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I Think I May Be Mentally Ill...please Help

I've never told this to anyone.  Not even to the closest people in my life nor do I think I ever will.  This is probably the closest I think I could openly admit this to anyone.  I do pretend I'm someone else. All the time.  I've been doing it since I was a very small child.  I think it started out as just playing by myself alone with my toys and having an imagination but now its full blown and I sincerely believe I may have a personality disorder.  I pretend I am other people. Mostly, people that are celebrities or are public personas.  I take on their personalities and even accents if they have one.  I try not to but some times I'll slip up and let an accent out.  I'll go to work every day and pretend I'm that person, male or female.  When I come home, its even worse.  Because I'm alone I'll pretend to be two people at once, talking back and forth effortlessly in conversation.  It seems to help me not be lonely like I'm in a relationship but at the same time helps me to avoid relationships with the opposite sex because I'm afraid of losing it.  I also can't watch a movie anymore without acting out film out loud as someone else, playing all parts.  I'll do the same with sports matches.  I've tried to hint to my mother that I may be schizophrenic or worse but have never told her any of this because I'm afraid to disappoint her.  I'm scared and I want to stop.  I'm thinking about contacting a local metal illness clinic and having myself tested.  What should I do? 

Thanks,

Distraught

me26 me26 26-30 123 Responses Apr 28, 2010

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Wow. I do this without even noticing until after, which scares me half to death. I'm very depressed and hate My life most the time i am also bipolar. For years and years now I've acted out scenarios in the mirror like a whole story line and start crying or laughing and then realize what I was doing and then start talking to nobody about how I am so stupid and hate everything I do and blah blah my life story. I do this several times a week. It has me wondering if this is normal?

Wow I'm stunned at all the responses on here I genuinely thought I was the only one that did this! Been happening ever since I can remember, has any one out there been cured or is there something that can be done? People please???
:)

I am still waiting for testing. I don't think it is going to happen. I asked my therapist if I have Maladaptive Daydreaming or Fantasy Prone Personality Disorder and she yelled at me telling me there is no such thing. I guess I am back to looking for a new therapist.

You need to be involved in acting. You dont have an illness, you have an undeveloped skill. Lucky you. But, nobody can do this for you and motivation can be a terrifying thing . You could fail. Of course , if you dont try, you already have failed.

Maladaptive daydreaming, it happens to me everytime, now I can't focus at school because I think about my invented worlds and characters.

I have hypochondria also. I have been going to a therapist who does not believe in personality disorders. Not all of them do. I found a new one and still waiting to get tested. So far Schizophrenia and Bipolar. I hope the test will tell me more. I am thinking Borderline Personality Disorder or Dissociative Identity Disorder.

I can't believe I'm not the only one who has this... I find myself emotionally distressed every time I read books or watch movies and somebody does, because I either see myself as that character or I ask somebody close to the dead character, and it's like losing an actual loved one or causing distress to those around me... I feel as if I shouldn't have close relationships with people anymore in fear of hurting people and I often find myself acting as the character or person and feeling horribly sad, sassy, angry, or other things. My mood changes all the time according to how the character feels and I feel like I'm in the setting of a movie/book. They are reality to me and I take them very seriously and I feel like I'm crazy. I dream about them and I've even gone as far as lying to people on the internet about who I am and pretending to be somebody I'm not because I cannot express it to anyone else. For a while I thought I had hypochondria because if I read about somebody having cancer or something I would assume that I too have cancer, but I think this is different than that. So glad to have somebody who knows what this is like...

Like i'm having the same problem.. I imagine myself as various charactors, even act and talk like them and, i have done it yet while reading all above responses and comments.. I was imagning me as a person who helps people suffering from maladaptive daydreaming...

I imagine i'm a character of a serie, book or anime I like ans imagine the other characters too so I interact with them taking the role I have assigned.

OmG!! I thought I was the only one to do that! I was searching about it on the web.. I'm 15 and a girl..it started with me from 1year as I am so addicted to a tv show and I watched it for 3 years..it has finished from from about a year and I can't stop living in my favourite character personality..I pretend to be her out loud when I'm alone..I even started to act characters from films I watch! I can't get out of it and I started to feel psycho..

I have always done this as long as I can remember. I will always be me but the people who are watching changes, they can be people from films I have normally just finished watching or people I know in real life. I will talk away to myself like they are listening, its quite embarrassing when I am caught which has happened various times over the years, im 38 now and still do it all the time. I know no-one is there but I think its a comfort thing?? Good to know im not alone!! xx

Have you guys ever pretended to be famous and friends with celebrities? You play yourself but with a different, very different, lifestyle.

