Sean O'Connor suffers from a rare disorder that leads him to believe his limbs do not belong to his body.
The first symptoms of the illness arose when he was around 4 or 5 years old and lead to the sensation that his limbs were somehow disconnected from his body and that he should be paralyzed. Known as 'body integrity identity disorder' (BIID), the condition was first reported in the 18th century when a French surgeon was held at gunpoint by a man who demanded that he remove his leg.
"I have attempted to break my back, but I missed. I need to be paraplegic, paralysed from the waist down," said O'Connor. "I don't hate my limbs – they just feel wrong. "I'm aware that they are as nature designed them to be, but there is an intense discomfort at being able to feel my legs and move them."
"Sean O'Connor is a very rational man. But he also tried, unsuccessfully, to sever his spine, and still feels a need to be paralysed."
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Source: New Scientist
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