Problem with Remembering Routes

by Confused guy

My problem may sound very uncommon to you...I'm a 23 yr old male..I am having difficulty in remembering the routes and places...yes! sounds weird I know...even if I go to a place 100 times, I cannot remember the routes...I donno why...


I want to remember routes..I try hard but i forget. I have a fantastic memory I am good at studies but still I don't understand why I forget routes and why is it so difficult?

Please help me. It's embarrassing when someone asks me of some place and despite being in the city for almost 20 years... I can hardly remember routes to any places. how can I overcome this problem? what's wrong with me? do I need to consult a doctor? take medicines? Is there any scientific explanation for this kind of personal disorder? plzzzz help me

no jokes plz... thnx.

Doug's Reply. First of all, you are not alone. Many other people have this exact problem.

You might want to ask your physician to test you for adult ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) or other learning disabilities.

Does the following sound familiar?

"Anyone else have trouble remembering how to get places? I can ride somewhere in the car several times with someone, but when I have to drive myself, I can't figure out how to get there for anything. I figure it's because I don't pay attention well if I don't have to drive. But even when I drive myself, if directions are hard I'll have to use written directions over and over."
(from Addforums.com)

According to Arlyn Roffman, Ph.D., not being able to remember directions or routes is a common side-effect of ADHD and other learning disabilities:

"People with learning disabilities (LD) and/or Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) often have difficulty getting from one location to another. They frequently lose their way, have trouble using public transportation, and struggle with driving-related issues. Contributing factors may include poor time management, problems with spatial and visual perception, and difficulties with eye-hand coordination."

What you are experiencing may just be the way your brain is wired, or you might have an undiagnosed attention-related condition. If the symptoms are severe enough to cause problems in your day-to-day life, you might want to have your doctor check it out.

Best of luck,
Douglas
www.Memory-Improvement-Tips.com

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Feb 10, 2021
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What is the solution?
by: Anonymous

Reading all these comments from people having the very same experience as me, gives me a sense of relief knowing I'm not the only one. I am a 28 year old man and live in Amsterdam for 4,5 years which actually is not a big city at all and when friends visit me it's so embarrassing for me that I have to use google maps to get to places in the centre. My father lives 60km away and I drove to his place more than 30 times and still have to use navigation app. And the route is not even complicated, it's actually super simple and straightforward which makes it even worse. And yet, if I don't use navigation, I'm off to the wrong direction. In Sweden my phone died because of the cold (-17 C) and it took me more than an hour to get to my hostel which was only 15mins away. It was past midnight and only very few people around I could ask. But after less than 100 meters I already forgot the instructions so I had to ask the next person. Again after going left-right once I forget the rest of instructions. I had a suitcase which I was dragging through the snow and had no gloves. I thought my hands were going to freeze off. These are just 3 of the countless examples in my life. So guys, how can we solve this problem? Because it's very frustrating for us to experience this over and over again. I think it's not that we can't solve it, it will just take us more time and effort. We just need a visual method / framework (?) and practise that like a 100 times until we got it right. Btw less than a year ago I self-diagnosed for ADHD almost randomly. [99% sure.] And I think this problem is related to ADHD. I never considered ever in my life that I would be someone with ADHD and you might think the same. But I recommend to find out.

Dec 10, 2020
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Always crying
by: Anonymous

I am a young person from India. From my childhood I am very good in studies in high jump, long jump, or running. But despite all this I face very difficulty in cricket, racket, football. I can't coordinate 2 things at a time. I forget direction very much even my small brothers make fun of me.

If I go to a big hospital or any building I can't find the door, the exit. Everyone makes fun of me. I can't even differentiate sizes. I buy shoes 2 times and everytime they were of bigger sizes and again everyone mock at me.

Now I fear to go outside, because I know I will be source of fun again. I even find difficult a job which someone my age can easily do.

Oct 25, 2020
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Is it Normal?
by: Anonymous

I have lived in my city for the last two years. I have gone to several places with my father, but I am unable to recognise distant routes alone.

I cannot walk to a new place without directions. I only know places I have been to a dozen times. However, I cannot travel distant places without direction.

Also, once I lost my route way back home. It was embarrassing as I completely took the opposite turn. I read maps, and try to figure out roads.

