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    Thread: Does anybody here Maladaptive daydream?

    1. #1
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      Does anybody here Maladaptive daydream?

      It's where you spend intense periods of time daydreaming and fantasizing about realtime stories that involve you as a first-person character. I have been doing this as long as I can remember, and now it's beginning to become an addiction.

      I have an entire world in my head, the characters are moving about as of now, doing their daily work as I would be realistically if I were them. When I go into my mind whenever I'm in daydream mode, as I call it, it feels like I'm actually there. I can get sucked in, where I don't hear any outside noise, and I mouth what I am saying inside my daydream. Is this beyond dreaming? and I was reading this can be a leading sign into mental health problems. I have a lot of problems, and I admit to being very anti-social and I use Maladaptive daydreaming as my coping mechanism.

      Comments? and it would be helpful to relate to somebody who daydreams as much as I do. I spend about 5-6 hours a day daydreaming, and 1-2 hours before bed and then I fall asleep, and adventure into my dream world. It feels like reality is drifting, and my life is more involved with the characters and concepts of my daydreaming, so that's the problem here.
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    2. #2
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      I know exactly what you're talking about, actually. At least, to some degree. My own mental world was my attempt to understand how my mind worked, so the characters were different moods of mine. Yet I never spent too much time completely in there. Maybe the reason I wasn't lost in it because it was a way to interface with the real world. Kept me connected to reality. Of course, I embellished it to the point it started getting out of control and disconnected...

      Maybe you can try to shift your daydreams to be more of a dream? As in, everything is a symbol for you personally. Everything has a purpose. Wean yourself off, by making it connect you more with reality than escape it.

    3. #3
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      I know exactly what you're talking about. I do it, too. With me, however, I'm usually doing it while I'm functioning during the day. From the time I wake up until I go to sleep again, half of my mind is in another world; it never goes away. Think of a marathon on TV, only it's perpetual, there's no commercial breaks and each episode is from a different show. I'm in different daydreams all the time, so there aren't really any that are recurring.

      I agree with what AnimusMessor179 said; wean yourself off of it. If that fails, try to multitask like I do. I can't guarantee its safety in everyday life, however.

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      I don't do this during the day anymore, but I used to. I do it at night though because it takes me a really long time to fall asleep...like 1-2 hours...so I spend that time doing this sort of daydreaming that you speak of, never knew it had a name. The stories used to revolve around myself and certain fantasies I had in my life. To be honest, when my real life began playing out exactly, and I mean exactly, like some of those fantasies I started to take notice of the whole power of intention/law of attraction stuff and started to believe there was actually something to it. Anyways, nowadays the stories revolve around a character that I've created that is basically my alterego and occurs in complex fantasy worlds I've built over the years. So it's no longer just about me and my life anymore...but each night it's like I add chapters to this epic saga...it's great...and sometimes it even leads me into lucid dreams.

      Also I think there is nothing wrong with this, and like I said, maybe it can even be used to make some things a reality. I don't like the term "maladaptive" because that implies that it is something bad.

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      I used to do this when I was younger, though I didn't know what it was until I read this thread. I didn't do it during the day, but as I was falling asleep at night. I kinda just stopped doing it.

      It started off with me visualising Spyro and a friend going through adventures etc. Soon it became as if I was there, controlling it. I actually thought I was lucid dreaming but now that I've seen this thread I don't think it was because I wasn't asleep, I just wasn't aware of my surroundings.

      Is it bad that I would like to learn how to do this? Not to the extent that I spend ours doing it, but have a world and reality shift inside your head sounds awesome to me.

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      I do it at night. Though I don't build a complete world with characters or something... just different scenes in different places with different circumstances. Occaisionally I do it during daytime.

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      Right, well that's comforting to know I am not the only person who does this, it seems you all do.
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      I've had this problem my entire life. For me, it's a coping/escape mechanism.
      I was able to end it for about 8 years though, by forcing out the thoughts ("Shut up, brain!")
      My daydreams are perverted and very dark so I would anguish in guilt over them.
      Now, I don't really care anymore, so I've been indulging them again.
      I'm trying to turn one such fantasy into a story to write.

