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In the film Days of Future Past it is explained that only the person that is sent back remembers the other timeline, and Kitty Pryde herself does not remember the other timeline. Given this, everytime Kitty were to use her powers, it would be the first time in her timeline.

Therefore how could she possibly

  • Know anything about her abilities
  • Learn to control her ability
  • Learn the limitations of her ability
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    @ChristopherLee "only the person that is sent back remembers the other timeline" so in the new timeline, Kitty hasn't used her powers yet. – Aron Sep 22 '14 at 17:51
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    @ChristopherLee Yes it does. If there was a reason to use her power, then they wouldn't be in that timeline. Kitty would have used her powers and they would be in another timeline. Please, think 4 dimensionally for a second will you... – Aron Sep 22 '14 at 17:54
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    Let us continue this discussion in chat. – Aron Sep 22 '14 at 18:17
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    I'd like to point out that, in reality, none of us understand time travel. Even our best scientists are just making it up as they go, based on educational guesses. What we see in movies or read in books is just someone's guess as to how it would work. Therefore, getting upset with someone because they "do NOT understand time travel" is somewhat silly. – Omegacron Sep 22 '14 at 19:53
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    I think the key point is that just because she sends someone back, it doesn't mean the timeline is altered so that she doesn't send them back. Maybe they just change what shirt they put on that day. – MartianInvader Sep 22 '14 at 23:59
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If Kitty discovered this ability in a non-life-threatening occasion, then she could conceivably remember things. If she learns to send someone back in time, and tests it when there's no need to radically change the timeline, then after the time traveling is complete, she'd still be in a timeline where she used her power.

Then just extrapolate that out to her practicing and learning (via talking to the time traveler about how practice went), and she's able to accumulate experience and knowledge of the time travel ability.

This isn't outlined in the film, but it's my educated guess on how it could be accomplished.

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  1. Send someone back.
  2. That person makes no changes.
  3. That person comes back and she will still remember the single time line.

In general, so long as changes don't change the fact that she is using time travel, then she 'll remember that time travel was used.

So how does she know what happens when changes are made? The person who remembers tells her afterward. And she has to tell that person what happened in the new timeline. For example, at the end of X-Men: Days of Future Past

Logan was surprised to find out that Jean Grey was alive in that new timeline.

She may not remember using her powers that time in the new timeline, but she can still learn about it from the person who does remember.

Not every change is as significant as the change from Days of Future Past. Part of the issue here is the paradox problem. If she uses her powers to make a change, then the change will obviate the need to use her powers. But if she is using her powers as a test, then she'll still want to do the test in both timelines.

Tests can also be insignificant. Send someone to perform some task, e.g. set a die to have the six on top. Send someone back in time to change the six to a one right after the change. Then go check it after they get back. That wouldn't prevent her from remembering using her powers, because the visible change occurs after the use of powers has stopped.

Even if there is a change, it doesn't matter if the change doesn't change the use of time travel. Make the decision to use time travel before the changed time and stick to it after the change is made. Then Kitty will remember using time travel in both timelines.

Most of this is speculative. We don't see her testing her powers in the movie. But the question was

Therefore how could she possibly

This is how it is possible. Since she does know things about how her powers work in the movie, we can assume that she did something like this. But we don't know how thorough she was or her exact process.

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