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10 Personality Disorders Many of Us Aren’t Aware Of

10 Personality Disorders Many of Us Aren’t Aware Of

Personality disorders are a kind of mental disorders that affect how people manage their emotions, behavior and relationships. Personality disorders can be diagnosed 40%-60% of the time, and they are characterized by an enduring collection of behavioral patterns often associated with considerable personal, social, and occupational disruption.

This behavior can result in maladaptive coping skills and may lead to personal problems that induce extreme anxiety, distress, or depression.

The concept of personality disorders itself is much more recent and tentatively dates back to psychiatrist Philippe Pinel’s 1801 description of manie sans délire, a condition which he characterized as outbursts of rage and violence (manie) in the absence of any symptoms of psychosis such as delusions and hallucination.

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 5th Revision (DSM-5), there are ten types of personality disorders and they can be grouped or clustered into three.[1]

Cluster A (Odd, bizarre, eccentric)

Paranoid PD, Schizoid PD, Schizotypal PD

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Cluster B (Dramatic, erratic)

Antisocial PD, Borderline PD, Histrionic PD, Narcissistic PD

Cluster C (Anxious, fearful)

Avoidant PD, Dependent PD, Obsessive-compulsive PD.

Below are the explanation of the ten types of personality disorder and signs.[2]

1. Paranoid personality disorder

The patient is always guarded and constantly on the lookout for suspicious acts. The individual is overly sensitive to rejection and easily feels down. They may feel shame and humiliation, and they can even hold grudges. Withdrawal from others is common, and it is difficult for them to build close relationships since they can easily blame others for mistakes.

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Signs:

  • Distrust of others
  • Sensitive to people’s reaction
  • Ability to bear grudges for a long time

2. Schizoid personality disorder

Schizoid designates a natural tendency to direct attention toward one’s inner life and away from the external world. A competing theory about people with schizoid PD is that they are in fact highly sensitive with a rich inner life: they experience a deep longing for intimacy but find initiating and maintaining close relationships too difficult. Therefore, they retreat into their inner world. People with schizoid PD rarely require any medical attention and are resistant to building close relationships.

Signs:

  • Staying away from friendly people around them
  • Lack emotional response
  • Lack sense of humor

3. Borderline personality disorder

It was given this name because it was thought to lie between the borderline of anxiety and psychotic disorder. Emotional instability, outburst of anger when criticized, suicidal threats and acts of self-harm are common. The person essentially lacks a sense of self, and as a result, experiences feelings of emptiness and fears of abandonment.

Signs:

  • Unpredictable as they can harm incautiously
  • They are manipulative
  • They are unstable

4. Schizotypal disorder

People with schizotypal personality disorder are often described as odd or eccentric. They usually have few, if any, close relationships. People with schizotypal PD have a higher than average probability of developing schizophrenia, and the condition used to be called ‘latent schizophrenia.’

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Signs:

  • Acting strange or unusual
  • They are not friendly
  • Staying away from people

5. Histrionic personality disorder

People with this see themselves as attractive and charming. They are constantly seeking others’ attention and tend to overreact. They do not have a sense of self-worth, and they depend entirely on themselves to gain the approval of others.

Signs:

  • Attracts attention
  • Tend to seduce
  • Seek to influence others’ reactions

6. Narcissistic personality disorder

People with this disorder have a sense of self-importance and require some form of admiration. They believe they are superior and therefore have no regard for others’ feelings. They lack empathy and exploit others in order to become successful. To others, this individual may seem self-absorbed, controlling, intolerant, selfish, or insensitive. They may become violent when ridiculed or criticized.

Signs:

  • Feels superior
  • They are arrogant

7. Anankastic personality disorder

A person with anankastic personality disorder is typically doubting and cautious, rigid and controlling, and humorless. Anxiety arises when this person experiences a lack of control over situations beyond his or her understanding.

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Signs:

  • Believes they are perfect
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)

8. Avoidant personality disorder

This individual has low self-esteem and is constantly having the fear of being embarrassed, criticized, or rejected. They are awkward and avoid meeting people due to fear of being disliked. Research suggests that people with avoidant PD excessively monitor internal reactions, both their own and of others. This prevents them from engaging naturally or fluently in social situations.

Signs:

  • Low self esteem
  • Fear of failure

9. Antisocial personality disorder

People with this disorder always act without considering others’ perspectives. Antisocial personality disorder is much more common in men than in women, and it is characterized by a lack of concern for others’ feelings. This person disregards social rules and obligations, is irritable and aggressive, acts impulsively, and never feels remorse or guilt.

Signs:

  • Disrespects others’ decisions
  • Believes they are the only ones who are right
  • Absence of societal norms

10. Dependent personality disorder

This is characterized by a lack of self-confidence and an excessive need to be looked after. The person needs a lot of help in making everyday decisions and surrenders important life decisions to care for others. This individual fears isolation and can never be found alone.

Signs:

  • Clingy with other people
  • Avoids isolation
  • Cannot do anything alone

Reference

[1]Psychology Today: The 10 Personality Disorders
[2]Mind: Personality disorders

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Joseph Chan

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Last Updated on January 6, 2019

Why a Life Without Pain Is the Guarantee to True Suffering

Why a Life Without Pain Is the Guarantee to True Suffering

No one wants to suffer. As a general rule, people like to avoid hurt and pain as much as possible. As a species, humans want a painless existence so much that scientists make a living trying to create it.

