Brad Pitt, 58, admitted in a recent interview with the magazine GQ who thinks he suffers from prosopagnosia or facial blindness, a rare disorder characterized by the inability to recognize people’s faces.
The Oscar winner for “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” told the aforementioned publication that he has difficulty recognizing people and worries that his disorder has led people to see him as “distant, inaccessible”.
“Nobody believes me!”he said, recalling that this is also an obstacle in social settings, especially at parties.
This is not the first time Pitt has insisted he has prosopagnosia.
“A lot of people hate me because they think I’m disrespecting them,” he told Esquire in 2013. “Every once in a while, someone gives me context and I say, ‘Thank you for helping me.’ But there is people who hate me because they think I’m disrespecting them.”
“There was a year where I just said, this year I’m going to face it and ask people where we met, but it just got worse. People were even more offended and interpreted my problem as a gesture of vanity or egomania. But it’s a mystery to me, I just can’t remember a face,” Pitt said.
In dialogue with the magazine, Pitt spoke of a nightmare that disturbed him for years.
“For four or five whole years, the most predominant dream that I have experienced would be to be mugged and stabbed. Always at night, in the dark, and I was walking down a park sidewalk or along a boardwalk and as I passed under an exorcist-type streetlight, someone jumped out of the abyss and stabbed me in the ribs. Or I felt someone following me and then another flanked me and I realized that I was trapped and that they wanted to do me serious harm. Or he would be chased through a house with a child he helped to escape, but he would get caught on the porch and get stabbed. He always stabbed. And I wake up terrified. I don’t understand why they would want to hurt me. This stopped a year or two ago only when I started going right back into the dream and asking just why,” he recounted to the publication.
What is prosopagnosia
The symptoms that the actor talks about coincide with the neurological disease called prosopagnosia, also known as “face blindness”. This is a form of visual agnosia (inability to process sensory information).
This disorder is characterized by the inability to recognize faces, whether family members or even one’s own face. Its uniqueness is that the person who suffers from it can distinguish between the different parts that make up a face. That is, you can see the eyes, the mouth, the nose and the pieces that join a face, however, you cannot put this information together and create the image of a countenance.
Someone with this condition can look in the mirror and not realize that they are looking at themselves. or when seeing a photograph, whether old or recent, they will not have the ability to recognize themselves either.
It is currently known that there are two types of prosopagnosia: congenital and acquired. Congenital (or developmental) comes from birth and it is due to an interruption in communication between different parts of the brain, so that the individual does not adequately develop the ability to recognize faces. It is suffered by 2.5% of the population.
While the acquired one is due to damage to the occipital temporal lobe, either by cerebrovascular accidents, hemorrhages, tumors, among others. It is most often found in adults.
Although there is no cure for this condition, many people who suffer from it tend to focus on particular characteristics of the person in order to recognize it. Either because of a particular scar, the way of dressing, the tone of the voice or particular signs such as a mustache or the smile of the person you want to identify.
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What Brad Pitt said about the strange disorder he suffers from
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