It's weird, as I was searching online to see if there was someone like me I was imagining stuff. I need to control it and I don't know how to stop or what's wrong with me. I have also pretend to be a youtuber or some character from my favorite tv show (i.e. Effy from Skins). I've been doing this since forever and I know there are people older than me that still do it, since I'm just 18. Is there something wrong with me? None of my friends know this. I don't go out much, I get invited and I say yes but at last minute I cancel and say I can't go. I try to get myself to go out but I can't. Sometimes I get anxiety out of the blue and I pretend there's someone with me trying to help me to calm down. I think I've seriously lost it.

Should I seek help or is this 'normal'? Because I don't think it is, unless you count doing this since primary school 'normal'. What should I do???

I imagine i'm the friend, daughter, girlfriends or boyfriend of my favorite characters of books or series and I take it really serious while doing it. I told this to a friend and she told me she did it too but i'm sure she really doesn't or not in the way I do.

I take it really serious too. Almost as if it was all real. I think the reason I do it it's because I don't like my lifestyle. I mean, if I'm someone else I don't have to deal with anything that breaks me down.

I feel comfortable imagining those alternative world, the problem is that sometimes I make conversations out loud, my mom thinks i'm insane.

I feel ya', I am so glad I'm not the only one who does it. I read somewhere that people call it maladaptive day dreaming, which I dunno since I ain't a doctor.

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OK they got me going to a specialist now for psychological testing. Hopefully I will get some answers.

I talked with my therapist about this. She said I had bipolar. I mean does bipolar cause a person to think this way? I am getting a second opinion to make sure.

I do this all the time. I am seventeen and a guy. I have two or three deeply detailed stories about some different guy (like a cooler version of myself). One of the characters dies and resurrects again with a slightly different personality (long story). But when I am them, I am completely them, it is scary once I come back to the real world, and I am afraid to talk to anyone about it. On the bright side I am a really good stage actor in plays and performances and inprov. that I do. And I do have a social life, but I do think it is linked to loneliness, because some of the problems my characters face allude to my real life (girl rejection, being alone etc.) until about a month ago I didn't realize how deeply connected to the characters I truly am, and that scares the crap out of me!

That sounds somewhat similar to what I do. Although, I pretend I'm a Youtuber. I made my character up myself. All I do is sit in my room and 'make videos' aka. talk. About random stuff. It has never worried me but I do tend to feel bad about doing it. Some of the things I say can be really depressing. I don't think it's something you should worry about though.

question: do you or have you ever had possesive issues? Like not wanting people to have what you have or know what you know. Like a new band for example. And question #2 Do you get jealous and envious easily and/or stalk others on social media. And question#3 When you act out every character in the movie do you pick the main ones that have the best line actions and roles? If so we should totally talk about this more together because Iv been there honey

Omg im not alone! I've been doing this for as long as i can remember. I act out scenario s of my own imagination, with various people of my imagination but the main character is always the same. I have her down to her looks, hair. Colour, eye colour, moles, even down to her dead parents ethnicity. I act out the other characters even down to the voices even the male voices. The scenarios are usually to do with love, family and accomplishments. They can last for months and i can have 2 going on at a time. I have friends and tend to cope well in social situations although i have never told any of my friends, i find the thought highly embarrassing and I think they would think i was wierd or a freak. I even lost a marriage because i wanted to be with my fake husband instead of my real one. I told my mother for the first time last night and it was quite a release as she did nt freak out or gather a posse to burn me at the stake. It was especially hard telling my mother as I think she may have had a hand in this. She herself suffered abuse as a child and as a result was quite a cold and unaffectionate. Although she wont admit it or deny it i remember being locked in my room alot, my mother would sleep till the afternoon so i imagine it was not to mess the house. My mother is not a wicked woman she has had a hard life and ultimately she has a good heart. I think she has her own mental issues. Anyway this whole fantasy world i feel has taken over and has stop me from living my real life, its like an ugly addiction and has made me feel suicidal at times cause i look at others who find friendship and life so effortless, i get so jealous. I just want to be normal but t the same time i don't want to give my characters up. I like being Gia, being perfect and being loved and i hate who i am. So glad u guys have shared, so brave. Thankyou x

Hi,
 
I see you wrote this a while back but couldn’t resist reaching out.
 
