Is infantilism a mental illness?(Please take no Offense)

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I feel that if I label it an illness that it allays my feelings of shame and guilt. And it seems that my infantile feelings if not the behaviors are at least partly out of my control. I feel compelled to mess myself sometimes although I've shown more control lately. Maybe in my case it is a compulsive disorder. Jesus! I don't want to be this way but I am. Yeah it feels good sometimes but I could do without it. But there it is, and it ain't going anywhere. It's not my fault is it? What do you think?

Michael (the grownup)
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I don't know if anyone else has asked a similar question and I'm sorry if it sounds redundant. I'm new to this forum and site and I need friends right now. I'm also pritty new to the AB/DL community. Help me break in.
 
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There is a clear divide between what is a fetish and what is an illness. First and foremost, it's important to realise that a fetish is a heightened appeal to a certain object or action that would otherwise not instigate any sort of interest. That being said, having a diaper fetish or being an infantilist relates to having an interest in the wearing and/or using of diapers, baby paraphernalia, the experience of being treated like a baby and all the pleasure, joy and satisfaction gained from those things.

There are a wide array of reasons people have a fetish, some more deeply rooted than others, some more emotional, some just because they like the object in question, or in the case of being a diaper lover, the convenience - just to name a few. A fetish is not an illness in that it can be practised (safely) without adverse side-effects, particularly if that fetish happens to be infantilism. (I'm not going to discuss other unsanitary fetishes... I'm sure you all know what some are).

An illness, or rather a mental illness to be specific is something that can cause serious emotional and psychological problems if conditions worsen or is left untreated. Mental illness causes depression, anxiety, feelings of isolation and harmful or suicidal tendencies, just to name a few symptoms - which, mind you, are the complete opposite of what you gain from participating in a fetish (which is pleasure and satisfaction).

In that regard alone, infantilism or having a fetish in general can be ruled out as being a mental illness. So whilst negative emotions are being pumped into mental illness, there are many positive emotions that come with having a fetish. Not that I am ruling out the negatives of having a fetish (like guilt, acceptance issues and the whole secretive aspect), I'm just looking at it from the perspective of what you gain emotionally from indulging in something you know will get you in a positive mood.
 
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Thank you for that thoughtful reply. And I must say I think you are right. I personally diagnosed, and many times by many psychiatrists, with Bi-Polar disorder. My fetish is usually fun for me and if I allow it with some sensible practices, it affords me relief from the stresses of life and, from my real mental illness, Bi-Polar disorder. I've also been told by the proffessional counselors that I see every day of the week that it is normal to feel the way I do about baby things. They are very supportive and only encourage control and sanitary practices. They even know that I wear diapers and they tell me "So what? A lot of people do for all sorts of reasons and there's nothing wrong with taking care of yourself that way."


As long as I don't feel guilty or let my fetish rule my life, like giving in to malignant regression then I count my infantilism as a blessing and certainly not a mental illness. Anyway thats todays progress. Thanks again.
 

Nam Repaid

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No, not an illness but rather a symptom of something else like a sneeze is caused by an allergy or cold. In my case I find I diaper up a lot more when I’m stressed whether from work or personal issues.

It’s still not your fault, can you not sneeze? Play carefully and cover your nose when you sneeze!

Nam
 

chevre

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I'd say it certainly can be an illness. However, it need not be. Typically (psychological) illness is defined in terms of causing you personal distress and/or interfering with your daily functioning.

If it's not causing you serious distress and really isn't interfering with your life, then it's not an illness. However, say you started not hanging out with friends because you always wanted to stay home diapered.. or if it interfered with your job performance. Or, say it made you feel ashamed and bothered to the point where you thought about hurting yourself. Then, it'd be an illness.

The trick is deciding which it is. If it's not obvious to you, you can always seek professional help. I suspect they would tell you something similar, and help you figure it out.
 
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It's not an illness for me today. In the past yes because of all the reasons you mentioned Chevre, and a few more. And I've seen how it is (at least in my case) a symptom of other emotional disturbances, one of which is a diagnosed mental illness called Bi-Polar Disorder, I'm sure most are familliar with it by now. Anyway I am happy to care for the little one today and its not interfering. And I don't think its a problem, Now its fun most of the time and lilbabymikey is happier.

