Cassie Oliver’s: To The Girl Who Can’t Say No : People Pleaser? Guest Writer

So I have not had time to dive in deep on the research of a famous fictional scientist, but that post is coming soon, maybe next week but for sure before April 5th. Anyway, lucky one of my friends accepted the offer of writing a blog post for me. So here it is, please enjoy!

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Cassie Oliver is from a faraway land called Iowa. She lives in the middle of a booming city, within her parent’s house as she awaits her adventure to seminary in the fall. She loves to drink hot chocolate, read autobiographies of celebrities and the Holy Bible. She has a vast knowledge of sports for one of the female gender. She is friends with the author and wonders why she was ever allowed to write this.

As a young girl, I was made fun of most of my years in school because I was the one who would always raise my hand in class for any assignment the teacher would give me. This continued into my college years where I felt like my car was used more as a taxi service then it was used for personal reasons. After I graduated college was when I started feeling that I was doing things more to please people then to do them for myself. As I discovered this, I started to question my mere existence, has my whole life been a lie to myself and just a reflection of what people wanted to see in me? Or have I not figured out who I am and I am just a bubble walking around filling a void in the space continuum? I have started saying no to people, and you ask how has that changed my life and those around me? Well let’s just say that I have less people in my life at the time being. People that have been around for years have started to noticed that I have more time to spend with them but more important, more time to discover the true self that I have been trying to find.

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Cassie is on the way to finding herself.

Until next week!

“Who in the world am I? Ah, that’s the great puzzle.”
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

 

Ranting of a Mad Woman No. 5: I See Grey

Happy Saturday readers. I hope all are enjoying today or at least making it through today. Conference went great. I got to see my friends and research mentor!

Anyway next week or so will be super busy, but I wanted to do a Ranting of a Mad Woman, because I have not done anything really creative since November (Rantings of a Mad Woman #3). Rantings of a Mad Woman #4  was more of a Lesley thing.

Anyway here is a ranting.

It started with a whisper. I whimper. A soft cry for help.
Someone save me.
Nothing.
From white it becomes black.
I get in the car and drive. I don’t know where. The darkness surrounds.
I speak up in a normal voice.
Someone help me.
I am dismissed.
The ever “why are you depressed you have it better than most.”
I say nothing.
From black it becomes grey.

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I end up in the roof of a very tall building.
I scream loud and until I feel my lungs begging me for air or least they collapse. The anger inside consumes me like a raging chemical fire.
But is it really anger. I don’t see red.
I see grey.
Most people think that depression is associated with black. I associate it with grey. Black, though the absent of color, goes well with everything. Black suits at weddings or major celebrations.
Seeing the world in white the bright side of things, seeing the world in black the dark side of things (hey at least they have cookies, right?) Seeing the world in grey washed up with no meaning, no life, no promise.
I see the world in grey.
Empty.
Anger is let out. Anger because that’s the only way things are understood.
Who screams the loudest is the one who is heard.
Abuse.
War.
Politics.
Whoever is the angriest. Whoever screams the loudest has the power.
I scream in anger. I scream. I scream. I scream.
And yet.
No one hears me. No one understands me.
No one is listening.
It makes me angry because no one can comprehend the pain that is inside.
They didn’t hear me as I whispered.
The dismissed my “inside voice.”
Now they tell me to shut up and stop being angry. To see the bright side of things.
I shut up.
I smile even though I’m crying inside.
I take a leap knowing that one will catch me. One has been listening the whole time. I don’t see  the darkness. I don’t see the the light.
I see the end goal that we all will achieve. The goal that has been the one hearing, understanding.
Listening.
I don’t feel happy.
I don’t feel content.
I don’t feel depressed.
I feel the impact.
I see grey.

I will write as soon as I can, but #life.

Raney Simmon’s Truer Than Fiction Guest Writer

Happy Tuesday! Lots has happen. Well actually just two things. One, I got into grad school!! Hoary! I am still waiting for one more to, pray to God, accept me.

Two, this Friday I will be presenting my summer research at a region conference. Please send your prayers and wish me the best of luck.

To the post! Guest writer! I haven’t done one of these in a really long time. Here it is:

Raney Simmon’s is a graduate of Columbia College in Columbia South Carolina. Her passion is writing and reading. She will be talking about the impact that literature has in the lives of those struggling with abuse and/or mental illness. 

Enjoy!

