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Types of Personality Disorder

Paranoid Personality Disorder

The individual may describe all or some of the following traits:

  1. They may find it difficult to confide in others, this can include family and friends
  2. They may find it difficult to trust others, believing they will be used and taken advantage of
  3. They can be paranoid at times and watch others closely looking for signs of betrayal and hostility
  4. They see threats and danger, (which others do not see) but which they may see in every situation
Schizoid Personality Disorder

The individual may describe all or some of the following traits:

  1. Will be interested in forming close relationships with others including family
  2. They may feel that their relationships interfere with their freedom and tend to cause problems for them
  3. They prefer to be alone with their thoughts
  4. They choose to live their life without interference from others
  5. They can get little pleasure from life
  6. They have little interest in sex/intimacy
  7. They can be emotionally cold towards others
Schizotypal Personality Disorder

The individual may describe all or some of the following traits:

  1. They may find it difficult to make close friends and find relationships extremely difficult
  2. They may be viewed by others as ‘odd’ using unusual words/phrases
  3. They may behave in ways that others find eccentric
  4. They may believe that they can read minds/that they have special powers such as: ‘sixth sense’.
  5. They may feel anxious and tense with others/or with those that do not share their beliefs
  6. They may appear as very anxious at times and paranoid especially in social situations.
Anti-social Personality Disorder

This individual may describe all or some of the following traits: (they must be 18 years and over to be diagnosed with this personality)

  1. They may put themselves in dangerous and risky situations, often without considering the consequences for themselves or for others
  2. They may behave dangerously and sometimes illegally
  3. They may behave in ways that are unpleasant for others
  4. They may feel very easily bored and act impulsively
  5. They may find it difficult to hold down a job for long periods of time
  6. They may behave aggressively and get into fights easily
  7. They may do things, even if it hurts others, to get what they want, putting their needs first
  8. They may have a criminal record
  9. They feel no sense of guilt, even if they have mistreated others
  10. They may have a ‘childhood disorder’ diagnosed before the age of 15 years

‘The above diagnosis may include ‘Psychopathy’ a Psychopathy Checklist questionnaire may be used in an assessment to confirm diagnosis’.

Borderline Personality Disorder

The individual may describe all or some of the following traits:

  1. They may feel very worried about people abandoning them, they would do anything to stop this from happening
  2. They may be very intense emotionally, this could last for a few hours or a few days and can change quickly (for example: from feeling happy and confident in the morning to feeling low and sad in the evening).
  3. They may find it hard to make and keep stable relationships
  4. They can act impulsively and do things that could harm themselves (for example: binge eating, using drugs/alcohol or driving dangerously).
  5. They may describe suicidal thoughts/display self-harming behaviour
  6. They may feel empty and lonely a lot of the time
  7. They may get very angry and struggle to control their anger

When they feel stressed they may:

  1. Feel paranoid
  2. Have psychotic experiences, such as: seeing/hearing things that other people don’t
  3. They may feel numb and not remember things properly after they have happened
Avoidant Personality Disorder

The individual may describe all or some of the following traits:

  1. They may avoid work/social activities that means they must be with others
  2. They may expect disapproval and criticism and be very sensitive to it
  3. They may be worried constantly about being ‘found out’ and rejected
  4. They may worry about being ridiculed/shamed by others
  5. They may avoid relationships, friendships and intimacy because they fear rejection
  6. They may feel lonely and isolated and inferior to others
  7. They may be reluctant to try new activities in case they embarrass themselves
Dependent Personality Disorder

The individual may describe all or some of the following traits:

  1. They may present as being needy, weak and unable to make decisions, or may find it difficult to function properly without help or support
  2. They may allow others to assume responsibility for many areas of their life
  3. They may be afraid of being left to fend for themselves
  4. They may have low-self confidence
  5. They may see other people as being much more capable than themselves
  6. They may be seen by others as much more submissive and passive
Obsessive Personality Disorder

The individual may describe all or some of the following traits:

  1. They may need to keep everything in order and under control
  2. They may set unrealistically high standards for themselves and others
  3. They think their way is the best way of making things happen
  4. They may worry when others might make mistakes
  5. They may expect catastrophes if things are not perfect
  6. They may be reluctant to spend money on themselves/others
  7. They may have a tendency to hold onto things with no obvious value.

The above Personality Disorders are grouped into 3 categories

  1. Suspicious – Paranoid, Schizoid, Schizotypal and anti-social
  2. Emotional and impulsive – Borderline
  3. Anxious- Avoidant, Dependent, Obsessive Compulsive

Different Professional approaches

Personality Disorders can show themselves in various different ways, different approaches are taken to diagnose and understand the Personality Disorder, these are:

  • A diagnosis can be given based on an assessment and evidence-based findings via consultation and interview and specialist testing.
  • Aspects of Personality Disorder traits can be explored and causes of difficulties can be identified during 1 – 1 sessional work.
  • Once a Personality Disorder has been diagnosed and traits, patterns and experiences identified 1-1 intervention via a Psychologist or Counsellor can used.