Have you ever heard someone say, “Oh, I’m sorry; I’m horrible with names.” This is a very common thing that you hear people say when you meet new people, etc. Well, I am now one of those people! I used to be REALLY good with names. I would remember this random persons name I met out and about through a group of friends and a random place.
I wish people could wear name tags
However, this is not the case anymore for me. Recently, I have been introduced to someone three times over a short amount of time. I still forget his or her name to this day. I really wish people could wear nametags around me. Anyways, I feel horrible when I don’t remember someone’s name, especially if I have been around them in a small group setting multiple times.
Pre-diagnosis, if someone didn’t remember my name that I had met multiple times, I felt sort of offended. It used to make me think to myself, “Well did I not make any sort of impression at all?” I felt as if the person felt like my name wasn’t important enough to remember.
So, I was at a friendly gathering and I came across this girl that I have been around multiple times. She came up to me and we were talking a lot but I could not remember her name at all. Now usually, if I get into this situation, I have another friend introduce himself or herself to the person I don’t know. This way they have to tell my friend their name. No such luck in this event, because we ALL already knew each other.
Social media can help
What to do next? I try to talk to one of my close friends nearby to tell me the person’s name without being obvious. This wasn’t an option at the time with this certain situation. So I did what any person now-a-days does, I Facebook stalked them. Thank goodness some of our mutual friends tagged them in a recent post and I got the name. However, that’s a lot of work to get a person’s name, just so I don’t come off rude.
I know that I could easily just ask for their name, but I don’t want to be rude, make someone mad or hurt their feelings. Some people might go about this a different way than I do, but I wanted to just share my personal experience on this topic.
To be honest, I have two kids and I mix up their names ALL the time. (LOL) On a serious note, I feel like I will remember a name more than likely if I repeat it a few times in conversation, if I find something to give me a hint that I link their name to, etc.
Sensory overload makes it worse
I’ve also come to realize that the less I have going on around me, the more likely I am going to remember their name. When I tend to have a bit of a ‘Sensory Overload’, that’s when my brain can’t keep up with everything that is going on around me, and I might forget the name of the person I was introduced to.
Luckily, my husband and close friends know that I have this issue. My hubby and friends will help remind me of names of people if they see I’m struggling. I still think it would be easier to ask everyone to wear nametags, but my husband said that I can’t just walk around with a roll of nametags and a sharpie.
It can happen even with old friends
Now, this lapse in memory on names doesn’t just happen with people I’ve met recently, but it can also happen to me with people I’ve known for a long period of time. However, I don’t see this person I have known for a long period of time. So I don’t frequently say their name or bring it up in conversation.
For instance, one of my husband’s good friends is married and I met his wife years ago. I have even spent time with her a few times, even vacationed with them. The difference is I don’t talk to or see them often, so I sometimes forget her name.
Sometimes it’s not a complete blank when I try to think of the person’s name. Sometimes I know what letter their name starts with, or I can’t decide if their name is Carrie or Cassie. Oh, have you met someone where their names could be pronounced two different ways? Or if it’s a name that is VERY similar to another… I tend to forget their names during these instances also.
One of many memory issues
Anyways, I just wanted to share something I’ve been dealing with ever since I was diagnosed. It’s been bothering me for a while now. Since it very recently happened, and I remembered it happened, I wanted to share with everyone else. I also have issues with memory lapse on other things as well, but I wanted to speak specifically on the remembering of names… because it really really annoys me!
I feel like this issue would fall under “Cognitive Impairment“. However, I have experienced cognitive issues in many different forms.