Maladaptive Daydreaming: where wild minds come to rest
I'm new on here anfter coming across this site after a google search.I really thourght I was the only person who had lived the last 30ish years running a parrallel daydream world.
In real life I am very happily married to a lovely man and have 2 great kids.I have a good job that I enjoy and plenty of friends.My "fantasy"world comes from a very disfunctional childhood and I realised it helped me cope and survive what happened.
I fantasise usually scenarios that involve a character from TV as my partner.There daydreams can get very involved and I do get emotionally attached.My problem comes when I find out things about their real lives e.g.they are married.I then feel devastated-as I would if it had actually happened in my real relationship.While my head knows that this is crazy I can't help the emotions.My latest fantasy life has become a bit too all consuming and for the first time ever has started to intrude on my life the last couple of months.Recently I found out that this actor was married and am now all over the place.
Does anyone else have a similar story?How do you manage it??
Well,here's the update.I ditched the actor concerned and replaced him with another less public actor.It still took me a long while to "get over" him though.
I find that the internet is a real problem as there is so much information available and I can inadvertently stumble across a piece of info I don't want to know.I am trying very hard to only access certain things about my current crush which has been fine until last week.I know he isn't married but I have spotted the same women in a few clips of premiers etc.She looks older than him so I am trying to convince myself she is a manager/agent etc rather than a girlfriend but finding it hard to do so.
I really wish I could be like those of you who are unaffected by reality/facts getting in the way of your daydreaming.I can't seem to disconnect the emotions.
Any tips to try to keep these "crushes"safe would be much appreciated.I have thourght about printing a photo and just using that but I really like my latest "crush's" voice so that doesn't work.
I don't know whether any of the following will help you but here's what I did to get over my married actor.I latched on to a much older actor who is extremely private about his life.I did this so I would have little risk of seeing facts about him inadvertantly on tv/magazines etc.I still kept my married actor in my fantasies but in scenarios where I would ignore him.It took a few weeks but the painful emotions died down and I managed to establish better fantasies about my new actor.I think because the new scenario was so forced I am much less emotionally attached to it which is safer.It allows me to be in my reality much more which is good for me.Ironically my husband is actually pretty perfect and close to any fantasy character so I hated it when I couldn't feel emotions for him.
Do you have real life things that you can latch on to?
I hope some of that helps
I'm finding this discussion really helpful.Finding out how others do things help me through rough patches when my fantasy life starts to make me feel emotions I don't want.
Roxanne-I'm sorry you are struggling at the moment.It took me a while to "get over" my previous fantasy actor.Interestingly I saw him on TV this week and felt nothing at all.
I am still intermittently having difficulty with my replacement actor.I have thourght about it carefully the last few days.
Much of why I feel down at times when I think of him is down to 2 main reasons.
Firstly,I feel totally inadequate and torture myself that he wouldn't ever pay any attention to me if we met in real life.The" Hollywood machiene" and the media builds these people up to be superhuman and actually this particular actor comes across well in interviews as well.I almost need him to be flawed to make myself feel better.I reaslise that what this actually means is that I need to build up my own self esteem which is theoretically what this fantasy is meant to do.It seems to be doing the opposite???
The second reason is that the fantasy reaches a point where it lacks emotional depth as obviouly it is one sided.I think having real life rel;ationships have given me knowledge that far more exists in real life.I wonder whether for me my real life has actually outgrown my fantasy life.I needed a fantasy life growing up in order to cope with home life and finding my place socially which took me a long time.I probably need much less help in these areas now but a 35 year old habit is hard to break.
Can i ask people what they want to gain from their fantasy actors/partners?
Also how do you screen out all the parts of that person that you just don't want?
I normally take characters from TV/games on the internet/books and change their personality to what I want it to be. When I watch the TV show/play the game/read the book that my character is from, it surprises me how different my version of them is.
I relate to so much of what is being said by you all.Thanks.
I'm happy to share some strategies I am trying to put in place to stop negative emotions in the hope they can help.As you say it's not something you can discuss with your friends.
I had a very successful fantasy relationship with an actor that lasted over 20 years,even through my real relationships,without impinging on them or making me feel bad.I realised it was because all I had of him were some old photos from a magazine.This meant that I could totally create his character to be whatever I needed.As I have said before the ease of access to all sorts of information these days really impinges on my fantasy character.I am going to try to print off a few photos of my current actor and resist all temptation to look online about him.
Like Roxanne I usually run my fantasy life alongside my real life with some overlap.In the past my fantasy life would fade into the background while real life was going on ,then I would fantasise when I needed/wanted to.Since about 6 months ago I became consumed with my fantasy life which I don't like.I lost a lot of weight at that time(98lbs)and so I think my identitity,which can be shakey at the best of times,got very muddled.I am now more able to connect with reality again.I used a lot of "grounding" techniques.I find that the moreI try to focus on my real life and shut out the fantasy,the less negative impact it has on me when I do want it.Probably because my self esteem is better.It is also much healthier for getting stuff done in reality and for my relationships as someone else mentioned.
I am feeling more positive at the moment so let's hope it lasts.I actually would hate to give up my fantasy life altogether as it's a part of me but I do want it to enhance my life rather than detract from it.