Etiology Of Personality Disorders

The causes or etiology of personality disorders is a subject of great interest to clinical scientists and empirical researchers alike. There is no question that the etiology of personality disorders is multifactorial and complex, probably with multiple developmental pathways. Attempts to reduce the cause of a complex phenomenon to one level of abstraction such as trauma, biological, social, or interpersonal are likely to be fruitless. Most clinicians have faced the question posed by family...

Contemporary Theories Of Personality Disorders And Treatment

The dominant theoretical models for understanding and treating personality disorders are generally accepted and understood. There are various other models, too, one of the most exciting of which is Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), that have been developed or are being developed that also have application and appear to offer innovative techniques (Manfield & Shapiro, this volume). Most models, however, fall within the spectrum of the following schools psychodynamic,...

Personalityguided Context

If no one subset of DSM-IV diagnostic criteria are necessary or sufficient for membership in a diagnostic class, and if the structure of the taxonomy and the planning and practice of therapy are to be linked in a meaningful way, it seems likely that no one therapy or technique can be regarded as a necessary or sufficient remediation as well. Diagnostic heterogeneity-therapeutic heterogeneity is a more intrinsically agreeable pairing than diagnostic heterogeneity-therapeutic homogeneity, which...

Borderline Personality Disorder A Critique

We now examine Borderline Personality Disorder as an example of a personality disorder diagnosis that, it could be argued, fails in the intended goals of any diagnosis to clarify etiology, indicate treatment interventions, and determine prognosis. This diagnosis in particular may also have iatrogenic effects on many patients. For instance, one patient commented that other treaters had called her a borderline, and she added that she knew that wasn't good. In fact, she felt they were maligning...

The Relational Stance

The more the therapist practices from some theory of blank screen, neutrality, silence, or distance, the more the PTSD patient will feel anxious pressure to find the real person in the therapist to feel safe and the more the therapist will be setting limits and demarcating boundaries. Although it may seem like a question of semantics, the distinction between stating limits and setting limits gets to the heart of the way authenticity, real engagement, and mutuality operate in relational-cultural...

Prevalence Of Personality Disorders In Contemporary Society

The prevalence of personality disorders in contemporary society depends on the validity of the classification system and diagnostic instruments used to establish the presence of a disorder. As we have discussed, there are problems with classification and nosology that make estimates of prevalence only approximate. Millon and Davis (1996) write No other area in the study of psychopathology is fraught with more controversy than the personality disorders (p. 485). Nevertheless, epi-demiological...

References

Personality A psychological interpretation. New York Henry Holt. Allport, G. W. (1968). The person in psychology Selected essays. Boston Beacon Press. Allport, G. W., & Odbert, H. S. (1936). Trait-names A psych-lexical study. Psychological Monographs, 47, 1-171. Beck, A. T., Freeman, A., & Associates. (1990). Cognitive therapy of personality disorders. New York Guilford Press. Beck, A. T., Rush, A. J., Shaw, B. F., & Emery, G. (1979). Cognitive therapy of...

Process Of Therapeutic Approach

The approach used in cognitive therapy has been described as collaborative empiricism (A. T. Beck et al., 1979, chapter 3). The therapist endeavors to work with the client to help him or her recognize the factors that contribute to problems, to test the validity of the thoughts, beliefs, and assumptions that prove important, and to make the necessary changes in cognition and behavior. Although it is clear that very different therapeutic approaches, ranging from philosophical debate to operant...

How Therapeutic Challenges Are Conceptualized And Managed

Although cognitive therapy may seem simple and straightforward when it is presented in a textbook or a workshop, there is no shortage of therapeutic challenges when applying cognitive therapy to the treatment of personality disorders. The complex, deeply ingrained, persistent, and inflexible problems presented by clients with personality disorders are, by all clinical accounts, difficult to treat. Authors often note that a number of problems arise in the course of treatment, including...