The Disney syndrome

The Disney syndrome

Do you feel like you get carried away very quickly on the first date? Or do you feel that love makes you “blind” and you idealise the other person or your relationship very quickly.

Or on the other hand, you anticipate the worst and always imagine evil everywhere, so you may have what I call the Disney syndrome, which I will explain in this article.

I call this phenomenon the Disney syndrome. It’s not a psychological diagnosis, it’s really my interpretation of a recurrent behaviour that I have observed in several people I have accompanied.

Definition of the Disney syndrome

For me, Disney syndrome is when you have a distorted image of the other person’s reality in the relationship and base your assessment on your projections and not on the facts.

It’s like your inner judge getting confused as soon as you fall in love.

The problem with the Disney syndrome is that it prevents you from making a conscious choice about your partner and tends to self-sabotage the relationship because either you come down from your cloud after a few months in the relationship and see the person as them or you will have pushed the other person away with your insecurity.

The same cause: apprehension of non-control

From the experience I’ve made with the people I accompany, I’ve noticed that this phenomenon happens mainly at the beginning of a relationship when you don’t know the other person yet and you don’t really know how much attention they pay to you and if they want to start a relationship, and that this beginning phase often implies a certain amount of risk-taking, because basically you launch yourself into the relationship without knowing 100% if it’s going to work or not.

Automatically for your survival brain it is a situation that is more stressful for it because by definition of the survival brain it wants to be prepared for the unknown, it does not like the unknown.

And so at that moment your survival brain is going to draw from its database, it’s going to look at what reaction patterns you’ve used in your past that have helped you in the past when faced with situations of the unknown and uncontrolled, and it’s going to suggest this way of acting.

Several origins are possible

From the experience I have accumulated with the people I accompany, I have noticed that there are mainly 4 origins of this apprehension of non control:

  • Idealisation of a parent. If you perceived one of your parents as being unpredictable and uncontrollable and you suffered from this, you may have created a story about this parent as a child and idealized him/her instead of seeing him/her as he/she was with his/her shortcomings towards you. This is often a protection mechanism because a child is dependent on this parent and it is better to stay with his/her parents for his/her survival. So automatically when you love someone you tend to idealize them, not taking into account their faults or shortcomings.

  • Accumulation of unpredictable and unexpected shocks in your life. If you have experienced a lot of unexpected and unpredictable things, whether it be the death of someone, illness, break-ups that may have been a shock, or rather sudden changes in life (be careful here, the perception of the unexpected and unpredictable for a child may be totally different from that of an adult), a birth with unforeseen events (emergency caesarean section, cord, forcep) that impacts on how you perceive the unknown or the unexpected and the unknown or the unexpected can become a constant threat and therefore you cannot tolerate not knowing and you will either anticipate the worst or imagine a positive outcome to the situation.

  • An addiction to the hormonal cocktail that is secreted at the beginning of the relationship, especially after the first sexual encounter. In ‘How a man falls in love’ I talk more about the process of falling in love and I talk about this famous hormonal cocktail that is secreted. And in fact the effect that this hormonal cocktail has on a person is not the same for everyone. By observation with the people I have accompanied, I have noticed that people who have had a tumultuous past with a lot of chaos in their lives, a lot of ups and downs, have a stronger dependence on this hormonal cocktail, which means that you quickly become addicted to the other without really choosing the other.

  • You want things to finally work out. You want to be in a relationship. It may be because you’ve done a lot of therapy, personal development, and you want it to work this time. It’s like basically you want to sort of control a result 100% whereas in a relationship you only have 50% influence, the other person also has to confirm their interest and act for their 50%. It can also come from social pressure, or from seeing your loved ones settle down and start a family and you don’t, or from Disney movies that promise you that finally the Holy Grail is to be in a relationship and have children. The problem is that when you think “I have to make it work” you are focused on the outcome, i.e. “being with someone” regardless of the conditions.

For you​

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The solution is to readjust your inner judge

For me there are three steps:

  1. The first step is to understand what experiences from your past have distorted your inner judgement in the face of the unknown and the uncontrolled and deprogrammed this protective mechanism with the mind-body approach. In the case of non-control and the unknown, the body has an even greater impact because it is a life and death situation.

  2. Consciously work on your thoughts to evaluate the person without getting carried away or assuming the worst. One thought that can help is “I can only evaluate a person after 3 months of a relationship”.

  3. Readjusting your inner judge by dissecting the facts of your thoughts or projections may seem laborious, but this introspection is the only way to see how you evaluate the other person and, little by little, understand and better define your biases and correct them.

This work is of course included in my Individual Love Coaching.