Why our first memories may not really be our first memories

A new study conducted by an international team of researchers found that many of our earliest memories are actually fake

That's because scientific literature suggests that it's not possible to have a memory from before the age of 2, said lead study author Shazia Akhtar, a senior research associate at the University of Bradford in England.

Previous studies have explored the phenomenon known as "childhood amnesia", demonstrating how children tend to lose early memories of their lives prior to the age of 7. Participants were told they had to be sure the memory was one they were sure happened. It should not be based on, for example a family photograph, family story, or any source other than direct experience.

This was important to emphasize, as some people may form their first memories exclusively from "a story told by a relative" or "information pieced together from a photo", Akhtar said.

Interestingly, the person remembering doesn't realize the memory is fake and the researchers found that when participants were told their first memory was false they didn't believe it, showing just how deeply ingrained mental representations of early events are.

Researchers from the United Kingdom asked more than 6,600 people about their first childhood memory. Researchers, including those from City, University of London, and Nottingham Trent University in the United Kingdom, found that 38.6 per cent of 6,641 survey participants claimed to have memories from two or younger, with 893 people claiming memories from one or younger.

The research team then examined the earliest memory descriptions in terms of content, language, nature, and details.

Whoopi Goldberg and Trump supporter Judge Jeanine Pirro fight on The View
Goldberg replied: "What is awful is when the president of the United States whips up people to beat the hell out of people". Goldberg asked. "Listen, I don't have Trump derangement, let me tell you what I have.

Indeed, the study authors suggested that some fictional memories could simply be based on remembered fragments of an early experience, rather than an actual first memory.

Such "recollections" seem to be "particularly prevalent among middle-aged and older adults", news site ScienceDaily adds.

"For this person, this type of memory could have resulted from someone saying something like 'mother had a large green pram.' The person then imagines what it would have looked like".

The findings were published online this week in the journal Psychological Science. "Over time, these fragments then become a memory, and often the person will start to add things in, such as a string of toys along the top".

I know mine was on my parents wedding day - I'm being lifted off a white bench outside by someone and I can see my little white sandals on my feet as I look down at them.

Professor Martin Conway, of City, University of London and co-author of the paper, said: "It's not until we're five or six that we form adult-like memories due to the way that the brain develops".

Related:

  • Waitress taking down butt-grabbing customer

    Waitress taking down butt-grabbing customer

    Holden later told People magazine she told the man: "You don't touch me, motherf--!" "I've never done that before". It's a slightly unorthodox way to go about it, but so far, she has raised over $6,500, so it's definitely working.
    Independence mom accused of letting men rape her 2-year-old daughter

    Independence mom accused of letting men rape her 2-year-old daughter

    Court documents say Watson told detectives that what she said in the recording was a lie because she was scared of her boyfriend. Azzie Watson, 25, has been charged with three counts of child abuse and one count of child endangerment in Jackson County.
    Tiger still in the mix after opening 71 at The Open

    Tiger still in the mix after opening 71 at The Open

    I don't think the rain is going to affect how the golf course is playing in one day, but I have to just keep doing what I'm doing. Defending champion Jordan Spieth takes on Carnoustie in a practice round this week. "I thought I was going to be a nervous wreck.
  • Man 'steals date's vehicle  before using it to go on another date'

    Man 'steals date's vehicle before using it to go on another date'

    Faith Pugh says it happened on Saturday when she went to meet Kelton Griffin for dinner. "I came outside and my auto was gone". Pugh said her mother picked her up, but then she got a surprising text from her godsister, saying Griffin had asked her out.
    Alisson completes Liverpool move in world-record deal

    Alisson completes Liverpool move in world-record deal

    Alisson, who began his career with Internacional in his homeland, was Brazil's No. 1 at the World Cup in Russian Federation this summer.
    Fortnite servers down: Fans ruffled, confused by extended maintenance downtime

    Fortnite servers down: Fans ruffled, confused by extended maintenance downtime

    Fortnite is the number one streamed game in the world by far, which has led Epic Games to start their own eSports league. The battle royale styled game is free-to-play, but that hasn't stopped Epic Games from swimming in money.
  • Trump's invitation to Putin draws rebukes from Democrats and his intelligence chief

    Trump's invitation to Putin draws rebukes from Democrats and his intelligence chief

    Indeed, when Trump came to office, many Russians hoped he would pave the way for lifting sanctions and ending years of tensions. At his joint news conference with Putin, Trump said they discussed Syria "at length" but was vague about the outcome.
    Tour de France 2018 - Geraint Thomas wins Stage 11, takes yellow jersey

    Tour de France 2018 - Geraint Thomas wins Stage 11, takes yellow jersey

    We've seen this before on the Tour de France , but it never fails to thrill - a cyclist jumping over the peloton. I just can't believe I won the stage". 'I'm not sure what happened to Nibali, ' he said.
    EU, Japan sign major trade deal in message against protectionism

