It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Born in the wrong species

page: 5
8
<< 2  3  4   >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 03:28 AM
link   
a reply to: Droogie

She's just doing it for attention and to belong somewhere. Or it's something sexual like furries.


A fetishistic disorder, maybe?

idk. maybe I'm just an a-hole but I call B.S.
edit on 29-1-2016 by rukia because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 09:24 PM
link   
Well, since I have a dog in this fight, I think I can provide some answers


originally posted by: Droogie
Unfortunately the journalist has done no work at all identifying experts that would expand on this condition. Fortunately though, a quick google search provides a hit immidiately identifying the condition as species dysphoria (wiki), or "species identity disorder".


I would actually identify her as a therianthrope rather than a Furry, but there is some overlap.

They're just beginning to study things like this - the real issue is that the community (weres, therianthropes, furries, OtherKin, etc) is very closed and very wary of outsiders. And media tends to focus on the very worst (and the real attention seekers with goofy modalities) are the ones who leap to get attention -- go on Oprah or other shows while the rest of the community cringes and disassociates from them. And then when show producers come into the community looking for MORE freaks to feature on their show, everyone except the extreme attention seekers hides from them.



The only thing I could find that touches on the subject is a paper from 2011 on how species dysphoria could relate to gender identity disorder, and if this is a valid comparison or not. But it also looks like they focus on something called "Furries" which is some kind of fandom. I appologize for not presenting this more thoroughly, but you can read the paper here if you are so inclined:

Furries and the Limits of Species Identity Disorder: A Response to Gerbasi et al.


There's also at least three Master's theses on Furries and at least one PhD dissertation (not mine.) Several papers are being written right now, but at this point it's difficult to get material about Furries, Therianthropes, and Otherkin accepted into journals.

Gerbasi is one of the few doing this research on Furries (she's pretty fearless in taking on a study of a community that has been held up to such public scorn), and after almost a decade involved with the fans is starting to be accepted by the community. The main problem (from my anthropological view) is that their research is based on questionnaires handed out at a few of the largest conventions (primarily Anthrocon) - and the questions initially were taken from psychological profiling questionnaires.

You know...the kind of "have you thought about (insert Socially Awful Scenario) today" questions.

Their early work is also heavily biased in that most of the answers came from young (18-22 age range) Furries and those who had been in the community for less than five years (the Old Guard fled, fearing what was coming next.) The more recent work with a larger sample size is more balanced in nature, I feel.

However, that's Furries and while there's overlap in the Otherkin/therianthrope/fey/were communities, you'll find that for convenience they are just studying Furries. For the nonce the research focuses on the available population at the large Furry cons (Anthrocon, Furry Fiesta, Further Confusion.)

You'll see Gerbasi and Nuka Plante and Troj and the IARP group quoted in a lot of these papers - they were the first academics to break the ice and get into the fandom, so theirs are the early publications. They also avoid the bias of some of the other researchers in approaching the community as though they're all suffering from severe psychological disorders.

It would be a mistake (as Gerbasi points out and as the later data shows) to think that all or most of the Furries have species identity disorder.


I observe from the video that she describes how a human would react to something, and then compare that to how a cat would percieve or react to the same. It's almost like she chooses favourably to the cat personality than the human personality. From my expertise of being an armchair psychologist, this seems like a sort of schizophrenia. But now I'm in dangerous waters, and leave it at that.


Actually, they often behave the way they THINK the animal behaves. This is not necessarily the way an animal would behave and some of their "species behaviors" would seem alarming or threatening to the species they're portraying.


NOW (that you're boggled thoroughly, perhaps) - this isn't that much different than people who believe they're Indigo Children or Star Children or part alien, etc. They feel a dissociation with human society; feel that they don't belong.

I would imagine that many of you reading my words right now ALSO feel that you "don't belong" ... to society, to humanity, to your family, etc. Some of you have formulated a different identity because of this. It's a coping mechanism and not necessarily a bad one. Some ancient societies had people like this (with a species identity disorder) who were considered healers or spiritual ministers (shamans...but this is not characteristic of shamanism.)

Our ability to "become other" is part of the mechanism that makes us empathic to those who don't share our experiences.

Useful things can be learned from those who take on different identities for whatever reason...but the problem is that in the past, scientists and psychologists have gone in with the "OMG! FREAK!" attitude and everyone skitters off or simply lies to their face (except for the attention seekers, who play the "shock the mundane" card.)

Well, this is getting long. There's much more, but I'm going to quit right now.



(yes, I go to furry conventions as well as science fiction conventions, steampunk conventions, and comic book conventions, anime conventions (hello Akon!) and occasionally gaming conventions. At Anthrocon, I'm one of the security guards (Dorsai Irregulars)).



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 10:14 PM
link   
a reply to: Byrd

Firstly, I'm picking my jaw up off the floor to see you've invested so much thought into this. I have blown it off as this:


NOW (that you're boggled thoroughly, perhaps) - this isn't that much different than people who believe they're Indigo Children or Star Children or part alien, etc. They feel a dissociation with human society; feel that they don't belong.