“We don’t create a fantasy world to escape from reality, we create it to be able to stay.” – Lynda Barry

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I would say my mental health journey began when my love of the written word grew. It manifested in the form of escapism because I spent so many hours reading that I sometimes wished I could go into the pages of the books I love.

Inkheart is the name of the book that started it all. I know I’ve probably mentioned this book before, but it’s the book that really made me realize reading and writing as my true passions. I read it during the summer before I started 7th grade, recommended as a summer reading choice by my 6th grade English teacher. It’s also the book that made me realize fantasy as one of my favorite genres to read and set me on the path to read what would become my favorite series of all: Harry Potter. Inkheart made me want to immerse myself in the books I read with its promise of characters being able to bring characters from other books into the world. Along with the Harry Potter series, this book (and the two books following it, Inkspell and Inkdeath) really showed me what reading truly had to offer. It’s a book that I’ll always keep close to my heart and a book I read whenever I find myself lacking inspiration.

At the time, escapism was my form of relief from the everyday cycle of reality that had become my life. When I was in 8th grade, my mother got married to a man my sister and I were excited to call stepfather. But it wasn’t until many months later that he revealed his truly terrible persona to us all.

It first came in the form of alcoholism. He’d spend Friday nights going out to drink and come back home aggressively drunk. I remember during this period of time that one day on our way home from going out to dinner with friends, Mom received a call. The police had picked him up and wanted us to come get him. I remember that trip home how he acted, the amount of tears I shed at seeing him in that state, feeling completely sorry for him. At the time I didn’t realize things were only going to get worse from there.

After the drinking, he started becoming verbally and mentally abusive. He was especially verbally abusive towards me. I remember him calling me a “retard” on more than one occasion and even tried to convince me that I had a disorder by trying to diagnose me himself. He even told me to kill myself “because nobody would miss me,” and threatened my well-being during the course of their marriage.

He made me feel worthless, like I was completely alone in the world. So much so that these words did damage to my self-esteem and self worth that I can still feel today.

The marriage truly ended the summer before my senior year of high school when he and my sister got into such a terrible argument that she threatened to leave and not come back. He acted like my sister not coming back was perfectly fine with him so my mother decided she’d had enough so we packed up our things together and left.

It was during these four years of my life that I used reading to escape from what my family was going through. As soon as I’d get home from school, I’d go to my room and read with my bedroom door closed and wouldn’t come out accept to eat. I’d read fantasy books because they were further from the reality I was dealing with and I loved the stories within their pages. Reading helped me cope with what I was dealing with in a safe, judge free environment. But this habit also affected other aspects of my life too, though at the time I never realized how much. I read to escape, but I further isolated myself from those around me who cared.

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However, there are two other books I read during this time that helped me make it through these four years of my life. Both these books were my first introduction to young adult literature and centered around real life problems teenagers go through. Speak really stands out to me because it was the first book I ever read that openly talked about rape. It is the story of a young girl who gets raped at a party the summer before she starts her freshman year of high school. She calls the police, who bust the party, resulting in her being the most hated girl in her class. I enjoyed reading this book during this time because even though I’ve never gone through that traumatic experience before, I was going through an experience just as bad and I didn’t feel like I could openly talk about it. I felt like I couldn’t speak out about my experience because nobody would care.

Crank is the name of the second novel that made me interested in young adult literature. It also centers around a young teenage girl, but the story and the way it’s told are completely different. Each page of the story is written in poetry form, giving the reader a completely unique reading experience. But like with Speak, I felt like I was being exposed to another real-life problem for the first time. Instead of rape, I was reading a novel that heavily dealt with drug addiction and the way it can impact those around you. This book had an impact on me because it was the first book I read that talked about a heavy subject matter in poetry format. It exposed me to poetry but also made me better understand my stepfather’s drinking addiction. So it benefited me in two ways: first, it showed me how to express myself through poetry and second, helped me understand why my stepfather is an alcoholic and how his drinking hurt us all.

This experience and escapism both changed me. They made me more introverted, made me prefer the comforts of home over being out in the world. But they also strengthened me and helped me survive so I can hopefully begin to heal. Because while we are out of harm’s way, I know my mental health journey has just begun.

If you like Raney’s writing check out her blog: https://vookthevook.wordpress.com/

 

When will My Reflection Show?

Hello readers! As many of you know, I have a sort of crush on Mulan (the movie and the character)! My favorite song is not, surprisingly, I’ll Make a Man Out of You, but Reflection, hence the title of the post.

