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A Psychologist's Thoughts on Clinical Practice, Behavior, and Life

The Fear of "Going Crazy"

While the fear of "going crazy" is widespread, in reality it is a very difficult state to achieve requiring either drug/alcohol abuse or long term overwhelming stress. This fear contains several elements: becoming unable to control oneself; having impaired thinking; and an inability to care for oneself resulting in hospitalization. For most people what underlies this fear is the fear of losing control because of realization of unconscious hostile feelings or dependency needs, both of which are controlled during hospitalization. Yet this fear of loss of control may be caused by something innocuous, as becoming tearful by one who rarely does.

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