• schopenhauer1
    3.7k
    One of the main differences between psychosis and neurosis is that psychosis is a mental condition (like schizophrenia) which is defined by a "break" from reality- the person with psychosis loses touch with what is real and what is not. Further, the person doesn't know they have lost touch. For example, they might have hallucinations, hear things, believe people are following them, believe themselves to be all-powerful or all-weakened. They often talk to themselves in an imaginary world, etc.

    However neurosis is a bit more tricky to define. It is a mental condition whereby the victim knows that their behavior and beliefs are abnormal or not "rational" but the belief and behavior persist anyways. A classic form of neurosis is obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Another form of this might be something like a mild psychosomatic disorder (one "feels" like something is wrong, even though rationally, they "know" nothing could have actually changed). What is interesting about neurosis in particular is it is much harder to convey to someone who does not suffer from it.

    Here is a scenario:
    Every time you do an action (let's say send an email) and use a parenthesis in the email like this (), you believe that your brain only functions at half capacity as it would otherwise function. In other words, for this person, right when they send an email that contains a parenthesis, they feel their cognitive capacity has diminished and they cannot function at their work, their social life, nor daily living at the "normal" capacity that they felt prior to this event. The only way to get rid of this feeling is to repeat the same exact email but restructure it without the parenthesis. Once they have done this compulsion, they immediately get rid of the "stupid feeling" and their mind goes back to full capacity. The person was well aware that this makes no rational sense, and that physiologically, except for perhaps adrenaline of feeling "triggered" (that might actually be causing the diminished cognitive feeling), there is no real change. It was simply OCD coupled with a psychosomatic feeling that has a very immediate and negative impact for that person.

    Now, someone who does not suffer from this neurosis would find this odd. No matter how much the person afflicted with this condition would explain it, the other people would just be perplexed at how this otherwise rational person would be feeling. For a vast majority not afflicted with a neurosis, indeed a neurotic disorder would seem very alien. They might even have more empathy for a fully psychotic person, as even though they may not understand the person, their break from reality is so strong, that it can be chalked up to that person having a severe mental breakdown. The neurotic person suffers nonetheless, and sometimes on a minute-by-minute basis, but people may have less understanding or empathy for this person, as their break doesn't look like a normal "break", but more of a manifestation of odd behaviors on an otherwise "well-adjusted" seeming fellow. Also note, for the neurotic person, they also full-well know what they are doing seems crazy and irrational.

    Thus, I see the person with neurosis to often slip through the cracks of society, suffering silently. It would mean they are isolated, not understood, and perpetually in their own world. Most people throw out terms like "see someone", "cognitive-behavioral therapy", "medications", etc. Much of these are external ways of trying to deal with something that is very idiosyncratic and internal to the person who is experiencing the condition.

    Perhaps @Bitter Crank has something interesting to add?
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    It's the tip of the iceberg problem isn't it? Frank psychosis stands out like Gulliver in the land of the liliputs and we have learned to diagnose and treat it. 90% of the iceberg is hidden and represents the vast number of people who have neurotic traits. Your post made me realize that despite the claims of "great" progress and advancement by the medical community all they've done is plucked the low hanging fruit, shot the sitting duck while completely missing those ailments that are difficult to get a fix on.

    However, it could be that neurosis isn't really a problem. People manage to take it in their stride and it doesn't cause personal or social disruptions to the degree warranting treatment or intervention.
  • Coben
    1.1k
    The only way to get rid of this feeling is to repeat the same exact email but restructure it without the parenthesis. Once they have done this compulsion, they immediately get rid of the "stupid feeling" and their mind goes back to full capacity. The person was well aware that this makes no rational sense, and that physiologically, except for perhaps adrenaline of feeling "triggered" (that might actually be causing the diminished cognitive feeling), there is no real change. It was simply OCD coupled with a psychosomatic feeling that has a very immediate and negative impact for that person.schopenhauer1
    This description, which I am not disagreeing with, has parallels with a lot of traditions, cultural habits and normal behavior. For example, all sorts of politeness, the not wearing of a tie in a corporate setting for a man, having the 'right' hairstyle, being in fashion in a variety of ways, bowing when meeting someone in certain cultures, all sorts of status behaviors with people who are (supposedly) higher and lower statuses...and so on.