No, not really. While I would love to write about Mulan and the amazingness of this movie, this week is National Eating Disorder Awareness Week, and it exactly what I will be talking about.

“Do I want to die from the inside out or the outside in?” Wintergirls

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Okay, so awhile back I read a book called Wintergirls, by Laurie Halse Anderson. Wintergirls is the story of eighteen-year-old Lia Overbrook, a girl with anorexia and someone who self-harms who loathes her body, her family, and her life. All these emotions are heightened when Lia’s best friend Cassie who suffers from bulimia, dies in a motel room after a long session of bingeing and purging. Wow, Peña, from Mulan to death in a motel, that escalated quickly.

See that is the thing with eating disorders, they escalate quickly. There are a lot of different types of eating disorders, but the main three I will be focusing on is bulimia, anorexia, and binge eating. Eating disorders, such as bulimia, binge eating disorder, and anorexia, are serious illnesses that involve extreme emotions, attitudes, and behaviors surrounding food, exercise, and body image.

Contrary to common stereotypes, eating disorders affect all kinds of people, regardless of gender, ethnicity, age, socioeconomic status, sexuality, or background. Most of the people who seek treatment are white females, but the number of eating disorders in non-white people has been increasing, and while it was considered at one point to be a “female disorder” more and more males are starting to fall victims to one or more eating disorders.  In fact, 30 million Americans will struggle with an eating disorder at some point in their lives.

I am just going to give a quick summary of the three main eating disorders and include some hyperlinks for additional information, but I will come back to this subject matter in various later post.

“I failed eating, failed drinking, failed not cutting myself into shreds. Failed friendship. Failed sisterhood and daughterhood. Failed mirrors and scales and phone calls. Good thing I’m stable. ” Wintergirls

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Bulimia- dying from the inside out

Bulimia nervosa, oh you fiend. Bulimia nervosa is actually the eating disorder that I dislike the most. Here is why: this is a serious, potentially life-threatening eating disorder characterized by a cycle of bingeing and compensatory behaviors such as self-induced vomiting designed to undo or compensate for the effects of binge eating. Basically, you eat and then throw up what you ate.

Some of the symptoms include: frequent episodes of consuming very large amount of food followed by behaviors to prevent weight gain, such as self-induced vomiting. A feeling of being out of control during the binge-eating episodes. Self-esteem overly related to body image. Like any mental health condition this disorder can be co-morbid such as: self-injury (cutting and other forms of self-harm without suicidal intention), substance abuse, and an increase in impulsivity (risky sexual behaviors, shoplifting, whatever it maybe.) Little to no regard is placed to living.

Here is why I called it a fiend: bulimia is extremely hard to catch. People with bulimia usually have normal or a little above normal weight. To the world who considers eating disorders as a condition that causes a person to be either too fat or too thin, bulimics can pass under the radar of healthy. That is the illusion that kills. According to the DSM-5, the official diagnostic criteria for bulimia nervosa are: recurrent episodes of binge eating. An episode of binge eating is characterized by both of the following: eating, in a discrete period of time (e.g. within any 2-hour period), an amount of food that is definitely larger than most people would eat during a similar period of time and under similar circumstances, and a sense of lack of control over eating during the episode (e.g. a feeling that one cannot stop eating or control what or how much one is eating). Usually this behavior is done away from the view of anyone. This next one part is what kills the bulimic from the inside out.  People with bulimia have recurrent inappropriate compensatory behavior in order to prevent weight gain, such as self-induced vomiting, misuse of laxatives, diuretics, or other medications, fasting, or excessive exercise. The binge eating and inappropriate compensatory behaviors both occur, on average, at least once a week for three months. Three months! Do you know who much damage you throwing up can cause for three months? That’s also, if, the disorder gets catch.

“Here stands a girl clutching a knife. There is grease on the stove, blood in the air, and angry words piled in the corners. We are trained not to see it, not to see any of it.” Wintergirls

Anorexia-dying from the outside in

Anorexia nervosa, I shake my head in sadness. This is an eating disorder characterized by weight loss (or lack of appropriate weight gain in growing children); difficulties maintaining an appropriate body weight for height, age, and stature; and, in many individuals, distorted body image. People with anorexia generally restrict the number of calories and the types of food they eat. This disorder breaks my heart, because that is one way that someone with anorexia can die. A heart attack. Some people with the disorder also exercise compulsively, purge via vomiting and laxatives, and/or binge eat. It’s the end-all-be-all of eating disorders.

