Is Talking to oneself Madness?
Although talking to oneself is associated with insanity, this is not always the case. People with schizophrenia, who are commonly described as crazy, may talk to themselves, talk a lot, not talk at all or, most commonly, talk strangely.
The impairment of speech in schizophrenia reflects the form of impairment in the patient’s thoughts.
NOT BEING ABLE TO SUPPRESS IT WELL
Talking to oneself in a way that is not associated with any psychiatric problem has an important place in human psychology. First of all, children talk to themselves more than adults.
This is because the mental function called “repression” is still developing in children. “Suppression” means not expressing thoughts, feelings, desires, memories and behaviors that come to mind, not putting them into action or not even being conscious of them at all. Since children cannot suppress the thoughts that come to their minds and the desire to speak, they voice them out loud.
Again, in relation to the “suppression” function, children experience their emotions more openly than adults. They express their emotions immediately when they are angry, sad or happy. When this expression is accompanied by speech, they appear to be talking to themselves. For the same reasons, children talk more in their sleep than adults.
WHO ARE YOU TALKING TO?
On the other hand, the relationships that children establish with their loved ones and the roles they assign to these people in their inner world play an important role in the development of human psychology. Every child has a dream of a mother, a father, a brother/sister or a sibling. These are very concrete and the child can easily talk to the imaginary mother, father and sibling in his/her inner world as if they were there with him/her.
This may seem like self-talk or play, but the child is actually talking to and shaping the parents and siblings inside him/her. As the child grows up, these dreams of parents and siblings cease to be separate persons and become part of the child’s inner world.
As the child grows older, he/she speaks less to himself/herself as a separate individual. In this process, one begins to perceive their voices as one’s own inner voice. The child’s conversations with his/her imaginary parents and siblings turn into the inner thoughts of the adult, becoming “the voice of his/her conscience”, “the voice of common sense”, “the voice of the devil within”.
The way the mind works during talking and thinking is different. Thinking has the potential to create more vicious cycles because it is not as relaxing and discharging as talking.
This is one of the reasons why obsessions occur. Talking, on the other hand, allows the mind to work more actively and open new paths. When people talk, they understand problems better, solve them better, and vent better. If talking is prevented, the issues in one’s inner world harden and become heavy. This can lead to alienation from oneself.
If the conversation is with someone who is trusted and understood, the person feels integrated. Someone who has no one to talk to can talk to themselves and review their decisions. It can lead to a better understanding of one’s own thoughts. Talking helps the mind to become better organized.
Talking to oneself is sometimes like an exercise. There are many people who repeat to themselves hundreds of times the conversation they are going to have with their manager or the coming out speech they are going to give to a loved one.
One can even motivate oneself by talking to oneself. Talking reveals and clarifies unconscious goals.
Contrary to popular belief, talking to yourself is not a bad thing. Talk to yourself, talk to your loved ones, talk to those you are angry with, but just talk…
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