Peter Pan Syndrome

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

What is Peter Pan Syndrome

Well I don’t blame you if you are laughing now because that was the same response i did when i read about peter pan syndrome.

Peter Pan syndrome is a term that is used to describe adults who failed to move successfully through the proper stages of personality development and so became immature.

People with Peter Pan syndrome like the idea of being childish, are in love with childhood and might even have the belief that they will never grow up.

Peter Pan Syndrome and behavior

People suffering from peter pan syndrome behave in a way that is similar to the way children behave. They can be doctors, intelligent scientists or successful business men but still have a big childish part that lives inside them and this usually results in the following:

  • They Refuse to take responsibility for their lives
  • They develop Excess narcissism( thinking that they are the center of the world)
  • Rebelliousness Behavior (not following rules and refusing to conform)
  • Being overly dependent on others( they need someone to take care of them and usually they fall in love with those who remind them of their care givers)

What Causes Peter Pan Syndrome

Just as peter pan refused to accept reality and lived in “Neverland” the other real peter pans do the same.

As a result of not wanting to accept the responsibility of adulthood they act like children. Spoiling a child can also lead to the development of peter pan syndrome.

All spoiled children try to stick to the favorable conditions they used to live in even when they become adults and that might let them become peter pans.

Escapement mechanisms and psychological disorders

Sometimes the subconscious mind of a person develops a psychological disorder on purpose in order to allow him to escape from reality.

Some cases of severe nostalgia are no more than attempts made by the mind to help a person escape to a better place even if it was imaginary.

Peter pan syndrome can fall under this category as well and its root cause might be the person's internal desire to escape from his current life. When the subconscious mind uses such a trick the person rarely feels guilty because he never understands that his disorder is no more than a escape attempt made by his mind.

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