Anorexia can affect people of all ages, genders, sexual orientations, races, and ethnicities. Here is something I just recently found out: historians and psychologists have found evidence of people displaying symptoms of anorexia for hundreds or thousands of years.

Although the disorder most frequently begins during adolescence, an increasing number of children and older adults are also being diagnosed with anorexia. PAUSE! I am about to break the biggest myth in mental health illness EVER! No one must be emaciated or underweight to have anorexia. Studies have found that larger-bodied individuals can also have anorexia, although they may be less likely to be diagnosed due to cultural prejudice against fat and obesity. Thanks, upside twisted ideas!

Here is what you need to have to be diagnosed with anorexia nervosa according to the DSM-5, the following criteria must be met:

  1. Restriction of energy intake relative to requirements leading to a significantly low body weight in the context of age, sex, developmental trajectory, and physical health.
  2. Intense fear of gaining weight or becoming fat, even though underweight.
  3. Disturbance in the way in which one’s body weight or shape is experienced, undue influence of body weight or shape on self-evaluation, or denial of the seriousness of the current low body weight.

This doesn’t help the heavy-set people with anorexia, which is why most of those cases go untreated.

However, even if all the DSM-5 criteria for anorexia are not met, a serious eating disorder can still be present. Atypical anorexia includes those individuals who meet the criteria for anorexia but who are not underweight despite significant weight loss.

“I am angry that I starved my brain and that I sat shivering in my bed at night instead of dancing or reading poetry or eating ice cream or kissing a boy…” Wintergirls

Binge Eating Disorder

Binge eating disorder, my understanding is with you. This is a severe, life-threatening and treatable eating disorder characterized by recurrent episodes of eating large quantities of food often very quickly and to the point of discomfort; a feeling of a loss of control during the binge; experiencing shame, distress or guilt afterwards; and not regularly using unhealthy compensatory measures (purging) to counter the binge eating. It is the most common eating disorder in the United States.

BED is one of the newest eating disorders formally recognized in the DSM5. Before the most recent revision in 2013, BED was listed as a subtype of EDNOS (eating disorder not otherwise specified), now referred to as OSFED (Other specified feeding or eating disorder).

Like said above, it is the most common eating disorder in the United States. The formal diagnostic criteria are:

  • Recurrent episodes of binge eating. An episode of binge eating is characterized by both of the following:
    • Eating, in a discrete period of time (e.g., within any 2-hour period), an amount of food that is definitely larger than what most people would eat in a similar period of time under similar circumstances. Similar to bulimia.
    • A sense of lack of control over eating during the episode (e.g., a feeling that one cannot stop eating or control what or how much one is eating). Again, similar to bulimia.
  • The binge eating episodes are associated with three (or more) of the following:
    • Eating much more rapidly than normal.
    • Eating until feeling uncomfortably full.
    • Eating large amounts of food when not feeling physically hungry.
    • Eating alone because of feeling embarrassed by how much one is eating.
    • Feeling disgusted with oneself, depressed, or very guilty afterward.
    • Marked distress regarding binge eating is present.
    • The binge eating occurs, on average, at least once a week for 3 months.
    • The binge eating is not associated with the recurrent use of inappropriate compensatory behaviors (e.g., purging) as in bulimia nervosa and does not occur exclusively during the course of bulimia nervosa or anorexia nervosa.

Fun fact: eating disorders, most of the time, is because the person feels like the only thing she/he can control is the food they intake and often times the disorder ends up controlling them.

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An eating disorder causes our reflections to be distorted. The person knows they have a world to offer the world and yet all they see when they look in the mirror is a monster, a fat, out-of-control monster. Hiding the disorder makes them feel isolated. They put on a mask for the world and eventually while behind the mask, they want to show who they really are inside.

“Eating was hard. Breathing was hard. Living was hardest.” Wintergirls

If you want to know about risk factors and possible causes, click here.

To those suffering from any form of eating disorders, you are not alone. To those asking when your reflection will show who you are inside, know that I know who you are inside. Your reflection should not matter. What is on the outside does not compare to what is on the inside. A person who is loving and caring.

