Maladaptive daydreaming (MD)- fantasy stories in your head - Page 5 - Social Anxiety Forum
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post #81 of 336 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 10:56 AM
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Being an only child I spent my childhood daydreaming and I still do in adulthood. I make facial expressions and move my hands about more so when people aren't around. I was brilliant at story writing in school because of my imagination.Yet now, thinking too much isn't healthy at all.
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post #82 of 336 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 11:55 AM
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I try to be mindful, but my daydreaming makes it very difficult. It's really bad when I just wake up.
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post #83 of 336 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 01:47 AM
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I do this constantly, complete with music and repetitive motions. It's one of the best coping mechanisms I have and I've done it for as long as I can remember. I don't really see it as part of my disorder though. If it is then it's the best part.
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post #84 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-02-2013, 02:31 PM
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This actually explains a lot. I just thought I was plain daydreaming. People ask me what film/tv programme I saw and what it was about, or what music I'm listening to, but I cannot answer because I was daydreaming. I've never heard this term before though. I don't necessarily tap or rock, but sometimes I find myself crying, smiling or laughing without realising. Then when I do realise, I have to stop myself and tell a lie to others around me and say I was clearing my throat or something (I don't necessarily have to be on my own at the time). It makes it extremely difficult to concentrate on things as anything can trigger a daydream. Otherwise, as sir robbins says, it is okay.
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post #85 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-03-2013, 09:46 AM
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I have SAD and PDD NOS with a lot of AS traits, and I started doing this exact desperate, crazy imaginative day dreaming in 7th grade when I had major depression and severe anorexia. I've recovered from those 2 now but I still do the intense escape reality day dreaming sometimes, usually when I'm feeling really lonely and unloved/rejected by a lot of people I know in real life and trapped in my life.
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post #86 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-04-2013, 04:57 PM
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I definitely daydream a lot. I don't pace or rock. Books, movies, and especially music, definitely "trigger" or help, depending on you perspective. I have been doing this for years, but I really like it. My world keeps me company if I can't sleep, am cleaning or doing something else that is mindless, or if I am waiting in a doctor's office. It is definitely an escape for me, but I don't consider it bad. I can turn it off if I need to. In fact, I can get frustrated if I want to daydream, but I can't, which does happen sometimes. I pretty much have a family saga in my head that goes from about 1880 to the 1990s. It has actually inspired me to learned a lot of history to try to keep it accurate. I have also bought a lot of music. It is very detailed.
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post #87 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-06-2013, 09:37 AM
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I do this constantly, complete with music and repetitive motions. It's one of the best coping mechanisms I have and I've done it for as long as I can remember. I don't really see it as part of my disorder though. If it is then it's the best part.
haha, I agree If my daydreaming is a disorder, it's the one I like the best. I really like my imagination and stories I make up. Gives me something to think about other than all the crap that's going on right now in my life ^^

"An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind."

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post #88 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-06-2013, 04:59 PM
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Daydreaming has become my life...I like pretending to be someone other than what I've become. Sometimes I almost believe I really am what I imagine, however life has a way of slapping me in the face to remind me it isn't. Sometimes I wish I could just plug into a computer, create my own world I see in my head and live throughout there.

Lately I've also been seeing and hearing things that aren't there. It's not too seriously, but it does startling me at times.

The Litany of Fear from Dune by Frank Herbert:

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing....only I will remain!
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post #89 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-11-2013, 03:14 AM
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Wow, I have been doing this for years! I think it began as simply 'playing pretend' as a child and having an extremely good imagination. Then it developed into a coping mechanism. I was lonely and shy as a child and lived in a stressful home. I still do it now when I need to de-stress or am becoming depressive or about to have a panic attack I just zone out and find a happy place. There are other times when I do it like sometimes when I'm going to be in a situation that brings me stress or makes me nervous I'll have some kind of story going through my head as a buffer to kind of remove myself from the situation somewhat so it does not have such a severe effect on me til I have a place to focus and process on those emotions. Or when I'm traveling or waiting in line, things can either blend in with reality or reality will just melt away and I'm suddenly in a steampunk world or at Hogwarts or I'm a mutant.

My triggers are music, tv, film, books, people anything really. Many of the things I dream up I plan on doing over again but in real life, in actual art (when I can draw and paint!). I love doing it because I get so many fantastic ideas that the images just keep on coming and shaping and molding into scenes and stories that I don't know what to do with. So as an artist, this kind of in depth reality warping daydreaming is a minefield of ideas. It's a good thing for me. I can see how it can be a bad thing but I know the difference between fantasy and reality so it's never been a problem for me. It helps me to process emotions and to cope with reality.

It does make me really happy though to know there's other people out there who do this too. Sometimes I feel crazy because I can't bring this up to just anyone they'll think I'm nuts or something. :P
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post #90 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-11-2013, 05:06 AM
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I do this too. When your own life is so unsatisfactory it is easy understand why you would fantasize about being someone else. I often worry about this as I fee I could become seriously disassociated from reality
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post #91 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-11-2013, 05:37 AM
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Yes I have this although that particular 'disorder' is not so much a disorder (just another way of labelling) as it is a common symptom of long-standing depression or anxiety. Some people disassociate from their problems by creating fantasy worlds in their heads.

