She has had auditory hallucinations for 2 years along with complex visual hallucinations the most recent episode was in the morning seeing flames all around her. Others she has experienced are of people, animals and objects. This is related to urinary tract infections.
She has experienced psychosis and delusional thinking it is clear from my views of this states that she is very scared, confused during the lead to these events and afterwards she quite rightly views them as ego-dystonic (separate and in conflict with “self”).
Paul Isaacs 2019
Note This was from a personal perspective
There are times when I even question my own perception visual and/or otherwise and got the the point wonder of how I cam to this conclusion.
Noticing An Object With No Context?
I was presenting a workshop around a week ago and in the room something every so often was catching my eye and intriguing me, its was shiny and rainbow coloured in presentation however I ignored for a while.
Interpretive Meaning vs. Non-Interpretive Experience?
I was then talking about experiences of being object blind (simultagnosia) and meaning blind (semantic agnosia) and turned the the object of intrigue and held it and proclaimed and questioned “what is this?” in about 5 seconds or more the audience explained that it was a hip flask!
It just goes to show that even on a residual level my visual perceptual challenges take me by surprise this were I made an effort to remember the object by touching the its smooth and bobbled surface.
Paul Isaacs 2019
Note this is from person perspective
Gestalt perception can account for both strengths and weaknesses of autistic perception. On the one hand, they seem to perceive more accurate information and a greater amount of it. On the other hand, this amount of unselected information cannot be processed simultaneously and may lead to information overload. Autistic people may experience gestalt perception in any sensory modality.
About a month ago I was a friend of mine who is a speech and language therapist who works with people with autism, brain injuries (associated with language processing) other other neurological conditions.
Visual Perception & Memory
She asked me about how I mentalise the world around despite having challenges with visual-verbal connections and the ability to “marry” words and images together. This made me think about how I piece my “world” together and what tools I have used to do so. So she suggested about a simple memory comparison which was to see in the mind’s eye a generic church figure which she could.
Sensory Associative Memory
I said that when I think of a church I think of the feel and texture of the grass, the feel of the aged stone walls, the loud squeak of the wooden door, the musky smell of the aged church. She said can you bring all the those senses (experiences) together. I said I cannot as I think of them one sense at a time.
There appear to be multiple pathophysiological mechanisms that result in apperceptive visual agnosia. These may be related to the misperception of shapes due to defects in representing the elementary properties of curvature, surface and volume149 or failure to integrate multiple elements into a perceptual whole.150 Patients with severe apperceptive agnosia usually have extensive and diffuse occipital lesions and tend to have residual field defects.151
D. Tranel, A.R. Damasio, in International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences, 2001
It’s clear that I have documented about having faceblindness, object blindness and meaning blindness which of course leads to “blindisms” in visual surroundings in which one has “context blindness” in which objects, faces and places lose their significance and visual-verbal meaning.
However it is clear from this conversation that the way in which I store memories through fragmented pieces of information bring about and evoke an emotional connection with what I am talking about.
Paul Isaacs 2019
Note: This is from a personal perspective
Simultagnosia is a condition that effects the occiptal lobes of the brain this is where visual perception and processing is connected, it also can have an impact on visual association, language perception/processing and overall navigation of the visual world around you.
For me it meant not being able to access the visual world with coherence rendering me unable to access with my “eyes”and having to build up the visual world in a “non-visual” way such as.
This started early in my development with my Mum’s observations thinking I was both deaf and blind (which is a common observation with people with visual agnosias) I was imprinting through EXTERNAL stimulus to build up a representation and connecting through other sensory modulations to make sense of the experience around me.
“Mapping” A System
As I have got older and with more awareness of the condition I have system in place where I do not hide anything from my view and placement of objects are important in relation to their context.
Context & Relevance
I still have a level of context blindness which means that things that are not being used “lose there relevance” (what they are, their use and function in relation to the environment) I may mistake objects for other things entirely and/or be caught up in how they make me feel rather than what they are.
Paul Isaacs 2019
Note – This is from a personal perspective
As I child the lack of visual and facial coherence meant that the visual world didn’t pry for the bonding and connective meanings that relied of multiple visual stimulus’, faces meant nothing and visual association was hollow, flat and soulless so I didn’t apply the connections of “me”, you” and “I”.