Some people find it both abnormal and ludicrous. Tell me what to do? I feel so stupid and unsmart, and it's affecting my self-esteem a lot.

Oct 25, 2020
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Is it Normal?
by: Anonymous

I have been staying in my city for the last two years. I have gone to several places with my father, but unable recognise distant routes alone.

I cannot walk to a new place without directions. I only know places where I have been to a dozen times. However, I cannot travel distant places without direction.

Also, once I lost my route way back home. It was embarrassing as I completely took the opposite turn. I read maps, and try to figure out roads.

Some people find it both abnormal and ludicrous. Tell me what to do? I feel so stupid and unsmart, and it's affecting my self-esteem a lot.

Aug 26, 2020
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There are many like me
by: Anonymous

I don't know. Is it ad/hd or something else?
I am a programmer. I can learn things, but I have a problem with remembering routes. I cannot drive if no one is telling me directions.

Jul 27, 2020
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I'm not alone
by: Anonymous

I thought I was the only one to have this problem. I can't remember roads or routes of my own town. What should I do now? I'm 21 yrs old.

Jul 25, 2020
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Same here
by: 😣

I have this problem too. I'm no idiot either.

I have lived in my city for 15 years and still need to use my gps to go places. I thought it was because I pay too much attention to fine details and not enough to general information.

Also I think a lot when I drive, about mainly problem solving, how to fix things, make things better. Oh well, thank god for gps!

Jul 18, 2020
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Same here
by: Keith

I've always had problems with direcions / orientation. Even in big buildings. If I have travelled a route many times (frequently and recently) then, maybe, I can find my way, but I CANNOT visualise it in my head.

I too was pretty good at school studies and did physics in college.

I am a highly motivated and efficient self learner, and so I don’t feel that ADHD is likely an issue for me.

I have difficulty reading, just in that my mind wanders after moments, except if I am reading factual things like instructional manuals or educational material.

I'm also bilingual (learned in my 20s (now 40), and I am colour blind (which I think of as colour dyslexia… perhaps incorrectly)

I have an INCREDIBLE memory for other things, especially dialog (word for word) and long numbers or alphanumerical strings of nonsense… but not for directions.

As a child I had trouble with the following (but not anymore):

- Distinguishing between eg someone in a 'close up' shot on the TV and how that wasn't someone really big in the room (that used to freak me out)

- Distinguishing between one strand of hair and a lock of hair (which also used to freak me out)

- Knowing when I was sitting on the floor, that it was under me and not wrapped around me (also freaky / trippy)

I would love to have a name for this condition, instead of just being "crap at directions".

It is very lovely to find a page of other people having the same issue.

From reading online, directional dyslexia is the inability to identify left and right, so that isn't it.

This term "anterograde topographical disorientation" from this link sounds closer to accurate:

https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/veterinary-science-and-veterinary-medicine/topographical-disorientation

Other terms I've found are Topographical disorientation, aka topographical agnosia or topographagnosia:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Topographical_disorientation

Bu this classification specifies a person exhibiting these symptoms after a brain injury.

Developmental topographical disorientation (DTD)
specifies a disorder where a person has these symptoms from childhood and in the absence of brain injury. However, this seems to include such severe cases as being "lost" in one's own house (according to the link, below).

I feel that the term lost may not be appropriate when discussing an in-house situation. I, for example, cannot orient myself in my own home, ie I can't tell you which room is above my kitchen even if I stand in it or in the kitchen or try map it in my head - but I would not say at that point that I am "lost"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Topographical_disorientation#Developmental_topographical_disorientation

For now, I feel that the DTD description above fits me best.

Jul 02, 2020
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I want a solution for it
by: Anonymous

I have always been like this, but now that I am a mom it's becoming more and more and worried how to live my sat today life help please. What kind of doctor should I see.

Jun 10, 2020
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You're not alone
by: Baw1126

I have the same issue. I can go the same route for a year and not fully remember how to get there, and I'm much better with a GPS and actually seeing the route I'm going on. My boyfriend always gets mad at me when I drive because I keep having to check the GPS, but I don't know why, I just need to glance at that safety net to make sure I don't pass up where I'm going. I really think some people just have that inner compass and some others don't. I also have ADD, which I've read can affect your directional memory. But yes it is very annoying, especially when someone gives you such a hard time about it.