This is the exact same thing I’ve done since before I can remember. I’ve always over analysed it and thought there was something wrong with me. I’ve wanted to go and see a councillor but didn’t really want to admit to anyone at all. Not because of the embarrassment necessarily but because I think talking about it in that way would make it real. I’ll go through phases where sometimes I won’t do it but it’s always there. I can’t remember the last time I went to sleep without sinking back into a persona I have and a really detailed back story and situation I’ll have developed. I’m always in a perfect relationship with a perfect guy and there’ll usually be something really special about me (I’m a bit hung up on super heroes.) I’m actually 27 now and still do it from time to time although not as much. In my adult life I’ve come to a pretty sure conclusion that it’s a defence mechanism and nothing more. *Also, to all those lovely responses who thought it might have something to do with a social disorder* I have nothing wrong with me, I have a great group of friends and I function perfectly normally in social situations and day to day life. I’m a pretty average person really. So I think it’s just a pretty normal thing that’s just gotten a bit out of hand. I don’t think it’s weird to try and cope with loneliness anyway we can. It’s one of the worst feelings in the world. I’m the same, I’ll talk to myself at night to drown out the silence. I’ll pretend I’m in a relationship because it numbs the empty feeling in my heart. I do suffer from a very mild bit of anxiety and it helps with that too. If I’m stressed or nervous I just lose myself in a story where I’m saving the world so my problems just don’t feel so big anymore – because they’re not mine anymore, they’re someone else’s problems.  If it’s starting to affect your day to day life and keep you from making real connections then I think maybe you should talk to someone. It’s so hard to admit to people but I’m sure if they love you they’d understand. I’ve also been in real relationships and had a great time, been in love, all that jazz and not once do I feel the need to do it, which just makes me more convinced that it replaces that feeling of intimacy.
 
Sorry for the rant – I hope something in there might have made you feel less anxious about it. There are obviously a lot of people here who feel the same and it’s so wonderful they’ve all reached out. I know it’s made me feel a little better knowing I’m not the only one. Just remember that you are in control and you are a wonderful person. Don’t let yourself disappear and let all these random personas take over. I’m sure there would be lots of people who would miss the real you. : ) xx

I'm 23 years old and I do the same thing. I always think that there is something wrong with me or that I have some sort of problem mentally or otherwise. I'm not in a relationship and I have a good group of friends as well but I tend to get very lonely sometimes. When I feel down or lonely I get lost in pretending I'm someone else. I usually pick a character from one of my favorite TV shows and pretend that I have their life. I like to think that it is just something I use to cope with the fact that I am alone and that I don't have anyone. It only happens when I'm feeling alone because it makes me feel better. When I am with my friends or when I have been in past relationships I didn't do it at all. It mostly just comes back when I start to feel that loneliness. Reading your post made me think that maybe there isn't anything wrong with me after-all knowing that I'm not the only one going through this.

Oh my god, I thought I was the only one. Honestly I have been imagining and pretending as well ever since I was young. I usually pretend that I am an actor, or a person in a fictional world of my choosing. Often it's one of the fictional universes created by other people like MLP FiM, or A Song of Ice and Fire, by George R.R. Martin, or even a universe I make up. I have been keeping it as a secret for so long due to fears of being considered a weirdo and a freak. The fact that I have Asperger's Syndrome makes me more weary that it might or might not be a part of my syndrome. But I feel it's something else entirely. Nonetheless, no one knows. Not even my family as I have fears of being put it in a mental hospital or given a label of crazy by a psychiatrist. It's been unnerving sometimes, usually I don't think about it and just act out my parts. I even have fantasies of having friends and a girlfriend in real life. However these imaginations have been decreasing due to an increased social life but I still have them and have on one I want to talk to till now at least. Thank you guys for showing me i am not alone here.

I tend to mimic fictional characters. I have this weird thing where I want to have relationships with certain people who share the same traits as the people in relationships/friendships as that character. But I feel if anyone had the slightest idea of the person I was trying to act as they'd know and would reject me for it. I wish I could talk to someone irl that isnt a psychiatrist about it and relate.

We are here trying to figure this out together. I have noticed that a few of us feel like we can't tell our mother. Could there be a link there? Afraid to disappoint her. Do we have some fear? Do any any of us have a dominant mother?

