About a couple of months ago there was a fake article published online which many people took to heart. The article basically claimed that The American Psychiatric Association (APA) had officially confirmed that taking ‘selfies’ was a mental disorder during its annual board of directors meeting in Chicago. The disorder was named “selfitis” and was defined as the obsessive compulsive desire to take photos of one’s self and post them on social media as a way to make up for the lack of self-esteem and to fill a gap in intimacy. Though there was no cure there was a temporary treatment available through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) which is covered under Obamacare. Yup you read that right.
The three levels of selfitis according to this article were:
- Borderline selfitis : taking photos of one’s self at least 3 times a day but not posting them on social media
- Acute selfitis: taking photos of one’s self at least 3times a day and posting each of the photos on social media
- Chronic selfitis: Uncontrollable urge to take photos of one’s self round the clock and posting the photos on social media more than 6 times a day.
Now my question for you is will “Selfitis” be a future disorder?
Though this article may have been claimed as fake with the way our generations are so active and dependent on social media, pop culture idols, and trends could we or are we already heading in that direction. If you think about it we have all been brainwashed at certain point and played a huge part into what we know as selfies. We have to document a night out, what you ate, what’ youre doing, what you are planning to do its a constant natural thing to do now from the time you wake up to the time that you go to sleep. We are most active on social platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and etc. It’s not that is a bad thing to do but how far can the selfie obsession go? For God sakes we already have to have our selfie sticks in hand.
I am a constant Instagram uploader myself and its addicting. I don’t post photos of myself all of the time sometimes I upload quotes, music, celebrities, and other things but it is an addictive almost consuming. So guilty as charged haha but at the same time its like subsconcious thing though I do it for the fun of it all. As I let my mind sink in these questions I started to observe the social behaviors and body language of how the people around me as well as on my social media platforms acted. How many times did they took selfies each day? How many did they upload that day? How many selfies did they took before they actually chose one to their preference to upload? Why did they choose not keep the other selfies before that? How did it affect them emotionally? Were they mad at how they looked, did they find it pretty, ugly, double chin, lighting? What?
The truth is after all the observation I gathered my conclusion is that is not a mental disorder per say. Its more of a society mental disorder. The way society are trying to follow trends and make trends happen its ridiculous its like if you don’t follow everyone’s step into what is hot then you are an outsider. Peer pressuring people into join these platforms where you have to prove yourself to others. (Ex.hey i can be better than you or i can do the same as you by posting things from your daily life). You may agree to disagree and I completely understand that but it really opened my eyes to the fact that we focus so much on the selfish selfies we take wether we do it because we say its for ourselves but in reality we are trying to somehow seek the praising (approval) from others when honestly don’t have to. It has become a cultural phenomenon as human we desire—to feel noticed, appreciated and recognized. It all comes down to individual’s self esteem and are you going to keep taking selfies to that new level where it will take over of who you are as a person. Will we move forward as individuals to live life to the fullest without having to feel the need to be approved for all the time. Be confident and focus on having fun and trust that you are worth more than a thousand selfies and other’s like, comments, follows or etc.
So are we Selfie Mental Disorder or True “Selfies”?
Stay happy, positive vibes, and love much. #loveyour(self)first
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Disclosure: I am not a psychologist or any mental analyst but for more information please seek a professional on mental disorders and helpline visit: National Institute of Mental Health . The opinions on this blog post are solely my own based on a published article online.
Photo Credits: All its original owners.