May 08, 2020
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Frustrating
by: Anonymous

I have the same problem. It's really frustrating. I had my driving license but I am afraid to drive because I can't remember the route 😣 I have no problem in study but I have big problem in studying route. It's more frustrating when young kids know it better ! I felt so stupid

Apr 29, 2020
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Suffering from bad memory
by: Rashid Ahmed

Being a traveller hundreds of time and you can't remember the way back and forth is also can be due to childhood brain injury. Though you are experiencing it when it comes to travel, you can't honestly say that you don't experience in other areas of your life. You might be experiencing it with lots of other life situations. Treatment to improve memory is available in modern medicine based on the cause.
Thanks and regards
Rashid Ahmed

Dec 19, 2019
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I am not alone😂
by: Ganesh

I too have the same problem with places, names, faces, directions.

It is frustrating when others do not understand my problem. I am an introvert and good at studies. I am NOT able to pay attention when someone is calling me or when the phone rings. My age is 24.

Dec 01, 2019
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You are not alone
by: Anonymous

Seriously dude! I was thinking I'm the only one. But sometimes it's annoying that people don't understand this. Phew!

Jul 21, 2019
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I just can't remember roads to places
by: Dr. M

I thought I'm the only one with this problem!
I'm good in my studies and got a PHD at the age of 43. But I just cant remember routes/roads! My wife did not understand this!

Dec 02, 2017
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I'm not good at studies, memorizing anything and Easily get lost
by: Anonymous

I'm not good at studies, memorizing anything and Easily get lost. Even If I use a path for months and if stop using that path for at least two then I'll start forgetting it.

Aug 30, 2017
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Same here
by: Jose

I'm 33 and I feel frustrated every time I try to go anywhere unless it's a route that I have hard-wired into my brain.

I need to be 100% concentrated on the navigation (even if I'm walking). If I am chatting to someone, I'll inevitably go the wrong way.

It makes you feel very stupid and others look at you as if you really are! I really don't know what to do.

Feb 09, 2017
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Driving with permit as 21 years old
by: Anonymous

I'm 21 years old and still have my permit. No matter how many times I'm in the passenger seat with a driver, I CANNOT remember how to get from here to there. I don't even know how to go home.

I am so embarrassed because all the younger generations are soo good at driving and I'm here all stupid and that can't drive. Idk how to fix this problem. Especially more embarrassing when friends ask me if I know my way home...

Jan 25, 2017
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The same here
by: Anonymous

I'm a male. I don't have a driver's licence because of that problem.

I'm not afraid of not passing but am very much afraid of embarrassment when driving with an instructor through routes. I'd not be able to go back the same route again if the instructor told me, "Let's go back the same route".

Otherwise I have a very good memory of everything else, except I'm not so good at names, but not as bad as directions. It's even hard for me in a big building with many corridors to get back to exit it.

I've had this condition since childhood. I've graduated in chemistry. My theory was that I have this condition because I'm a strong introvert.

Every time I got lost someplace I thought I was stupid, and I got depressed for some time... till the next time.

Jan 17, 2017
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I thought it was only me
by: Anonymous

Me too. I am good at studies but I can't remember routes and faces. I always get lost if I go alone even in the university. I am worried it will affect my daily life or work.

Aug 28, 2016
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Scared of my issue
by: Anonymous

I have this problem. I'm a 32 year old woman, married and my husband always makes me feel sad and embarrassed. I take my GPS everywhere I go and he tells me: why don't you remember the way back? We have been here so many times.

I'm not pretending, I just CANT! I hope I can be able to find some help.

You are NOT alone and we have to start looking for help!

Jul 15, 2016
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problems remembering routes
by: Anonymous

I am 20 yrs old and have same problem

Jun 26, 2016
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Worst at remembering routes
by: Anonymous

Me too same problem. I use GPS most of the time. I forget where I parked my car. So embarrassing and inconvenient many times.

Good to know that I am not alone. I can remember numbers well though. Hardly forget locker number of locker in my gym. I don't know if it's dementia or spatial memory issue.

Same goes with names, in a party many will know my name but I will blank out and that will be tough to have conversations. Any solution?

