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March 2, 2014 11:08 pm  #181


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

Willow wrote:

I have concluded that I am the type of person who is easily bored by personality tests, to the extent that I ground to a halt at question 25.

You are so funny, Willow!http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/smile.png

 

March 2, 2014 11:43 pm  #182


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

So moriarty is the psycopath? Not Sherlock?


Don't talk out loud Anderson, you lower the IQ of the whole street,
 

March 3, 2014 6:35 am  #183


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

Willow wrote:

I have concluded that I am the type of person who is easily bored by personality tests, to the extent that I ground to a halt at question 25.

Lol It takes forever to do this particular test. It's more informative than most though so if you are ever going to endure a personality test this is not a bad one to choose.

 

March 30, 2014 5:40 pm  #184


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

I disagree with Sherlock's self-diagnosis of sociopathy, but I also hesitate to label him a high-functioning autistic. He is extremely adept at reading other people's emotions and doesn't seem to suffer from many of the sensory processing issues associated with the disease. His skill in manipulating others and deducing their motives suggests that he is very emotionally intelligent, just not emotionally invested.

I believe that, much like Watson, his "issues" are psychological. It's not uncommon for someone who is outcast to develop that sort of chip on their shoulder, to be disdainful of people in the first place so their rejection doesn't hurt you. He became a force of nature because nobody could gain enough leverage over him to reign him in. His eccentricities snowballed until he became insufferable, and it suited him just fine to be regarded as other and left alone.

You can observe him making small exceptions to his normally brutish behavior when he is actually concerned about someone's feelings. The scene where Molly introduces him to the flamboyantly undercover Moriarty is a great example of this. He tried to hold back at first to avoid hurting her feelings, but allowed himself to become vindictive because he secretly fancies her. In the beginning of the series he tries to interrogate/embarass Molly about wearing the lipstick because it is of personal interest to him. Otherwise he'd have written it off as an unecessary detail, that she might have a date or fancy a coworker. Given the extreme lengths he goes to avoid unneeded conversation, his attraction was obvious.

He grew up accustomed to being written off, ignored, or ostracized. When he's being casually rude to people he comfortably (and often rightly) assumes they will simply write him off as a bastard and carry on. He saves true viciousness for people who "repel" him, and he's very good at spotting a rat. He loathes Donovan and Anderson from day one, and he's right to do so. They're both jealous, incompetent bullies who'd rather have let those murders gone unsolved than tolerated being outshone by a 'freak'. 

Conversely, he is careful about his close associates and knows how to spot a good person. Take Mrs. Hudson for instance. She's very dotty and always exasperated with his mess, but she loves him. She would never gossip to a reporter, or sell any of his things, or betray him. She was at his funeral because she unwaveringly believed in him. And she put up with all of his crap- heads in the fridge, bullet holes the size of matzo balls, etc. He'd have to live with someone he trusted. Don't you think Mycroft approached her as well?

Don't even get me started on his kinship with John. He took one look at the guy and was willing to share an apartment. He knew Watson could hang, and that he was a good and loyal man who would prove useful. And perhaps he felt a kinship with someone who would limit himself by developing a psychosomatic limp. It was the deepest way he could deny the shame of wanting more action, by becoming a cripple who was incapable of it.

Sherlock is much the same way. The idea that he wanted friends, that he was sad to be alone, was so shameful that he abused drugs, crippled himself socially by locking himself in the ivory tower of his mind palace and looking down on everyone. His obsession with solving crimes was his indirect way of allowing himself to care about other people, and to rob sadists and bullies of their power.

To make a really long post short: It's never Lupus, it's not always Assperger's, and never underestimate how badly social rejection can warp a person's sense of self.

 

March 30, 2014 6:09 pm  #185


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

Emergency Blanket wrote:

To make a really long post short: It's never Lupus, it's not always Assperger's, and never underestimate how badly social rejection can warp a person's sense of self.

Lol that's a good summary.

The way I see it some aspects of Sherlock's behaviour could be seen as symptoms of Aperger's but his behaviour is very changable. One minute he is totaly oblivious to the nuances of human social interaction and the next he is perfectly capable of manipulating people into doing what he wants. On the surface he ticks quite a few boxes but if you did deeper it is not consistent.