I've done it since I was a kid and I still do it now (age 27). I have characters in my head I'm far more attached to than real people. The reason my therapist gives me, and that rings true for me personally, is that I disassociate from everything and tend me depersonalised/derealised. I inhibit my emotions so much I'm not even aware of them and can think of traumatic incidents in my life without so much as a hint of sadness. It's like watching actors on TV, it's not really happening. Fantasising is a successful coping mechanism for children (and adults) but can become maladaptive if you rely on it. As I do, and as a lot of inhibited/disassociated people do.

If I were you I wouldn't think of this as yet another disorder. Your real 'disorder' is that you are unable to face up to the real world for individual reasons of your own, probably linked to events and treatment in early life. I was too ill to function for large proportions of time between the ages of 13 and 25 but I'm so much better now my therapist thinks this is the end of it for me forever.

The more disorders you diagnose yourself with, the harder it seems to overcome. But actually, recovery is totally possible and this is just a symptom of one underlying problem. Speak to a therapist about it, definitely.
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post #92 of 336 (permalink) Old 08-12-2013, 11:00 AM
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I used to daydream only before bedtime, but the older I get, the more I dream in other times of the day. It is really stressing me out, because I can't focus properly on anything. However, I never thought of it as a problem until now, when it started to eat up all the time I have for studying - I should get my master's degree, but I can't study. My mind just wanders.
It took me years to actually find out that I have this disorder. I've never heard of it before, and I'm 22.
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post #93 of 336 (permalink) Old 09-05-2013, 07:40 PM
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It's really awesome to know that I'm not the only one that does this!
I've been daydreaming since I was around 6, maybe even younger, and it has helped me cope with the negative things that pop up in my life. Music is the #1 MAIN trigger for my dreams, along with reading, and watching movies, because they give me so MANY ideas of things I can do in my dreams. Daydreaming has helped me cope with so many things, not only does it give me something to do, but in some ways I learn a lot about myself and my morals. Just the thought of having to go without my dreams makes me feel upset, because that's what excites me everyday of having to do the repeated things over and over, is dreaming. Because I can always count on my dreams to NEVER being normal or boring.

So I don't see daydreaming as a hindrance, I absolutely LOVE it.

Though it is disappointing to know that the characters you make up are not real. Well for some they could be, but they wouldn't be how YOU pictured them.

I can never really dream as well as when I listen to music. And I'm beginning to think I have a music addiction, because it also helps me cope with things. Just today my phone broke, and it has my music on it, and its the only way I can listen to music, until I get home. When I learned I couldn't listen to my music, for school, and what not, I got EXTREMELY emotional, I felt like crying, and I felt angry. And as much as I don't want to I need to cut back on my music, because I ALWAYS listen to music with headphones, and I'm slowly losing my hearing. And I'm pretty sure by the time I reach 25 I'll need hearing-aids.
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post #94 of 336 (permalink) Old 09-06-2013, 01:35 AM
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I often "replay" certain scenarios I've daydreamed up, over and over, just like watching an advertisement over and over and over (usually to music)...goodness. If it were a tape or a DVD it'd be worn out.
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post #95 of 336 (permalink) Old 09-10-2013, 03:35 AM
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I think for me it is a problem as I think I prefer my day dreams to real life. For example if I am with my family quite often I want to get away so I can think about my 'other' life and role pay scenarios. For me this isn't healthy and I can see why it would be viewed as an addiction.
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post #96 of 336 (permalink) Old 09-18-2013, 07:07 AM
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Oh dear, this is so me. I'm a maladaptive daydreamer for 2 years now and I hate it. I constantly create situations in my head, like i'm a moviestar, i'm in a relationship and so. It's really stupid but I just can't stop..
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post #97 of 336 (permalink) Old 09-18-2013, 07:13 AM
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Honestly, I always make up stories in my head about real people, never fake characters. Since quite a few weeks, I imagine that I'm in a relationship with a Dutch celebrity and that we are also best friends and go on vacation trips. But it's so annoying, even when I try to stop these thoughts they just come back every time. I feel pathetic. It also makes it worse when I'm listening to music. I can sit in my room for hours with music on and act like i'm a star who gives an interview. I dress up( put a dress on, high heels and stuff) to make me feel like i'm the real star in the building. I talk to myself as me and then I talk to myself in someone elses point of view. All things I imagine are things that I'm not in real. In my dream world, I'm a succesfull moviestar/singer, with a relationship, lots of friends, just a social human being. I have literally zero friends in life and no success so I guess this is how I cope.
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post #98 of 336 (permalink) Old 09-23-2013, 07:15 PM
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If you guys think this is a lot of people to have Maladaptive daydreaming, you should go to the Wild Minds Network, they have about 3000 members who have MD. Its like a giant forum just to talk about the condition.

