Tag Archives: depressive realism

Kenneth Williams

Friday, 29 January [1954].Man went to see a psychiatrist — Man: O! I’m in a frightful state doctor! I feel that I am suffering from an inferiority complex. Dr: Perhaps you’re inferior. Peter Nichols told me this story—it’s the perfect answer to all the psychological bunkum that goes on.

Kenneth Williams, The Kenneth Williams Diaries, London, 1993, p. 97

Nassir Ghaemi

The most popular psychological theory about depression these days is the cognitive-behavioral model, which views depression as distorting our perception of reality, making our thoughts abnormally negative. This model, the basis for cognitive-behavioral therapy, is contradicted by another theory that has a growing amount of clinical evidence behind it: the depressive realism hypothesis. This theory argues that depressed people aren’t depressed because they distort reality; they’re depressed because they see reality more clearly than other people do.

Nassir Ghaemi, A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness, New York, 2011, p. 11