 

 

March 30, 2014 6:14 pm  #186


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

I agree with you. I never believed that he has a clear-cut medical/psychological condition like Asperger's. And after series 3 I believe it even less. 


------------------------------
"To fake the death of one sibling may be regarded as a misfortune; to fake the death of both looks like carelessness." Oscar Wilde about Mycroft Holmes

"It is what it is says love." (Erich Fried)

“Enjoy the journey of life and not just the endgame. I’m also a great believer in treating others as you would like to be treated.” (Benedict Cumberbatch)

http://up.picr.de/28609194so.png

 
 

April 2, 2014 5:29 am  #187


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

SusiGo wrote:

I agree with you. I never believed that he has a clear-cut medical/psychological condition like Asperger's. And after series 3 I believe it even less. 

Hear, hear.

 

April 2, 2014 8:54 am  #188


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

if you go by canon,  I'd almost classify him as bipolar? with some almost autistic tendencies as well..  Benedict plays him not quite as clearly swinging between that legendary  frenetic energy and  languid dissoluteness of book Sherlock.. especially if you go by S3 ..   but the lack of ability to truly enjoy and understand social interactions  is ALWAYS an issue throughout, as it must be if he is to truly embody Sherlock...  

 

April 2, 2014 5:25 pm  #189


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

I think you can make an argument for canon Sherlock to have bipolar type II with hypomanic episodes as opposed to true mania. BBC Sherlock shows some of that but to a lesser extent. I could be persuaded that he is hypomanic at times with the high energy levels, some pressure of speech, lack of sleep etc I am a bit less convinced if there ever have been a true depressive episode. His mood is low in TRF but considering the circumstances its not suprising that he is not very happy. However he can function more than adequatly, appears to have normal energy levels, his mood is reactive. Maybe we could label it a moderate depressive episode if further cognitive symptoms were discovered on closer questioning.

Another thing that ges against diagnosis of bipolar is that mood changes in this condition are not situational. Sherlock seems to be low but when he gets a case his mood is elevated and than may dip again after case is solved. If I have seen him depressed during a case and unable to solve it becouse of lack of energy and motivation then I would be more inclined to think that there is some true pathology going on here.

 

April 2, 2014 5:56 pm  #190


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

Kepp in mind that this is a guy who was able to keep it together enough that he gets activley recruited for MI6 missions. If he had some sort of debilitating challenges--etc, ... he woudn't be able to do what he does. Not reliably, and not for as long as he has done it. In other words, he might just be eccentric, and not all that well socialized, and have had to deal with being ostracized from a young age-- but I don't see that as something requiring medication. 

There's got to be room left in the word for people just being odd. 

 

April 2, 2014 6:18 pm  #191


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

I suppose one thing with bipolar is that it comes and goes. There can be years of remission in between episodes and there are plenty of patients with this diagnosis holding responsible jobs and going about their bussiness without anyone even knowing that they are unwell. MI6, army etc would not normally recruit someone with this diagnosis but they wouldn't also employ someone who comitted murder. Mycroft obviously is pulling strings here and I doubt any of the usual occupational health  assesments apply.

I agree though. Not everyone who is different qualifies for some sort of medical label.

 

April 2, 2014 11:19 pm  #192


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

I do think that canon Sherlock was generally languid,  eccentric, and  moderately anti-social.  He appears to have found that casework dispelled the depressive condition he could easily sink into,  as could a syringe of cocaine..    What other if  any psychiatric, pyschological or physical condition could there be that one would find that cocaine would alleviate the severity of the symptoms, we have to look at that, that he was trying to treat his own condition?? And we know he did not always take a case, but it is true when called upon, he could rise to the level of being of use to royalty literally.      I do think that Mycroft's engineering of his Eastern European stint was his way of dealing with a brother that had become a very hot political potato..  it had little to do with his actual qualifications, in fact the inference is that he would be put in as an operative in  a sting of such high risk, there was almost no chance of coming out alive.  It's been done before I would think.   