    These are all irrational behaviors that if not carried out give people anxiety. The different is that they are 'understood' and 'expected' by the various cultures or subcultures. One can see the neuroticness in big cities, say on the subway, where a bunch of different subcultures intermingle. There you will see people conforming to a wide variety of norms that look entirely differently, inlcude different ways of speaking, dressing, coiffing, standing, moving...and most of those people would feel extreme anxiety if they did not do all these things 'right'.

    I would conclude that we have cultural neuroses and not only do these cause people stress, they are further used to ostracise people and create random hierarchies, and then they cost a lot of money, especially with clothes, the 'right car', trophy houses.........
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    I think you've overstretched the definition of neurosis. It's not a cultural issue. In fact neurosis is defined in terms of not being part of cultural practice. Of course cultures differ and neurosis may be relative.
  • Coben
    1.1k
    I do understand that people doing those things are not diagnosed as neurotic. I am arguing that they are neurotic. That these are cultural neurosis. In fact I would make the case, for example, that the fashion industry through its various marketing strategies, tries to (successfully) create and sustain neurotic behavior. Individual neurotic behavior is seen as pathological, but collective neurotic behavior generally not so. But we have exactly the same structure psychologically.
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    I do understand that people doing those things are not diagnosed as neurotic. I am arguing that they are neurotic. That these are cultural neurosis. In fact I would make the case, for example, that the fashion industry through its various marketing strategies, tries to (successfully) create and sustain neurotic behavior. Individual neurotic behavior is seen as pathological, but collective neurotic behavior generally not so. But we have exactly the same structure psychologically.Coben

    I agree. It's just that cultural practices are excluded from neurosis as a diagnosis, just like belief in god is excluded from the definition of a delusion. If this isn't done then everyone is neurotic which makes neurosis-normal a pointless distinction to make.
  • Coben
    1.1k
    Though in a sense it is an unfair distinction. You are pathologizing people who have neuroses that are not shared socially with other people, allowing people with power to utilize the anxieties of collective neurotics (most of us). If we started to call these collective neuroses for what they are, it might make slight inroads into ending them, at least for some people.

    Right now in the US we have 80 million people on psychotropic meds. I certainly don't want to increase diagnosis to medication type paths, but we are already via psychiatry/pharma and the pathologization of emotions blurring the normal/pathological boundary.

    I notice where we do not do this, and I think we avoid doing it around power and corporate use of anxiety.

    There's an opportunity to empower people here. Right now neurosis and many other diagnoses are used to disempower people.
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    If we started to call these collective neuroses for what they are, it might make slight inroads into ending them, at least for some people.Coben

    I wonder though which choice is the correct one?

    1. Call everyone neurotic (collective neurosis)

    or

    2. Call everyone normal

    I personally don't have a preference but there is sense in maintaining the distinction between neuroses and normalcy. It, apart from giving psychiatrists something to do, helps some overcome by neurotic traits to seek help and get treatment.

    As for collective neurosis it's important to be aware of it as it gives valuable insight on the human condition - sort of like an epiphany.
  • Coben
    1.1k
    We can keep the distinction up. Collective neuroses and individual neurosis. I think these are different phenomena. I just want the collective behavior recognized for what it is. Then it gives a tool to attack, for example, corporations that create and/or cynically utilize neuroses for their own gain. I certainly don't want psychiatrists to have a new set of customers. But in a sense they likely already have them. The collective neuroses cause more anxiety, those who are on the more anxious end of that group are more likely to be told they have anxiety disorders, for example. So they do benefit from other organizations creating neuroses.

    It might also have a soothing effect on neurotics, when they start to see that 'normal' people act like they do, but it is considered normal because large groups share neuroses. I would guess that what we now call neuroses have a lot to do with modern culture, the detachment from nature, lack of meaningful work, lack of meaningful physical activity, and collective neuroses also. IOW we pathologize individuals when their anxiety is probably in large part more of a sociological event. Now critics of my position will say there are genetic factors. No doubt. But here's the thing: all that indicates is that some people are genetically more reactive to modern society's faults and lacks. Just because some people react in certain ways gets, as a rule, diagnosed and pathologized, in a sense as we used diagnose gays. They are a minority, so their difference is pathologial and we can call it a disease. But minority reactions to

    the way things currently are..

    may very well just be normal, but further out on the bell curve, reactions to problems in the society.

    Now I am being polemical here. I don't really know what happens if we start viewing the categor of behaviors I called collective neuroses as neuroses. I don't know for sure what underlies much more modern humans anxiety and depression.