But rather feeling so much 'they don't belong' I associate it more with youths (particularly young girls) who are disappointed in their lives, striving to attain some degree of 'specialness', and like the great indigo/starchild trend of the early 2000's, latch on to what differences they experience, cultivate them, and eventually begin believing them, having some support from family or peers.

My thoughts are, like the 'Indigos", they will outgrow it in due time. (And of course 'magical thinking', which I think is pertinent also). There may be a few who have an actual thought disorder, but I doubt if the majority do.

However, considering that you find it interesting, I suddenly find it more interesting. : )
I will perhaps look more into it.


edit on 1/29/2016 by ladyinwaiting because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 10:38 PM
link   
I actually logged out to head to the bedroom, but had another thought about this. lol. (Bryd, you got me thinking).

I think rather than wearing a fake tail, ears and cat make-up to strut around at the mall, or other public place, that a person with a true disorder such as this would be terrified. These folks would be horribly insecure, completely lack confidence in their social interactions, and would be trying to conceal the phenomenon, while doing everything possible to look 'normal' as we see with other disorders, with patients studying how to mimic what they consider to be appropriate behavior -- in order to fit in.

It seems this would more true in adolescence, which is a time when one strives to be accepted by peers, perhaps seeing others as more beautiful, intelligent and popular, and if lacking, or perceive themselves as lacking the qualities that accomplish those ideals, they find another way to set themselves up as 'special' and slough off the dreaded designation of 'ordinary".

Hm. Something to think about,.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 10:52 PM
link   

originally posted by: ladyinwaiting
a reply to: Byrd

Firstly, I'm picking my jaw up off the floor to see you've invested so much thought into this.


I'm one of the Old Guard Furries, actually (in the fandom for over 30 years and a Muck wizard) and tired of seeing the community misrepresented. That's why I'm working with Nuka and Troj and Gerbasi to help them understand better (since they're new to the fandom.)

There's some intriguing things here: most fan groups take personas/identities/roles that are based on what the original creator did. In other words, Tolkien fans play Elves or Hobbits or Dwarves (I was a Hobbit), Star Trek fans play Vulcans or Klingons or other personas (I have a Vulcan name in the Vulcan language (boggled yet?)), and Bronies have personal characters based in and on the show.

The Furries don't. They literally create their own universes and rules (world building) to play in. So in their creative play they're not borrowing from a main creator - they are the main creators. That's one of the more recent findings from the research.

The community is also reasonably accepting of non-destructive alternate identities. Stalking Cat was one of us, and was accepted into the community. He struggled with illness and depression but he was honored and respected and no one thought of him as a freak. (He was a shaman... there's at least one other true Native American shaman in the community). I encountered my first transgendered person there... by the time my daughter's fiance came out as transgendered it was old hat to me. To the children in my life, I was a "safe adult" that they could talk to about sexuality, gender, religion, and a lot of other things because being involved in many fandoms had brought me into contact with many strange things.

Stalking Cat isn't strange to me. I understand how he got his tattoos, why he did them (shamanism/body identity), why they changed, and why he kept his appearance in spite of the trouble he got for it. I have promised myself that someday in his honor I will do an anthropological study of people who are extensively tattooed... not from the standpoint of "OMG! FREAK! PSYCHOLOGICAL PROBLEMS!" but from the aspect of "these people have learned to integrate unusual body modifications into their sense of self. What do THEY know about accepting appliances that might help... someone who has just lost an arm or a leg or has had some sort of abrupt and possibly troubling body change?"

The fandom's interesting. About 2/3 of us don't fursuit (I have a pair of ears but keep forgetting to wear them. Just acquired a tail but would only wear it for short periods of time within a convention (just like Trek fans might wear a uniform shirt...but only at a con. You don't usually wander around wearing the thing.)

Steampunk shows some of these tendencies (the self-created universe) but hasn't been around long enough (only 10 years or so) to really have a core group... and there aren't any mega-conventions yet. We shall see what happens there, too.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 10:58 PM
link   

originally posted by: ladyinwaiting
I actually logged out to head to the bedroom, but had another thought about this. lol. (Bryd, you got me thinking).

I think rather than wearing a fake tail, ears and cat make-up to strut around at the mall, or other public place, that a person with a true disorder such as this would be terrified. These folks would be horribly insecure, completely lack confidence in their social interactions, and would be trying to conceal the phenomenon, while doing everything possible to look 'normal' as we see with other disorders, with patients studying how to mimic what they consider to be appropriate behavior -- in order to fit in.


Exactly true. One young man we interviewed from Mexico cried (with relief) that he could talk to us. He'd come to the convention at the urging of friends (not daring to tell anyone in his family or his community what he was doing) and the collapse-and-relief at being able to be himself and be safe was emotionally overwhelming.



It seems this would more true in adolescence, which is a time when one strives to be accepted by peers, perhaps seeing others as more beautiful, intelligent and popular, and if lacking, or perceive themselves as lacking the qualities that accomplish those ideals, they find another way to set themselves up as 'special' and slough off the dreaded designation of 'ordinary".