Please, if you are struggling with an eating disorder get help. Talk to someone. I, though I am not yet a professional psychologist, am here for you. Also, you can always call or text 800-273-8255 or text ANSWER to 839863 for crisis counseling. They are open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week because they care about you.

For additional contact information on various mental health topics, click here.

“Why is my reflection/Someone I don’t know?/ Must I pretend that I’m/ Someone else for all time?/ When will my reflection show/ Who I am inside?” Reflection

It is Called a Pattern

Hello readers, did you miss me? I apologize for a few things: 1) the ever so clear Moriarty reference 2) my leave of absence, I have a job now working with pre-k students, got to produce the next generation of nerds! 3) our current political state of affairs- or this could be either fake news or alternative facts no one knows anymore.

I discovered Unbreakable Kimmy Schmitt. For those who don’t know what Unbreakable Kimmy Schmitt. Season one and two is on Netflix. Also, check out the trailer here.

Okay, so who is Kimmy? Well, the series follows 29-year-old Kimmy Schmidt as she adjusts to life in New York City after her rescue from a doomsday cult in Indiana where three other women and herself were held captive by Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne for 15 years.

“Yes, there was weird sex stuff.” Kimmy said to her roommate. While talking about her PTSD would be great for this article because, hey she attacked her date because he grabbed her and smacked her lover while they were trying to have sex, this is not what troubles Kimmy. Kimmy has attachment issues, and that is what is going to be the topic of this post.

First, let’s talk about attachment. Attachment theory is a concept in developmental psychology that concerns the importance of “attachment” in regards to personal development. It makes the claim that the ability for an individual to form an emotional and physical “attachment” to another person gives a sense of stability and security necessary to take risks, branch out, and grow and develop as a personality. There are two key people John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth, I’m not going to focus on them too much just their theories.

Bowlby established that childhood development depended heavily upon a child’s ability to form a strong relationship with “at least one primary caregiver.” Typically, this is one of the parents. Bowlby’s studies in childhood development and “temperament” led him to the conclusion that a strong attachment to a caregiver provides a necessary sense of security and foundation. Without such a relationship in place, a great deal of developmental energy is expended in the search for stability and security.

Ainsworth identified the existence of what she calls “attachment behavior.” She ran a study  to see how child attachment. The attachment types are as followed:

Secure Attachment: children feel confident that the attachment figure will be available to meet their needs. They use the attachment figure as a safe base to explore the environment and seek the attachment figure in times of distress. They cry when the attachment figure leaves but are able to be soothed when the figure returns.

Insecure Avoidant: children do not orientate to their attachment figure while investigating the environment. They are very independent of the attachment figure both physically and emotionally. They do not seek contact with the attachment figure when distressed. These children will cry when the parent leaves, but when the parent returns they are distant.

Insecure Ambivalent / Resistant: children adopt an ambivalent behavioral style towards the attachment figure. The child will commonly exhibit clingy and dependent behavior, but will be rejecting of the attachment figure when they engage in interaction. The child fails to develop any feelings of security from the attachment figure. Accordingly, they exhibit difficulty moving away from the attachment figure to explore novel surroundings. They will cry when the figure leaves and once the figure returns they are difficult to be soothed.

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“The trick is not caring whether you live or die,” says Kimmy when asked how she could hold her breathe for four minutes. Why would she care? Kimmy was kidnapped for 15 years because her mom never taught her how to tie her shoes, her mom was never really a mother figure, “I made you lunch,” Kimmy says. She never knew her father, her mom gave up looking for her to go ride roller coasters. Her attachment problems are seen throughout the season, but it is finally Andrea (Tina Fey) who points out her problems

In “Kimmy Sees A Sunset!,” Kimmy sees a marvelous sunset as she realizes that Andrea will have to leave for rehab because Kimmy has failed to help her. Kimmy is upset that she has failed, and blames herself for Andrea’s drinking problem. Andrea forces her to see that her abandonment issues are rooted in a toxic cycle of blaming herself for things that are in no way her fault. “It’s not your fault,” Andrea insists to Kimmy twice—and then once more, Oprah-style. Kimmy needed to be told that it’s not her fault that people leave in order to really understand where her attachment issues come from.