    I think https://www.amazon.com/Lost-Connections-Uncovering-Depression-Unexpected/dp/163286830X
    makes an excellent case that our problems are much more to do, in general, with our situations, and further that these can be changed on an individual and even societal level and without drugs and without pathologizing people and emotions.

    So I would like to pathologize norms, for a while, and depathologize emotions, because emotions are being heartily pathologized in our society. Of course they always have been, but now technologies are coming in to crush them..
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    I had a faint idea where you were heading with "collective neurosis" viz. this: "corporations that create and/or cynically utilize neuroses". You're right neuroses are parts of the psyche we least control and wouldn't corporations just love that?

    I hope we're on the same page?

    Manipulating the masses is feasible with collective neuroses.

    You make an excellent point, broadening the scope of neuroses to include groups, even entire cultures.

    I don't know if the term "neuorsis" is the best for this view on the collective though. Can we diagnose an entire culture to be sick?
  • Coben
    1.1k
    Well, it's not the entire culture, and there are degrees of it. And some cultural things do not create anxiety, they can create just joy or fun, or are rather neutral like many politeness phrases. But it might be a way to analyze culture. What creates neurotic relations to certain behaviors (and purchases), what does not?

    etymology
    neurosis (n.)
    1776, "functional derangement arising from disorders of the nervous system (not caused by a lesion or injury)," coined by Scottish physician William Cullen (1710-1790) from Greek neuron "nerve" (see neuro-) + Modern Latin -osis "abnormal condition."

    And there are people who do not buy the collective neuroses in most cultures and subcultures. There can be tremendous pressure, economic, peer, parental, religious to be neurotic, but often one can manage to at least minimize one's neurotic conformism. There is often a cost however.
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    Well, the way you directed the discussion I'm led to believe, true to the term "neuorsis" whose definition you kindly provided, that collective neurosis is an illness - a weakness if you will, ripe for exploitation by the unscrupulous.

    Then you said
    they can create just joy or fun, or are rather neutral like many politeness phrases.Coben

    That tells a different story and that "neurosis" may not be the right term to apply here.

    And there are people who do not buy the collective neuroses in most cultures and subcultures. There can be tremendous pressure, economic, peer, parental, religious to be neurotic, but often one can manage to at least minimize one's neurotic conformism. There is often a cost however.Coben

    Then you said the above which again looks like you're trying to criticize cultural norms as an illness and that we should resist or defy them but at a cost.

    We could say that collective neurosis applies to those social norms that can be used to exploit/harm us. You mentioned things like "right car" and it makes sense: Our desire to conform to a social standard makes us do irrational and, sometimes, harmful things. Is drug-abuse in children and young adults a collective neurosis?
  • Coben
    1.1k
    Well, the way you directed the discussion I'm led to believe, true to the term "neuorsis" whose definition you kindly provided, that collective neurosis is an illness - a weakness if you will, ripe for exploitation by the unscrupulous.TheMadFool
    I wouldn't say we have an illness, but we are affected by nurture. If mommy says trees are dangerous and screams when she see them, children will develop anxiety around trees, at least many. It's not that the children are sick, it's that they learn socially. Commericals with subtext and unconscious messages, fashion news, movies, and so on, are a form of nurture we learn from.
    That tells a different story and that "neurosis" may not be the right term to apply here.TheMadFool
    Well, the same behavior of someone fussing over something, like making fly fishing flies if they don't suffer or have anxiety around it, is not neurotic. So it is not the behavior, it is the suffering. Corportions tend to create anxiety and things like fashion are presented to us with the deeply embedded idea of potential failure, for example. So here we are dealing with neuroses, where unnecessary behavior is given an irrational importance coupled with anxiety.
    Then you said the above which again looks like you're trying to criticize cultural norms as an illness and that we should resist or defy them but at a cost.TheMadFool
    Cultural norms, ones that have no practical objective positive to them, are irrational or non-rational. If they cause anxiety, then they are neurosis creators.. If they don't then they are simply ornamental.
    We could say that collective neurosis applies to those social norms that can be used to exploit/harm us. You mentioned things like "right car" and it makes sense: Our desire to conform to a social standard makes us do irrational and, sometimes, harmful things.TheMadFool
    Yes, sort of you worded it here.
    Is drug-abuse in children and young adults a collective neurosis?TheMadFool
    I would think it is a symptom of collective neurosis in general. But can be, in certain subcultures, a collective neurosis. The whole artist/rock star self-abusive abusive archetype in that subculture is a collective neurosis, where it seems like to be creative and cool, you need to do drugs to excess. That book I mentioned above Lost Connections. Interestingly the same author has a book on the war on drugs and drug abuse. They found that a very large percentage of drug abusers were abused as children, sexually or via other violence, sometimes neglect. IOW it's not a disease or set of genes, it is a reaction to nurture.

    Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War of Drugs

    is also an incredible read. I can't recommend it enough. Pretty much everything we have been told about drug abuse is not correct.
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    I have to admit that collective neurosis is real and people need to be aware of how they may be unconsciously influenced by those who are in the know. It's liberating to realize that many social standards and beliefs could be hidden neuroses. Thanks.

    Just one thing I'd like you to consider. What if these neuroses are necessary in the sense that besides the harmful effects of spreading unhealthy anxiety it also serves as a vehicle for the good stuff? You mentioned the rockstar drug-abuse archetype and while I agree this is harmful for children who then think drugs are cool, I also wonder whether drugs were necessary for the artist/rockstar to convey an important useful message about music/art.

    You did say:
    And some cultural things do not create anxiety, they can create just joy or fun, or are rather neutral like many politeness phrases.Coben

    Could it be that collective neurosis is a necessary evil - unifying society through establishing common cultural norms but, unfortunately, also providing a window of opportunity to unhealthy anxiety-causing cultural practices/norms/standards?

    Even if such is the case it's sensible to be aware of collective neurosis as it allows us to adopt the good and eschew the bad. All I'm saying is that both the good and bad maybe using the same access point in our minds and therefore collective neurosis is unavoidable but definitely manageable to some extent.
  • Coben
    1.1k
    , I also wonder whether drugs were necessary for the artist/rockstar to convey an important useful message about music/art.TheMadFool
    Actually I wasn't worried so much about the kids imitating. I think it is a myth that the drugs are necessary for their art. I am sure that the drugs influence the art, but if the talent is there it can come anyway. Further I think one of the reasons so many rock stars lose their creativity - as opposed to painters and novelists, for example - is their drug use. The drugs may, I say may, accelerate the creative process, but you are stealing from yourself when you do this. Because they destroy the creative centers when abused.
    Could it be that collective neurosis is a necessary evil - unifying society through establishing common cultural norms but, unfortunately, also providing a window of opportunity to unhealthy anxiety-causing cultural practices/norms/standards?TheMadFool
    I think collective practices can be bonding. Those would be the ones that are neutral or positive. The collective neuroses are damaging, though they may also be bonding. I think we can drop out the addition of more anxiety. Life is tough enough. We don't need to be worrying if people think we suck because we don't have the newest jeans.
    All I'm saying is that both the good and bad maybe using the same access point in our minds and therefore collective neurosis is unavoidable but definitely manageable to some extent.TheMadFool
    I think there are reasons why some people create collective ideas that hate emotions or bodies, or teach us to be anxious about things that are not important - until we are taught to hallucinate they are. I would like us to look at these people and organizations - which of course many do already, though not with the collective neurosis model, perhaps.
  • Daniel C
    73
    Everything said about psychosis and neurosis is said against the background of normality. It has to be the criterion to determine what counts as psychotic and neurotic - as well as other so-called "psychopathological conditions". To me one of the biggest problems is to know what is "normal". One of the most basic aspects of this concept must be: according to / in line with the "norm". But, there are so many norms: and, they are really so "circumstantial". It seems to me to lead inevitably to the road of "many normals". But can that be the case? If not, then what will be the nature of the "one normal"? Taken as a concept, what will be its definition, denotation / connotation, its sense / reference etc? And, after having done an in depth conceptual analysis of the concept, will it be clear to anyone what "normal" really is, or will we end up knowing even less and only be able to point out how problematic the concept actually is?
  • Coben
    1.1k
    And further if we look at the past normal would now often be diagnosable. And to put this another way, I think there is implicit in the contrast between norm and abnormal an approval of society. What if society is not conducive to homo sapians. Just as some ecological niche could be made problematic - and stressful - for an animal. The norm in that case should include people who are having emotional turmoil. But that's not the way it works, at least in practical terms, now.
  • Daniel C
    73
    But, there is also something else that bothers me about psychosis and neurosis. To diagnose you for either one of them the "medical man" evaluates you. In other words, to state that someone is neurotic, is not a factual statement. It is a value statement - derived from evaluate. Therefore to be neurotic can be neither true nor false, because only factual statements can have the properties of being "true" or "false". If that is the case, how can we ever know if its "true" if anyone is diagnosed with some type of neurosis? The "logic of language usage" doesn't allow us to know. In fact, to ask such a question is ipso facto a senseless question. Where does that leave us?
  • Coben
    1.1k
    I agree with your concerns. I think the concept can be useful if the person themselves feels like they are not enjoying life as much as others who have similar lives. That on some level that person feels like something is wrong. They worry too much - by their own estimation - are somewhat depressed, too self-critical...these kinds of things. They someone gives them a label for this pattern plus some way to minimize it. Cogntive behavioral therapy has some effect. Dynamic therapies can have an effect. If the pattern is actually coming from a traumatic experience, there are other treatments. IOW labeling a pattern can also be part of a collaborative client/practitioner relation. I think there are all sorts of things one should avoid doing in that relationship, which many professional do do. But I don't think the noticing and labeling of a pattern like this is per se bad.
  • schopenhauer1
    3.7k
    However, it could be that neurosis isn't really a problem. People manage to take it in their stride and it doesn't cause personal or social disruptions to the degree warranting treatment or intervention.TheMadFool

