Dessa, a rapper and writer from the hip hop collective called 'Doomtree,' gave a talk about her unconventional approach to heartbreak. She discusses her music's trend focusing on failed romance and realized it was all centered around her relationship with one man who she had been seeing "on and off" for 10 years. While Dessa knew that it wasn't healthy for either of them, she wasn't able to walk away.
Dessa found inspiration after watching a video by Helen Fisher, a scientist who was able to "map the coordinates of love" in the brain. Dessa connected with Dr. Cheryl Olman, a researcher at the University of Minnesota's Center for Magnetic Resonance Research, to examine her brain using an fMRI machine. She looked at photos of her ex-boyfriend compared to pictures of men who resembled her ex to see what area of her brain became activated. They found the exact spot in her brain that was activated when she was in love and she set out to "annihilate" this part of her brain to "fall out of love."
Dessa partnered with Penijean Gracefire to start a course of treatment known as "neurofeedback" to train her brain to stop loving this man. Through various activities, she was able to neutralize her brain to stop activating the parts associated with loving her ex. By resequencing her feelings toward this man, she was able to train herself to fall out of love and move on with her life.
Artist Dessa Discuses an Unconventional Approach to Heartbreak