 

April 3, 2014 12:12 am  #193


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

The thing  is, it seems plausible to me that Sherlock has worked for MI5 or MI6 before; Mycroft often comes to him for assistance, and he's able to do the work that all those cases demand. I'm having trouble simply ascribing a personality disorder, or a disability ( no offense meant, if I'm using improper terminology) to him just because he's ( to most "normal" people) kind of a wierd guy. 

If he was treated via meds to make him "more normal", he wouldn't be Sherlock. 

 

April 3, 2014 4:21 pm  #194


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

RavenMorganLeigh wrote:

If he was treated via meds to make him "more normal", he wouldn't be Sherlock. 

Intrestingly enough that is a common reason why people don't want to take medication. They feel less' themselves'. Many people with diagnosis of bipolar II don't take medication or don't do so consistently. Hardly anyone comes to see us when they are hypomanic. If depressive episodes don't get to bad there is little incentive for taking medication long term. I would imagine that anyone who would try to medicate Sherlock would face an up hill struggle. He strikes me more like the type who would prefer for things to  run their course or self medicate with illicit substances.

On another note I think it would not be such a bad thing if Sherlock did have a diagnosis. Be it Aspergers, bipolar or some other mental illness. It's rare for TV shows to include characters with mental health problems, particularly in lead roles. If we look at it that way giving him an official label could be actualy helpfull in terms if trying to reduce the stigma.

Sherlock may not meet the strict diagnostic criteria for anything but he has enough traits for people to be able to identify with him. There is enough there for people to see him as being on the autistic spectrum or having bipolar if it fits your headcanon. If it doesn't fit with how you want to interpret the character then there is plenty of evidence to the contrary.

Last edited by belis (April 3, 2014 6:23 pm)

 

April 4, 2014 1:14 pm  #195


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

I cannot understand this endeavour of some people to label Sherlock with some psychiatric diagnosis.
 
Sherlock, as he is portrayed in the show, has no psychiatric diagnosis. He is just excentric and he has an unusual way of thinking – but that is quite normal for genuises or for people with an unusually high IQ, they often seem weird when compared to general population. Many famous writers, philosophers, artists or scientist share similar traits as Sherlock – should we label them all as psychically ill? When they function without any problems, they just think differently?  
 
What′s more, in confrontation with people who really have some psychiatric problems (like Moriarty, for example), you can clearly see that Sherlock behaves quite normally, there′s nothing wrong with him.
 
The idea that such people as Sherlock should be medicated just because they differ from their peers is incredibly repulsive to me, because it reeks of totalitarianism. Totalitarian regimes often misused psychiatry for their goals, to discredit people who were opposed to the system. Psychiatry is a perfect tool for such totalitarian control over population because unlike other sciences, psychiatry is unable to define the very subject for which it strives – normalcy.
 
Yes, psychiatry is unable to define what is normalcy and who is normal. You have no person alive who can be marked as „normal“ from the psychiatry′s point of view. Everybody is unique, everybody has some quirks and so, using psychiatry, everybody can be labeled as „having psychiatrical diagnosis“ when it suits certain regime or certain people. It often happened in the past that very normal people were lobotomised, castrated or similarly destroyed under the ruse of psychiatry – I can cite some people from Virginia and Georgia, USA who were unlawfully castrated before WW2 under the pretext that they are idiots (when they were just from the low classes and the regime was trying to stilt their birth rates) or young sister of American president JF Kennedy who was lobotomised and made a vegetable just because her family thought she was too cheerful for a girl and that she should be a little less energetic. And don′t make me start on all the homosexuals who were treated as psychiatrical patients before 1976.
 
So, please, don′t label people who can take care of themselves and who function just fine with various psychiatrical diagnoses. It′s seems like fun but it′s incredibly dangerous and harmful in real life.
 