Thanks friends

Mike
 

DLGrif

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Mental disorders and mental illnesses, in the medical field, are used interchangeably. When distinguished, disorders are characterized by a condition that impedes functionality, whereas a mental illness is a blanket term that encompasses all departures from a normal state (including depression, anxiety, etc.)

Infantilism is definitely not a disorder, because it does not directly or indirectly cause or promote unwanted behaviors. Over time it may make you want to become incontinent, or impulsively buy diapers, but at that point the problem becomes one of addiction, much like social drinking degenerating into binge drinking. In this sense, it could be treated as an illness for its potential to turn otherwise healthy people into submissive, helpless, exposed, and/or incontinent adults.

The correlation on this is minor, however. It has about the same affect on people as drinking does: the majority know how to control themselves and when it is appropriate, but a few may latch onto it and find themselves spiralling into addiction. Infantilism cannot be blamed for this, and it is likely that something to this effect would happen to that individual in some other way.
 

dogboy

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Even though this is old news now, I just would like to wish you the best in your therapy. I have two friends who are bi-polar. They have both done quite well. My one friend had very extreme problems, but has made very good progress over the years. Both friends have obsessed over music careers. Since I am a musician, I have worked with them both on their music. Anyway, just wanted to let you know I appreciate what you are going through.
 

Rissy

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It's silly to call certain states of mind, mental illnesses... People talk about chemical imbalances... but really all that's happening is that people have discovered that people with different mentalities can be identified by the chemical levels in their brain... It's really just a form of supremism to say your chemical balance is the benchmark and that other people who aren't like you are inferior and need to be made like you...

The fact is that the DSM is democratic anyway... It's made of what people have accepted and what people have rejected... Think of alcoholism, which is in their because people want an excuse for their weakness... they want to say they can't help it because of some disease... And on the other side... it's no longer crazy to have different sexualities because there aren't enough prudes in society...

Its fair enough to say everyone has mental illness... or that mental illness doesn't exist... but it's just discrimination to decide that some people have mental illness and some don't
 

DLGrif

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Its fair enough to say everyone has mental illness... or that mental illness doesn't exist... but it's just discrimination to decide that some people have mental illness and some don't
My response may be irrelevant or even distracting, and if so please ignore it. But deciding that some people do and some don't...is the entire point of discrimination. Sometimes it's a good thing to realize that one person wears diapers while others don't, or that one likes football, or that one likes the same music as you, or that one has cheated on their mate in the past. Discrimination with cause is a good thing.
 

Mr. Marley

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I think it really depends wether it's a sexual fetish or not. If a person likes to act like a baby (with diapers, bottles, dresses and baby talk/acting), and it's not part of a sexual game, i would say something not's right. Bear in mind that i'm not an infantilist, and I really don't know all about what kind of relationship AB/TBs have with their baby-side.
 

ShippoFox

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No. I don't think it's an illness. If it is, then any interest can be an illness since anyone can just be interested in something because it's something that naturally interests the person... fetish or not.
If a person likes to act like a baby (with diapers, bottles, dresses and baby talk/acting), and it's not part of a sexual game, i would say something not's right.
Lots of people here are sorta like that. What is your reasoning?

I kinda agree with Mysika. Sometimes it seems like mental disorders are just a way to label someone as inferior or just different. This is a world where different is wrong, after all. Though there are some mental disorders that are real, that cause people to really need help, I think a lot of other "disorders" are just crap.
 
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Pramrider

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Thought I'd quote a short, but to the point reply. I also say no to it being a mental illness. Believe me, I worked at a state mental hospital briefly when I was much younger. They had a whole range of patients there from ones needing milder medications to keep them from going off to violent psychopaths that were kept locked up. Some parts of that hospital were very scary, with hearing all the screaming going on.:frown: No way would I ever consider infantilism as some type of mental illness after experiencing that! Even if you have a hard time keeping it under control I feel it's more of a minor behavior disorder than an illness of the mind. Something that you CAN get the master over with some amount of personal effort plus support from others.

~Pramrider
 
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xdeadx

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Thought I'd quote a short, but to the point reply. I also say no to it being a mental illness. Believe me, I worked at a state mental hospital briefly when I was much younger. They had a whole range of patients there from ones needing milder medications to keep them from going off to violent psychopaths that were kept locked up. Some parts of that hospital were very scary, with hearing all the screaming going on.:frown: No way would I ever consider infantilism as some type of mental illness after experiencing that! Even if you have a hard time keeping it under control I feel it's more of a minor behavior disorder than an illness of the mind. Something that you CAN get the master over with some amount of personal effort plus support from others.

