Personality Disorders

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Personality disorder is a mental health condition that affects how people relate with each other and manage their feelings. Patients suffering from this type of disorder face several difficulties of maintaining relationships with their partners or the public. Furthermore, they are affected by extreme anger and distress. The main causes of personality disorder are genetic disorder, physical abuse during child development, abandonment and previous humiliation (Kantor, 2010). This essay mainly focuses on the three types of personality disorders that include antisocial personality disorder, borderline personality disorder and avoidant personality disorder.

Antisocial personality disorder (ASP) is a mental health condition that causes a person to have a long-term pattern of exploiting, manipulating, and violating other people’s rights. One of the symptoms of antisocial personality disorder is the inability to conform to various social norms regarding lawful behaviors as indicated by repeating occuring acts on which arrests are based. Most of the people suffering from this type of disorder engage in criminal activities such as robbery and drug trafficking (Deangelo, 2011). This symptom might result from physical or mental child abuse. A patient suffering from ASP may have not received any discipline or supervision as a child. This may affect him emotionally since the child may think that nobody cares about what he does, and thus the child may not see any harm in breaking the law. Another symptom is deception. A patient exhibiting this symptom does not see the harm of lying to other people or conning them. This symptom may result from mental child abuse since some of the patients suffering from ASP lived with foster parents, and these parents would lie to them in order to receive favors from them. Another symptom is impulsiveness. This causes the patients not to plan for their future, and they, therefore, prefer living in the present. This symptom may result from physical child abuse where the child was exposed to severe beatings and thus developed a perception that he would finally come to die due to continuous abuse.

Most ASP patients also show irritability and aggressiveness. This is shown by the fact that they beat their spouses or engage in unnecessary physical fights. Such behavior could have been caused by child abuse since some of these patients may have lived with stepparents who subjected them to sexual or physical abuse (Rotgers & Maniacci, 2005). Most of ASP patients are reckless since they do not care about their own safety or the safety of other people. This causes them to abuse harmful drugs without caring about their health safety.  Mental child abuse may cause the patient to develop this symptom since he may have been neglected as a child. The parents of this child may have not given him proper health care or enough food. Another symptom of patients suffering from ASP is that they show consistent irresponsibility since most of them cannot work in the same job for a long time. This is because they break the organizational rules without taking into consideration their future in that particular organization. This might have been caused by mental child abuse as some of these patients may have moved from different foster families while they were growing up. The changing environments may affect their responsibility since they fail to have any attachment to one particular person. ASP patients also lack remorse. Some of these patients kill other people and do not feel guilty despite having engaged in an inhumane act. Furthermore, some of them steal from the poor and do not feel any guilt. This symptom may have been caused by repeated sexual abuse or violence when this patient was a child, and thus the child becomes indifferent towards being hurt.

Borderline personality disorder is a condition in which patients suffer from long-term patterns of turbulent emotions that causes them to perform impulsive actions and have chaotic relationships. Patients with this disorder make frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonments from their spouses or friends since they may have suffered after being abandoned by their parents while they were young (Gunderson & Links, 2008). They also have a pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships since these patients do not trust anyone as they only see the negative side of a person. This may have resulted from the trauma of sexual abuse occurred to them due to being neglected. Furthermore, these patients suffer from identity disturbance since they may shift their personal goals and values. The suffering that this child underwent through due to abandonment may cause this symptom, and thus this child sees no need of setting goals since conditions may change. They also show impulsivity by engaging in drug abuse and reckless sex. This may have been caused by severe neglect of a child since through this neglect, the child feels that no one cares about his welfare.

These patients also have recurrent suicidal behavior since most of them try to take away their lives through drug overdose. This may have been caused as a result of abandonment as the patient may have suffered a lot after being abandoned and thus may prefer to take away his life than undergo the previous suffering again.  They also have affective instability shown by irritability since the severe neglect may have affected them psychologically and made them to develop intense anger due to the feeling that nobody is concerned about them (Gunderson & Links, 2008). They also show chronic feeling of emptiness since they may not have received emotional support after abandonment. They also have intense anger since they may have developed anger towards the people who neglected them, and thus they direct this anger to anyone.  They also have severe dissociative symptoms since most of them feel that people always talk about them behind their back. This may be caused by abandonment since after being abandoned, they stopped trusting anyone.

Avoidant personality disorder is a condition in which a patient has a lifelong pattern of feeling inadequate, shy, and sensitive to rejection. One of the symptoms of a patient suffering from this disorder is that they avoid activities that include a lot of interpersonal contact. This is mainly because these patients fear rejection which may be caused by the fact that this patient was ridiculed after failing a particular task when he was a child. These patients also avoid being involved in communicating with people unless they are certain that these people will like them. This may be because of humiliation that this patient felt after being rejected by someone else (Kantor, 2010). These patients also show restraint within any intimate relationship because they are afraid to be ashamed or ridiculed. This is because they always want the relationship to work, and this may have been contributed by the fact that they were ridiculed by people after a relationship in which they failed. These patients are also preoccupied with the fact that people may criticize or reject them in a social situation. This is because they may have been humiliated in a previous social situation because of failing in a particular duty or producing poor results. Another symptom of patients suffering from this type of disorder is that they are inhibited in new interpersonal situation since they feel they are inadequate. This is mainly caused by the fact that these patients may possess low self-esteem as they may have been ridiculed in previous relationships due to their weaknesses or incompetence. This may kill their morale, and thus it is hard for them to create new relationships.

 These patients also view themselves as socially unsuitable since they feel that they cannot maintain a conversation with other people. They also feel that they are personally unappealing and thus would not approach anyone despite the fact that they may have feelings for this person (Kantor, 2010). They also feel that they are inferior to other people, and these feelings may be caused by the fact that these patients may have been humiliated after being rejected due to their appearance or inferiority. Furthermore, these patients are always afraid to take risks or to be engaged in any new activities as they may turn out to be embarrassing. This is because they might have taken risky projects, for example, an investment opportunity, but it failed to yield favorable returns. In addition to this, this patient may have undertaken a new activity but failed due to the lack of experience. Because of the failure, the patient may have faced ridicule from people resulting in a reduction of the patient’s confidence.

To conclude, it is evident that certain symptoms of antisocial personal disorder result from a history of abuse as a child. Most of these patients are aggressive and this may have resulted from violence that these patients underwent through as children. Furthermore, some of these patients are full of deception and this may have been contributed by the mental abuse that they underwent through by being given empty promises by their foster parents while they were growing up. The symptoms of patients suffering from borderline personality disorder may result from a history of abandonment or severe neglect as some of the patients avoid real or imagined abandonment due to the suffering that they may have undergone through due to neglect. Patients suffering with avoidant personality disorder may be unwilling to be involved with other people unless there is a possibility of being liked since they may have suffered humiliation as children due to rejection.

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