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Mom Doesn't Recognize Daughter's Face at School after Grandma Changed Her Hairstyle

Salwa Nadeem
Jun 19, 2022
02:20 P.M.
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When a 35-year-old mom-of-two went to pick up her eldest daughter from school, she stood at the entrance wondering where her girl was. Strangely, the mother couldn't recognize her kid's face in the crowd of students.

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Sometimes in life, strange things happen that leave us shocked for a long time. At first, we don't understand the reason behind such odd incidents. However, looking back at them later in life reveals some hidden aspects we couldn't see previously.

The woman in today's story also experienced something unexplainable. After discovering what went wrong, she recalled past events and realized strange things had been happening in her life for a long time. Let's understand why she couldn't recognize her daughter the day she went to pick her up from school.

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THE CARING MOTHER

The mother of two, Natalie Whitear, struggled to recognize the faces of her family members in public. Often, she would do strange things that made people wonder what was wrong with her.

It first occurred to the 35-year-old mother when her boss pointed out something strange about her behavior. He noticed that Whitear had difficulty remembering people's names because she often introduced herself to people she already knew and asked them their names. She recalled:

"I explained to him that I could remember their names, but not their faces - it was only because of his shocked reaction that I suddenly realized that this was not normal."

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FAILING BUT WINNING

After her boss made her realize something was wrong with her memory, she stumbled upon an online test on the internet asking users to recognize various celebrities' faces.

For her, remembering her husband's face was also difficult.

To her shock, she failed the test. However, the good part was that she discovered why she couldn't remember people's faces. Soon after taking the test, a psychologist from Bournemouth University contacted her, telling her about the rare condition, prosopagnosia, that hindered her ability to recognize faces.

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HER RARE CONDITION

Prosopagnosia, also called face blindness, is a condition where people cannot recognize faces -- Not even their own. After the psychologist diagnosed Whitear with this condition, everything made sense to her suddenly. She said:

"When I look back, there have always been signs of the condition but I never even realized."

The young mother said she had never pasted photos of celebrities in her bedroom because she couldn't remember their faces. Once, she was in a restaurant sitting across from a mirror on the wall, making her think the place was quite big. It wasn't until Whitear stood up she realized she had been looking at her own face.

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STRANGE OCCURRENCES

Recalling past incidents made Whitear realize the symptoms of her condition were always there. While watching movies, she couldn't keep track of the characters because she kept forgetting their faces.

Other times, she walked past people she knew on the street and didn't stop to greet them because she couldn't recognize their faces. For her, remembering her husband's face was also tricky. She said:

"I love to paint but I’ve never drawn Garrick’s [her husband] face. I leave it blank."

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HER DAUGHTERS

Whitear, mother to Eva and Mia, struggled to remember her daughter's faces. It might sound odd to many, but remembering her children's faces was nothing less than a challenge for her.

Mia usually had her hair tied in a long plait, which Whitear considered a hint to recognize her eldest daughter. One day, Mia's grandmother did her hair in pigtails before sending her to school, not knowing that Whitear won't be able to recognize Mia. Whitear recalled:

"When I came to collect her in the afternoon I didn't know which child she was."

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THE COPING MECHANISM

Since Whitear had been living with the rare condition her entire life, she had developed a few coping mechanisms to help her make her way through life. She confessed:

"I recognize people by what they're wearing, how they style their hair or the way they walk."

Luckily, the people close to her all had varying style preferences and looked very different, so she never got confused between them. Whitear said her husband was a tall man while one of her best friends was Chinese, and the other had long hair.

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MEETING HER HUSBAND

Since Whitear didn't know what her family looked like, the feelings she got while being with them made it easy for her to identify them. She recalled when she saw her husband for the first time:

"When I met my husband, I wasn't attracted to the way he looks because I didn't know, but I was attracted to the way I felt when I was with him."

If Whitear had to get up to go to the washroom or grab a drink while watching a movie in the cinema, she counted seats to get back to her husband instead of finding his face. Even after living with her husband for years, she couldn't identify his face.

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NEW STRATEGIES

Remembering faces is a big challenge for Whitear, so she devised a way to make things easy. Whenever she would meet people, she took photos with them and saved them for future reference.

Another thing she planned to do was to open her Facebook friends list and recognize people in real-time by seeing their profile pictures.

Despite suffering from a rare condition that made her life difficult, Whitear didn't stop herself from achieving her goals. She lived her life without worrying about her condition.

It's difficult to imagine what the poor mother goes through every day, struggling to remember her children's and husband's faces. Share this story with your loved ones to make them aware of Whitear's rare condition.

Click here to read another story about a mom with Down syndrome who lost her friends after pregnancy and was later forced to live without her child's father.

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