The ever-infallible Wikipedia defines Stockholm syndrome as “a psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors, sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with them.” When I read this submission, this was the first thing that came to mind. I know this secret isn’t exactly the same as the situation described in classic Stockholm scenarios, but there’s enough similarity to merit some kind of conversation around this.
Add this to the list of things they don’t tell you at diagnosis. With all of the time and energy spent focusing on and managing this disease, to suddenly have that taken away, that away would feel…I don’t know how that would feel. I’m sure I would feel relieved. I’m sure I would be incredibly grateful. I’m sure life would go on. But despite my efforts to not let diabetes define who I am, it is an integral part of me.
I’m not a psychologist, but I know enough smart people to pass this along to: is there a medical term for this kind of association with a condition, disease, or mentality? Diabetes isn’t necessarily a ‘hostage taker’ or a ‘captor’, even if it can feel like it at times, but can you really have the kind of emotional breakdown associated with Stockholm syndrome and a person (or persons) with an inanimate ‘captor’ like a chronic disease?
Assuming a legit, biological cure is on the horizon, will we need to invest in specialized pseudo-grief counseling for the newly cured? Can you get separation anxiety from a disease, particularly one as omnipresent as diabetes? Am I out of my element? Should I end this post with a cat picture?