Maladaptive Daydreaming: where wild minds come to rest
Hi, I'm new here. I must say I'm somewhat relieved to finally find others like me - I've been looking for an answer for years. I'm 53 and this seems to have started for me early in childhood as well - about 6 or 7. I had a great childhood - no abuse, neglect, mental health problems and such, But I also have many of the issues others have posted about, although not as severe as some. My question is: Does anyone else feel there may be a genetic predisposition involved?
I suppose it might be difficult to determine as so many of us never speak to others, much less family members about MD. However, I noticed many of us have several common conditions in addition to MD - OCD, autism, anxiety, ADD, etc. In my own family I have a nephew with mild OCD, a daughter and niece with autism, a son and another daughter with ADD and a grandson with ADHD. I, myself, have a generalized anxiety disorder given to occasional full blown panic attacks and although I was never diagnosed, I suspect ADD. (when I was growing up it wasn't called ADD/ ADHD - it was called OLB: Obnoxious Little Brat...)
Recently, my older brother passed away and as I was going through some of his personal items, I found many writings that were quite fantastical - rewrites of childhood memories that as a sibling I know simply didn't happen: such as him breaking an ankle at age 12 and crawling home for help - I was only 2 years younger and I certainly would have remembered that! He had so many of these writings it leads me to believe he also secretly had MD. It just makes me a little sad I never knew before. But as so many of us experience shame or guilt related to MD it leads us to hide the condition from even our closest family and friends.
I'm trying to work up the courage to ask other family members I suspect might also have MD and to be honest, I wonder if they would even confess to it if they did have it - I'm not sure I would have admitted it if someone directly asked me just a few months ago. After given it some thought and finding this site, I have realized that it really isn't anything to be ashamed of anymore than any other condition - I would just be careful who I spoke to as not everyone I know may not be sensitive to issues around MD.
I was adopted at birth and only in the last few years found my birth family. I have found out there is a lot of depression in the family, and maybe ADD. Like you said, when I was growing up it was OLB, lol. I suffer from depression myself and I think ADD. I should probably ask my brother about that. He's never mentioned it but he is usually pretty open about telling me things like that in the family so maybe he would if I asked.
I have often questioned this but none of my family really talk that much. As far as I'm aware there is no history of any mental health issues in my family. I sometimes wonder if my mum has MD as she often talks about her plans for the future but they always seem very...unrealistic and almost movie like but my mum is on her own a lot so I imagine she relies on her imagination to keep her occupied so perhaps she doesn't have MD but simply daydreams out of boredom or to fantasize about a better life.
I have other mental health issues. For 8 years I have suffered with psychosis but nobody else in my family (that I know of) has psychosis or any kind of disorder that is similar.
I've never been diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, OCD, autism. I have had anxiety attacks in the past, but haven't had one in at least 12 years.
I don't think there is enough evidence of MD and not a clear definition of it. In the past, my DDs have kept me from functioning at my job or in my academics. I've learned to control them to an extent in order to perform my in my career, but I have a job that I love and can be creative in, so that makes a difference. I have found that doing anything mundane will allow my mind to drift into DD mode and I lose myself in the DDing,
I'm glad you joined this amazing group!
Thank you for the replies! And thank goodness for this group - I really don't feel so alone in this anymore. It's nice to know there are people out there who not only truly understand and care, but are so welcoming. I've decided to contact my younger brother, whom I suspect might also be an avid DD'er. He has similar behaviors to myself and older brother and in the past has spoken to me about his own anxiety issues, so I feel he would be the safest person to not only confide in, but test the waters regarding MDD in the family. Wish me luck, folks - I'll let you know how it plays out.
My dad's brother who died long before I was born, had hysteria. My dad after he was struck down by paralysis, was on anti-depressants, and the last pysch consult said he had hysteria because of his repetitive behavior. My dad who never recovered and was bed ridden, would often stare into the sky. I'm not sure if he was thinking or was daydreaming- but he was definitely not MDing.
At one point I suspected my brother was also an MDer. But as is the case with MD, the more busy and more social life gets, the MD tends to dissipate. It maybe a lil odd that extroverts are MDers.
Of all the many kids, none of us have any mental illness.
i also feel that this conditn might have some genetic relation ........though in my family there is no one who who has mental problem......but i feel my brother also has MDD n i think it is more severe in him......i m concerned about him much more than i m for myself ......
My mother has OCD and I definitely display the MD traits that align with OCD, like the pacing and shaking of an object, ruminating thoughts, and I also have mild trichotillomania. OCD spectrum disorders are supposed to be highly hereditary, so it would not surprise me if MD was as well.
Wow, I never thought about this. I've always assumed it was just me, but now I'm starting to wonder.
Recently, my mother brought up her memory of the days before my wedding. Her remembrance of the events was so very different from mine it left me breathless. In fact, the incident she was recalling included a shocking incident of abuse: she nearly drove me to suicide on the day before my wedding, because she didn't like the way my wedding dress fit (she has always been quite abusive about my weight issues -- even before I actually had any.) She completely rewrote the incident in her memory to eliminate the abuse, and looking back on it I wonder if she didn't DD it away. I believe my mother has undiagnosed mental health issues, so I can't really comment on parallels or specifics. This isn't the first time she rewrote a memory, though.
Like Vic, my family doesn't talk to each other much. Looking forward to the holidays (not), where in the name of togetherness we'll each sit in different rooms watching TV or reading, not interacting at all. I wonder now if this is a sign of familial MD.
Wow - so much food for thought here! Maybe researchers can use a lot of the common issues and topics here to come up with a definitive list of symptoms that will define MDD. They do a similar thing when diagnosing autism - a person needs to meet a particular number (criteria) of behaviors that define if they are autistic, what type, or if they have autistic tendencies, rather than full blown autism. Given the different levels of MDD just in this group, but so many common issues, I'm thinking perhaps there could be a similar way to determine types and levels of MDD.
Does anyone else feel there may be a genetic predisposition involved?
I do. Not a direct cause and effect, like a daydreaming gene. But a predisposition for some people? Certainly.
I've wondered off and on about this for about 4 years. I have daydreamed my whole life, but I never really told anyone. My mother hinted at something similar four years ago, but didn't go into detail. Given that she was ill when she said it, I didn't ask her any more, but since then I've wondered if I got it from her.