Psychosis:  Any of several serious mental illnesses characterized by defects in judgment and other cognitive processes and by loss of contact with reality. 

Psychoses can be divided into two major types: functional and organic. Functional psychoses include schizophrenia and affective disorders (also called mood disorders), such as major depressive disorder and bipolar disorder. 

Organic psychoses arise secondary to a preexisting medical condition such as Alzheimer's disease and share important features with functional psychoses. Certain medications, including narcotics (used to treat pain and levodopa (used to treat Parkinson disease), can cause symptoms of psychoses. 

The major symptoms, aside from delusions and hallucinations, are disorganized speech and behavior, lack of emotional expression, and apathy. Treatment usually consists of medication and psychotherapy; severe cases may require permanent hospitalization.

We finally figured out what made my wife, Carolyn, the way she is. It bedeviled me for forty years. A tendency toward psychosis. About three weeks ago, I mentioned the variations on a storyline of a British show called "Merlyn" that she had grown obsessed with for months. We talked about the other stories she had sunk into in the past. She had started doing that as a child because her parents and grandmother were too busy with their own troubles. It got so bad, she had started to write the characters in her fantasies real letters. She didn't like her environment so she was indifferent to it.

I found I could add a couple of key feelings to my Trauma Aid page that hit this mark. This week, for the first time, she suddenly took on a tough project in reality! She doesn't have time for her fantasy trips. I may have a help-meet for the first time!