Do you have the 45th President Adjustment Disorder?

You’ve read about him in the papers and online. You’ve watched him on the news; you discussed him over countless cups of coffee or belts of high-octane beverages. Given his actions, statements, choices and associates, people from coast-to-coast as well as across the globe are reeling in reaction to the 45th President of the United States.

His inauguration has created a panoply of fear, anger, depression and resignation among global citizens. People are having real difficulty accepting and adjusting to the 45th U.S. President. There is so much suffering.

As a psychologist, I felt it behooved me to name this affliction, which I now term the “45th President Adjustment Disorder with Mixed Reactions.” The diagnosis code for those of you hoping to submit this to your health insurance, while it lasts, is OMG1.20.2017.

Here is the diagnostic criteria:

1. INABILITY TO ACCEPT REALITY: The appearance of being stunned with disbelief; characterized by a bobble-headed face plastered in incredulity and a mouth pursed in a frozen “what the ….” or “oh noooo”; showing shock and horror; feeling totally aghast. This is compounded by somatic symptoms such as upset stomachs, eye and/or mouth twitching, spontaneous groaning, restlessness and agitation.

2. ANGER AND RAGE: Red (fiery), white (beyond words) or blue (deep and buried) anger and rage due to the complete disregard and thwarting of humanitarian rights and environmental realities.

3. OBSESSIVE BEHAVIORS, such as:
a.) A sudden and marked increase in watching and/or reading the news and related articles. This includes headline-seeking prior to bed and before the first cup of morning coffee;
b.) Wearing pink, kitty-eared caps while marching;
c.) Watching Saturday Night Live religiously;
d.) Signing petitions repeatedly;
e.) Looking up the definitions of dictator, autocrat and plutocrat;
f.) Avoidance of the word “huge”;
g.) Taking self-help courses in how to deal with a bully;
h.) Wearing protective gear when watching a White House Press conference;
i.) Praying daily for peace.

4. DENIAL:
a) Complete avoidance in watching, listening and/or reading the news;
b) A refusal to discuss politics; period;
c) An increase in the behavior of each hand over an ear with a swivel rotation of the head, saying “la la la la la” repeatedly while ignoring everyone and everything around you, especially incoming info about #45;
d) Pretending it’s all ok when your insides are screaming.

5. HIGH ANXIETY: Escalating anxiety that there will be no clean air, water or earth for future generations; no insurance to cover chemotherapy costs; abolishment of Sanctuary cities; opening of Black Op torture sites; military aggression; a nuclear event; closing doors to the press and media bans; disregard for the arts; disdain for intellectuals and the like.

6. DISTORTED REALITIES: This is particularly evidenced around numbers, such as the attendance at the inauguration, Election Day votes by illegals, climate warming percentages, the tax returns of the 45th President as well as disavowal of ties with Russia. This phenomena is heightened when the 45th President, his right-hand counsel and Press Secretary speak publicly.

7. FEAR AND PARANOIA:
a) Struggling with the concept of alternative facts and no one calling “Liar, liar, pants on fire”;
b) Certainty of Big Brother watching;
c) Fear of reprisals and retaliations;
d) Feeling like you are the only one who knows that this “Emperor” wears no clothes.

8. DEPRESSION: Characterized by feeling stuck, disrespected, unacknowledged, disenfranchised, sad, defeated, resigned and hopeless due to the actions of the 45th President and the very-real consequences of said actions; despair over the diminishment and manipulation of a “for-the-people” Democracy.

9. PTSD: Recurring nightmares and flashbacks triggered by debate rhetoric, campaign trail promises, prior historical events that ended in merciless debacles as well as the energetic signatures of #45 and his minions.

10. COMPLICATED GRIEF: Examples include letting go of the 44th President; heartbreak over the election; and, most especially, the loss of Dignity, Truth, Transparency and Gravitas by the 45th President and his White House administration.

