Becoming aware of a different behavior in oneself is already difficult enough. But then how to find an explanation to it, and how to find out whether we are the only ones to experience it? What searches lead to a condition that’s not quite yet recognized by the scientific community? This week we asked daydreamers how they found out about the term “maladaptive daydreaming”.
Some daydreamers of an inquisitive nature were led by their own introspection to search if everyone was developing such intense universes and daydreaming sessions.
“One day, I asked myself whether everybody was inventing such stories or whether I was the only one.”
Or they were motivated by the feeling of a difference between them and their relatives or friends.
“Even if I wasn’t sad, there was a big feeling of a gap between me and the others.”
For others, necessity drove them. Faced with the difficulties of a condition impairing their daily life they searched for help by questioning their symptoms.
“I was beginning to worry about myself because I was spending hours “in my world” instead of working”
They then started to type in a search bar “lost in my thoughts”, “live an imaginary life”, “prancing”,”I invent worlds for myself” etc.
But those searches were sometimes made difficult by conditions with similar symptoms like Autism or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (that some daydreamers can also be affected by). And could lead to questioning oneself about other disorders because of a wrong self-diagnosis. However communities centered around those disorders can be of great help and sometimes redirect members toward Maladaptive Daydreaming.
“[I found]Totally by accident, thanks to the asperansa forum(about autism).”
We also realize that daydreamers discovery of Maladaptive Daydreaming happens sometimes by accident, stumbling upon it by recognizing themselves in someone’s sharing on TikTok or YouTube and in the following discussions in the comments.
“A girl was filming herself having a daydream, it interested me, I looked in the comments and I wondered If I was experiencing the same thing”
Or by a recommended article, like the Vice website one.
“As I was reading, I recognized myself 100% in the description that was made!”
In conclusion, we can only be glad that Maladaptive Daydreaming isn’t that obscure condition anymore and that the press is beginning to spread awareness about it. But we also find that sharing our own experience on our favorite social network remains a simple, yet powerful, way of doing it as well, not only to exorcise our fears of judgement and realize that other people share it, but also reassure those who asked themselves the same questions.