~Pramrider
He he. I felt it not necessary to give a long answer.
 

BitterGrey

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Yes and no

I'd say it certainly can be an illness. However, it need not be. Typically (psychological) illness is defined in terms of causing you personal distress and/or interfering with your daily functioning.

It is a disorder for roughly 4 in 10 ABDLs, might be a condition for 5 in 10, and is probably just an interest for the remaining 1 in 10.


By the APA's "distress or impairment" criterion, about 4 of 10 ABDLs has a disorder. The distress or impairment might be more due to how our culture reacts to ABDLs, as opposed to being due to paraphilic infantilism or diaper fetishism directly.


Additionally, we could argue that most of those that got involved in ABDL activites in their 20s were making a choice, as opposed to expressing an innate condition. This includes about 1 in 10 ABDLs.


The remaining 5 in 10 ABDLs wouldn't be diagnosed as having a disorder. This is because they lack distress or impairment. The underlying condition might be the same, however.


These results are discussed in the article on The Changing ABDL Community


~Grey
 

Starchild

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Thank you for that thoughtful reply. And I must say I think you are right. I personally diagnosed, and many times by many psychiatrists, with Bi-Polar disorder. My fetish is usually fun for me and if I allow it with some sensible practices, it affords me relief from the stresses of life and, from my real mental illness, Bi-Polar disorder. I've also been told by the proffessional counselors that I see every day of the week that it is normal to feel the way I do about baby things. They are very supportive and only encourage control and sanitary practices. They even know that I wear diapers and they tell me "So what? A lot of people do for all sorts of reasons and there's nothing wrong with taking care of yourself that way."


As long as I don't feel guilty or let my fetish rule my life, like giving in to malignant regression then I count my infantilism as a blessing and certainly not a mental illness. Anyway thats todays progress. Thanks again.
Hi mikey I also have Bi polar, just thought ide say hi and so you know you are not alone
 

Mr. Marley

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No. I don't think it's an illness. If it is, then any interest can be an illness since anyone can just be interested in something because it's something that naturally interests the person... fetish or not.

Lots of people here are sorta like that. What is your reasoning?

I kinda agree with Mysika. Sometimes it seems like mental disorders are just a way to label someone as inferior or just different. This is a world where different is wrong, after all. Though there are some mental disorders that are real, that cause people to really need help, I think a lot of other "disorders" are just crap.
It's not like I'm saying AB/TB are crazy/mad/sick or anything like that. But personally (my subjective opinion), I think AB/TBs who truly wants to become babies (not in a sexual roleplay), have that desire because of something. Something happening in the past, issues in the childhood etc. If an adults desire to be a baby is a reaction to problems in the past, I don't think it's healty living out that desire. What kind of fetishes/roleplays you enjoy isn't something to make a fuss about, in my opinion, it's only sex (unless it involves children, animals, raping etc). But I think it's different if you wants to be a baby all the time. But remember that i'm not an infantilist, and can't say I'm an expert on these things :smile:
Is it anyone here who wants to be a baby/treated as one all the time?
 

Xolani

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The fact is that the DSM is democratic anyway... It's made of what people have accepted and what people have rejected... Think of alcoholism, which is in their because people want an excuse for their weakness... they want to say they can't help it because of some disease... And on the other side... it's no longer crazy to have different sexualities because there aren't enough prudes in society...
For the record, the DSM is not democratic. It is socially influenced, but it's not like you or I could vote for what is excluded or included in the next edition of the DSM. Homosexuality was de-listed from the DSM at a time when more than 50% of people in both the UK and USA believed homosexuality was wrong, too.

Alcoholism is listed not to allow it to be a crutch or excuse for people, but to allow people who are alcoholics to seek help for their problem.

People here have already noted what is and what isn't a mental disorder, and that can be applied to alcoholism, too. Normal alcohol consumption is ok, and not pathological. But as soon as it interferes with home life, work, or causes feelings of self loathing, or a combination, it becomes pathological and a mental illness.

The same applies to more or less everything (except for things which are inherently harmful, such as self-harm, though it normally has an underlying cause), and it's how psychologists distinguish between something harmful and individual differences.
 
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