11. REACTIVE FEATURES, such as the following:
a.) Sore throats from vociferously responding to television and online news;
b.) The search for Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak, Anne Frank’s hidden attic and other instruments of safety;
c.) The avoidance of all walls of division, most especially cultural, racial, religious and sexual as well as any construction on the border of Mexico and the U.S.;
d.) Dreaming of a move to Canada;
e.) Feelings of heightened solidarity with like-minded unity consciousness thinkers across the globe.

12. IDEALIZATION: The constant and continuous search for what was once the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave; remembering that we are global citizens sharing one Mother Earth.

If you or one of your loved ones exhibit a number of these symptoms, you are urged to seek others who behave similarly. The optimum treatment, to date, is to become a power of example by demonstrating compassion and respect, be a pro-active agent for humanitarian rights and the Common Good and share your light in your own unique and special way.

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17 Responses to Do you have the 45th President Adjustment Disorder?

  1. Adele Ryan McDowell January 27, 2017 at 4:57 pm #

    What a thoughtful and expansive post, Gayook. Thank you so much for sharing. I agree, what matters is that we uplift one another; there is compassionate response to humanitarian needs and social justice and we find ways to listen and bridge the divide with common good. xx

  2. Adele Ryan McDowell January 27, 2017 at 4:54 pm #

    Thank you so much, Abbie. Your effervescence comes through your kind words. So happy you liked it and joining you in the good fight. Onward and with much love.

  3. Abbie Wilson January 27, 2017 at 8:43 am #

    OMG Adele! This is brilliant, and SPOT ON! Of course, I have known this about you for many years. Good to know you’re out there fighting the good fight!

  4. Gayook January 27, 2017 at 2:19 am #

    Hi Adele,

    This most recent presidential campaign, to me, does reveal just how divided this nation is on many of the major issues of the day – all the way from local to global. That saddens and frightens me, especially as I am an Asian-American woman who has lived through direct blatant and violent experiences of racism and sexism. Right now, the Muslims and illegal Mexicans are being targeted. My thought is, what if the President finds China to be a threat, what then? Given the incarceration of Japanese-American citizens during WWII, there is precedence already set. On a more academic note, as a major in history/political science in my undergraduate days, I have studied how revolutions come about. The patterns for such is when there is great disparity between the very wealthy and very poor, when the latter have nothing – no jobs, no food, no survival resources, and no hope of such – even if the government makes efforts to negotiate. It is already too little late. As an American citizen, I hope that it’s not the case here. However, when I read about the wealth w/the 1%, the disappearing middle class, and the higher rates of poverty, this scares me as to what could happen.

    As a retired psychotherapist, I do agree with your clinical response of how you have assessed the wave of reactions from many people, especially those who did not vote for our 45th president. I have observed these reactions from my family, friends, fb and twitter friends, and in the media. These are trying times, yet I also believe that Pres. Trump is a catalyst, although not in the way many would have thought. As shown in the Women’s March, I see that it is a catalyst for the American people to exercise their democratic privileges that perhaps many have taken for granted. I am uplifted by the numbers in this country and in the world that have shown up. I am also uplifted and proud to see that this was, as far as I’ve read, a peaceful one. And, so, it depends if the people can keep the momentum going or not. I believe a true democracy does depend on the the people, and it looks like we’re off to a great start.

    Regardless of who I voted for or what my beliefs are, one thing I’m very pleased to see is that the transition of power from one president to another was peaceful. I do think we also need to see the ways our government does work. And, be realistic about the ways that it doesn’t and to keep exercising our rights to show that we can still be the best of what a democracy is supposed to be.

    Having said all that, I do believe that each of us has to search our own hearts, look at our own beliefs and see if they align w/what is best for all Americans. Evidently, your blog has engendered a thought process for me I didn’t expect to have, let alone write. Thank you for your candor.

  5. Adele Ryan McDowell January 26, 2017 at 11:44 pm #

    Dear Win and Meredith, Thanks for sharing your wisdom and bridging the divide. You guys are great! xx

  6. Adele Ryan McDowell January 26, 2017 at 11:42 pm #

    Thank you, dear Stella. I’m so glad it resonated. Much love.