Making Connections & Gestalt Perception
My first friend was “water” not the interpretive word but the emotional recoil that I gathered and like a friend it was there to give and take.
I would see the puddles, flush the toilets and knew from them what would come. A timely wave of energy which was a akin to expectation as the water flowed the twinkles of spray in the surrounding area and the light shards bouncing off the sun in the morning.
“Bear” was used as a transitional object he was large, course and scratchy and would sit next to me in the car when my parents went out and about.
Mirrors & “Me”
The Mirror in the bathroom and other places was a constant source of fascination it took me until 16 to released that “him” was “me” but I found it a comfort not to be alone.
Information Processing & Making Connections
On a pre-conscious level I was “sensing” and “tuning in” to an apart of myself which I wasn’t able to make the connection with in real time so it was slow process from infancy to mid-teenage hood.
Having a level of aphasia, visual-verbal agnosias delayed the process but I am thankful to have given myself a “project” to work on and to bridge the gap between my world, the world and other peoples worlds.
Sensing, Interpretation & “Meaning”
This was a feeback loop in which I was finding other through self and self through other (the sense that the person in the mirror was “other”) this brought upon the slow bridging between my internal world of sensing to a level of intereptation.
Paul Isaacs 2018
I first met the endearing Daisy King when I done consultancy work at The King’s home about two years ago, we have since become friends.
Daisy King is in the later years of teenage hood and is very charming, warming and loving to the people she meets. She does not have verbal speech however she shows her wants and needs through tonal modulation, directing the person, objects of reference and gesture.
She has low muscle tone (which is a feature of the syndrome) but that doesn’t stop her from wanting to get around to meet people, play with them or go for a walk with her friends and family, she has problems with feeding but has a tremendous appetite, she has her person care needs met by her family and big sister Rosie. She is loved and shows it in a give and take fashion.
Sensory Perception, Meaning Blindness (Semantic Agnosia)
I was 19 when my ex-shrink declared from across the room, ‘You have agnosia’. We’d evolved into a friendship thing and I guess in my years as her patient she didn’t have a shelf of objects in her room so had never really seen me handle them. But here I was with a rubber thingy in my fingers upon which was balances a hollow tube like structure which made a good sound when tapped. I had suddenly declared ‘this is a baby’s bottle’… probably fairly obvious to most given this woman had a toddler, but to me this mysterious structure was something of unchartered territory though it’s likely I’d encountered hundreds of them in my 19 years of life by that time, let alone grown up with one. But that’s visual agnosia for ya (semantic agnosia).
Daisy seems to be meaning blind so externally explores around her liking to connect people through touch, pressure. If one doesn’t have a level of visual “recall” it would make sense that she explores people and objects in this fashion to get a “reality” other than “seeing” despite her eyes working.
Sensory Perception, Object Blindness (Simlutagnosia)
As a person who grew up with inability to simultaneously process my visual world, leaving me seeing everything bit by bit, context blind, face blind, often also semi object blind, I feel visual perceptual disorders played a significant role in my learning, development and inability to also gain receptive language processing or functional speech until late childhood. But what weight might visual perceptual disorders alone play in the development of someone’s autism?
When your visual world is so distorted, lacking interpretive meaning and “fragmented” Daisy shows many clever signs of trying to get coherence from the visual world around her she will twiddle, spin and balance objects creating movement for people with an array of visual perceptual disorders objects may be “dead” when there is no movement and/or sound present.
She also at times looks out the corner of her eyes using peripheral vision because it is easier to process and percieve rather than central vision which causes the distortion.
The “System of Sensing”
The realm of sensing is the place we have all come from: that world before mind was thought of as ‘me, before body became ‘mine’, that time when we ‘knew’ because we FELT the nature of things, the feel of them- when we sensed. This was before we had learned to interpret and see the world not as it was but through our concepts and ideas of what it was.
When someone is in the system it often gets confused (because of the external “behaviours” and presentation) as someone who has a “low intellect” I challenge this because if the system is still present that means that the person is taking in the information around them but is “feeling” rather than putting it into other more “interpretive” framework.
Daisy seems to live very much in this system in terms of her interpersonal relationships with her family and friends. She is fun, cheeky, outgoing and shares her Mum’s idiosyncratic personality and mercurial personality.
In the end she is a human being living and loving life. 🙂
Paul Isaacs 2018