Perception is reality. For people with Capgras Syndrome, reality is a conspiracy. Everyone that should be familiar to them is an imposter.
Say you wake up, roll over in bed, and see your significant other snoozing. Instead of recognizing them off the bat, you freak out. Yes, this person looks like your significant other, snores like your significant other, perhaps drools like your significant other-but in the mind of a Capgras sufferer, there is no way this person can be their significant other. They’re a stranger. A replacement.
Take this example from an NPR article, “Seeing Imposters: When Loved Ones Are Suddenly Aren’t”:
“A 37-year-old woman came into the office of Carol Berman, a psychiatrist at New York University Medical Center, with a strange complaint. She had returned to her house recently to find a man sitting on her couch. He was familiar, sort of, and he was wearing her husband’s clothes. But something didn’t feel right to this woman. She felt a strange kind of emptiness when she looked at him. She was struck by the very deep sense that her husband had somehow been replaced by this strange man.”
It’s like the movie Invasion of the Body Snatchers, but with less Donald Sutherland and Aliens.
The cause of Capgras is complicated and widely debated. It could be organic, such as head trauma or lesions. A second theory is a breakdown between the physical structure of the brain and the cognitive workings of it. A failure to communicate. It could even be a result of an alteration of brain chemistry.
Or it’s the ultimate act of trolling.
In short, scientists have no fucking clue.
Understandable. The mind is a mysterious place. There really is no treatment-one that has been put forward is to establish a connection between the sufferer and the ‘Imposters’. However, it’s easier to say, “Hey, person who firmly believes that everyone around them is not who they seem, you’re crazy and this is totally your husband/wife/best friend.” than successfully achieve.
Capgras really sucks. More like “Crap-gras”. Know more.