Maladaptive Daydreaming: where wild minds come to rest
I've noticed that many people have different types of worlds they go into. Many of them are fantasy-based, but there are also action-adventure, mystery, drama, and love-driven ones I'm sure.
So I'm typically a shy, polite girl. I'm scared of everything, especially hurting others' feelings. Others see me as kind, caring, and sweet. As an empath who just wants to make others happy, people are always shocked to hear about the terribly gory, violent horror "stories" I create. Yes, even when I first began writing my daydreams down in 5th grade (my daydreaming started when I was around 5 years old), they were still a bit disturbing for an 11 or 12-year old.
Now I'm not an angry or violent person in the slightest. (When I get upset, I take it out on myself. You'd have to do something just awful to make me angry at you.) I've thought in the past that my daydreaming could be like this because I have a pretty boring and mundane life with little control, and the anxiety/depression I've experienced may have also influenced it. Either way, my daydreaming world is the safest place for me to go. In the past I've managed to stop myself from cutting myself in the last second by immersing myself so deeply in the other world. (For you who have self-harmed, you understand how hard it is to stop yourself, all by yourself.)
Anyway, the character I possess is always the protagonist. Always a heroic and incredibly brave figure, always the one who is tortured or hurt the most. Always the one who has people who care about him as if he's changed every single one of their lives. Always the one who endures the most pain, usually physically but often mentally so as well. There are often times where I even shift the character I possess in scenes where someone different would fit that description at the time.
I've explored all kinds of horrific situations, and have even been murdered a couple times (only to come back one way or another). In my other world, I've endured death, intense beatings, stab/gun wounds, exorcisms, waterboarding (along with a long list of other methods specifically for torture and interrogation such as rat torture or white torture), kidnapping cases, lots of comas, drowning, illness, fire burns/smoke inhalation, the physical and mental pain of slowly becoming a monster, surgery (one of my phobias), dissection, lots and lots of needles/syringes, chloroform, blindness/deafness, starvation, poison, being eaten alive by beasts, soul being eaten alive by entities and demons, being possessed by a demon, choking/strangulation, struck by lightning, amnesia, hypothermia, carbon monoxide poisoning, being drugged and falling into insanity, suicide, child abuse, vampires (yes I had that phase, and ever since it was incorporated into my daydreams it's held a special place in my heart <3), hypovolemic shock, paralysis, disarthria, seizures, sudden cardiac arrest, sodium thiopental, and oh my land the list just goes on and on. I think I've made my point here. I used to always joke to myself that every single character I've ever possessed has incurable PTSD.
Sorry you had to read all that. The strange thing is, although I've explored so many different types of violence [so much that I can recite the rate in which oxygen levels drop in an air-tight room depending on the volume and the amount of people in it, recount endless facts about comas and sleep, give an abnormally long list of torture/interrogation methods along with the details of what they do, how it works, what it feels like, and the psychological affects it has on the person,] it has never crossed the line between my daydreams and the real world. I'm just another author; Stephen King was never a murderer or violent person, and neither am I. I just find so much excitement and adrenaline when I'm in those positions, fighting for an idea or to protect a person or even just myself, and I always have that support system I never had in my waking life.
Sorry, I went on much longer than I thought I would. Just some interesting things (again don't worry I'm not some serial murderer)
I'd love to hear about the genres you guys have explored, too! If you feel comfortable, share why you think you lean towards that genre and feel free to give examples since I've spoken so much here~
Every genre, I think. Though sci-fi and fantasy are my favorite. Currently I’m an Intergalactic Ambassador kidnapped by hostile aliens who are humanoid but with cyborg bodies. I always gravitate to strong characters too because I feel so helpless and unfulfilled in my real life. I have one DD I keep repeating of me as a berserker dwarf warrior who is the High Commander of an elite army in a world filled with monsters. As I’m tiny and female, I love the strength and the respect for my abilities. I’m very cognizant that I use these DDs when my life feels out of control. I think we draw what we need to feel somewhat fulfilled in this life. I’m functioning, and I get way more from my DDs than any adverse effects. I love my DD and I’m glad I’ve learned how to compartmentalize each DD from my reality, which is very nice, just not passionate or exciting enough. Your horror DDs are serving a very distinct purpose in your life. If they keep you from harming your precious body, then it is a good thing. Now, you must learn how to delineate the real from the imagined in a way to use it to propel you forward.
I grew up in a cult like religious community, poverty ridden and emotionally, physically and verbally abused. I survived intact because of my MDD. I know it can can become a crutch or addiction so I learned how to utilize it in conjunction with therapy, yoga, meditation, exercise and nutrition. It is just a tool in my box to help myself through uncertainty, fear, transitions, or sadness.
