When I tell people what I do, I often get questions about mental illnesses. Like, what does someone have if they do XYZ? I don’t really like diagnosing hypothetical strangers based on an out-of-context list of symptoms, but even more so, I don’t like reducing wonderfully complex people to a mere label. It limits their view of themselves and my view of them. I prefer to focus on people’s strengths rather than their problems, and yet I think it is helpful to talk about disorders. Often, the silence on these topics leads to confusion, shame, stigmas and misunderstandings. Even though I am proud of the large amount of dust on my DSM (manual of mental disorders), I am going to write a series of posts on some of the most misunderstood mental disorders. My aim is not to help you understand them in clinical sense, but that you could better empathize and connect with real people that you know that are affected by these illnesses. I will try to address each of the disorders with the upmost respect in order that we could all be better to each other. Please comment below or send me a message if you have a “favorite” illness you’d like me to address in this series. First up: Narcolepsy.