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Personality disorder-AKA Narcissism

You didn't wish me good morning! I know you don’t love me! Show me what you’re wearing? ( I need to approve your outfit) When did you buy this?I have never seen it before?

You don’t have any time for me! You don't like to sit with me. I made this food specially for you, you didn’t even tell me how it was?

My fashion sense is so good you should get your outfits approved by me

I am better than your father at this don't worry

Are these some statements that you hear constantly? Do you think something is wrong here? Are you in constant distress? What do you think is going on? What you see here may be a personality disorder. What is a personality disorder one may ask?

A personality disorder is when a person's way of thinking and behaving is very different from what's expected in their culture. This can make life difficult, especially in relationships and at work.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), outlines the general criteria for diagnosing a personality disorder. It states that a personality disorder is characterised by a pervasive pattern of inner experience and behaviour that deviates markedly from the expectations of the individual's culture in two or more of the following areas:

1. Cognition (Thinking):The way the person thinks about themselves and others, including patterns of perceiving and interpreting events, is markedly different from societal norms.

2. Affectivity (Emotions): The range, intensity, and appropriateness of emotional responses are often significantly different from what is typically expected.

3. Interpersonal Functioning: The person's capacity for developing and maintaining close, meaningful relationships is impaired.

4. Impulse Control: There is often evidence of poor impulse control, including risky or destructive behaviours.

Additionally, these patterns of behaviour are stable over time and lead to distress or impairment in important areas of functioning, such as social, occupational, or personal relationships. The onset of these patterns can typically be traced back to adolescence or early adulthood and is not better explained by another mental disorder, substance use, or a medical condition.

It's important to note that the DSM-5 identifies specific personality disorders (e.g., Borderline Personality Disorder, Narcissistic Personality Disorder) with their own diagnostic criteria, but the general criteria mentioned above apply to all personality disorders. The specific criteria for each personality disorder involve additional features and traits unique to that disorder.

Case Example - Someone with a Big Ego (Narcissistic Personality Disorder):

Imagine Ramesh, a businessman in India. He always talks about how great he is and wants people to admire him all the time. He doesn't really care about other people's feelings. He often makes his family and employees feel small because he thinks he's better than them. This makes his family and work situations hard because he doesn't understand how others feel. His behaviour is a bit like having a big ego, which can cause problems in any culture.

Read more about Narcissism here: If you feel you or someone in your home needs therapy, feel free to contact us and book your sessions now!

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