May 18, 2016
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I cannot remember routes outside the Cities !
by: Judex

I cannot remember the routes ! Now I use the GPS, and that nice female voice of the GPS always ask me to make a U-Turn because I have driven a bit too far off.

My problem may be because I have always driven on the main roads where it is easier to locate places because of the sign boards direction.

The smaller roads, do not have that many sign boards.

Further, if there are many residential houses, it becomes more confusing.

In a place where there are many tall buildings it is also confusing.

Driving in Cities is ok, but in villages, it is hell !

The worse thing is when I get lost, I do not know how to return home !

Once in France, I asked a French Policeman (Gendarme) to help me find my Hotel. He said : It is just behind you ! "


Apr 29, 2016
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Left and Rights
by: Anonymous

Same Problem!
Have to think for 2 seconds before figuring out left and right. Any one can guide what can i do about this??
I am good at studies stuff, but cant remember common things like names.

Mar 28, 2016
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Yes I have the same problem
by: Anonymous

I have the same problem that I cannot remember the places even if I have visited the same place numerous time. If I walk along the place then I can remember the place, but if riding or driving I cannot.

Feb 19, 2016
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Directions problems
by: Anonymous

Yah... i have same problem.... i'm very bad with directions.... the main problem occurs when someone asks me about the particular area or route at a time i am blank totally.... it's a very embarrassing moment.... and also, when i need to take the nearby roads for particular area, every time i pick the long one... what kind of problem is this ????


Feb 13, 2016
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Same issue
by: Anonymous

Yes, I have the same problem. It's so intense that once I got confused about which direction to take in the main road to go home... that road was nearby to my place.

Feb 08, 2016
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Yes Problem with directions
by: Anonymous

Thank god.. I'm not alone.. I have exactly the same problem.

Jan 08, 2016
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Thank god i am not alone
by: Anonymous

This is very true for me too. It's embarrassing. My younger sibling is perfect, but i am still at level 0.

Left and right is also confusing to me. I mean i imagine which hand i use for eating and call it right. So there may be 2 sec lag in determining which one is left and which is right.

Jan 05, 2016
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need help
by: nannette

True, it's really embarrassing because I can't remember routes, and I wish there was a way I could use to remember my way at least 50 percent of the time.

Oct 31, 2015
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same problem
by: RAM

I have the same problem too. the weirdest is I am familiar with the routes that I have passed, but I cannot connecting the routes that I have to pass to get to the destination.

Oct 08, 2015
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Afraid of driving for fear of getting lost
by: Ally

Hi, i believed i was alone in this problem, I got comfort reading this site, i don't want to see it as a form of dyslexia.

Can we help each other and work through our issue?

I want to drive and take my son everywhere, but am afraid of getting lost with him. He shares such a close relationship with his dad because they always just get up and go.

Sep 14, 2015
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When lost comes to lost!
by: Anonymous

The real trouble happens when someone asks you about any route!

One day I was searching out for a bank with some address and with some confusion I lost my way, it was pouring heavily and I was standing nearby road and all of a sudden one car stopped by and with very desperate voice asked me for one route :) though was new to me I've been living this city from around 3 years.

I told him I am new here and I can’t tell you the route. This is what my answer is most of the time ;)

But at that time a thought came in my mind let me first check where I am right now :) then I would be able to help you.

I think we can remember this places /route just by visualizing and asking to oneself that how I reached here. Which turns directions did I take?

Were there some landmark nearby I can remember and all this should immediately after reaching there. I think this way we can remember places it better.

Jul 14, 2015
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I too have a way remembering problem
by: anonymous

When I was child i didn't know i have this problem. When i started work, during the work i have to visit many places with my boss.

After 2-3 months my boss told me to go alone. I said i will go, but when i tried to visit those places where i visited many times but friends i couldn't remember the way of anywhere.

NOTE: BUT WHEREVER I DID DRIVE MYSELF WITH MY BOSS I COULD JUST REMEMBER THOSE WAYS. YOU ARE NOT ARE NOT ALONE.

Jul 01, 2015
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Can't remember the way going home
by: Lady G

My husband is always mad at me. He said even if I drive the same road 500 times I'll still not remember the way.