      I know what you mean about the lines becoming blurred. I seem to have a subconscious fear of driving because when I lived in BFE one of my daydreams was of crashing during a blizzard, having amnesia from the accident, wondering out into the forest, getting raped by a hunter, coming to fear civilization, giving birth to twins in the wild etc etc.
      I'd think of the story every time I went out and I would drive in extreme weather, daring the daydream to become real. I have a Scottevest jacket that I always wore. The jacket has around 20 pockets and I keep everything in it- sewing kit, collapsible cup, some meds. If I'd leave home without it, I was certain nothing bad could happen
      In truth, though, I was just afraid to make the 40-60 minute commute into town so my brain concocted a "worse case scenario" to distract me. I came up with the story to help conquer the fear as silly as it may sound.

      Now I live in town again. My kids are unruly, I never see my hubby... so my daydream involves my hubby divorcing me and giving me $25,000. as a parting gift. I send my kids to live with my parents, then I hit the road, find a cave in some national forest and homestead in it. The story changes and evolves according to my whims but all of them are painfully detailed.

      I think we should all be writers
      Last edited by Zhaylin; 04-05-2011 at 04:16 AM.
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      i know exactly what u mean haha theyre pretty vivid and just like epic storylines and things that if i was in a vivid LD id like to carry out. i do it like most of the day now thoguht its really bad, in college, work or anything im just in my own world lmao

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      So, what are your night dreams like?
      ya gwan fok wid de Baron? ye gotta nodda ting comin. (Formerly known as Baking Nomad.)

    11. #11
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      I used to do this when I was a kid. I would often imagine huge epic battles that I was a part of. And later on when I was obsessed with girls I would imagine us leaving society together and living in the wild.

      Now I don't do this at all. I want to create an alternate pretend life in my dreams though, just to escape temporarily from being human. I'm still trying to think up a character and a story though :/

      If you do this you should definately turn it into a dream!!!! Basically my life is I am fully immersed in my experience. Whether that be dreams or waking life.
      But in my dreams I am still who I am in waking life. I want to pretend I am someone else in a different reality and then make it have a continuing story line like a book.
      Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake

    12. #12
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      I didn't know there was a name for this, how exciting!

      I have done this since I was a kid, and I never really stopped.
      I still do it nowadays, usually if I'm in a situation where I'm bored but can't really do anything about it.
      For example if I'm at uni and a lecture is really boring.
      I also do it occasionally while driving long distances over the german autobahn, as long as there isn't much traffic.
      (I know, this may not sound very safe, but really, on the route in question I encounter another car like every 5 minutes.)

      I've created countless plots over the past years.
      The really interesting part is, that after enough character development, the story basically plays on it's own.

      I also do it every night before falling asleep.
      Not only does visualizing help me fall asleep, but I also think it helps with dream incubation. (mostly just remembering goals)

      Kinda cool to know I'm not the only one doing this.
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      Dreams are simple.
      It's the painfully simple things the human mind cannot comprehend.
      After all your mind is trained to understand the complexity of the waking world,
      not the simplicity of the dream world.

      - Yuya

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      P.S. It's true, you are crazy. We all are. Especially the ones that call others crazy. They are the craziest ones.
      ya gwan fok wid de Baron? ye gotta nodda ting comin. (Formerly known as Baking Nomad.)

    14. #14
      <span class='glow_9400D3'>saltyseedog</span>'s Avatar
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      I don't know if everyones crazy but I am completely fucking crazy!!!!!!! I think the ones that don't know they are crazy are the craziest ones
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      Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake

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      haha yeah but i guess there are sort of different levels of it.
      i think mine at the moment is quite bad and is affecting my education quite a lot as ill just sit in lessons and zone out without realising and just slip into this other reality, i do it pretty much most of my day the only time i dont do it is when im concentrating on the computer or when im talking to someone or playing a game or something.
      I guess when i get round to LD'ing on a regular basis i can put these into dreams, about the plot of the thing self developing i sort of get what you mean on that one too its really odd

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      music has a MASSIVE part to play in this, a lot of the time i zone into complete almost visualisation with it, so almost like a dream but your really awake. Sort of like a semi-lucid dream.
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      ^I kind of had that on shrooms when I was listening to music
      Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake

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      I hated school because concentration was extremely difficult. As an adult, I was diagnosed with ADD. I thought the obsessive day dreaming was just part of the ADD and my anxiety.
      I did my best writing in High School though.
      I never knew it had a name either, so it's been interesting to find others who do this

      It doesn't help me with my dreams, though. I think I play out the storylines SO freagin much while I'm awake, my brain gets sick of it and makes me dream of unrelated stuff
      And since I've returned to this after an 8 year break, I'm more easily distracted. Music would be a definite no-no for me. Any noise or activity sort of breaks the "spell".

