So... I'm just going to write truthfully about my experience because I've never told anyone. This is going to be long.
I suffer from MDD, obviously. I've had this about three years and I spend between 60 and 90% of my waking time in a daydream every day without exception. I have tried many times to quit but I've always been unsuccessful, though I've made some improvements.

I think my daydreams are unusual because they never involve romance, or celebrities or even real life scenarios like being popular or famous. Instead, they are set in an entirely fictional world loosely based off the Legend of Zelda game series. I have always been fantasy-prone. When I began creating my first in-depth, complex daydream story, I was 13 and not at all unhappy; I'd recovered from depression and social anxiety, made wonderful friends and regained my self-confidence. I was as happy as could be. My daydreams, mainly featuring my favourite character from tLoZ, Ghirahim, probably began as a creative outlet.

However, it was when I moved away from the school where I'd recovered, to a much more unfriendly school, that I began to use daydreaming as a coping mechanism. I did everything I could to stop myself relapsing back to depression. For some ridiculous reason, I thought it would help me if I repressed the sadness I felt as a result of changing schools, and force myself to be happy. Any sadness I felt was translated to anger at my new school and myself and my parents, and that anger eventually faded to... nothing. I felt empty. The only place I could feel was in my daydreams. In real life I felt like a broken, fake excuse for a person while on the inside I was in another world entirely. If you suffer from MDD, you probably know the feeling.

I realised I was addicted when it came to exam time. Guess who was pacing around their room replaying imaginary scenarios in their head instead of ever studying? Yes, me. No matter how I tried to convince myself, I could never just study. I still can't. I have my second set of exams coming up in a few months, and these are the ones that matter for university. Without MDD, I know I'm a person capable of achieving As but with it, I'm totally useless. I hope I will recover one day but I'm scared that 'one day' will too late and I will already have failed my exams and changed the course of my future. The worst thing is everyone I know thinks I'm a bright, hardworking person and nobody will be expecting me to do badly. Telling myself these things, or trying to inspire myself by thinking about what I could achieve in the future does not motivate me, because I feel more attached to my fictional world than the real world.

The content of my daydreams has changed over the years. Right now my main daydream is one I'm quite proud of because I think the story is exciting. I would write it but it involves some already-existing fictional characters so, you know, copyright issues. It begins when daydream-me, but age 11, from a tiny religious village, summons a demon named Mevag (pronounced Mevarg, it's a weird name but it's what I'm used to calling him) and because he's not as evil as he pretends to be, instead of him taking 'my' soul like he was going to, we come to an arrangement that means he is free to come and go from The Demon Realm for as long as daydream-me is alive. After a while we become best friends. But because I find it embarrassing to be a Mary-Sue in my own story (even though that's basically what daydreams are for...hmm), everything then goes wrong. In order (um, it's quite dark):
1. Mevag, actually a demon Lord and more powerful than he's let on, is summoned back to the demon realm because the demon king has decided he wants to declare war on humankind and every demon has got to return. Mevag leaves a note to daydream-me saying he'll be gone for 3 days but gets trapped and is gone for years.
2. The war starts and 'my' village is burned and everyone I know dies.
3. I seek revenge and join the army of light (basically the human army). After a year training I fail the final entrance test which is to kill a demon prisoner because I remember Mevag and think 'nope, this prisoner is a person, I'm out'
4. I don't know what to do with my life, so I do the obvious, sensible thing and take life advice from some random fortune teller, then disguise myself as a demon and run away to find Mevag.
5. I find him and we're both really happy to see each other but I still don't know what I'm doing with my life so I stay in the demon realm for about 6 months. At this point daydream-me is the age I am in real life. Most of the daydream is about this part of the story, me trying to fit in and learning about the demon realm (a place which is awesome because there is 0 discrimination based on sex or race or orientation, everybody's chill with everything, but also terrible because it rests under the thumb of the demon king and his right-hand man, a sadistic psychopath obsessed with revenge on the land of light, and they have deceived all the demon realm's citizens into following them and letting them do evil). The culture and mythos I've imagined for this place are kinda more important to me than the actual story. While daydream-me learns all about this stuff, she has to remain disguised, so even the people who think they're friends with her don't know her really, except for Mevag. The story is about truth vs lies, breaking stereotypes, friendship and hate and revenge, identity, following your heart, empathy, war, peace...

The most frustrating thing is how motivated I am in my daydreams to change the world for the better. In the real world, I do charity work as a duty to myself, because it's the right thing to do and I know that if I wasn't so lost in fiction it's what I would want to do. It makes me feel like I'm not wasting all my time. It may be a good thing but I hate that my motivations for it are so selfish and it frightens me that I feel so cut off from reality that I can barely bring myself to care about the work I do. I just wish I could care about the world again. Some days it doesn't even feel real.

If you got through all of that, thank you. I'm terrible at sharing my problems and I'd never tell anyone I know about this because I don't think they'd believe me. I thought I may as well be truthful here.
d1sc0rdant d1sc0rdant
18-21, F
2 Responses Jan 26, 2016

When I was twelve, I built a story loosely based off of Kingdom Hearts and Naruto. Then I built a story based off the twilight series (this was when I had horrible taste in books and before the movies came out). Hearing that you created a world based off the Legend of Zelda Series is refreshing.

I have the same problem as you too. I simply can't just sit down and study. I get too caught up in my thoughts.

Yes I know exactly how you feel. And I always wonder how my life would be without MDD. And you know what, I honestly can't picture that. It has taken over my life entirely that I feel like I am a daydream.