    I doubt that for the person experiencing it. But yes, someone can be "riddled" with neurotic behaviors and thoughts and live a daily life. But clearly that life is not optimal for the person experiencing it. My point was that it may even be more so as they are living in a double world of having the irrational belief/behavior but also knowing that they have it.
  • schopenhauer1
    3.7k
    These are all irrational behaviors that if not carried out give people anxiety. The different is that they are 'understood' and 'expected' by the various cultures or subcultures. One can see the neuroticness in big cities, say on the subway, where a bunch of different subcultures intermingle. There you will see people conforming to a wide variety of norms that look entirely differently, inlcude different ways of speaking, dressing, coiffing, standing, moving...and most of those people would feel extreme anxiety if they did not do all these things 'right'.

    I would conclude that we have cultural neuroses and not only do these cause people stress, they are further used to ostracise people and create random hierarchies, and then they cost a lot of money, especially with clothes, the 'right car', trophy houses.........
    Coben

    Although I agree with you, in spirit, how enculturation and mass media can shape cultural expectations and cause widespread anxieties, I do not think this shaping of culture or these anxieties are the same a person with an actual neurotic disorder. First off, in order for something to be a disorder, it has to be a major disruption to their life. It has to affect how one functions at things like work or social interactions. It has to be pervasive. It has to be something that one cannot simply walk away from and turn on and off. An example would be let's say that for someone who was simply "anal" about how their desk was organized, they might prefer it to be neat and tidy. Someone with an actual neurosis like OCD would have something like exact spots where things need to be. If they do not put something in that pattern or place, they think about it the whole day, they preseverate, they can't think clearly. In other words, they obsess. They feel a compulsion to go back and put it in the "right" place or pattern. That is an actual neurosis. To generalize it to how culture shapes anxieties would be to muddy the definition and significance of an actual neurosis with cultural practices.
  • schopenhauer1
    3.7k
    Everything said about psychosis and neurosis is said against the background of normality. It has to be the criterion to determine what counts as psychotic and neurotic - as well as other so-called "psychopathological conditions". To me one of the biggest problems is to know what is "normal". One of the most basic aspects of this concept must be: according to / in line with the "norm". But, there are so many norms: and, they are really so "circumstantial". It seems to me to lead inevitably to the road of "many normals". But can that be the case? If not, then what will be the nature of the "one normal"? Taken as a concept, what will be its definition, denotation / connotation, its sense / reference etc? And, after having done an in depth conceptual analysis of the concept, will it be clear to anyone what "normal" really is, or will we end up knowing even less and only be able to point out how problematic the concept actually is?Daniel C

    I don't think it has much to do with normality, per se. Rather, someone with a neurotic disorder is believing or doing something they rather not do. It interrupts their thought process and ways of being that might otherwise take place without the disorder. In other words, a neurosis is not simply a different way of doing something that can be seen externally by others, but they themselves experience and can usually report the negative impact of the neurosis and would like it to not negatively impact them anymore.
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    I doubt that for the person experiencing it. But yes, someone can be "riddled" with neurotic behaviors and thoughts and live a daily life. But clearly that life is not optimal for the person experiencing it. My point was that it may even be more so as they are living in a double world of having the irrational belief/behavior but also knowing that they have it.schopenhauer1

