Individuals who have a mental disorder called Aboulomania are unable to make their own decisions and they lack willpower. Many people with this condition also suffer from depression, anxiousness and stress. These individuals are very insecure, skeptical of their own abilities and apprehensive about trying new things. Because of these factors, they feel as if they are unable to live by themselves.
The reasons why some people have this condition is unclear but it is believed that it stems from developmental and biological influences. It is theorized that individuals who have overprotective, dominating and interfering parents or caretakers are more prone to developing this condition.
Since individuals who have aboulomania do not believe they can make their own decisions, they often stay in abusive or unhealthy relationships.
The symptoms of this mental disorder include the fear of being all alone, being consumed with worry about being deserted, taking a passive role in relationships and being very distressed after a relationship has ended. Individuals have trouble communicating when they do not agree with other people and they quickly become upset when they are criticized.
For the time being, the exact causes of Aboulomania are not known. This mental disorder is believed to be caused by a combination of biological and developmental factors, but research is ongoing.
Some researchers believe the largest of these factors in someone susceptible to Aboulomania is the presence of a primary caretaker who is too involved a child’s life, and in ways that are often considered intrusive. Since most primary caretakers are parents, this would typically be a mother or father whose parenting style was either too authoritarian or overly protective in nature. The more involved a caretaker continues to be as a child enters adulthood, the more difficult it becomes for that child to make decisions or solve problems on their own. This can lead to the appearance of a lack of willpower and/or a marked inability to handle decision making on their own as they become adults and cause Aboulomania to occur.
Its symptoms are similar to Aboulia, which is a result of frontal lobe lesions from injuries or degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s or Huntington’s disease. The two disorders are different, however.
After a diagnosis from a psychologist or a psychiatrist, individuals who have aboulomania will have scheduled psychotherapy counseling sessions. By going to therapy, individuals will learn how they can become less dependent on others and how to have positive interactions with other people. Learning how to be more assertive helps individuals gain confidence in themselves.
Goals are set before the therapy sessions begin and because there is a risk of individuals becoming too dependent on their therapist, the sessions are limited. Those who are also depressed or who experience anxiety may be prescribed medications. When individuals take prescription medications, they must be regularly observed to ensure they do not have a dependency on the medication.
Aboulomania is difficult to prevent because the exact causes are not known. Symptoms may not present themselves until a person is having trouble coping with a particularly difficult problem. Since this disorder is not well known and some symptoms do match other conditions, people will not seek treatment for it. Rather, they will seek treatment for the symptoms and often not until depression or anxiety occurs.
One thing parents can do to reduce the potential is to help foster a more independent dynamic in their relationship with their child. Additionally, they should teach their children how to deal with problems as they come up and make decisions, and give their children room to do so as they grow older.