Last week, I was telling the optometrist/vision therapist about how I switched eyes when I could see in single in the stereoscope.

“Don’t concentrate on the details of what you have trouble seeing well. Pay attention on what you can see. You can fuse in the periphery, but not in the center of your vision. Pay attention to the depth that you CAN see in the periphery and don’t bother yourself with what you can’t fuse. If you work from the area that you can fuse and works inwards to the area that you have trouble with, you will be more successful than thinking about how mcuh you can’t see.”

This made so much sense for me for my general life. As I am reconfiguring my life to match my new energy levels, I am rethinking what I can do professionally and socially. The answer is simple: stick with what works and don’t bother or lament what doesn’t. Life is simpler when we can do what we do best and let the other things will fall into place.


6 responses »

  1. Karim says:

    Hi… that is very good advice from your visual therapist. I am the same like you, when I try to fuse my strabismic eyes, I concentrate on the stuff that I can’t focus on in the center rather than the stuff I can in my peripheral. I will try it out the other way. Thanks for sharing the tip and your story.

  2. Beth says:

    I love this advice. Dr. W.C. Maples says to find fusion and start from there.

    Thank you for sharing your story. I have enjoyed reading about your journey and your insights. I’m working with my 6 year old daughter who has alternating exotropia. We do exercises everyday and it’s been helpful to read what an adult who can put into words is experiencing.

    I’m curious about the peripheral fusion that you can obtain as well as the previous commenter Karim mentions. I wonder if my daughter can use her peripheral vision to fuse.

    Thank you,

    • There’s also a problem being an adult in this therapy. Sometimes when the doctor asks me if an image is standing out, I tell that I am deducing from the shadows and lines that a certain image is closer to me than the others. But I don’t think he wanted me to think too hard. He just wanted me to tell him if the image was really obviously jumping out at me.

      The doctor told me that it’s not uncommon for it to be easier to fuse in the periphery.

  3. Lew says:


    I’ve really enjoyed following your posts and learning about your progress — It seems so quick to me! Like you, I’m an adult alternating esotrope (3 cosmetic muscle surgeries as a child). I started VT about 18 months ago with the goal of getting my eyes to work together, align better, and hopefully gain some depth perception.

    I’m having the same issues you’ve described in this post. I’ve gotten very good at peripheral fusion, but still have difficulty fusing central objects. We are working from large to small, trying to break life long habits. I also fill in a lot of the answers (in life and in VT) by thinking too much, instead of just perceiving – those life long compensating skills helping me out. We’ve started using yolked prisms more in VT which throw off what I “know” and what my brain could fill in, and force the brain to rely on what the eyes see.

    Keep up the great work!


    • Thanks Lew! I am glad to know there are others with the same predicament. Now that I’m aware of my vision much more than before, I see how much deducing it takes me to see stuff. It really does take us more thinking to judge distances and depth. Some of my friends are amazed I can even drive or cross the street without hurting myself. But we are resilient and flexible people. Going through this makes me more appreciative of the elasticity of our minds and how we can overcome so much and function in society.

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