To be concerned by this...

(29 Posts)
Gobbolino6 Thu 24-Mar-16 13:23:53

A couple of weeks ago I got very confused watching tv .I'd started watching Luther and, after several episodes, said to my DH 'Why have they picked actors who all look so alike?' I was struggling to follow the story because all the male villains looked very similar, as did almost all the female characters. DH just said he hadn't noticed.
I forgot all about it until I was in town yesterday doing some shopping. I think I might have seen two reasonably close friends...but I don't know. I spent quite a while looking at both of their faces, and it's hard to describe, but I'm not sure if it was them or not.
I spoke to my GP this morning. She asked me to book a face to face appointment but it's in two weeks. I'm slightly worried. Has this happened to anyone else?

liz70 Thu 24-Mar-16 13:32:23

Please try not to worry too much, but it sounds as if your GP will be checking you out for developmental Prosopagnosia, or face blindness - the inability to recognise different human faces. There can be several causes of this and your GP will probably run some checks to try to find out what is going on. Please try not to stress about it too much, easier said than done, I know. flowers

originalmavis Thu 24-Mar-16 13:37:15

I thought I had that but it turns out I'm just really unobservant when it comes to people. I'd recognise a dog or a scarf at 50 paces but if I see someone 'out of context' (IE a teacher in the supermarket) I have no idea who it is.

Gobbolino6 Thu 24-Mar-16 13:44:15

Haha! I think I'm more worried because my ability to recognise people and remember their names has always been legendary at work etc. The two people I saw yesterday...or possibly didn't see...were a woman I've known for ten years and a dad from school I really do know quite well!

originalmavis Thu 24-Mar-16 13:46:12

Is that just at work though? See that's context!

Gobbolino6 Thu 24-Mar-16 13:49:45

Yes, you're right.

originalmavis Thu 24-Mar-16 13:51:15

My sister is like that - can remember 300+ delegates' names, their partners name, job title etc, but can she ever remember anyone's birthday?

oliviaclottedcream Thu 24-Mar-16 15:45:56

I do the same OP. I get distracted easily these days - just hit 50.

Gobbolino6 Thu 24-Mar-16 16:48:42

Thanks all. It's such a marked change for me. I'm 34 and and can't think of anything that's changed recently to explain it. Hopefully all will be well at the doctor's and I'm just being a bit ditzy. Thanks again.

tinyterrors Thu 24-Mar-16 17:42:24

Try not to worry too much, there could be any number of reasons for this happening.

Originalmavis prospoagnosia can present in the way you describe, being able to recognise someone in their usual context but not having a clue who they are when in a different context. So you may recognise a teacher at school but see them in the street and you wouldn't recognise them at all.

thatsn0tmyname Thu 24-Mar-16 17:45:32

What ethnic group are you? It has been proven that people of one group struggle to pick out facial details of other ethnic groups.

originalmavis Thu 24-Mar-16 17:49:27

Scots? Is it Scots? (Please!)

Lanark2 Thu 24-Mar-16 17:54:45

The Luther thing could be explained, if you have a lot on your mind, or the drama doesn't engage you, or you watch too many episodes in a row, you just won't follow the nuances of the plot, or remember who is who. It happened to me with game of thrones, and I spoilt the third series by doing this.. I realised I was only really taking in the major plot points and no subtelty nor did I even care for anyone but the most outrageous characters. Its like plot/emotion fatigue.

If you are thinking about that when you meet people instead of just seeing them you might get a similar effect. People out of work can look way different..its like different parts of them are switched on.

But there is a thing where you lose the ability for faces, but if you were binge watching, don't stress.

CaptainCrunch Thu 24-Mar-16 17:55:35

I'm Scottish and recently have noticed I have this problem. All white people look the same to me (I'm white) and ditto to not being able to distinguish one actor from another in tv dramas.

originalmavis Thu 24-Mar-16 17:57:42

That'll be it then...

Vintage45 Thu 24-Mar-16 18:02:53

I do this! I also say hi to people and totally forget their names and if Im thinking about something all else just evaporates. I've come to the conclusion that we live such bloody stressful lives these days with social networks/email etc. we "short-circuit" a lot confused

MERLYPUSSEDOFF Thu 24-Mar-16 18:22:45

I do this too. Mine is as a result of brain surgery. I can't recognise people outside their normal haunting ground. I try to remember things like their glasses / coat / shoes etc. That or voice.

I can remember the registration plates of any car me or my parents ever owned, post codes, telephone numbers and birthdays.

FannyFifer Thu 24-Mar-16 18:23:38

Also Scottish & also have this problem. My husband is bald & if he walked towards me on the street with a hat on & I didn't expect it then I wouldn't recognise him.
It gets quite embarrassing, I usually recognise people by hairstyle or clothes, if they change either I've not a hope.

OzzieFem Thu 24-Mar-16 18:40:22

Well I watched Luther last night, and was confused as I had not watched previous episodes. Turned out they had one villein in custody and another running around murdering people and they were twins. Another young female looked remarkably like another one in the episode as well.

We are probably behind UK in episodes, but it took quite a while to figure out who was who, and what the hell was going on.

Gobbolino6 Thu 24-Mar-16 19:25:55

Hahaha it wasn't the twinzs. Funnily enough I coped with that. grin I'm white British, Irish surname but don't know if I have Irish ancestry really. Red hair and pale skin though.

NotCitrus Thu 24-Mar-16 19:28:46

I'm pretty bad with faces generally but I find that US dramas often have a Standard White Guy who plays five characters, and Standard Black Guy playing a couple, plus various Quirky-Looking Characters who I can actually tell apart. Films are worse if they are romcoms - thrillers usually better. Something about that polished Hollywood look that makes them all look the same.

Having done various tests on the internet, I can tell pictures apart very well, and I can ID people by how they move very well, but what I'm really bad at is telling if two images of a head from different angles are the same person or not. Could never tell the difference between Cameron and Clegg in still images on TV, but could if it was video.

I seem to have become scatty as anything since having kids, so now my ability to remember anything is nearly as bad...

araiba Thu 24-Mar-16 19:45:22

the doc is taking the piss asking you to book a face to face appointment!!

molyholy Thu 24-Mar-16 19:57:47

the doc is taking the piss asking you to book a face to face appointment!!

Grrr you beat me to it araiba

Gobbolino6 Thu 24-Mar-16 21:05:01

Hahaha!

WonderingAspie Thu 24-Mar-16 21:12:13

I can get a bit like this. I saw someone from school, the other day somewhere I don't normally see her. At first I thought it was someone who looked like her, I didn't realise it was her until she was right in front of me. I don't always recognise people out of context either and if they had a hat or something on, I'd probably not recognise them.

I often think people look the same when they apparently don't. DH is forever giving me funny looks when I point out that someone looks like someone else. I thought 2 girls in a class were twins once, they weren't even related! I often have to look at identical twins for a while to work out if they do look the same as I can't always tell.

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