The otherkin form a community of individuals who do not consider themselves human. They believe that their identity is partial or entirely nonhuman, that is, they feel that their mind and / or body are mythological beings, disembodied entities or other animals. As for example, angels, vampires, dragons, lions, foxes, elves, extraterrestrials, among other identities.
The members of the otherkin community relate to each other and to the rest of the world in a different way, according to their perceived identity. Also, they have specific initiation rites. And because they are otherkin they suffer from certain abuses and discriminations that can lead to certain psychological disorders. We will talk about it in this article.
What does it mean to be a otherkin?
The term otherkin comes from English and is formed by merging the words other (other) and kind (type, species). So its translation into Spanish is: another type. Also in the Middle English Dictionary (1981) defines otherkin as a different or additional form, of another type. Therefore, anyone who identifies himself as otherkin feels that he is different from a human or that there is something different in him.
For this reason, there are some otherkin, depending on their particular identification, who feel that their differences are spiritual, while others believe that the differences are genetic. Some believe they were born of another species and others believe they evolved to a new state.
On the other hand, many otherkin believe in the existence of parallel dimensions or multiple realities. Which can explain the possibility of the existence of fantastic, mythological and even fictitious beings. Explaining in this way his existence in the human world.
The attitude of the otherkin depends largely on the identity they adopt. Those who consider themselves elves are allergic to iron, those who believe they are vampires are irritated by sunlight. Some otherkin that are considered animals claim to be more empathetic and connected with nature, precisely because of their animal instincts. Others claim that they have the ability to separate themselves from their body to make astral or extracorporal travel.
Some otherkin take to the extreme their desire to resemble the mythological or animal being with which they identify. Therefore, some undergo plastic surgeries to modify their bodies. All with the aim of approaching the ideal appearance of the identity they adopted. So some of them brush their teeth to make them look like fangs, and others outline the tips of their ears to look like an elf.
How do the otherkin relate?
The otherkin are related especially through the internet. There are many communities and forums of this community on Reddit, Tumblr, Facebook, etc. The Otherkin community is extremely extensive, more than it seems and they have a lot of presence in the network.
In these virtual communities, the otherkin are dedicated to giving information about their condition and advising new initiates. There are many isolated groups formed by otherkin with specific identities. As, for example, a group of dark beings, such as vampires, demons or dragons.
Also other pages or blogs are dedicated to counting the day to day life of a otherkin. There are many web pages with informative articles to raise awareness about the otherkin community. There are even stores that sell merchandise about and for the otherkin community.
The otherkin community that expresses itself on the network does not have any kind of hierarchical organization. Rather it is an interaction between individuals or closed communities, expressing how, why and what they are otherkin. On the other hand, occasionally these communities organize meetings outside the Internet, although their interactions occur mostly in the network.
How do the otherkin begin?
The otherkin do not always know about the existence of their other identity. They are not aware of their condition until they start as otherkin, this process is known as “awakening”. Because anyone, potentially otherkin, can wake up from one day to another or during a process of months or even years.
Many otherkin before awakening are in a difficult situation or existential twilight, without knowing what are the causes of their afflictions. So recognizing your identity as otherkin can become a personal liberation. This is why they feel very comfortable, by adopting the appearance and attitudes of the creature with which they identify.
There are not two equal awakenings, each one lives its awakening in a different way. It usually occurs in adolescence, but it can happen at any time in life. It can be triggered by a dream or by some traumatic experience. It can be a long and difficult struggle or it can be an easy and direct transition.
For this reason, the internet is full of forums and web pages that seek to advise and guide the awakening process of the new otherkin. Many of the beneficiaries are teenagers who want to know what is happening to them and find support with other people who can understand them.
Do the otherkin suffer from mental disorders?
Many psychologists and psychiatrists believe that many of the members of the Otherkin community may suffer from mental disorders. We would talk about clinical lycanthropy, bipolarity, schizophrenia and species dysphoria. However, some of them deny that they suffer from these disorders. They argue that identifying with other beings is a way to know and accept each other, and not to flee from reality.
Another mental disorder that can be associated with this community is the phantom limb syndrome. It consists of feeling the existence of a part of the body, even though it is no longer there. This happens mainly to the targeted people. However, some otherkin feel that they have a tail, tentacles or a pair of wings, although they do not physically exist.
Some otherkin, may suffer multiple disorders not directly associated with their identification with other creatures. As anxiety disorders, social phobias or obsessive compulsive disorders, among others, as any other person can suffer.