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Lazy Sickness, Control Freak & Pathological Selfishness

An accurate mental health diagnosis is important because it lays the foundation of mental health treatment. It will determine the course of medication and therapy you receive. However, it's not unusual for mental health clinicians to disagree on a person's diagnosis.

Don't be surprised. Mental health diagnosis is less of a science that you would think. Often subjective measurements such as questionnaires and observation are used as assessment tools. I have observed a number of common behaviors or character flaws that reach a pathological states, but are not recognized mental health disorders. You will probably recognize some of the proposed conditions which include Lazy Sickness, Control Freak Disorder and Pathological Selfishishness.

Lazy Sickness - Symptoms include an excessive presentation of lethargy, sluggishness, and a lack of goal directed activity. Lazy Sickness Sufferers typically have very little self control or discipline. Individuals who suffer from lazy sickness have often been enabled by family members. Lazy sickness sufferers are often financially dependent on another person because they have not cultivated an academic or professional career. This may result in an inability to live autonomously, even as adults. Much of their time is spent engaged in frivolous activities. These activities may have similarities to addictive behaviors ie unsuccessful attempts to stop activities.

Control Freak Disorder - "Presenting" symptoms include attempts to control the behaviors, thoughts, and emotions of the people around them. The spectrum of dominating behaviors is often overbearing and may become intolerable. Therefore, one of the primary symptoms of the Control Freak is a lack of close relationships. The Control

A close up of woman with steam coming out of her ears.
The dominating behaviors of control freaks have negative impact on realtionships.

Freak often has few friends, is not liked by family members and may be isolated. The Control Freak often becomes angry or feels threatened when others act, emote or think differently than him. Due to his lack of emotional control and need to dominate others, the control freak often responds with insults, criticism and sometimes threats when others act as an individual. The Control Freak may cling very strongly to his beliefs and opinions and harshly judges others who do not share the same beliefs.

Selfish Sickness - Symptoms include an obsessive focus of self. A person who presents with selfish sickness feels as though their experiences are very different, unique, or more difficult than they actually are. Their problems are often an obsessive focus, and are generally blown out of proportion. Selfish Sickness makes it difficult to empathize with the difficulties of another person. Other people's problems are greatly minimized. If attention is not directed toward a person with selfish sickness they may get angry or engage in sabotaging behavior in order to draw attention back to themselves. Selfish sickness presents with a great deal of sensitivity on special occasions such a Birthdays or Holidays. If a great deal of attention is not received, selfish sickness sufferers react with anger or are deeply hurt. While it is not impossible for an individual with selfish sickness to feel compassion for another, the compassion it is not sustained for very long. Selfish Sickness individuals often have little tolerance for other people who may be experiencing problems.

You probably know someone with one of these make-believe disorders because they are common personality traits.

I try to stress the importance of using mental health diagnosis as a term which uses broad strokes to define a cluster of symptoms. It is not you. It is not your essence. It is a label. Don't attach to hard to your labels. Break out of them!

Be in peace - Diane


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