The Mental Disorders of Winnie-the-Pooh Characters

Winnie the Pooh: An article by the Canadian Medical Association diagnosed and identified him with three disorders based on the following behaviours:

  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. It is likely that he suffers from the inattentive subtype where a patient exhibits careless and indifferent behaviour towards his peers without exhibiting narcissism.
  • Impulsivity with obsessive fixations. He is obsessed with honey. He grabs it everywhere he can and is even prepared to take risks in order to acquire it. This fixation has also contributed to his obesity.
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder: He is exhibits repetitive counting. On top of that, because he suffers from OCD in combination with ADHD which could eventually contribute to Tourette syndrome in later life.

Piglet: Generalized Anxiety Disorder. He may have suffered a significant self-esteem injury in the past which is causing him great stress, anxiety and general nervousness. He also suffers from a distinct speech impediment with his stuttering problem which might be related to the irrational anxiety he experiences.

A Winnie the Pooh Thanksgiving

A number of A.A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh characters

Owl: Dyslexia. It is quite clear that he is a dyslectic. However, it should be said that he is extremely bright despite his disorder.

Tigger: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. He cannot control his hyperactivity. What is worse, he is prepared to try any substance or matter that comes along his path which could indicate a substance abuse problem. Also, he is extremely impulsive, which in turn could potentially make him a bad role model. Nevertheless, he is a social magnet but those drawn into him run the risk of getting themselves into trouble because of his questionable behaviour.

Kanga: Social Anxiety Disorder. Specifically, overprotective mothering. She is clearly obsessed with controlling her young and will not let them to make decisions, make mistakes, grant them any time on their own etcetera. This is commonly know as suffocation.

Rabbit: Obsessive-compulsive disorder. He over-organizes and is obsessed with order and method. Also, for a male character, he behaves very feminine. Which in most cases would direct your classification of his character towards homosexuality. However, it must be noted of course, that this is merely an observation of his character and not classified as a disorder of any kind.

Eeyore: Depressive Disorder. He has a major general downcast and negative outlook on life which render him incapable of experiencing emotions like joy and excitement. He could be a major depressive.

Christopher Robin: Schizophrenia. The imagination of Robin often manifests itself through auditory hallucinations where all of the above mentioned characters are formed in his mind. It is very likely that these characters represent feelings he experiences in his internal world. Since he is a child, he is still learning how to function socially and interact with the external world. Each character could represent a different reaction or feeling within himself as he learns to cope and deal with that extra world.

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85 thoughts on “The Mental Disorders of Winnie-the-Pooh Characters

  1. Pingback: University, and Everything After: Advice From Winnie The Pooh (Part 1 of 3) | PsyBites

  2. Pingback: Entry #2 | aprilscottpsychblog

  3. I noticed there was nothing about Gopher (than again he’s not in the book). Than again Gopher maybe the only normal one. Gopher is suppose to represent the American working man (or at least the American working man of that day which was the 1960s.) He works hard, but doesn’s look where he is going and often falling down a hole. I don’t know what do you think?

  4. Owl: The word is dyslexic, and most dyslexics are incredibly intelligent. Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Winston Churchill, Sir Richard Branson, Leonardo daVinci, …..shall I go on? And it’s not a disorder, it’s a different type of brain. For more info, check out dyslexic

  5. Dyslectic is a variant of dyslexic and is also correct, just thought I would point that out.

  6. Gopher didn’t exist until Disney bought Winnie the Pooh from the English publishers.

  7. As accurate as this is, there is one very wrong fact/observation. ‘Kanga Roo’ is actually TWO characters, not one. ‘Kanga’ being the Mommy & ‘Roo’ being the child, specifically son.

  8. I disagree with Christopher Robin being schizophrenic. The stories are told by his father, with him as a character in them. It often starts with the father saying, “Don’t you remember…” or something similar.

  9. I’ve been saying this for years!!! However I would say Whinny the Pooh is more of a developmental delay with an eating disorder (fixated on Honey). Tigger I would say is more bi-polar with extreme highs and lows, he often feels rejected. Poor Eeyore, depressive disorder with self injurious behaviours (he has a nail holding his tail in place). The article left out Owl, who I see to represent the Super Ego.

  10. I always thought of Owl as a narcissist, with a superiority complex

  11. Pooh bear could have ADD (attention deficit disorder) and not ADHD because he isn’t hyper but he does have a Hard time listening

  12. Pingback: The Mental Disorders of Winnie-the-Pooh Characters. | And thats the way the cookie crumbles.

  13. Pingback: Le psicosi in età infantile: sogno o realtà? - Scuola di psicodiagnostica

  14. Pingback: Winnie the Pooh – Who are you? | Jodi L. Milner, Author

  15. I personally believe Pooh is the exact equivillant of a true addict. Simple as that. I have experience working with addicts & their behavior is too similar. The A.D.D. Pooh experiences is only apparent during his search for “honey”, the same way addicts become uninterested & distracted while searching for their next fix. Once its in Poohs possession though he seems able to focus better. Notice how he also obsesses or feigns for the “honey” from the moment he wakes up & always thinks he had just a little bit sat aside somewhere? Addicts dream about their drug of choice & often wake up confused after forgetting if they did all their stash or not. Most times they start their days off tearing apart the house before finally deciding someone they know will have some they can bum to get their minds right til they can get more of their own.

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  17. Pingback: Task #7: A Book with Nonhuman Characters – Winnie the Pooh | thereisabookstoreinmyhead

  18. I want to suggest that Winnie the Pooh is also dyslexia. And Eeyore is dysthymia.

  19. Wow this is terrible since when is homosexuality a mental disorder? This is extremely offensive. Being society’s idea of “feminine” does not mean you are homosexual. There is nothing wrong with being gay even is this fictional character is. It’s trying to teach kids that there are no gender roles anymore. This entire website is sick.

