AEW World Champion MJF discusses the challenges he faces with rejection sensitive disorder (RSD) and who has helped him deal with it. Rejection-sensitive disorder or rejection-sensitive dysphoria are two conditions that are technically different but are very similar. Clevelandclinic.org identifies the condition as: “Rejection sensitive dysphoria (RSD) is when you experience severe emotional pain because of a failure or feeling rejected. This condition is linked to ADHD and experts suspect it happens due to differences in brain structure. Those differences mean your brain can’t regulate rejection-related emotions and behaviors, making them much more intense.”
MJF is on top of AEW and has a very bright future in pro wrestling. He is the current AEW World champion and current ROH World Tag champion along with Adam Cole. Every time MJF speaks on the mic he exudes an extreme level of confidence. However, under the veil of his MJF gimmick is someone who deals with a real sensitivity.
During signings and other fan interactions, MJF can be very standoffish with fans. That is until recently when he has started to welcome fans in much more than he has in the past. In a recent interview with WrestlePurists, MJF spoke openly about why he has started to embrace the fans. He stated the following:
“This is not me like messing around. I just wasn’t ready to accept love and I know that might sound insane to anybody. But if there’s anybody that’s similar or like minded to me. That is listening to this, they’re gonna totally relate to what I’m about to say.
“I had been f****d over so many times in my life, and because of my rejection-sensitive disorder, you know, I already have my arms up at all times. I always when I leave a room, I think everyone is talking s**t about me, always constantly, constantly in my own head. And I knew If I completely let myself out there and I wasn’t accepted, it would have killed me, I wasn’t there yet mentally. “H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription
MJF Explains His Fear Of Rejection
Having RSD and being in such a public career must be hard and being a professional wrestler must be overwhelming at times. Wrestling fans are so brutal and analyze every move and misstep a wrestler makes.
They pick out every negative a wrestler has and blast it out on the internet for the world to see and critique. Someone who is already having negative thoughts about themselves seeing that must be heartbreaking.
Even though MJF has been struggling with RSD for probably most of his life he has gotten a lot of support recently. The support came from an unlikely source. His fellow ROH World Tag Team Champion Adam Cole. MJF went on to talk about how his growing friendship with Cole, both on and off-screen, has helped him get a little more control over his RSD. He continued:
“But honestly my friendship inside and outside the ring with Cole … I really learned a lot as far as just being more open. Look I still have my bad days right? The entire arena was chanting Tofu at Jay White and I heard literally one guy say ‘come on Jay, you got this’ and immediately I was like ‘f**k, does everybody hate me?’ Which is insane, that is insane, but that is how my brain works.
“And I’m trying to be better, I’m trying to get better. And Adam had a lot to do with that big time as far as me allowing myself to let the fans be a part of this journey with me as opposed to me trying to buck that.”H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription
MJF Getting a Little Help From Adam Cole
MJF’s partnership with Cole really has allowed MJF to show a new side of himself. He has always been funny and clever in his promos, but Cole has brought out more of a silly side. An example is MJF copying or mocking Cole’s entrance.
MJF has always been really good, but recently it seems like he is coming into his own and reaching his potential. He is someone AEW can get behind and build into the face of the promotion. That is if he stays with AEW because there have long been rumors that WWE wants MJF and he may be interested in going over to WWE.
Would you have guessed MJF has RSD or has issues with self-confidence? Do you think he is so good because he always feels the need to prove himself? Have you noticed an improvement since teaming up with Cole? Do you think with MJF sharing some vulnerability he can or should become a babyface? Let us know if you think MJF will be the next to follow Cody Rhodes and Jade Cargill and jump over to WWE. Let us know what you think about the subject on The Illuminerdi’s social media.