Thursday, 18 February 2010

There’s An App A Disorder For That!

As the world gets progressively madder, it seems only right and proper that psychiatry is forever updating its list of hang-ups available to us all. This week, with the excitement of a fashion designer launching a new spring collection, American psychiatrists have unveiled what they call "the next generation of mental disorders".
Oh, boy...
The list, which will be included in the new edition of that essential reference work The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, will be good news for the pharmaceutical industry and the therapy business, and will bring joy to the ranks of the self-concerned. There is something in it for everyone
He ain't kidding! Everything is now a disorder of some sort. Nothing is ever anyone's fault any more:
If you suffer from torpor, dreaminess and general inability to get things done, you will be glad to know that you are not lazy but suffer from sluggish cognitive disorder. If you have a tendency to over-eat, your trouble may well be binge-eating disorder. A bit of a problem with keeping your temper? That will be your intermittent explosive disorder.
And as for those inkblots, well, yup, you guessed it...
Virtually anything you do, or fail to do, in the area of sex will now be found under one heading or another in the shrinks' manual.
Still, there's room for more, surely?
If anything, though, the list has not gone far enough. Of the mental ailments cutting a swathe through early 21st-century life, several must surely find a place in the next manual. Public crying disorder, the tendency to well up when in front of a camera or microphone, is clearly a significant new behavioural syndrome.

Then there is internet mob-hysterical disorder, which can afflict normally sensible people when they have too much regular contact with the speed, heat and anonymity of online communication.
Hmm, that last one's spreading rapidly. Must be contagious...

8 comments:

Moriarty said...

It gets even madder Julia. Once something like 'sluggish cognitive disorder' gets into the official medical books, it's pretty likely it'll now count as a bone-fide disability, and become eligable for all sorts of legal/economic benefits. Someone really will be able to sign off permanantly sick on the grounds that they're just too lazy to work.

Uncle Marvo said...

Dear Doctor

I have a disorder which makes me want to reach for my gun every time I read twaddle like this.

I believe it is fed-up-with-all-this-bullshititis but I have been told it may be just normal behaviour for a rational human whose patience has been pushed to the limits by over a decade of Political COrrectness gone bonkers.

Who is right?

Dr Dan Holdsworth said...

Hey, remember the "toothing" spoof of a few years ago? The story was that bored commuters were using the Bluetooth short-range radio on their phones to send messages to each other, to arrange illicit sexual encounters. A forum on the web was apparently dedicated to discussions of these encounters and was predictably full of the usual pre-literate drivel you get on such forums.

The catch was this: although the forum was apparently a couple of years old based on the postings, the domain had been there for only a month or so. What had in fact gone on was that the whole thing was a spoof, put together by a couple of bored programmers out to see how easily the media could be fooled. The forum had been largely constructed using a Perl script to auto-generate drivel, then the coders had spiced in a few dubious stories to add content.

Then they waited for a journo to spot the thing (this being the mid-summer silly season), and the scam was on.

I wonder how many psychologists developed new psycho-sexual theories based on that spoof?

Henry Crun said...

"I wonder how many psychologists developed new psycho-sexual theories based on that spoof?"

Dr Dan, I think it is more likely that the theories are based on how many hours of therapy at $300 per hour psychologists can generate.

Angry Exile said...

That intermittent explosive disorder is absolutely genuine. I get it all the time, mainly from reading this kind of bullshit in the papers or nearly any story with Gordon Brown in it.

MTG said...

Ah, day has become too blinding for the cynic.

Morlocks to the lot of you.

blueknight said...

I wonder how many psychologists developed new psycho-sexual theories based on that spoof?...
Quite a few. I reckon the 'problem' pages are made up too...
Dear 'Worried of Wembley',
That is perfectly normal for a teenage girl.
(Pity you are a 47 yr old man with builders bum a beer gut and hairy hands)

JuliaM said...

"Once something like 'sluggish cognitive disorder' gets into the official medical books, it's pretty likely it'll now count as a bone-fide disability..."

Oh, lord! Hadn't thought of that...

"Dear Doctor

I have a disorder which makes me want to reach for my gun every time I read twaddle like this."


That's a pretty common malady.. ;)

"Hey, remember the "toothing" spoof of a few years ago?...I wonder how many psychologists developed new psycho-sexual theories based on that spoof?"

Reading this, I'm beginning to wonder about just how gullible our journalists and doctors really are!

"I reckon the 'problem' pages are made up too..."

Didn't one ex-agony aunt admit just that a few years back?