Just today we went to a fast food restaurant. He let me drive, and afterward I couldn't find the way home.

I couldn't remember which way to go, to the right or to the left, so then I got lost. And he was so mad. He thinks I don't have a brain.

I did well during my school days. But when it comes to remembering places or routes, I can't remember.

I'm glad to hear that I'm not alone. But this is really bothering me. I wanna go other places, but I'm afraid can't find the way home. Thinking something wrong with me.

Jan 14, 2015
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Same problem here...
by: Anonymous

I had created my own term for my condition.. "Road-o-Pagnosia" o_o but now that I've done a little research over it.. it's called "Directional Dyslexia".

We can't even remember the directions within large buildings let alone roads or places that are close .. about 10-15 mins of travel.

You are not alone :)

Dec 18, 2014
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Hard to remember routes
by: Anonymous

I too have the same problem in remembering routes. I only know the route to and from my house to my job place.

I am glad I not alone.... My hubby says it's because I don't pay attention as he does at most time the driving. Because of this problem I dread driving.

Dec 03, 2014
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ohh
by: Anonymous

i have same problem ...even i entered in big mall or apartments ..exit form other side :-)

May 09, 2014
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Thank god I am not alone
by: Anonymous

I have a problem of remembering the routes. After going through that same route couple of 100 times then I can remember. But my wife, if she visits the place once, she can remember it for a lifetime. I feel embarrassed.

Sep 16, 2013
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Feeling lost!
by: Azy

I do have same problem or so call SICKNESS.

I wanna to figure out the name if this sickness in scientific..

Feel lost and ashamed every time driving alone and I couldn't get to be at the place I wanted to go!

Feb 22, 2012
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by: Anonymous

same here... I've been to a certain place couple of times already with family and friends. But when I tried to go back to that place alone, it feels like its my first time to be there since I cant remember the directions.

Dec 30, 2011
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Embarrassed for having friends picking me up
by: Anonymous

I have the same problem. I have a really good memory, but I can't remember routes. I avoid driving and my friends come and pick me up most of the time and I feel really embarrassed. But I get really anxious when it comes to driving myself because I am not confident in the road, even though I am an OK driver. Please if anyone can help I would really appreciate it

Nov 28, 2011
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forget routes
by: Anonymous

i am working in a very reputed company, do very well always get praised but when it comes to city routes of my city, where i m staying for past 5 years, i get blanked....................................................................................................wht to do dont know.....................................................

Nov 24, 2011
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Routes Forgets
by: Anonymous

I also have this problem, but I think it's because when I'm outside and I'm not the one who is driving the car, I tend to think other thoughts rather than focusing on the routes. Hope I can overcome or even improve this part of my life.

Nov 10, 2011
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Mee too.
by: suresh

I am a migrant to Australia. I am an Graduate engineer and a Quality engineer in aerospace industry.

I handle more responsibilities in my job, But when it comes to routes, man you can't believe i get depressed lot of times.

I sometimes feel GPS inventor is a god/ or the one who got affected with the same disease.

Oct 22, 2011
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Even my friend have the exact problem of not remembering the routes
by: vidya

See even my friend cant remember the routes and places, even if she goes 100 times to that place. It may be a kind of amnesia. Means short term memory loss of forgetting the things that of from few seconds, min, hours.

Sep 29, 2011
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can this be treated?
by: Minty

i am alady aged35 ,post graduatein science, , i too have this problem. i cannot remember routes even if i tries hard to remember and goes there 1000times. i know just less than 5 routes. can i overcome this condition by treatment? if any body knows, pls suggest.

Aug 22, 2011
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I have the same problem
by: Andy

Hi,

I have the same problems of forgetting routes ,its so embarrassing and frustrating when i go outside and drive.Even if i go through the same route many time still after some time i take wrong direction ..
If you have any improvement by using anything pls share ..


Jul 24, 2011
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Same Problem
by: Anonymous

I have the exact same problem. I have an excellent memory. I am good with faces, names, the littlest details etc. My memory is photographic but no matter how hard I try I cannot remember routes.

Jun 19, 2011
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contact me
by: Anonymous

dude i have the same promblem i think i will feel more consoled if i speak to someone having the same promblem.you can contact me on my email mhsufi@gmail.com

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