Perhaps. We do see many late teens who are struggling for acceptance; for a tribe. I don't know if the fandom is a passing phase for them or not. It's somewhat different for the Old Guard (Greymuzzles, we're called).

We shall see. In any case, I'm glad that we're finally being studied in a civilized fashion.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 11:41 PM
link   




posted on Jan, 30 2016 @ 12:12 AM
link   
a reply to: Droogie

Well she identifies herself with a cat, however its more like she identifies with something she thinks is a cat, not necessarily what a cat is more like what she thinks cats are. But off course she is quite obvious human, in fact delusion is a very human trait as well. In all from that short vid she has more traits depicting her as a human then traits depicting her as a cat.

Wearing cat ears and a fake tail does not make you a cat, it just makes you have some sort of fetish for that. Does not necessarily mean anything in itself. Maybe it may mean you watched to much cat anime or something, I heard its a thing in japan or korea especially the cute cat ear thing. But again just another fetish in the hundreds if not thousand if not hundreds of thousands of fetishes humans have that are out there, in fact its not even the weirdest, she may not be trying hard enough if she is going for attention.

Who knows plenty of people who believe weird things, I suppose she can believe anything she wants.



posted on Jan, 30 2016 @ 12:14 AM
link   
Her thing is utter BS.

I have seen stories of children being raised by wolves and feral cat's and that is a VERY real and very different thing. It's not fetishistic.
EDIT:They're called feral children. Im not being sarcastic or facetious you can look it up.
edit on 30-1-2016 by Mousygretchen because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 30 2016 @ 06:26 AM
link   
a reply to: Byrd

I have to say I'm really happy you replied! This was both refreshing and very interesting to read! You deserve an applause.

Initially I was pondering if this was a new phenomenon that perhaps was a reaction to our modern society. But from your reply I understand that this isn't something new at all.

You say "Some ancient societies had people like this (with a species identity disorder) who were considered healers or spiritual ministers (shamans...but this is not characteristic of shamanism.)". How were you able to identify this "condition", if I can call it that, in more ancient societies? Has it been recounted verbally in stories from generation to generation? I'm just curious about how the behaviour would be described, and later identified by researchers today.

It's also interesting when you draw parallels to indigo children and star children. I guess now that you mention it, it doesn't seem like an unfounded comparison at all. You gave me something to contemplate there, thank you!



posted on Jan, 30 2016 @ 06:30 AM
link   
Welcome to the 21st FREAKing Century, Where Anything F'cking BLOWS.

I guess we can thank TeleVision and Subliminal Suggestive Mind Tunes for the Crap we're seeing now eh?



posted on Jan, 30 2016 @ 11:14 AM
link   

originally posted by: Droogie
a reply to: Byrd
Initially I was pondering if this was a new phenomenon that perhaps was a reaction to our modern society. But from your reply I understand that this isn't something new at all.

You say "Some ancient societies had people like this (with a species identity disorder) who were considered healers or spiritual ministers (shamans...but this is not characteristic of shamanism.)". How were you able to identify this "condition", if I can call it that, in more ancient societies? Has it been recounted verbally in stories from generation to generation? I'm just curious about how the behaviour would be described, and later identified by researchers today.


Gerbasi, et al, are psychologists and not anthropologists (which is why my presence changes the game a bit) - not something to fault them for, BTW. Societies need a multidisciplinary approach in order to better understand them.

The Furry experience ranges from basic roleplay to an immersive type of "othering."

Roleplay personas are quite common. The way this works is like this: I play World of Warcraft. My oldest toon there (about 8 years old) is a "persona" of myself when I play on roleplaying servers. So I'm me-not-me (in real life I cannot jump several feet into the air from a standing start and I can't magically heal people with my hands nor do I smite goblins and orcs with holy power.) So one of my personas is a male centaur (who was used in artist prank exchanges (called "zaps") where you draw your character doing something silly to another character.) After awhile, that character becomes a reflection of you and you do care what happens to it.

This is a very common experience.

In older cultures, this would be similar to anyone taking on a role for a purpose such as the Hamatsa society or the rather scary African Leopard Society or the Zuni Clown Society - or even modern clowning. A persona is created that is a part of yourself but not-entirely-you, and is for special purposes.

It is not unusual to learn about yourself through this process (to discover things you might be good at, such as storytelling) or to "give strength" (similar to the members of the Leopard Society believing that their garb and (rather horrific) actions would make them better fighters and stronger (more dominant in their society.)

Deeper connections (where the person "becomes" the animal in some way) are similar to Navajo skinwalkers; a form of totemism (for medicine people). So you "become" something else inside and might even take on the gestures of what you believe this spirit to be (while it's possible to imitate a bear in stance or maybe action, imitating a dragon is going to be whatever you think is dragon-ish.)

(more on totemism here: en.wikipedia.org...)


It's also interesting when you draw parallels to indigo children and star children. I guess now that you mention it, it doesn't seem like an unfounded comparison at all. You gave me something to contemplate there, thank you!


Thank YOU for your thoughtful conversation. I think I need to gather these thoughts into a more formal paper (or at least a white paper) for presenting to the researchers.



new topics

top topics



 
8
<< 2  3  4   >>

log in

join