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    #241292 - 02/14/18 07:18 AM The patio- Just-because discussion for the adults
    aquinas Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2277
    Starting a thread for us to shoot the breeze and share random thoughts. Please post whatever is of interest to you personally or thematically as a gifted adult! OEs welcome. smile
    _________________________
    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

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    #241293 - 02/14/18 07:42 AM Re: The patio- Just-because discussion for the adults [Re: aquinas]
    RRD Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/04/16
    Posts: 278
    Thank you, Aquinas! I love this! smile

    So my first random thought/cool thing I learned yesterday:

    I am currently reading The Idiot Brain by Dean Burnett and I read the coolest thing last night! It seems that there may be something entirely circular that goes on in the brain to reinforce phobias (and humour me because I will bastardize the explanation): An individual with a phobia of spiders (for instance) will experience all of the physiological responses associated with the fight of flight response (increased heart rate, etc.) when they see a spider. And because the brain perceives these responses as being associated with a dangerous occurrence and makes the connection to the spider, this reinforces the phobia of spiders. Thus once it has developed, the phobia of spiders is self-reinforcing/self-fulfilling. The human brain is certainly flawed in so many ways, but endlessly fascinating!

    Mind you, I explained this to DH last night and he was a little less enthused than I. I guess his interests lie elsewhere. smile

    Anyone else? smile

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    #241294 - 02/14/18 08:20 AM Re: The patio- Just-because discussion for the adults [Re: aquinas]
    aquinas Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2277
    It makes sense from an evolutionary perspective, I suppose, because our brains disproportionately weight the importance of adverse risks for survival (#prospecttheory). So, if you have reason to believe a spider is a real risk, your body will act like it for self-preservation.

    Somewhat related to your thoughts...

    I can't find the original source (sorry!), but I read a news article last week that touched on vicarious learning about risk through others' trauma. The researchers in the study noted that family and associates of an individual who undergoes trauma experience comparable neurological changes to the original victim in sympathy. They theorized that vicarious learning is a survival mechanism, and that survival-based social learning in humans can occur almost by osmosis, driving the biological changes within the community. I found that fascinating!
    _________________________
    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

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    #241295 - 02/14/18 08:48 AM Re: The patio- Just-because discussion for the adults [Re: aquinas]
    RRD Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/04/16
    Posts: 278
    Actually, vicarious learning of fear through your parents is another aspect that Idiot Brain addressed, and he provided essentially the same explanation. If adults we trust are afraid of something, then surely we should be as well. And yes, it certainly makes sense from an evolutionary standpoint. We benefit from others' mistakes, so to speak (i.e. One wouldn't get killed by a large predator because one's parents witnessed such a death).

    I guess my DSs won't be afraid of water snakes - I once caught one bare-handed just so that I could show it to them up close. I was so excited to hold it for a moment, even though it bit me. I was even happy to show them the fang marks! smile

    Ok, back to my day job! smile

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    #241300 - 02/14/18 01:02 PM Re: The patio- Just-because discussion for the adults [Re: aquinas]
    aeh Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3604
    We see this phenomenon at work (or a related one) all the time in the form of social referencing. Of which the classic would be the toddler who falls, checks to see if caretaker is signaling distress, and then chooses to cry based on the response. It's also fairly well established that first responders and mental health professionals can (and often do) develop secondary trauma responses (secondary PTSD) without having witnessed the trauma at all, just from working with the distress of those with primary trauma.

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    #241303 - 02/15/18 06:16 AM Re: The patio- Just-because discussion for the adults [Re: aquinas]
    RRD Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/04/16
    Posts: 278
    Oh, I'd never thought about the social referencing aspect of that type of response from a toddler! I knew it existed but never thought about why. It makes perfect sense.

    It is amazing to me that there are so many holdovers from our cave-dwelling days and we don't even recognize it. For instance, I would think that the rampant consumerism that pervades society is likely just the modern day equivalent of the need to hunt and gather. It used to be that he/she who had the most resources survived. Now, it just leads to closets and basements crammed with stuff we don't need, debt, and a degradation of the planet. Sigh.

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    #241361 - 02/19/18 04:14 PM Re: The patio- Just-because discussion for the adults [Re: aquinas]
    sanne Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/30/16
    Posts: 289
    This is maybe only tangentially related, but I have experienced and am reading about the same sort of loop in illness. Some illnesses, mild symptoms trigger a reaction which is perceived as more intense symptoms and pretty soon the victim is bedbound. Yikes. I'm learning to fight through the mental part of it.

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