If you’ve been racking your brain for a way to impress your Facebook pals or you just enjoy feeling paranoid about your own mental health, here are some nifty disorders I found in an old medical dictionary, some of which are still official. It seems that doctors have long been busy turning what some of us consider normal if eccentric behavior into full-blown pathology.
Do you suspect that you and your fellow humans have been degenerating lately? Well, you may be right. They, and you, could be suffering from abatardissement, the deterioration of a race or breed, which, being French, sounds so much prettier than the English “bastardization”. And remember, if you indulge in un peu aboiement (making barking sounds) over this sad state of affairs, you’re definitely becoming “batardissed” yourself.
Do you tend to split hairs when you’re trying to win an argument about, say, whether or not Obama or Bush should be blamed for the recession? Congratulations! You’re suffering from Gr’¹belsucht (the making of ultra-fine distinctions in discussions).
While you’re pondering all the germs in the world that could be crawling on you at this very moment, are you soaping up constantly to get rid of them? You’re in good company. Like Howie Mandel, you’re an ablutomaniac.
Or, maybe you’re a congressman who can’t stop yourself from sending sexual poses of yourself to strangers on the Internet. You could be an abulomaniac (someone who is weak-willed or morally indecisive), as well as an aidoiomaniac (someone with abnormal sexual desire), not to mention a passive scopophiliac with a morbid desire for your family jewels to be displayed and admired.
Speaking of famous bulges, here’s one neurosis a lot of men can relate to: macromania, the belief that external objects or one’s own members are larger than they really are.
But perhaps you’d rather forgo human intercourse altogether and live in the purity of Nature. Then you could be diagnosed with agromania, an insane passion for solitude and wandering in the fields.
Are you a cowboy who doesn’t want to be fenced in? Sounds to me like you may be experiencing eleutheromania, an abnormal desire for freedom.
Enjoy your scotch with a big nipple attached to the bottle? Welcome to the world of enomania, the craving for strong drink.
In a world of terrorism, life is very scary, but most of us learn to cope. Those who can’t handle it are enosimaniacs, people who are driven bonkers by their own fears.
As a caretaker of seven felines, I’d be happy to plead guilty to ailurophilia aka catophilia, an extreme fondness for cats. Sounds purrfectly normal to me, though!
If you’re a metromaniac, it’s not that you adore cities to excess. Actually you’re either excessively horny or you have a passion for writing poetry (they have a lot in common, trust me).
You say you’re addicted to shopping? Welcome to the world of oniomania. And while you’re making all those purchases you can’t afford, are you constantly picking at your nails? You onychotillomaniac, you!
Bitch, bitch, bitch! Not to whine, but it seems that some people can’t stop complaining because they enjoy it so much, those paramaniacs.
Admit it. Sometimes you can’t stop picking at your own skin, especially when something attractive is growing there, like a wart. Watch out! You could be accused of being a raving phaneromaniac.
With tuberculosis on the rise again, we may see more phthisiomaniacs, people with the persistent delusion they have TB. A happier delusion is plutomania, the belief that one is very rich, or the obsession with being wealthy, like The Donald.
Are you a patient who likes to be cut into, or a doctor who enjoys slicing into patients? Welcome to the blood-thirsty world of tomomania!
Lastly but not leastly for now, a very common form of madness, especially among today’s right wingers: sebastomania, or religious insanity.
I could go on, and I will, because I’m clearly suffering from acrasia: no self-control. So tune in later for more Venerable Verbiage to Convince Yourself You’re Gaga. In the meantime, I encourage you to try and cultivate (harmless) craziness to save what’s left of your sanity.