Not only does England exist, it's a hotbed of paranoia:
Ground-breaking research from clinical psychologists at the Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London, shows that one in three people in the UK regularly suffers paranoid or suspicious fears. In fact this level of paranoia is much higher than previously suspected and means that paranoid thoughts may well be almost as common as depression or anxiety.
Paranoid thinking is the suspicion that other people intend to do us harm.
The frequency of paranoid and suspicious thoughts in the general population
% having thought at least weekly
- I need to be on my guard against others - 52%
- Strangers and friends look at me critically - 48%
- There might be negative comments being circulated about me - 42%
- People are laughing at me - 34%
- Bad things are being said about me behind my back - 30%
- People might be hostile towards me - 29%
- People deliberately try to irritate me - 27%
- I might be being observed or followed - 19%
- People are trying to make me upset - 12%
- Someone I know has bad intentions towards me - 12%
- I am under threat from others - 10%
- I have a suspicion that someone has it in for me - 8%
- Someone I don't know has bad intentions towards me - 8%
- People would harm me given the opportunity - 8%
- There is a possibility of a conspiracy against me - 5%
While the trend is good news for the paranoid cause, it still means that two out of three people in the UK suffer under the debilitating interpersonal credulity of orthonoid thinking. Much work needs to be done to shake some suspicious reason into them, but the promoters of the above study aren't helping any with their anti-paranoid thoughts book (conveniently coming out on Thursday). Well, then again, they might just help a bit with contradictory arguments like the following:
The probability that your fears are unrealistic increases the more you feel that:
- No one else fully shares your suspicions
But their own data suggest that these suspicions are shared by a significant percent, therefore paranoid thoughts are realistic. All the more reason to get paranoid!