Maladaptive Daydreaming: where wild minds come to rest
When I have been daydreaming a lot, the will to stop generally comes because I realize that I am getting (very!) impatient in my real life and am damaging relationships by being so not-present. Like many DD'ers, I don't have a lot of relationships and value those I don have. So, then I make the huge effort to stop. As an aside, the longest I have ever stopped is just under a year, but generally less.
The period I especially wanted help with is the week or two right after I forcibly go 'cold turkey'. My anxiety levels spike to the point where my skin hurts, I pace, I find it hard to sit still. I also feel nauseous, almost flu-like. Clearly I can stop this by going back to daydreaming, but that isn't what I want! I take Advil for the worst of the physical symptoms and a very mild anti-anxiety drug, but still, the physical reaction is incredibly strong.
I have never been addicted to drugs, but I wonder if coming down from a 'high' isn't a little like this.
First, is this what happens any of you who succeed in stopping for periods? Do any of you have any tips or tricks to get back that horrible first period?
I usually reserve a certain part of the day for daydreaming, for example during dinner or before sleep. That way, I get my "drug" without affecting real life. Also, trying to approach daily problems in a philosophical way tends to help me calm down.
Usually, daydreams are your subconscious telling you something, so plainly blocking them won't solve the cause. I'd advise you to explore the needs/fears projected in the DDs, and think on them.
I appreciate your comments Gina. However with me it seems to be all or nothing. I am incapable of confining my daydreams to single short periods, they bleed over and then in a short time I am back to having them constantly. Probably just my own mental processes, and believe me, if I was able to do as you suggest, I would!
Any other thoughts on getting through this period? *hopeful smile*
Well, I hope someone has a good thought, because I never found an easy solution. The only permanent solutions are the ones where MD itself retreats-otherwise you'll keep feeling hurt (according to my personal experience). Denial is not a permanent solution, I'm afraid. I tried it too. Only when I decided to face my fears and change my life, it started retreating.
I cannot know if the head-on approach suits you, as it is a real pain...I've made progress with it, though, and can get in and out of denial periods without feeling too tormented.
I had withdrawal symptoms such as shaking, loss of appetite, fatigue, increased heart rate, extreme irritability and so on. Some of these symptoms were probably a result of depression which I became aware of only after stopping MD and realizing I was no one without it. Anyways, I was literally lying in bed for two weeks and the only thing which removed all the symptoms was interaction with people I felt comfortable being with, or simply, being occupied with something that allows you to feel alive.
Also, another thing: don't go cold turkey. Like Gina said, you'd be merely repressing the problem, it won't solve anything. It'd be like killing off a part of your personality. Your daydreams are in fact a shield against something so find that something and deal with it - and you'll find it by analyzing your fantasies.
Thanks to you both. I recognize that you are both correct. Whether I can manage that is something else. But I will keep trying.
That's the spirit, don't give up! :)
Also, I agree about positive human interaction, it helps getting out of depression.
I am currently going through withdrawal. When I feel the need to daydream, I try to do something fun such as playing cards or web surfing. I also hear bells help too.
It's kind of all or nothing for me, too, Alta. I've realized just how distant I am from my friends and family and how much the DD is taking over and I feel I have to stop altogether. It's hard. It just keeps creeping back in on me. When I do make an effort to stop I feel kind of a shocked back to life feeling and feel weird and have a hard time going into public. I know it's strange but that's how it happens to me.
Kacey-I do think that you need to find why you are so addicted to it, consciously and subconsciously. What do you have in there that you don't have in real life? Perhaps you could find some sort of replacement. For example, many people smoke because it calms them down. And when they try to quit they often seek other ways to feel calm, and keep themselves occupied. (It's not the same, but it makes rehab more bearable)