People can now choose “pain-free” labor for babies, and remedies to cure back pain, headaches, body-pains and even mental pains are a dime a dozen. Beyond medicine, we also work hard to experience little pain even when it comes to loss; often times we believe a breakup won’t hurt as much if we are the ones to call it off.

But would a world without pain truly be painless? It’s unlikely. In fact, it would probably be painful exactly for that reason.

If people never experienced hurt, they wouldn’t know what it was. On the surface level, that seems like a blessing, but think for a moment: if we didn’t know pain, how would we know peace? If you don’t know you’ve hurt or been hurt, how would you know that you need to heal? Imagine someone only knowing they have an incurable cancer at the final stage because no obvious symptoms have appeared at early stages.

Without the feeling of pain, people won’t be aware of dangerous situations—what should or shouldn’t do for survival.

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Pain Is Our Guardian

Pain serves to protect human beings from harmful actions. It’s the same reason parents teach babies that fire equals hot, and that hot equals hurt. Should the baby still place its hand in a fire or on a stove, the intense pain remains so memorable, that the child is certain never to repeat that action.

In the same way, pain within human bodies can serve as a warning that something is not right. Because you know what it is to feel “well,” you know what it is to feel poorly.[1]

Along with serving as a teacher of what not to do, pain also teaches you what you are made of in terms of what you can handle as an individual.

While the cliche, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” is a tired term, it’s used excessively for a reason: it’s true. Pain helps you learn to cope with life’s inevitable difficulties and sadnesses— to develop the grit it takes to push past hardships and carry on.

Whether it’s a shattering pain, like the loss of a loved one or a debilitating accident, pain affects everyone differently. But it still affects everyone. Take a breakup as an example, anyone who has experienced it knows it can hurt to the point of feeling physical. Especially the first breakup. At a young age, it feels like the loss of the only love you’ll ever know. As you grow and learn, you realize you’re more resilient with every ended relationship.

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No Pain, No Happiness

You only know happiness when you have known pain. While the idea of constant happiness sounds nice, there is little chance it would be. Without the comparison to happiness, there’s no reason to be grateful for it. That is to say, without ever knowing sadness or pain, you would have no reason to be grateful for happiness.

In reality, there is always something missing, or something unpleasant, but it is only through those realizations that you know to be grateful when you feel you have it all. Read more about why happiness and pain have to exist together: Chasing Happiness Won’t Make You Happy

In a somewhat counter-intuitive finding, researchers found one of the things that brings about the most happiness is challenge. When people are tested, they experience a greater sense of accomplishment and happiness when they are successful. It is largely for this reason that low-income individuals can often feel happier than those who have a sense of wealth.[2]

This is a great thing to remember the next time you feel you would be happier if you just had a little more cash.

Avoiding Pain Leads to More Suffering

Pain is inevitable, embrace it positively. Anyone who strives to have a painless life is striving for perfectionism; and perfectionism guarantees sadness because nothing will ever be perfect.

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This isn’t a bleak outlook, but rather a truthful one. The messy moments in life tend to create the best memories and gratitude. Pain often serves as a reminder of lessons learned, much like physical scars on the body.

Pain will always be painful, but it’s the hurt feelings that help wiser decisions be made.

Allow Room for the Inevitable

Learning how to tolerate pain, especially the emotional kind, is a valuable lesson.

Accepting and feeling pain makes you human. There is no weakness in that. Weakness only comes when you try to blame your own pain on someone else, expecting the blame to alleviate your hurting. There’s a saying,

“Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting your enemy to die.”

Think back to the last time you were really angry with someone. Maybe you were hurt because you got laid off from a job. You felt angry and that anger caused so much pain that you could feel it in a physical way. Being angry and blaming your ex boss for that pain didn’t affect him or her in any way; you’re the only one who lost sleep over it.

The healthier thing to do in a situation like that is acknowledge your pain and the anger along with it. Accept it and explore it in an introspective way. How can you learn and grow? What is at the root of that pain? Are you truly hurting and angry about being laid off, or is the pain more a correlation to you feeling like you failed?

While uncomfortable, exploring your pain is a way to raise your self-awareness. By understanding more about yourself, you know how to deal with similar situations in the future. You can never expect to be numb to difficult situations, but you will learn to better prepare financially for the loss of a job and be grateful for an income since you now know nothing is promised (no matter how much you work or how deserving you may feel).

Pain Hurts, but Numbness Would Be Worse

Pain does not feel good, but the bad feeling of it will help you learn and grow. It makes the sweet moments in life even sweeter and the gratitude more sincere.

To have a happier and more successful life, you don’t learn from success or accomplishment, but through pain and failures. For it is in those moments that you learn how to do better in the future or at least cope a little more easily.

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You are the strong person you are today because of the hardships this life has presented to you. While you may have felt out of control when those hard times came, the one thing you will always have control over is how you choose to react to things. The next time you hurt or you’re angry or sad, acknowledge it and allow yourself to ruminate in it. Then take a deep breath and start learning from that pain. You’ve got this!

Featured photo credit: Stocksnap via stocksnap.io

Reference

[1]University of Calgary: Why is Pain Important?
[2]Greater Good Magazine: The Importance of Pain

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