  7. Stella Drakoulias January 26, 2017 at 8:12 pm #

    By far my favorite piece of yours, ever (well, except the little girl and the teddy bear story).
    You hit ever nail right I
    On the head!

  8. Meredith and Win Blevins January 26, 2017 at 5:53 pm #

    Win and I were talking about some latest WHAT? this morning. Win was looking for some rational reason why this, this, or that response to one issue and then another happened. I said, “Look you were never married to a crazy person–a narcissist. I was.

    Here is the deal: You can never be surprised, because you’ll live in that state forever. You can never expect a stream of rational reasons, such as a>b>c. Ideas pop randomly, and they often contradict each other. When that happens, and you catch the person, they will respond with something like, “Well, I lied.” (This is pretty much what happened with the “I will show my tax returns if I become President.” then . . . “I won. I’m President. So, no, I won’t show my tax returns.

    Meaning? We all need to stop being surprised. We need to know that rational reason won’t happen. Pick one thing that is your pet — in my case it’s watching for the oil and gas drilling and the uranium mining — it’s in my backyard. Pick that thing, and work on it. Kathleen, I’m sure there is one thing you’d like to see changed, too. We all do.

  9. Adele Ryan McDowell January 26, 2017 at 2:33 pm #

    PS Kathy, I agree. I think Mr. Trump is a huge agent of change….not perhaps in ways that have been imagined but he has become a catalyst for bringing together like-minded people as evidenced by the Women’s March which was supported across the states, and, even, the globe in surprising numbers.

  10. Adele Ryan McDowell January 26, 2017 at 2:30 pm #

    Dear Polly, Thanks so much for your response. I had not hear that quote from Bill Maher. I think he nailed. We do live in the most interesting of times. All the best.

  11. Adele Ryan McDowell January 26, 2017 at 2:26 pm #

    Hi Kathy, Thanks for sharing your thoughts. And, actually, I only write to help — in whatever form that may take. Obviously, I offended you. And clearly, we are going to agree to disagree on this one. That said, I know we both hold other common values. Thanks for speaking your truth. Much love.

  12. Adele Ryan McDowell January 26, 2017 at 2:20 pm #

    Thank you! I thought you might get a kick out of this. And right back at you!

  13. Adele Ryan McDowell January 26, 2017 at 2:19 pm #

    Thanks so much, dear Val. I am glad you liked the post. Thanks for sharing the best bit. I appreciate your light!

  14. Polly January 26, 2017 at 2:11 pm #

    I have no words to describe how extremely frightened I am of this man and his plans to destroy our current democracy.

    I think Bill Maher said it best, “A reality actor from Queens was elected President.” This actor is “playing at being President” and has no clue how to be President of the US.

    Hopefully, his term in office will be very, very short before our country is torn apart.

    I did not vote for him and I was born and raised in this country. I am not register to vote in separate states and not dead.

    Thank you for this great post.

    Polly

  15. Kathleen Dooley DiGiovanna January 26, 2017 at 12:30 pm #

    Adele I think that articles like yours are not helpful. You diagnose and give credibility to the whining side of too many people who were blindsided by the media polling.
    Also the reality is that Donald trump is president
    Instead of using your forum to forecast and criticize why don’t you spin a positive view of what a
    Non politician can do.
    There are many who thoughtfully evaluated the two candidates and choose the one with the least baggage and the real desire to change things
    Maybe his language was off putting.
    However the other candidate lied over and over and
    Her acceptance of a philandering husband did not give the example of a strong woman.
    Don’t fuel the fire. Does what you wrote really help?
    I don’t think so

  16. Na'ama January 26, 2017 at 11:26 am #

    🙂 Love this! Love you!

  17. Val January 26, 2017 at 10:56 am #

    This is terrific, Adele. I think your superbly-written article dragged me out of Denial. The last paragraph gives us all clear instructions as to how to keep calm and carry on. {sharing}