The Truman Show Delusion UP133

The Truman Show delusion, informally known as Truman syndrome, is a type of delusion in which the person believes that their lives are staged reality shows, or that they are being watched on cameras. The term was coined in 2008 by brothers Joel Gold and Ian Gold, a psychiatrist and a neurophilosopher, respectively, after the film The Truman Show.

The Truman Show delusion is not officially recognized nor listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association. While the prevalence of the disorder is not known, there have been several hundred cases reported. There have been recorded instances of people suffering from the Truman Show Delusion from around the world. Joel Gold, a psychiatrist at Bellevue Hospital Center in New York City, and Clinical Associate Professor of psychiatry at New York University, and his brother Ian, who holds a research chair in Philosophy and Psychiatry at Montreal's McGill University, are the foremost researchers on the subject. They have communicated, since 2002, with over a hundred individuals suffering from the delusion. They have reported that one patient traveled to New York City after 9/11 to make sure that the terrorist attacks were not a plot twist in his personal Truman Show, while another traveled to a Lower Manhattan federal building to seek asylum from his show. Another patient had worked as an intern on a reality TV program and believed that he was secretly being tracked by cameras, even at the polls on Election Day in 2004. He shouted that then-President George W. Bush was a "Judas," which brought him to Bellevue Hospital and Gold's attention.