12 Unusual Mental Illnesses You’ve Never Heard Of

Do you vomit when you go to Paris? Compulsively tear out your pubic hair? Maybe you think your hand is trying to kill you or that you’re rotting from the inside out. If so, chances are you’re suffering from one of these weird and not-so-wonderful rare mental illnesses.



Boanthropy is a type of rare delusional disorder in which the sufferer believes themselves to be a cow or an ox and attempts to live and behave as one. Freud and Jung determined that this may often be the result of a dream that continues into the conscious mind in the form of a persistent delusion. There is also some speculation that hypnotism and suggestion may contribute to the persistence of such a delusion. Other explanations for behaving in a such a bizarre way include porphyria (a group of enzyme disorders that manifest with neurological symptoms including hallucinations, depression, anxiety and paranoia) or paralytic dementia caused by syphilis. One of the earliest and most famous recorded instances of this affliction is in the Book of Daniel which claims that Nebuchadnezzar, King of the Neo-Babylonian Empire, “was driven from men, and did eat grass as oxen.” 

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