How does this apply to attachment theory? When Kimmy’s mom left, she developed major abandonment issues, that “stink up my relationship with other people.” Kimmy tries to help people because she was always helping her mother, and Kimmy feel like it is her fault when she fails to help them and then they, of some reason or another, leave. I believe that Kimmy has insecure ambivalent / resistant attachment type. Here is why: Kimmy, helps one person at a time, and spends so much time with them that while they are the ones who seem clingy and dependent it is actual Kimmy who is clingy because she refuses to see them fail, and she is dependent because Kimmy depends on their success to feel good about herself. Kimmy has difficulty moving away from the person she is trying to help. Finally, when Kimmy is unable to help, she honestly believes it her fault the other person fail. While some of the things are Kimmy’s fault, the person’s success or failure were results of the individual person.

Kimmy finally realizes this in “Kimmy Sees a Sunset!,” and goes out to find her mother and develop better attachment styles, because if she doesn’t she will not be able to truly be in a healthy relationship. Like Andrea says, “It’s called a pattern.”

The season ends with Kimmy getting over some of her mommy issues, only to find herself facing her PTSD. Season three comes out on May 19.

 

Well, technically, you’re not a king

Hello readers! I hope your new year has been… well manageable up till now. If not, the year is still young, which means it could get worse or it could get better, but as always,  “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” Or James 1:2-4.

Any who, cause insomnia is paying a visit tonight, I am up!!! It’s one in the morning so why not. Okay, so like I said before I am going to write about characters who have mental disorders. Right now, I am watching two movies: Mrs. Doubtfire and Shrek. I had the best childhood! Anyway, I was thinking umm… Lesley, maybe you should write about one of these two movies. But which one, Lesley? (Yes, I often refer myself in the third person, allows me to think.) So, I am looking deeper into the two movies, and guess what? In Mrs. Doubtfire, while Robin Williams does cross-dress, I don’t think the DSM5 considers this as a mental disorder.

So, turns out that cross-dressing is in the DSM5 called Transvestic Disorder. If interested go check out the link!

I am going to focus on Shrek, cause why not? It’s an awesome movie. So, there are a couple of characters in Shrek that if they did come to my psych office (when I get a psych office), I could diagnosis with many and various issues! Shrek: social phobia, antisocial personality disorder, anger issues, etc. Donkey: shows signs of having ADHD, anxiety, suffers from loneliness, and possibly hidden depression. Fiona, haha she is a jar of wonders suffering from anxiety, loneliness, PTSD, and body dysmorphic disorder. However, the character I want to talk about is someone who cut short from the film and played a small part in the movie, although he had major impacts. Additionally, this character, sadly for him, could never measure up to be king. Yep! I am talking about this guy:

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Lord Farquaad! Trying saying that name five times fast (I cannot with sounding inappropriate, haha!) Anyway, for those who don’t know who he is or have not seen the movie: Farquaad is the comically short-in-stature, ruthless ruler of Duloc. Several times in the film it is commented that, in his capital city Duloc’s towering height, Farquaad may be compensating for something.

In his pursuit of perfection, Farquaad attempts to rid his Kingdom of Fairy Tale creatures, offering a bounty for their capture and then exiling imprisoned creatures to Shrek’s swamp (mistake number 1). However, because Farquaad is not of royal stock, he cannot become a king until he marries a princess (enter magic mirror where there is ad for Fiona…wait…what???) MISKATE NUMBER 2! However, Princess Fiona can be the must first be rescued from her tower which is guarded by a fire-breathing dragon.

Obviously, Farquaad won’t recuse her, cause well height, and he only cares for himself “That is a sacrifice I am willing to make” when he talks about how many men will die in this task. He holds a tournament to discover the knight who will rescue Princess Fiona. Enter Shrek and Donkey and the one of my favorite songs “Bad Reputation” by Joan Jett & the Blackhearts. Shrek and Donkey defeat the knights, so Farquaad decides to send Shrek on the quest. Farquaad agrees to move the Fairy Tale creatures out of Shrek’s swamp if he rescues Fiona and grant deed to the swamp to prevent any future squatters or resettlements on his land. Shrek delivers Fiona to Farquaad and he immediately proposes, unaware that she becomes an ogress at sunset (talk about desperate and mistake number 3). Shrek later disrupts the marriage ceremony, delaying a kiss between Farquaad and Fiona until after sunset.

