Where wild minds come to rest
This is a long post, but here it goes...
Dd’ing is something i’ve done all my life. I started when i was 4 or 5 and just kept doing it. It’s fine for a child but problematic for an adult.
This is not to say that daydreaming is bad, but that dd’ing excessively serves a purpose that is unhealthy for me. Daydreaming is a way to get what i want without trying, to have great moments in my imagination without risking rejection, and to feel powerful without any possibility of defeat.
When i first joined this site, i agreed with many people that MDD is a gift, something that makes us special and which is deserving of more attention from the scientific community. However, as i read more literature about “neurosis” and how older psychologists treated it, i have to say that this ‘startling new discovery’ called Maladaptive Daydreaming is really no different than hundreds of other behaviors that have been known to psychiatrists for the purpose of delaying growth and development. That is, MDD is a fancy way to say we daydream to get out of responsibility.
I don’t know everyone’s story, but i can speak for myself. If i’m being honest, then yes, i have to admit, that my daydreaming—my frantic pacing and plot-building and sweeping emotional highs—was just a distraction to keep me from actively living my life. Now that i’m waking up from my compulsive fantasizing, I can say without a doubt that my life sucks, and i’ve got nothing to show for it. I HATE DD’ING, I HATE MYSELF.
Self-hate, melancholy, anxiety, feelings of inferiority together with vanity, perfectionism, and a holier-than-thou attitude—all of this is simply a way to avoid recognizing the obvious burden of taking responsibility for myself and my limitations. Worse, its a way for me to dictate, dominate, or generally impose on others—people have to walk on eggshells around me. Why? For the above reason, it’s letting me have what i want without any struggle. And if it fails, then it’s not my fault. I’m sick…i can’t do anything…You don’t understand my depression…I suffer all the time…I am different and can’t be treated like others…bla bla bla… This is just what i tell myself to get away from life.
What i didn’t know, and what i learned from being in some very humiliating circumstances recently, is that all along….all my life…I’ve maintained a neurotic claim to have something…I FEEL I AM ENTITLED TO BE KEPT SAFE. This is the secret formula for understanding all of my behaviors and all of my “problems.”
Analyzing the content of my daydreams reveals this theme. I am fundamentally insecure and feel small next to the universe which threatens to destroy me. Well, duh, the universe is big and nothing is certain…everybody knows that…but for whatever reason i developed a personality that is motivated to find safety and stability and that means surrendering my own autonomy and confidence in myself. I present a false image of one who needs to be cared for so that i can receive an excuse for the demands that others impose on me.
It’s really that simple. I remember being in therapy and telling the psychiatrist that i was sad. But after several sessions, i couldn’t quite explain why i felt like that. My psych said, “It seems like you’re looking for a reason to be sad.” And it was true. In the end, i was just searching for a reason to be in therapy in the first place. So there it is…I’m not defective…i’m just mortal.
I don’t have all the things i’d like. I wish i was more attractive, had more education, a better upbringing, etc. but doesn’t everyone feel that way? And then i say, “Well, i’ve got it worse than you!” But that’s not true, it might feel like that, but its really not true. In reality, i’m just too comfortable in my own excuses to accept the hard work needed to make myself happy. I’d rather just be grumpy and negative and bitter.
So that’s it. I’m really sick of my daydreams. Stuff i used to do is no longer appealing. I feel so sick and angry. I’m very hurt and lonely. I’ve wasted time and i’ve lost friends, and it’s just so discouraging. I’ve hurt people because of my insecurities, accused people of things, been paranoid, and i’ve just been awful in so many ways. I regret it. I wish i could change everything, but i can’t, because that’s life, and dd’ing about it isn’t going to solve anything.
If you’ve read this far, thank you. It’s just been disappointing living this way, year after year. I’m jealous of what others have, and I really yearn to have more relationships. Being isolated is terrible on your mental health. Now that i think i know what the real problem is i hope i can finally get over this habit. It’s never too late, of course, but, ugh…some things just can’t be reversed and getting older is a reality we all have to face.
So, this is my story. Maybe its similar to yours. But this is the reason why i compulsively daydream. The solution for me is simple, too: COURAGE. Good luck, everyone! Take care, and thanks for reading.