In my case, ive had it for as long as I can remember. My trigger is music. I basically pace around and imagine a celebrity or person I think is cool (basically someone I want to impress) in the room and they watch me as I be awesome; much awesomer than I am in real life. I put myself in situations where I can show off how perfect and interesting and beautiful I am. I can sing, play instruments, im funny, crazy, wild, hot (all the things I wish I was in real life basically)...and the celebs or whoever it is at the time are usually sitting in a corner just watching, all impressed lol. I don't actually interact with them, although sometimes I do, but they are mostly just listening and watching me while im talking or doing something with someone else (this person whom im doing things with is not usually specified). Or a big one for me is imagining im on a tv show, or im about to be interviewed and they do an extensive introduction of me before I come out on stage, while the other guest stars are amazed that they have never heard of me before. lol (i cant believe im admitting all of this). Still other times I imagine im in a montage of stuff that my friends have filmed me doing, and sometimes I'm in slow mo and stuff like that. lol When i watch youtube and someone makes a funny joke, ill pause it, pretend im my character and repeat the exact same joke and get a laugh from my celeb fixation, or if I disagree with something the youtuber said I imagine they are with me and argue with them about it lmao. Other times it could be them watching me be a really good guitar player, or singer, or bikini model, or dancer, or comedian, or being really good at a certain sport. Or sometimes ill know a language 'secretly' and when I bust it out everyone is impressed. Or ill picture im back in time with elvis Presley or marlin monroe and act out how everything has changed in the future. Also, if im mad at someone in real life my daydreams will involve me saying the comeback I wish I did or yelling at them. Or if im pissed in general ill practice speeches and rants and say them over and over till iv perfected them and there is enough emotional impact in them for me to be 'relieved'. Then of course there are the sexual day dreams...which are probably even more common for people to have.

Sometimes if I go a couple days without daydreaming, it makes it all the more fulfilling when I finally get to do it. It really is like a high and I even experience withdrawal if I don't do it. A lot of times ill turn off all the lights (I even considered buying one of those disco ball things that light up and spin, just to enhance my experience) I guess because my mind is more stimulated when there is less external stimuli. Sometimes they are planned and some of them are just happening as I move about my daily life. Like if i'm at walmart ill pretend im super cool wearing really out there clothes and being loud and funny and everyone is noticing me; when in real life im alone, wearing a hoodie and listening to headphones hoping to avoid crowds of people. lol And at an even deeper level, my actual thoughts start off normal, and then I feel this strong urge to 'act them out'. In other words I will move my mouth and hands (if im alone obviously) as if im actually talking to someone (not anyone specifically, its more like the feeling of a presence of someone there).

But all the entertaining stuff aside, I don't think people really realize just how maladaptive this daydreaming can be. It almost always occurs in conjunction with other mental disorders. It is a distraction. Is it fulfilling a need that ought to filled with real life people and real experiences. And what are you supposed to do if you have a spouse or roommate? Just because it doesn't hurt anyone doesn't mean that it isn't an addiction. It is another way of escaping reality just like drugs/porn/tv etc. You could end up ignoring your real life. If you think about, the reason we daydream is because we feel the extreme need to be noticed, loved, accepted and approved of.
I just joined this site. I had too after reading your story. This describes my experience to the t. I literally had goose bumps reading this because, minus the going back in time with the Elvis Presley, everything else is my exact md experience. I am jut discovering this MD term today. I never knew there was a name for it or even thought anyone else walking earth but me had this. I was looking for positive affirmations to help me with SAD, since I'm trying visualization or law of attraction to manifest good or perfect mental health, and I stumbled on affirmations to stop daydreaming, which was odd and I wondered if people daydreamed like I did, so i googled "stop daydreaming", and I find a link to MD and literally had tears to discover that other people were like me. It is an addiction to me. I have been living in this fantasy world since I was 9, and I'm 32 now , married with three kids. I have managed to conceal it from my husband, sine he is the main breadwinner and works all the time, but I can barely function in real life. It completely consumes when I go into my fantasy world. I can go for hours and just can't snap out of it, even when I'm tired. I'm in such a high from it that I don't want to stop. I am really trying to overcome this, so I can tend to my kids and husband, and live a more fulfilling life.
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post #99 of 336 (permalink) Old 09-23-2013, 07:59 PM
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I have some of these features. I often adapt characters from fiction I like into stories, usually romantic cause I'm secretly into that ****. Music can, but doesn't always or even usually inspire daydreaming. It really doesn't interfere with my life in any significant way. I only really daydream when driving and when I'm trying to sleep so I won't have to go over my painfully repetitive negative thoughts.

In middle school is when I started daydreaming, and back then it kind of could get in the way. I didn't want to be present because that was an age when I was being teased by certain peers, and I just wanted to block it out with something better than my reality. I wouldn't pay attention in class at all. I just sat at my desk thinking up stories to distract myself.
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post #100 of 336 (permalink) Old 09-27-2013, 08:05 AM
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i am a maladaptive daydreamer...i am struggling big time..dont know what to do..
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