-----------------------------------

I cannot live without brainwork. What else is there to live for? Stand at the window there. Was there ever such a dreary, dismal, unprofitable world? See how the yellow fog swirls down the street and drifts across the dun-coloured houses. What could be more hopelessly prosaic and material? What is the use of having powers, Doctor, when one has no field upon which to exert them?

http://49.media.tumblr.com/eb0e156f55878fcd6f89dcf91ae89811/tumblr_o0eyyzrphE1spvwrzo2_1280.gif
 

April 4, 2014 7:10 pm  #196


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

for me, I noticed canon Sherlock seemed to  almost self-prescribe his drugs  to deal with ongoing  symptoms,  I just wondering whether its due to an organic mental imbalance? and  that he is trying to medicate..  the 'work' seems to  allow his brain to catalogue, make mental leaps at a frenetic rate, he is able to channel that almost destructive  energy into something constructive.. and when he can't he substitutes it with narcotics when necessary..      isn't that what ACD's portrayal indicates?   

 

April 4, 2014 7:19 pm  #197


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

you do notice in canon as well  the way he agressively  avoids social interactions which speaks volumes,  as well as his difficulties in understanding emotions and their nuances, being almost in horror of them,  there are many who experience difficulty  as he appears to,   and I don't say the answer in medication,  I am on the spectrum myself and I take no medication.. but I identify so much with Sherlock,  especially the wedding reception scene when he is alone,  that has been ME so many times.

 

April 4, 2014 7:37 pm  #198


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

nakahara wrote:

I cannot understand this endeavour of some people to label Sherlock with some psychiatric diagnosis.
 
Sherlock, as he is portrayed in the show, has no psychiatric diagnosis. He is just excentric and he has an unusual way of thinking – but that is quite normal for genuises or for people with an unusually high IQ, they often seem weird when compared to general population. Many famous writers, philosophers, artists or scientist share similar traits as Sherlock – should we label them all as psychically ill? When they function without any problems, they just think differently?  
 
What′s more, in confrontation with people who really have some psychiatric problems (like Moriarty, for example), you can clearly see that Sherlock behaves quite normally, there′s nothing wrong with him.
 
The idea that such people as Sherlock should be medicated just because they differ from their peers is incredibly repulsive to me, because it reeks of totalitarianism. Totalitarian regimes often misused psychiatry for their goals, to discredit people who were opposed to the system. Psychiatry is a perfect tool for such totalitarian control over population because unlike other sciences, psychiatry is unable to define the very subject for which it strives – normalcy.
 
Yes, psychiatry is unable to define what is normalcy and who is normal. You have no person alive who can be marked as „normal“ from the psychiatry′s point of view. Everybody is unique, everybody has some quirks and so, using psychiatry, everybody can be labeled as „having psychiatrical diagnosis“ when it suits certain regime or certain people. It often happened in the past that very normal people were lobotomised, castrated or similarly destroyed under the ruse of psychiatry – I can cite some people from Virginia and Georgia, USA who were unlawfully castrated before WW2 under the pretext that they are idiots (when they were just from the low classes and the regime was trying to stilt their birth rates) or young sister of American president JF Kennedy who was lobotomised and made a vegetable just because her family thought she was too cheerful for a girl and that she should be a little less energetic. And don′t make me start on all the homosexuals who were treated as psychiatrical patients before 1976.
 
So, please, don′t label people who can take care of themselves and who function just fine with various psychiatrical diagnoses. It′s seems like fun but it′s incredibly dangerous and harmful in real life.
 

Nakahara, this is a wonderful, profound, and timely post. THANK YOU!!! 

We seem to now live in a culture where it's expected that people are not allowed to have the full range of human emotion, not allowed to deviate in any way from proscribed behavior patterns; everyone has to conform to this mythical "norm", that doesn't exist. People are complex and they are individual. It breaks my heart that we have lost the ability to see that. 

I also think that medicating Sherlock to be "more normal" might not make him a "nicer" person, or someone more "palatable" to be around. Because I think that's actually what is at the root of the need to diagnose Sherlock with something-- we need to explain or excuse his rudeness, his singlemindedness, the parts of him we don't like; but would need if *our* child was kidnapped. He's grown up a lot in the last season, and that to me tells me he's capable of change if he values the reason for it. 

