“Out Patients” – Elise Wu
Elise Wu is trying to portray the life of those who have a mental illness called Factitious disorder which is when one fakes an illness or exaggerates symptoms they may have. Although she has the disorder, I notice that when she describes the community of FDers more often than not she does not include herself. Is as if she is a different entity than them. I also notice that Wu writes about the families and friends affected by those closest to them who fake their illness. She notices that the majority of the people in the website she is on, are people seeking advice on how to deal with someone with FD. She provides details on what the people are commenting and their response to one another. When Wu joins a group chat of FDers, she describes them as conversational by sharing their stories and developing friendships with one another. Through this group chat she meets different types of people such as those who confess to their therapist about their disorder and those who want to confess but do not know how to. The more she reads, she confesses that she does not feel any type of empathy for these people and worries that she doesn’t belong. She uses multiple websites as the sources for her research as well as her personal experience regarding her topic. She ends up coming out to a former doctor about her Factitious disorder. The footnotes serve as context to what she is citing in her writing.