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Do you have maladaptive daydreaming?

Wow that's amazing! Well Done @Widow_of_one!

I am close to breaking the back of this as well. I have decreased so much and I can pull myself out now and tell my inner critic to f*ck off.
wow! That’s impressive. Speaking of pulling out - one night I was in bed having my typical “somatics” before bed when I don’t know what I did but I stopped it!! Wow!
 
I wanted to make some key points about maladaptive fantasies:
1) it never occurred during the day only at night.
2) I believe that when I sit or get into bed I “connect”- aka my mind and body become one. I think maladaptive daydreaming is a fun way to “block” whatever is coming up. So it is a very useful “symptom”.
3) ever since I had a “FB dragged” (ie my gf dragged my body outside and sexually abused me with the help of his friends) I can’t not have maladaptive daydreaming about them! The majority of maladaptive fantasies I used to engage in was about them! Now that I see them for being who they are/were, my mind tries to start thinking about them but quickly stops!! I Seem to become aware that the feeling that I have in my body about them isn’t “happy” it is sad. I don’t want to feel sad I want to feel happy so the “maladaptive fantasies” stop! I do have other maladaptive fantasies but my grandfather and his friends accounted for about 95% of them.
 
Thread starter #221
My maladaptive narratives happen all day whilst I am doing other things.

It is interesting to ready our experiences @Widow_of_one.

I am in the maladaptive daydreaming most of the time at the moment. All day. It's hard to describe. I think it is part of my reactive attachment disorder.
 
I do the same thing.
So this is going to sound kinda "scientific"-because I'm a planner. I retired from work.....and realized I spent way too much time in dissociationland or climbing in TV shows which facilitated me not dealing/living in reality........so, I wrote down a plan. I needed new things to do actively....so I started taking art classes-one on one, then in small groups, and it was very hard.....but as I met more people, it got easier and as I did better in art....and found my niche, my self esteem rose. I play an instrument, so made a plan to get better at that. Learning.....learning anything new, fosters a new direction in thinking. So, I'd learn to cook something new, learn to fix something around the house (youtube is great for that), learn something new on my camera, and make myself go to new places.....new is different, each time. New keeps you engaged.....whether it is painting flowers on old curtains, crocheting a new blanket, making a vegetable pot garden from old pots, or playing a new song......new didn't allow me to daydream. I planned at least one new thing a day......and this really has helped break out of the "old patterns".........I thought about all the things I needed to do musically, spiritually, artisitcally, writing, for my home, traveling, and physically......kinda.......dare to dream. Instead of dreaming about it.....or reinacting something old, focusing on learning helped keep me in the here and now.....and there were here and now results, whether a clay heron, painted curtains, bird photos, or a new line dance. So I think the key to wanting to change maladaptive daydreaming is to decided that maladaptive daydreaming isn't really living.....and make a plan and act on it everyday to do new things.......engaging things.....things that build us up and make us smile. I don't have to fight maladaptive daydreaming anymore......I don't think I need it. I'm much better with who I am......each day (at least that's for now, anyway).
 
You're right, that helped me too! Now that I have farmish chores everyday, I plan instead of daydream. In my free time I have lots of craft projects. With the pandemic I have allowed it to creep in a little, but I figure that's ok since my stepfather is now on hospice and I'm moving, all are hugely stressful things.
Yes....all are stressful....but all are new and you are learning....and living in the here and now.....and when he leaves this Earth......so many new possibilities await you. Good luck with that.....and keep the faith!
 
Thread starter #225
I think maladaptive daydreaming is a ... way to “block” whatever is coming up. So it is a very useful “symptom”.
That is a really interesting way to think about it. I will think on this. Seeing it as a symptom rather than another maladaptive or some other negative epithet is most useful.

My maladaptive day dreaming is a symptom. That's really useful for me.
 
Thread starter #226
New keeps you engaged....
That's a good thing to do. I was doing that but then I started using it as a way to beat myself up - that I wasn't learning enough, fast enough, or I wasn't good enough.

Then I found a great banjo teacher and he tried to get me to join up to this self help encounter week or weekend and that it will change your life and if you don't go then you are in denial about your issues. He was pretty unkind. I wish I had just gotten up and walked out, but I didn't. I stayed and listened to it for two hours. So I have been burned.
 
That's a good thing to do. I was doing that but then I started using it as a way to beat myself up - that I wasn't learning enough, fast enough, or I wasn't good enough.

Then I found a great banjo teacher and he tried to get me to join up to this self help encounter week or weekend and that it will change your life and if you don't go then you are in denial about your issues. He was pretty unkind. I wish I had just gotten up and walked out, but I didn't. I stayed and listened to it for two hours. So I have been burned.
@ms spock First...it was only 2 hrs of your life.....where'd you go wrong with boundary setting and keeping? You go play banjo and end up talking about your personal stuff......he's a banjo teacher......so music is what is expected to be happening?? Right......just music. That's how my music group has worked. We have been together 17 years....off and on....so we do share about families, vacations, cancer/surgeries, health, but still-not typically mental health or really personal stuff......Did you allow the intended music boundary to be shifted to a more personal level.............do you know how that happened?

When I meet new people (teachers are notorious for this), I try never to appear needy and don't tell them my trauma shit or personal position on much more than the weather, past employment, and COVID 19 and maybe a few of my talents....I try to be a good listener....let them talk.....learn about them.....that keeps the focus off of me....and on them.

If you are going for banjo lessons and coming away with "become a happier, well-adjusted person lessons/cure" you might have changed the boundaries........boundaries are based on the intent of any relationship and what you both "talk about" and allow in the conversation......Consider keeping it simple and straightforward.....
Go to art class...expect to do art,
go to banjo class-expect to be playing on a banjo,
go to church.....expect to get your spiritual needs met,
go to yoga class, expect to get stretched out............................
go talk about your problems/past history to people....expect to get advice or some kind of reaction. It is you who hold the boundary key.....and it wasn't his fault he was convincing enough to get you to go to the two hour improve yourself course. You didn't get burned.....you just really relaxed your boundaries......and didn't like the outcome. Then you beat yourself up-hold the line next time......don't throw baby out with bath water........he's not that important.

I say this from experience....when I divulged past trauma, appeared needy, then I unknowingly changed the boundary of the intended relationship.............telling too much changes the relationship, often gives the other person the warm fuzzies to fix me.....and there are plenty of fixers out there.......yeah......RUN! I work really hard to keep firm boundaries....which requires I limit what I reveal. Save that for long-time friendships....where you know you can trust them because you've established a long-term relationship.

I'm finding life easier if I consider that parts of my life (like other peoples) are just private (not a secret)-just not necessary to share with others.....I tell my T my secrets or darker stuff, my past, my trauma.....and share with only one other person.....minimally
when I think it is beneficial to the relationship-and only then.

Consider forgetting banjo teacher, and make your own ideal be happy plan on paper-all the things you'd like to learn to do in life......then work toward it actively and realistically in your life so that you are engaged in your own personal life goals regularly.......engagement, learning new things and meeting new....hopefully healthier folks too that also believe in a private space for their past. Oh....also you might tell inner critic "No" when you hear him......I sometimes have to say it aloud....but you can stop/minimize that too. It is just a little bump in the road. Take care,
 
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