    Maybe you set the bar so high that practically no one will be able to accomplish this so-called optimal life. I guess a difference between being realistic and being idealistic.
  • schopenhauer1
    3.7k
    Maybe you set the bar so high that practically no one will be able to accomplish this so-called optimal life. I guess a difference between being realistic and being idealistic.TheMadFool

    Let me get you in a mindset then of the neurotic person...
    The "average" person may close a door. They may check the handle and turn it to make sure it is locked. They go their merry way.

    The "neurotic" person (this case OCD) may have something where they lock the door 4 times. If they lock it 3 or 5 times, they feel X sensation (in the moment) or they believe Y belief will happen (in the future. This present sensation or this belief about the future causes extreme anxiety and other sub-optimal experiences (not thinking clearly, extreme fear, hypochondria, etc.). The trigger of 3 or 5 (not the "right" number) has nothing to even do with the door itself being locked.. it's just that those numbers have "magical" or "superstitious" value for the neurotic person.. They cannot shake off the anxiety of not repeating the act without thinking that something bad is happening or will happen to that person. If they lock the door 3 or 5 times and then leave, they are wrought with anxiety, fear, delusions, irrational beliefs, etc. However, if they go back and repeat the sequence four times, the feeling immediately goes away. This is not something the person wants to feel or have to repeat, but they feel it and repeat it nonetheless. That is what I mean by not optimal.
  • Coben
    1.1k
    To generalize it to how culture shapes anxieties would be to muddy the definition and significance of an actual neurosis with cultural practices.schopenhauer1
    Yes, I am intentionally muddying the water. These cultural neuroses may be milder in individual cases, however they are vastly more widespread, cost unbelievable amounts of money for sufferers, shift power away from individuals, at least often, to corporations, distract people from seeking real solutions, contribute to global warming, pollution, and not just a little, contribute to class tensions and social hierarchies, and because they are norms are much harder for the people to consider extricating themselves from them - from seeking treatment. I can grant that individual effects are less, but the societal level damages from these cultural neuroses, while hard to track, I consider likely to be enormous and pernicious.

    The people with the disorders have trouble primarily contained to their own suffering, and then on their family members. Collective neuroses also detrimentally affect people who are many degrees of separation from the individual sufferers. IOW you can be immune to the meme aspects of the collective neurosis in question but still suffer.

    First off, in order for something to be a disorder, it has to be a major disruption to their life.schopenhauer1
    It's an interesting combination of something that is an anxiety disorder with a self-medication aspect. If they were not allowed to engage in the behaviors that, say, the corporations have suggested solve the problem, they would have more of the full blown disorder. IOW the symptoms would be much more visible.
    It has to be something that one cannot simply walk away from and turn on and off.schopenhauer1
    I don't think most people can walk away from these patterns. To move outside what they consider important norms creates trememdous anxiety and likely depression also. And further they will often be socially and even professionally punished for moving away.
    Someone with an actual neurosis like OCD would have something like exact spots where things need to be. If they do not put something in that pattern or place, they think about it the whole day, they preseverate, they can't think clearly. In other words, they obsess.schopenhauer1
    This section reminded me directly of mobile use, in general, and then also the specifics of social media participation. So ritual interaction with the object, with surfing, that the object has been checked, is nearby and then all the rituals of self-presentation of likeing the right things of getting liked for comments and the ongoing anxiety around all this. Again, since the activity does have a self-medication aspect, the disorder is less obvious than some of the disorders.
    They feel a compulsion to go back and put it in the "right" place or pattern.schopenhauer1
    Again, mobile use, but also hair style, make up, the way emotions need to be actively suppressed, certainly not expressed, and any let downs in this last, need to be 'explained' and 'reframed' and made up for.

    Of course the neurosis sufferer - they no longer use neurosis in psychiatry, but I'll keep using the term since it has been used since the OP - tend not to have the additional anxiety about their oddness. They are not insiders, since having these collective neuroses makes one an insider. An OCD sufferer IS going to be judged. They will feel a sense of stigma, in addition to the underlying anxiety driving them. Cultural neuroses are based on anxiety creation - and consistent threat - with a way out. You conform. So there isn't the additional meta-anxiety of the disorder sufferer.