Is your character dying? Or is a part of you depressed and your having thoughts of death. It sounds deep.

my character usually dies and then i clear my mind and make up a whole other story.. right now the one in my mind is getting pretty deep story wise, and im just kinda wierded out that i do this

write a book, the best authors were like this

I am questioning myself constantly about my sanity because each time i have time by myself or just alone time i end up making scenarios where i am a different person, i just tell "stories" to myself and i am all the characters.. i have never really been open to this, not even to my own mother. i will use sound effects and accents and i think it is really weird for a 15 year old girl to do this. i have recently been pretending to be in-love with the angel of death.. and im kinda worried. im not a bad person im just kinda confused most of the time.. i don't know what to do really but i will mostly do this in the shower where i have privacy so no one can really hear me talking to myself. i will do it when washing dishes or in my room, it kinda scares me, because i know none of my friends do this. im not very social either so i might just be making up relationships in my mind. i will have fights in my stories with myself or even "die". im just acting in my brain but if someone actually walked in on me they would probably be worried.. i don't really know what to do about this so if any of you have any way to help me with this i would really appreciate the advice.

I have been trying to stay in reality. I am finding I feel very depressed and empty inside. I also find life very boring. Once I start living in fantasy again I feel happy and have energy. I am having some guilt though for going back to fantasy. Has anyone else had these feelings when trying to quit?

I have ASPD, and have been labled as a Psycopath and Narcissist. I have never had many friends who stick around long, but have often lived in an altered reality, when I was diagnosed a few months ago I had thought this was an effect of Psycopathy, then twindled the thought maybe mild Schizophrenia or Dimentia. I can't explain why I do it, I just do, i have many friends when i'm alone, and in an odd way it's helped me gain social experience, to the point were I can pretend to listen to my students when they want to talk to me about vintage planes aircraft and what they did over the weekend. It is a relief to see people who have not got these disorders coming out and saying something, now i and i am sure you all feel a little better knowing there are others who share this odd secret. I especially found the fact that the poster often posed as female personas as well. Although I have never played another person in my altered reality, I do often have fantasies of the same sex. I would offer advice but I myself have been looking for advice on how to deal with this problem as well and would like suggestions. All I know I started "pretending to be this other me at about 7 years old, it gets wierd but i will leave that out, for all you who don't want to hear because I am feeling nice to today, bt it would often involve hanging around older people, flying big planes and playing music. Now in my adult life it is the opposite, with the exception of flying (I am a Airline Flight Instructer for a major airline with over 2,000 hours on my log book), i can't say my passion for music has lead to anything other than a couple mangled cords though. Anyways I digress, but one thing is everytime played in this other world i had feelings, and connection I just never had with anyone I have been so gracefully aqquainted with over the years, and it was great because they always liked me for who I am and not Judge me for what I am. I guess after going in and out of this world and into that one, I somehow became stuck in this world when I am alone, sometimes when i am at work in the simulators or on IR flights while my first officer "Stares at the Overhead". I know this was long but whatever, what explanation isn't, or are they I forget to pay attention to people's submissions to these sites, but again I digress :)

I just want to say to all of the responses below, you are brave and my personal heroes. At the time I wrote this post 3 years ago, I didn't think anyone else did this and really thought I was mentally I'll. I know right from wrong and know that what I do is odd which is why I hide it. I don't think I'm sick and I don't think either you are either although talking to someone could be very helpful. I still want to do that and eventually will. But I just wanted to thank you all for being brave to let me know you understand what I've gone through and that it's ok. : )

I'm not getting along with my mum that much so I've been watching a couple on youtube they do pranks I think they are fun etc but the thing is when ever I get into and argument I always think I'm joint in with these to couple (I'm in there life) I think of being in there life because to me they seem to have the perfect life and I don't so to make my self keep going and waking up I think of being with them I don't know what to do sometimes when I remember that me being in there life is just my imagination I start crying I'm only 13

Oh my god, I've been doing this ever since I was a toddler. When I was little, I'd watch a tv show with my mom or something, and in my head I'd pretend I was that character. Back then, I didn't do it constantly, just every once in a while. Now I'm thirteen and I do this every single day. I have since I was about nine. It's routine for me. But lately I've been feeling guilty about it. Also, it makes me feel frustrated and depressed because I want to live in the world of the tv show/book/movie/whatever, but I can't. It makes me feel some better knowing that I'm not the only one that does this.

omg this is soo amazing to find out that im not alone!!! i actually thought that i was the only one like this. what i do is i pretend like im a celebrity and i act like im a new character in a movie or a tv series for example vampire diaries or something. and also i have all the other actual actors and actresses in the specific movie or whatever and i act as them as well. talking to my self back and forth. so weird. but then again i don't do this when im in college or anything. i normally do this when im at home alone. its like i pretend as im a really successful actress, singer, and also i pretend like some of ma real friends from real life are stars as well. lol am i crazy?? is this really normal. i've been doing this thing like forever and im 19. please help!!