Personality disorders

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Personality disorders (Pd’s) and why we need to know about them

We have all been in situations with people who are toxic. Sometimes it gets out of hand and can cause deep psychological distress or can even be dangerous. The critical and belittling spouse (obsessive- compulsive pd), the girlfriend who manipulates with suicide attempts (borderline pd), the boss whose own advancement is at your cost (narcissistic pd). These kinds of situations are repeatedly set up by the same ten percent of the population. The ten percent who suffer from personality disorders. People with severe personality disorders seem incapable of maintaining honest, mature relationships and seem hell bent on self-serving justifications. Considering the…

Help! My girlfriend has Borderline Personality Disorder

It’s so easy to fall in love with someone suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). The early stages of the relationship are so passionate and intense. Initially, she adores you and idealises you completely. She is much more vulnerable and creative than the other girls you know. (Men can also have BPD, although it does occur slightly more commonly in women. I could just as easily have entitled this blog: “Help! My boyfriend has BPD”). Very soon though, you are the source of all her pain and suffering. You are everything that is wrong in the world. You are not entirely sure…

Help! My boss is a narcissist!

There are many arrogant, grandiose bosses. When I look at the CEO superstars, it seems as if success in many Western corporations requires some level of self-aggrandisement and ruthless ambition. That does not mean that every jerk boss is a narcissist. Narcissistic personality disorder is a diagnosable entity. Its salient features are a sense of deep entitlement and rage when this entitlement is not met. A narcissistic boss who believes that you are not on their side will make your life a living hell. But it usually does not start at this point. The gift that dealing with personality disorders gives us…

Help! My daughter (or son) has borderline personality disorder

Parenting is challenging. Every parent (hopefully) wishes to raise their child into a successful adult. Someone who can be self-reliant and live life to their full potential. Someone who can find happiness and growth in a solid relationship, and then effectively parent their children in the future. Borderline personality disorder traits can be traced back to early childhood. The disorder has a strong genetic component. There are brain abnormalities detected on neuroimaging. All of this is evidence that borderline personality disorder is a disorder of the brain, not just a psychological disorder. Salient features of this disorder are: Emotional dysregulation (extremely unstable…

Psychopaths- the wolves among us

The joy of my job is that I get to talk to a lot of people. I talk with them when they are at low points in their lives; when they are vulnerable and hurt. There is a lot of honesty, much barebones of stories, not much bull. As a result of my experience, I have concluded that 90% of humanity is mostly good. Granted, mostly good people can commit the most heinous of crimes, but the struggle is universal. We try our best for our children; we mourn the loss of loved ones. We feel pride, envy, love, fear and…

The lowdown of living with Borderline Personality Disorder

Historically, the border of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) refers to the edge of neurosis and psychosis. That unstable area which is always hysterical or mad. It is classified as a personality disorder. Personality disorders are considered fixed throughout life and not amenable to treatment. Unlike psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia or bipolar mood disorders, which are considered chronic but responsive to treatment. It is a very bleak view of BPD. Because of this, when I was doing my specialist degree, many psychiatrists felt that it was pointless telling a patient of their BPD diagnosis, that it would just add to…

People who will destroy your life (and how to avoid it)

In my work, I come across a lot of pathos and suffering. People endure incredible pain, surviving only because of love from families and friends. My experience is that most people are flawed human beings, just trying their best. After being in this business for a while, I have come to realise that there is a small minority of people who repeatedly make it very hard for the rest of us. There is much pain in the world, and most of it is perpetrated by the same 10% of humanity. If you come into the crosshairs of one of that…

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