    Many of the traditionally diagnosed can control their symptoms and function quite well on medication. Most of the collectively neurotic since the very pattern includes a self-medication aspect, can control their symptoms and function quite well.

    Should the quite unlikely happen and I can convince many people that this is all correct, the ocd sufferer, for example, will still be able to receive treatment for his or her disorder. They might, potentially, feel a bit less shame, as they realize that normal people have similar patterns, though perhaps to a lesser degree. And then those with power who create these collective neuroses, will be challenged in a new and different way.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.4k
    liliputsTheMadFool

    Tragically, I can not congratulate you for being the first person to use "Lilliput" on the Philosophy forum. You did not capitalize this proper noun, and you misspelled it in two ways -- it has two 'L's and there is only one Lilliput. It's a place, like Tierra del Fuego. What you were reaching for and failed to grasp was "Lilliputians", the 6" high occupants of Lilliput. It's so painful.

    If you stay after school and write "Lilliputians live in Lilliput" 100 times on the blackboard you will make me feel better. By the way, Gulliver's Travels have been previously referenced.

    Perhaps Bitter Crank has something interesting to add?schopenhauer1

    I would, but I'm having a neurotic crisis. It's TheMadFool's fault -- he misspelled Lilliput. Everything was just fine until I noticed his egregious error. Had he spelled it correctly, or had I not noticed his post I would not be so terribly mentally disheveled right now.

    This trauma will require bed rest. It's 12:52 a.m., so a good time to retire.
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    Tragically, I can not congratulate you for being the first person to use "Lilliput" on the Philosophy forum. You did not capitalize this proper noun, and you misspelled it in two ways -- it has two 'L's and there is only one Lilliput. It's a place, like Tierra del Fuego. What you were reaching for and failed to grasp was "Lilliputians", the 6" high occupants of Lilliput. It's so painful.Bitter Crank

    :rofl: I got tired of fighting with my phone's auto-correct. Thanks though.
  • TheMadFool
    4.4k
    I understand what you're trying to say. I'm not a psychiatrist but I think there's a reason why they created two categories viz. neuorsis and psychosis. The difference between them being the former is mild and manageable but the latter is severe and requires medication.

    However there are cases of severe neuroses requiring treatment but I endorse the view that, in general, neuroses are simple quirks in personality than anything debilitative.
  • schopenhauer1
    3.7k
    However there are cases of severe neuroses requiring treatment but I endorse the view that, in general, neuroses are simple quirks in personality than anything debilitative.TheMadFool

    But this is exactly the type of dismissive understanding I'm talking about. Neurosis, for the sufferer, is debillitative, it is just not as externally observable. But internally the sufferer is silently keeping themselves together. That's not to say this isn't a spectrum, but as you were saying, it's like an iceberg where people only see maybe a few odd behaviors. A lot of it is silent to others, but very present internally for the sufferer.

    I think it is also interesting because I wonder if tribal societies manifest "OCD" as superstitions and sufferers of OCD in this society might be celebrated as "medicine men" in some tribal societies.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.4k
    Perhaps Bitter Crank has something interesting to add?schopenhauer1

    Probably nothing very helpful.

    There is a distinction between "neurosis" and "neuroticism", the former affecting one's life more than the latter. Also, "neurosis" is more of a psychoanalytic term than a medical one.

    In basic terms, neurosis is a disorder involving obsessive thoughts or anxiety, while neuroticism is a personality trait that does not have the same negative impact on everyday living as an anxious condition. In modern non-medical texts, the two are often used with the same meaning, but this is inaccurate.

    Neuroticism is considered a personality trait rather than a medical condition.
    Neuroticism is a long-term tendency to be in a negative or anxious emotional state. It is not a medical condition but a personality trait. People often confuse this with neurosis.

    Five traits make up the five-factor model of personality:

    Neuroticism
    extraversion
    agreeability
    conscientiousness
    openness.

    This model is used in personality evaluations and tests across a wide range of cultures.

    Speaking for my self, I have experienced neurosis (depression, anxiety) and have had a fairly high level of neuroticism. For the last 8 years, I have experienced a sharp shift away from neuroticism. I have become less irritable, more tolerant, less anxious, more contented. I have felt much less depressed and anxious, but whether that is a result of declining neuroticism or effective medication, isn't clear.
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