Dissociation : Vol. 8, No. 4, p. 241-246 : Dissociation during positive situations
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Breaking from the traditional mode of dissociation research, this study examines the experience of dissociation during positive situations. Thirty-three of ninety (36.7%) randomly selected undergraduate students reported positive dissociative experiences. In order of ranked frequency the experiences included sports, sexual encounters, prayer, contact with nature, anticipating good news, hearing good news, acting, hobbies, musical performances, and listening to music. Interestingly, low as well as high dissociators reported these types of experiences suggesting that one need not be highly dissociative in order to dissociate during a positive situation. A qualitative analysis of descriptions of positive dissociative experiences coincides precisely with Beere's perceptual theory of dissociation : dissociation occurs when perception narrows during an intense situation of personal significance and, thus, blocks out the background.