    EU, Japan sign major trade deal in message against protectionism

    Apart from its deal with the EU, Japan is working on other trade agreements, including a far-reaching trans-Pacific deal. Abe was predominantly referring to the protectionist trade policies being pushed by US President Donald Trump .
  • Trump Slams Interest Rate Hikes, Ignoring Hands-Off Tradition Toward Fed

    If the Fed moves too aggressively, however, it could curb economic activity so severely that it helps to provoke a recession. Last month, the Fed raised its benchmark rate for a second time this year and projected two more increases in 2018.
    Joker Movie Goes After Deadpool 2 Star Zazie Beetz

    Joker Movie Goes After Deadpool 2 Star Zazie Beetz

    So far, Beetz is the only other cast member besides Phoenix-who is playing the Joker-for the upcoming movie. Filming begins in the fall on the pic, which is expected to be released under a new DC banner.
    Tory chief whip Julian Smith under fire in pairing row

    Tory chief whip Julian Smith under fire in pairing row

    The Tory spokesman said: "We have apologised for the fact that a pregnancy pairing arrangement was broken in error this week". Conservative MP Heidi Allen said: "No matter how tough the going gets, principle, integrity and standards matter".

Comments

Latest news

Augustus & Fowles Named 2018 WNBA All-Stars
One likely candidate for starting guard is Toliver, who joins Delle Donne in the second all-star selection of her career. Team Delle Donne will be coached by Seattle's Dan Hughes and Team Parker by Phoenix's Sandy Brondello.

Full-Length ‘Nightflyers’ Trailer Teases Syfy’s George R.R. Martin Adaptation
And though it uses the framework of Martin's written work, it has a different setting. They hope to make contact with a race of aliens who may be able to save Planet Earth.

WhatsApp takes more action against misinformation by testing forwarding restrictions
Recently, 30 people were arrested after a 2,000-person mob became incensed by WhatsApp rumours of a child kidnapping and lynched a man.

Korean oil importers improvise vs U.S. re-imposition of sanctions on Iran
USA crude stocks rose by 5.8 million barrels last week, compared with a forecast of a decline of 3.6 million barrels. News Wednesday of strong U.S. demand for gasoline and distillates gave the price only a brief boost.

Ousmane Dembele offered to Chelsea as part of Eden Hazard deal
ESPN correspondent Liam Twomey asked a further question comparing Hazard with Dries Mertens, who developed under Sarri at Napoli. Hazard, like keeper Courtois, has been strongly linked with Real Madrid and recently indicated that he would like to move .

Tornadoes cause 'catastrophic damage' in Iowa
Mark Smith , who lives in Marshalltown, told Des Moines station KCCI-TV that the area likely will be declared a disaster area. She was not in the area where the tornado hit, but went into town to help pick up her granddaughters from day camp.

European Union urges members to be prepared for possible failure of Brexit talks
It added " there is still no certainty that there will be a ratified withdrawal agreement in place on that date [30 March 2019]". The two men took part in a short discussion on the UK's white paper before dining together at the UK's embassy in Brussels .

Kenyan team off to United States for Rugby Sevens World Cup
I can remember we were warming up and I saw in the crowd one of the Fiji supporters with a sign saying "Take it home Fiji". The opening match against Ireland or Chile must set the momentum for the remainder of the weekend, Snyman said.

Trump doubles down - invites Putin to White House
But he was caught off guard in a live interview when told Putin was being invited to visit the U.S.in the fall. The White House has been struggling to contain a political outcry and confusion over the summit ever since.

Sheriff: 8 people dead after Missouri Ride the Ducks boat accident
Suzanne Smagala-Potts said the company recently acquired the vessel that was involved in the incident. The vessel submerged and Nielsen said he believed it had been found underwater.

Huge Egyptian sarcophagus found to contain three mummies
The Ptolemaic dynasty famously ended with Cleopatra's suicide during the Roman conquest of Greece and Egypt around 30 B.C. Nevertheless, the skeletons will be moved to the National Museum of Alexandria to be studied.

Whoopi Goldberg Gets 'Hysterical' After Being Accused of Being Hysterical
Goldberg responded of Trump, "I have never seen anybody whip up such hate ". Listen, I'm 62 years old. "I have never seen anybody be so dismissive".

Liverpool sign Roma goalkeeper Alisson for world-record £66.9mn
The Reds seemed to have opened the door for the Welsh worldwide after inching closer to the securing Alisson's signature.

Opening of ancient sarcophagus in Alexandria
Waziri's point was another shot at internet sleuths who believed that Alexander the Great might have been buried in the box. Once the last pharaoh, Cleopatra VII , killed herself in 30 B.C., the Roman Empire took over Egypt.

Leaked Document Exposes New MacBook Keyboard Fix
Apple is facing criticism for over its new MacBook Pro after a YouTuber claimed the laptop was being slowed down intentionally. That may be while Apple isn't willing to publicly acknowledge the keyboard design issue that affected the previous notebooks.

Other news