, I’ve passively dealt with having a different view of the world than those around me. I’ve known we all “see” things differently and it’s mostly been an interesting – veering occasionally into negative or positive, but neutral overall – concept to think about.

The way this podcast was presented, with its casual us-vs-them phrasing, made me feel really, really bad. There are positives and negatives for me personally regarding my aphantasia, but this podcast made me think of the most emphatic response I’ve gotten from talking to someone about it: When I told one of my closest friends, his first and repeated response to my simply saying I can’t visualize things was to tell me he’d unalive himself if he weren’t able to picture things. What I heard was far more pointed than I’m sure he meant it and we’ve hung out a good amount since with no further issues, but this really got me feeling a lot of the negative emotions I’ve avoided thus far.

Did anyone else listen to this podcast? What were your thoughts? Personally, aside from feeling very attacked, I started really wondering about large-scale studies and forms of treatment. I have a data research background rather than a scientific or psychological one, but imagining being part of that first major large-scale study made me really excited. What did everyone else think about it?

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I listened to the podcast, I didn’t get a perception of that degree of us vs them that you seem to perceive and at risk of offending you (I very much hope this does not) it may be an emotional sensitivity issue on your part at still perceiving negatives in relation to your aphantasia. Something worth talking more about with people that are a bit more understanding as I would certainly be offended if a close friend responded in the way your friend did to you so I think your sensitivity is justified and worthy of empathy and kindness as a response not that kind of disregard even if they didn’t intend it they should be a little mindful of someone’s feelings discussing something like this. This is also something that you might want to address with your friend, perhaps just printing your question and this response and letting them read it to see if they take on a more understanding viewpoint.