A part of me wants to write a fic where he gets diagnosed in an effort to make him more normal, and the result is, more or less, a mild lobotomy. He's calm, unruffled, no swings of mood; but no deductions, no passion about his work; instead-- he acts like most of us who don't really like our jobs, do it because that's what we *have* to do, and go through the motions with everyone in our lives to avoid rocking the boat, because that could be uncomfortable. 

What a different show it would make! 

Oh, hell. Plot bunnies!! :-)
 

 

April 4, 2014 8:08 pm  #199


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

Well said, nakahara and Raven, fully agree with you. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/happy.png


------------------------------
"To fake the death of one sibling may be regarded as a misfortune; to fake the death of both looks like carelessness." Oscar Wilde about Mycroft Holmes

"It is what it is says love." (Erich Fried)

“Enjoy the journey of life and not just the endgame. I’m also a great believer in treating others as you would like to be treated.” (Benedict Cumberbatch)

http://up.picr.de/28609194so.png

 
 

April 4, 2014 10:28 pm  #200


Re: Sherlock- Asperger's syndrome and sociopathy

nakahara wrote:

I cannot understand this endeavour of some people to label Sherlock with some psychiatric diagnosis. 

People have their own reasons. Whilst in my own headcanon I consider him to be excentric I can see why others would maybe read a bit more into some aspects of the behaviour. For some people (like myself) it's just an academic discussion and others have more personal reasons. There is a very good meta by welingtongoose as to why Sherlock doesn't have a mental illness. I agree with it on the whole. What is even more intresting though is some of the reactions to it and the opposing points of view. This is a good post that I think explains better why some people would like a lebel for Sherlock
 
http://nauticus.tumblr.com/post/48166930728/sherlock-does-not-have-aspergers-or-autism-thanks

nakahara wrote:

The idea that such people as Sherlock should be medicated just because they differ from their peers is incredibly repulsive to me, because it reeks of totalitarianism. Totalitarian regimes often misused psychiatry for their goals, to discredit people who were opposed to the system. Psychiatry is a perfect tool for such totalitarian control over population because unlike other sciences, psychiatry is unable to define the very subject for which it strives – normalcy.

It's a big leap from a diagnosis to medication. Not all mental health conditions can be medicated for. Even if they can be medicated for in most instances it is up to the patient if they want to be treated or not. I can't speak for every psychiatrist on the planet but personaly if I offer someone medication it is to treat specific symptoms that they find distressing. It is not my ambition to go round turning everyone into some sort of conforming drone or strive for 'normalcy'. What I'm striving for is to improve quality of life, help patients to achieve their own goals and minimise suffering.
 

nakahara wrote:

Yes, psychiatry is unable to define what is normalcy and who is normal. You have no person alive who can be marked as „normal“ from the psychiatry′s point of view. Everybody is unique, everybody has some quirks and so, using psychiatry, everybody can be labeled as „having psychiatrical diagnosis“ when it suits certain regime or certain people.

I agree that it may be a less clear cut to decide if someone has a mental illness than to decide if they have a broken leg. I think though that to say that we consider everyone to be 'abnormal' is pushing it a bit. If you practice medicine in accoredence with best practice guidelines and ethical principles you won't find yourself diagnosing people left right and centre for some sort of secondary gain. I don't question that it happaned in the past and all sort of abuses took place. What I'm saying is that is not how psychitrists practice in the UK at present time.
 

nakahara wrote:

So, please, don′t label people who can take care of themselves and who function just fine with various psychiatrical diagnoses. It′s seems like fun but it′s incredibly dangerous and harmful in real life.

I think it is open to debate as to what sort of role a psychiatric diagnosis serves in real life. The way various services are structured in the UK the disgnosis is what opens doors to various sorts of support from specialist educational provision to social support. Ideally everyone would have a supportive familly and wider social network and have all their needs met by their community without input from services but it doesn't happen. Most of my patients can function just fine and they take care of themselves. What they ask from services is help with some specific difficulties and diagnosis facilitates that.

So this started as a post about Sherlock and ended up an essay on merits of modern psychiatry. My appologies but obviously I have taken it a bit personally.
 

 

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