    19. #19
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      I love listening to music while doing this, it makes the experience much more intense, as long as the music is fitting.
      I choreograph the daydream to the music, it's a lot of fun.
      Dreams are simple.
      It's the painfully simple things the human mind cannot comprehend.
      After all your mind is trained to understand the complexity of the waking world,
      not the simplicity of the dream world.

      - Yuya

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      This actually helped me develop my ability to lucid dream in the first place. I too had an entire world in my head.
      Most of my fantasies were pervy. Some involved being sort of a super hero, except that my super power was ultimate brain power. I could do anything, merely because I knew how to. Other fantasies involved helping starving, or homeless people.

      I'm so lame.
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      ---o--- my DCs say I'm dreamy.

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      You're not lame.

      Maladaptive daydreaming is the title proposed by Eli Somer, Ph.D., for a condition in which an individual daydreams or fantasizes as a psychological response to prior trauma or abuse. This title has become popularly generalized to incorporate a recently-described syndrome of immersive or excessive daydreaming which is specifically characterized by attendant distress or functional impairment, whether or not it is contingent upon a history of trauma or abuse, as introduced in 2009 by Cynthia Schupak, Ph.D. and Jesse Rosenthal, M.D. of New York City. Dr. Schupak and her colleagues are currently conducting follow-up research on excessive or "maladaptive" daydreaming in a confidential online study.

      Maladaptive Daydreaming is often characterised by pacing around (often to music) whilst in a profound daydream. Furthermore someone with the condition may uncontrolablly move their hands or find and hold an object to use in a semi unconscious state. The daydreaming is often triggered by a type of media for example a movie or a song. Maladaptive Daydreaming is reported to make it difficult to concentrate on everyday tasks. Not everyone with the condition sees it as a bad thing but as a gift of vivid imagination.
      Hmm...ok so after reading this...I don't think this is what I thought it was. I don't do it in response to trauma or abuse, and I don't display attendant distress or functional impairment, nor do I pace around listening to music when I daydream, picking up objects, etc. I don't think the OP provided a clear or accurate description of the concept of Maladaptive Daydreaming. A lot of people who responded to this thread seemed to have similar experiences as I have...which just involves excessive daydreaming...and isn't necessarily maladaptive, which by definition, implies abnormality or mental dysfunction.

    22. #22
      <span class='glow_9400D3'>saltyseedog</span>'s Avatar
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      ^basically you do it to escape your miserable reality
      Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake

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      Member nina's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by saltyseedog View Post
      ^basically you do it to escape your miserable reality
      I don't consider my reality to be miserable. I just have an overactive imagination.
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      Ok Im a bit confused, are you all discussing thes as if its problem? or just an interesting habit? because to me it seems like a real problem. Seems like you should be spending your time actually living your life in a productive way. Just my opinion though.

    25. #25
      Hyu
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      Quote Originally Posted by saltyseedog View Post
      ^basically you do it to escape your miserable reality
      Quote Originally Posted by Stryke View Post
      Ok Im a bit confused, are you all discussing thes as if its problem? or just an interesting habit? because to me it seems like a real problem. Seems like you should be spending your time actually living your life in a productive way. Just my opinion though.
      Okay... wait.
      I don't do it because I'm miserable or anything, in fact, I'm quite pleased with my life.
      For me this is something very relaxing and very fun to do.
      I just love letting my imagination run wild, and I think that having done this for many years is one reason why I'm a very creative person.
      Being able to play out stories like that in my head and let characters develop helps me a great deal to design computer games. (I study game development)
      I bet this would also be very helpful if you're a writer etc.

      So yeah, I'm confused as well now. Are we discussion potential mental health problems when using this as a mechanism to escape reality?
      Dreams are simple.
      It's the painfully simple things the human mind cannot comprehend.
      After all your mind is trained to understand the complexity of the waking world,
      not the simplicity of the dream world.

      - Yuya

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