That’s the question business communication coach Nancy Ancowitz asks in a recent Psychology Today article. Apparently The American Psychiatric Association (APA) is considering including introversion as a criteria for diagnosing mental disorders in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders—commonly known as the DSM-5.
I think I speak for all introverts when I say weren’t not nuts, but those DSM-5 bastards sure are. Here’s what they define as introversion:
‘Withdrawal from other people, ranging from intimate relationships to the world at large; restricted affective experience and expression; limited hedonic capacity.’ Additionally, this definition includes ‘deficit in the capacity to feel pleasure or take interest in things.’
Ancowitz is concerned – as we all should be – that the stigma introverts already experience in society will only be exacerbated, especially in the workplace. To put it all in perspective she spoke with Laurie Helgoe, Ph.D., clinical psychologist and author of Introvert Power who said:
‘If an introvert is clinically depressed, that’s a problem. If an introvert is debilitated by anxiety, that is a problem... But if an introvert is simply an introvert, please don’t render that person ill. We are talking half the population here!’
I couldn’t have said it better. Stupid ass APA. Who’s running that? A bunch of extroverts? Geesh.