  20. ‘There is nothing wrong with being gay even is this fictional character is. […] This entire website is sick.’

    Not to be cruel, but reading is hard:

    ‘[…] classification of his character towards homosexuality. However, it must be noted of course, that this is merely an observation of his character and not classified as a disorder of any kind.

    You also seem to have missed our featured article “Trivialities of Gay Marriage“, otherwise there would be no way you would have accused the authors of this site of bigotry. I propose you give this a thorough read before you judge this site so harshly.

  21. Pingback: Wise Words from Old Friends | With Love, From Ariel

  22. Tourette’s does not develop in later years. It begins to presents itself as early and 5 and usually dissipates by age 25. It can cause ocd and adhd later in like along with many other issues but it not caused by these issues.

  23. Seriously? This whole “articale” is BS. I’m an avid reader myself and I love examining and analyzing things too but come on. This is a children’s book. There’s absolutely no need to apply real world ailments to characters written with their own quirky personalities. I don’t think it should go any further than that. Just enjoy the book for what it is. If you’re going to “diagnose” Pooh Bear then why don’t you diagnose characters from The Chronicles of Narnia as well, hm? Or hell, Alice in Wonderland? Not everything has to have some underlying cause for a character’s personality. And for the record, Pooh Bear is not “obese”. He’s stuffed with FLUFF. Jesus Christ I hate these articles.

  24. Even though you may not feel you have wasted another few precious moments of consciousness in sharing this opinion, at least you wrote something constructive to vent your dismay.

  25. I took it as a spoof on the whole fake medical “science” of psychiatry, not that these medical types were actually serious. But then, if you could feed drugs to characters in novels; bring them to court for crimes, jail them, make war against them, steal their resoures, imagine how much more profit their would be for the scientific-military-industrial complex. Maybe they’re on to something.

  26. Pingback: Changing Societies Views On Mental Illness | thismadjourneythatislife

  27. What if they turned into a real life creepy pasta…….that would be the scariest thing ever

  28. Dyslexia is a neurological disorder, not a mental disorder. It affects how the brain interprets letters, numbers, and sounds. It also doesn’t affect intelligence. Mental disorders affect the psyche. Also, the word dyslexic is misspelled. Dyslexics have hard time with spelling.

  29. I’m sad cuz the President just interrupted the end of Price is Right to talk about gun control 😕 I know it’s important, but I wanted to see who won the Showcase Showdown.

  30. Does it not make you wonder how stable the mental health association is when they are diagnosing fictional characters, instead of using their time to diagnose real patients and help real patients. Or we are so caught up in what they have to say about these loved fictitious “celebrities” we are unaware of the consequences that this wate of time has on a real person. A person with a life, a family, and a real mental disorder that requires real help, time, medication and research

  31. The mental health association spent time labeling these so kids had some characters in books they could relate to if they were also diagnosed perhaps. On the other hand, the original stories from 1929 clearly outline characters w personality traits that everyone can relate to. It’s not making up disorders and placing them on a kids book. Milne created characters that resonated with the very troubles of life and found suggestive remedies beautifully woven into the writing almost like budhist answers. (Which is why the remake of “the Tao of pooh” is unnecessary bc it’s just as clear in the original ).

  32. Kanga is the mother, Roo is the child. If you’re going to analyze the character’s behaviors, get their names right!

  33. You’re SUCH a lady! I’m afraid I don’t have your grace.

  34. In future we’ll just write posts on present-day Palestine and stem-cell research, let’s stay away from the controversial stuff like Disney characters ;)

  35. Pingback: Discovering Disney: The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh | Post-Critical

  36. What purpose does analyzing beloved fictional characters really serve? Even to analyze Christopher Robin Milne simply because he has an active imagination is simply wrong! When these stories were written, and other Disney classics made into film, children utilized Imagination to its fullest potential. Some children, like Christopher Robin Milne, had Imaginary friends, what really is so bad about that, since most children will normally outgrow their Imaginations. But please consider if you would, just how IMPORTANT Imagination really is? Without Edison and his Imaginations, we would not have light bulbs, stereos, phonographs. Without Alexander Graham Bell’s Imagination, we would still be using the telegraph. Without Henry Ford’s Imagination there would be no automobiles today. Imagination has Historically played an Important role in the advancement of human society (not always for the best). To analyze fictional characters, whether it be Pooh, or Dumbo, Cinderella, or Peter Pan is, in my opinion, without merit, for all it can possibly achieve is the destruction of human Imagination, and the world’s most beloved fictional characters. If you must analyze fictional characters, you might want to analyze porn stars instead of children’s characters. Why do I suggest this? It is simple, by analyzing children’s fictional characters in such ways, directs parents to avoid allowing their children to watch these characters on the screen, or imagine the characters by mom or dad reading these beloved stories to their children. While Porn does nothing for the betterment of society, these beloved children’s stories have ever played a significant role in the betterment of society. What you fail to recognize in your analysis of these characters is the MOST IMPORTANT aspect of these stories. That aspect is how each and every character is totally accepting of the other characters and do not seem to notice that there is anything wrong with them. As with real people, the characters do show signs of frustration with each other from time to time, but to not get frustrated with others behaviours from time to time is something that would definitely require analysis.

  37. Thanks guys for trying to ruin these stories for us by dissecting the characters. For many of us however they will all remain our much loved childhood buddies. Loved despite the little quirks each one had. We accept them as they are .


  39. Hope you don’t mind me sharing this with the teachers I work with, it looks like the perfect way to explain some of the learning needs of our students in a context they are familiar with!

  40. Pingback: Thoughts After Eavesdropping: On Popular Methods of Literary Criticism | W. A. Hall

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