When I deal with difficult real life situations, which seem scary or nerving, my day dreams cover suspense and horror. They are far more dramatic than my reality. I will feel stuck or trapped and in great danger by someone or something coming to get me, almost like in a teen horror.
When my life situations feel happy and glorious, my day dreams become sunny, angelic, dancing through the fields holding lilies while singing "somewhere over the rainbow." Sometimes, I will even think about having good Sex. I'll be making love to my fantasy crushes. So I do have a romance theme to my day dreams as well.
If I want to ride my bike into the trails for hours or go hiking in the countryside, perhaps in another country, I will get a sense of Adventure. I think of myself as a relic hunter, a highlander, a adventurer or a missioner.
Other times, I will be in a mystery or on a top secret quest, especially if my life situation gets interesting and I deal with meeting up with new people and filling paperwork.
I do enjoy comedy. Sometimes, I'll suddenly imagine I'm my favorite comedian. I once imagined I cracked jokes like Robin Williams. However, every time I do this, I start laughing for real. So, I have to make up excuses, so nobody thinks I'm a creep.
My daydreams, I think, generally reside in hurt/comfort. The day dream I have been having recently is about a high school student who is raped by her casual date. She doesn't seek help right away because the situation was so fantastical to her. She decided to pretend nothing ever happened. Overtime, she becomes completely consumed by guilt, shame, and worthlessness that she attempts suicide. Her friends are now trying to figure out how to help their friend feel better about herself.
Another day dream is about a frisbee team who is having trouble holding together because of some stupid drama between some kids who have crutches on each other. The boy who is crushing on the girl, lets call them Sam and Allie, is Mad at the guy she likes, his name will be Carl, because Carl doesn't reciprocate the feeling for Allie.
You would think Sam would be happy about that, but Sam only wants her happiness. So Sam decides its time to be an awesome to the entire team, and when the fighting completely erupts, the team starts picking sides. The team picks on each other, gets into fights, and it severely It finally comes down to the newest teammate, smacking the living shut out of Sam and their friends calling out the drama to be stupid.
Sam says he hates the sport now. They say if they hate it so much, he should quit. Sam quits, and the teams playing slowly worsens due to teammates not wanting to play because their friend left, overwhelming guilt over the drama, and the severing of the bond the team had.
My genre is mostly look like yours...the protagonist, but I played as a vigilitante, or john wick type character. The antagonist mostly crime lords, aliens, evil hydra type organisation, evil monarch, and even my own twin or doppleganger or clone! My daydreams look like a movie where there is a sequel, prequel and sometimes spin offs. Lol this is a result of watching too many movies. My world is full of fantasy but not too fantasy its like half real half fantasy. And I create many universe and in every universe myself has different role and different villain. And sometimes these universe collide with each other.
I used to create universes that collided with my real life. I'd sit and eat breakfast. I would be here, but I'd really be gone. However, I live with my mother who is always talking to me. She always wants to know if I even listen to her. She is very worldly and politically aware. Also, I feel that living in other worlds interferes with having a life for myself.
At the minute mine are WW3 scenario's involving my last dog being reincaranted and finding her way back to me in the middle of everything!
P.s. apologies for going off topic but can anyone tell please me how to start a new post myself as I couldn't see a button to press on the forums front page to 'Make new post' or something as I'm new and wanted to introduce myself it's my first time here..Thanks :D
My first post, and it scares me bit to write this down.. I have never told anyone about my daydreams..
I daydreamed a lot when I was younger, mostly violent daydreams... I do not think it was maladapative, I had a social live, and I had periods without daydreaming. I did it mostly in weekends and at night in bed. Can't think of any childhood trauma.
I forced myself to stop doing it when I was 18, the dreams were so disturbing I was scared it would get to a point where I couldn't distinguish what was real.. (That never happenend though.) Why was I dreaming about these horrific things while I had a pretty good life?? It helped that I moved out and started studying in another city so I was distracted of daydreaming.
But now, around 10 years later, the daydreams have come back and I found about Maladapative daydreaming and that I am not the only one.
I am really confused now.. I like the daydreams, but I also fear it will become maladaptive this time. I had a stressfull time, and I think that is why it came back.. That period is over now, but the daydreaming is still here.. Should I let go?
The dreams are violent again, with me being victim of torture etc. But it is addictive..
(In real world I am not violent at all! I want everbody to like me... maybe that is my problem?)
Sorry if this not totally on topic..