Disney Princesses That Show Signs Of Mental Illnesses

Disney Princesses That Show Signs Of Mental Illnesses
Disney Princesses That Show Signs Of Mental Illnesses

Disney, one of the biggest movie studios ever, earned nearly $5 billion in 2022. The legendary brand has been around since the 1930s, popularized for its animated films about princesses. These princesses often needed to fight back against a nemesis or evil person before finally reaching their happily ever after. These princesses carry a lot of meaning for women and young girls due to the relatable experiences they often reflect. 

But reality can sometimes be a little darker, which Disney hasn’t always acknowledged outright. In real life, women often deal with all kinds of mental illnesses, and there are many Disney princesses who show signs of mental illness. Some speculate that this is a way of understanding symptoms through iconic characters we’ve all come to love. According to fans, here are all the Disney princesses who may deal with mental health issues. 

1. Mulan: Atelophobia

In 1998, we got to know the heroic Mulan, who fought to save her homeland from an army that invaded it. She also showed signs of atelophobia, which is defined as an extreme fear of imperfection, according to the Cleveland Clinic. People with atelophobia are very frightened of making mistakes and tend to avoid new situations if there isn’t a guarantee of success. It can lead to panic attacks, depression, anxiety, and more. This is highly likely since Mulan often deals with feelings of rejection and imperfection.

2. Anna: ADHD

Anna from Frozen doesn’t have the ability to use ice magic, unlike her sibling. She exhibits signs of ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, due to her tendencies towards being chronically inattentive, acting impulsively, and fidgeting often. Just think of all the times she trips, gets extremely excited, talks too fast, and jumps on furniture. Not to mention agreeing to marry a prince just hours after being introduced to him.

3. Alice: Schizophrenia

Alice falls down the rabbit hole in Alice in Wonderland, which might be caused by schizophrenia. In the classic 1951 version, the protagonist talks to a floating cat and a talking caterpillar while escaping an evil queen. The film has often been associated with hallucinations, which are a common symptom of schizophrenia. This is a chronic brain disorder that often includes seeing things that aren’t there.

4. Meg: Borderline Personality Disorder 

Meg, otherwise known as Megara from Hercules, begins by serving Hades but ultimately falls in love with our hero, Hercules. Due to her frequent mood swings and an extreme fear of being abandoned, it’s been speculated that Meg might suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder. 

5. Aurora: Major Depressive Disorder

You might be familiar with “Maleficent”from 2014, but the origin story of that flick is actually the 1959 movie “Sleeping Beauty” with Princess Aurora. Aurora is the victim of a curse that puts her in an eternal sleep. That’s why some fans speculate that she has MDD, or Major Depressive Disorder, which is often signified by low energy, a general disinterest in activities, and, you guessed it, hypersomnia, which can cause prolonged periods of sleeping. 

6. Merida: Avoidant Personality Disorder

Merida, the Scottish princess from Brave, doesn’t want to get married, and hence her whole kingdom is thrown into chaos. Although the movie was celebrated by audiences and critics for developing Princess Merida as a person rather than only focusing on a potential romance, some fans believe that she shows signs of Avoidant Personality Disorder as she is against marriage and the conventions of the kingdom.

7. Ariel: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Brought to popularity by the recent live-action remake with Halle Bailey, The Little Mermaid focuses on a young mermaid princess who fantasizes about living on land as a human. She may show signs of OCD, which is a disorder that can cause recurring uncontrollable thoughts or obsessions, as well as a likeliness to engage in compulsive behavior in a way that interferes with daily life. Her willingness to sacrifice her voice for Prince Eric, and her obsession with collecting dry-land objects are both symptoms.

8. Rapunzel: Stockholm Syndrome

Originally a tale written by the Brothers Grimm, this movie tells the tale of Rapunzel, a princess with long, magical hair who is kidnapped by an elderly woman named Mother Gothel. Mother Gothel raises the child to use Rapunzel’s magical hair to keep her young. In the story and film, she’s kept away in a secluded tower, dealing with emotional abuse. Still, genuinely cares for Gothel, which leads people to say she has Stockholm Syndrome, a proposed condition for hostages who develop a bond with their captor. 

9. Cinderella: Dependent Personality Disorder

Cinderella was released in 1950 when women were expected to clean, cook, and have children. At the time, they were expected to be docile and submissive, which explains why Cinderella depended on others. In the movie, she loses her father and is taken in by a cruel stepmother. She needs to be rescued by her Fairy Godmother, who acts as a caregiver, before marrying a prince who takes care of her.

10. Snow White: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder 

Snow White was the first Disney princess ever. She was born a princess and lived with her evil stepmother after being left an orphan. The stepmother was jealous of the girl’s beauty and saw her as a threat because of her looks. She obviously experienced trauma since just being beautiful got her into trouble with her stepmother, who also killed her father and wants to now kill his stepdaughter via a huntsman who will kill her, remove her heart, and bring it back as a trophy. We’d say that would likely lead to PTSD.

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