Fiona makes the transition from human to ogress form, upon which Farquaad rejects his new bride, banishing her back to the tower and claiming the title of King (I don’t think that’s how it works since the marriage never was completed, but I am not sure). He also sentences Shrek to death at that time, but before Farquaad finishes his claim of becoming the new King, the dragon who had guarded Fiona, and who developed a crush on Donkey while Fiona was being rescued from her castle (wow that sentence… Go watch the movie if you have not already), crashes through the window in response to a beckoning whistle from Shrek. She then devours Farquaad and burps out his crown. Farquaad was apparently not well-liked in Duloc; when he is eaten, the citizens laugh and cheer.

Okay, Lesley, what’s up with this short little guy? Well… he has Histrionic personality disorder!

What is that?

Good question!

Histrionic personality disorder is characterized by a long-standing pattern of attention seeking behavior and extreme emotionality. Someone with histrionic personality disorder wants to be the center of attention in any group of people, and feel uncomfortable when they are not. While often lively, interesting and sometimes dramatic, they have difficulty when people aren’t focused exclusively on them. People with this disorder may be perceived as being shallow, and may engage in sexually seductive or provocative behavior to draw attention to themselves.

Individuals with Histrionic Personality Disorder may have difficulty achieving emotional intimacy in romantic or sexual relationships. Without being aware of it, they often act out a role (e.g., “victim” or “princess”) in their relationships to others. They may seek to control their partner through emotional manipulation or seductiveness on one level, whereas displaying a marked dependency on them at another level.

Individuals with this disorder often have impaired relationships with same-sex friends because their sexually provocative interpersonal style may seem a threat to their friends’ relationships. These individuals may also alienate friends with demands for constant attention. They often become depressed and upset when they are not the center of attention.

Right so now symptoms to show that he does have HPD!

  • Is uncomfortable in situations in which he or she is not the center of attention:
    • Farquaad made himself to be ruler of his land, heck he even built a massive castle.
  • Interaction with others is often characterized by inappropriate sexually seductive or provocative behavior
    • In the movie we sometimes see him like this: shrek_973_300_200_90
      • Additionally, like he is looking for a princess
  • Displays rapidly shifting and shallow expression of emotions
    • He is an emotional and I don’t really understand why. Like he goes from giving a great speech to cutting the legs off Gingerbread Man. Seriously, man get help. Well… he got eaten but still.
  • Consistently uses physical appearance to draw attention to themselves
    • Physical appearance he is after all 4 feet tall and wears A LOT red!
  • Has a style of speech that is excessively impressionistic and lacking in detail
    • He gives great speeches but really is one big circle of nothing, with more questions than answers (like this guy:how-much-donald-trump-makes-in-speaking-fees-compared-to-everyone-else

Sorry… I couldn’t help myself!

  • Shows self-dramatization, theatricality, and exaggerated expression of emotion
    • Farquaad IS GOING TO BE KING! KING! Self-dramatization at its finest and he so such a drama queen… drama king? DRAMA KING!
  • Is highly suggestible, i.e., easily influenced by others or circumstances
    • This isn’t really shown in the movie but we can see that he uses the circumstances of his height and his status to influence what he does, and the mirror mirror on the wall has a major influence on him.
  • Considers relationships to be more intimate than they actually are
    • He is in bed just smiling about the idea of having Fiona as a bride (she is younger and he does not know her yet)

Because personality disorders describe long-standing and enduring patterns of behavior, they are most often diagnosed in adulthood. It is uncommon for them to be diagnosed in childhood or adolescence, because a child or teen is under constant development, personality changes and maturation. Like most personality disorders, histrionic personality disorder typically will decrease in intensity with age, with many people experiencing few of the most extreme symptoms by the time they are in the 40s or 50s. This fits Farquaad since he appears to be somewhere around ages 25-35.

Researchers today don’t know what causes histrionic personality disorder. There are many theories, however, about the possible causes of histrionic personality disorder. Most professionals subscribe to a biopsychosocial model of causation. The causes of are likely due to biological and genetic factors, social factors (such as how a person interacts in their early development with their family and friends and other children), and psychological factors (the individual’s personality and temperament, shaped by their environment and learned coping skills to deal with stress). This suggests that no single factor is responsible; it is the complex and likely intertwined nature of all three factors that are important. If a person has this personality disorder, research suggests that there is a slightly increased risk for this disorder to be “passed down” to their children. Good thing he won’t be having any children.

That was mean…

So, what do you guys think? Does Lord Farquaad have histrionic personality disorder?

By the way and fun fact:

Alan Rickman was originally offered for the role of Lord Farquaad, but he turned it down to play Severus Snape in the Harry Potter film saga instead. Good call Alan!