Personality Disorders: Know Your Future Spouse (an article)


#21

[quote="larsenl1, post:20, topic:244270"]
Well said.

As a parent adopting an orphan from Russia, we knew there would be problems we just were not sure exactly how it would be day to day. But we did 'volunteer' and so I guess I do not see us as saviors and that she should be forever in debt. My reward will be if she can be independent and have a healthy marriage. I don't want to find in on a cold metal table in a morgue because she made one too many bad decisions and risky behavior.

I hope my daughter can heal or at least learn to be social. The latest research on attachment by Dr. Bruce Perry shows that sometimes with proper intervention the neurons can be built even in older children. That is what I am hoping for while we have her on medication to keep her safe in the meantime.

[/quote]

No, I was talking about a person who would be trying to "rehabilitate" another adult, as in a dating relationship that turns into a marriage. Seeing people as a project is a defect of character usually reflecting a problem in one's own family history. Giving up one's reasonable needs in order to sacrifice to "heal" someone else is the flip side of narcissism - martyr syndrome.

I have not seen that research. That does give me hope. I will look it up. I have seen only the studies that are very depressing and hopeless to read. I am an eternal optimist, being the Savior type, but after much study I recognized that there seem to be some things that are permanently broken inside kids like this. But if it really can be changed for the better, there is hope. I mean, there is always hope for a miracle, don't get me wrong. I totally believe God does miracles every day.

I will keep you and your daughter in my prayers. Our kids aren't that different. Our son hasn't had a psychotic episode but he was cutting and violent at one point. I wasn't sure if we'd have to get him out of our house. And I gave birth to him!!


#22

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:21, topic:244270"]
No, I was talking about a person who would be trying to "rehabilitate" another adult, as in a dating relationship that turns into a marriage. Seeing people as a project is a defect of character usually reflecting a problem in one's own family history. Giving up one's reasonable needs in order to sacrifice to "heal" someone else is the flip side of narcissism - martyr syndrome.

[/quote]

yep - aka the "savior complex":

narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/2006/08/savior-complex.html


#23

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:19, topic:244270"]
And what does that person get out of the process, while the mentally ill person is still mentally ill? (I'm assuming that there is someone who can actually be healed from these disorders, which I do not necessarily believe.) To be a savior to someone, to have that person forever in debt because you sacrificed so much to help them? That's as sick as the person who is diagnosed with mental illness.

[/quote]

From personal experience, someone may be seeing symptoms of a disorders as a sign of some temporary, passing trauma, especially if the "disordered" person has recently had some potentially traumatising event. One may also be unable to tell actual disorder from permanently arrested development (in some relevant area) from temporarily arrested development from simple inexperience.

Also, if exposure is limited, even serious loss of sleep could conveniently fake a couple of disorders in the eyes of someone specifically looking for them without training, and vice versa, a real disorder's actual symptoms could be blamed on some passing condition.

...And a person in love is on amphetamine anyway. ;)

I have done my clinical work (not professional, but through hard experience) in NPD. I can tell you that someone who is NPD and/or sociopathic is about 95% certain NOT to ever change. They feel no need to change. They might go to therapy, in order to charm the therapist into agreeing with them that they are the sane one and the spouse who is healthy is the sick one. And not infrequently, this works! Medications might be handed out to the non-NPD spouse, for the depression that tends to come along with trying to love someone who can only love his or her own image. Trying to squeeze love from these people is like trying to squeeze water from a stone. And as you try to do that, they suck you dry in the process.

Oh yeah, NPDs are perfect charmers.

I hope your friend does heal. Borderlines are not well understood and there may be some hope but I am not an optimist when it comes to people's mental health. I would advise my sons to keep their eyes open and their hands in their pockets, so as not to minimize any "quirks" that they see when they are dating to discern marriage.

Being with a borderline could mess someone up for real, I guess, first getting close and then shoving you away and then possibly getting close again etc. I had the push-pull strategy (might have been NLP/NLS, might have been real disorder but it was not subconscious) used on me over a year ago for not even a long time and I'm still struggling.


#24

[quote="chevalier, post:14, topic:244270"]
Thanks, Grace. Right now the desk/online thing is a major one due to the fact I'm currently a "business" with proud "offices" in my bedroom. Not that I can't meet people through the Internet, but profiles with photos and words just don't do it on me, or do so to a limited extent. I guess I've got to meet someone in a natural way... including even some Internet environment, but not really an actual dating site. Same as any sort of offline dating service wouldn't work for me. So yeah, going out...

[/quote]

I totally understand.. precisely meant that.. get away from excessive work and from time spent at the computer and join Christian groups:)


#25

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:19, topic:244270"]
I have done my clinical work (not professional, but through hard experience) in NPD. I can tell you that someone who is NPD and/or sociopathic is about 95% certain NOT to ever change. They feel no need to change. They might go to therapy, in order to charm the therapist into agreeing with them that they are the sane one and the spouse who is healthy is the sick one. And not infrequently, this works! Medications might be handed out to the non-NPD spouse, for the depression that tends to come along with trying to love someone who can only love his or her own image. Trying to squeeze love from these people is like trying to squeeze water from a stone. And as you try to do that, they suck you dry in the process.

[/quote]

I've been through that word for word, including the therapy and the diagnosis of the healthy spouse (me) as the sick one. I look back at our therapy sessions as a bizarro world. My poor little wife (probably NPD) holding back tears while she explained how her "needs" weren't being met, and the psychiatrist sympathising and leading the conversation back to what would I do about it. I spent 10 years of that. In that 10 years I never complained about my needs not being met - I didn't even notice that they were being treated with contempt, as I tried ever harder to please her. Your last two sentences are most apt.

Having been thru it, I can offer a little insight into why the abused partner goes along with it. They learn very early in the marriage that the NPD spouse will never back down in any dispute, that the tiniest thing will be a battle to the death, and that reasoning with the person is impossible. So, to protect themselves, and their job, and the children, they avoid arguments and start practicing appeasement, and start hoping (rather than working) for a change. It eventually eats away all their self confidence and judgement (and, in my case, my faith), and, of course, only gets the spit treatment from the spouse.

Your other cautions, about entering a relationship as the martyr, or to heal someone, are spot on.

I think there's a significant difference between a congenital personality disorder and a disorder caused by trauma. There does seem to be a good prognosis in the case of trauma, when there is the right counselling, the right support, and time. However it is very easy to mistake a congenital disorder for a temporary one ("with my love, I'll build up his/her self-confidence").


#26

[quote="exoflare, post:22, topic:244270"]
yep - aka the "savior complex":

narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/2006/08/savior-complex.html

[/quote]

Perfect. I know a person who needs to read that. Unfortunately enough, he is a minor narcissist himself. He's not in the major realm, but still very self-centered and blind to others' needs. I used to think his over-working was the problem, but the more I consider it, I think the over-work is just a way to deal with the interior problem of not truly caring about others.

The one thing I have found profoundly frustrating is the lack of any perspective of others' needs, wishes, desires, or interests. Over and over again, you can talk to these people about your pain, and since they think you are the one with the problem, you get no response whatsoever. It's been a slow education in my case, but after 2 failed attempts at marital counseling, I think I'm finally getting it.

I have given up a lot of the struggle I used to be in to try and get my emotional needs met through my marriage. And by my withdrawal of attention on that level, I shook his world and now we are on shaky ground. If I am always yearning and coaxing, trying to pull up some water from that dry well of his, he likes the attention. If I give that up and just detach with love, he doesn't get that same attention. And we who deal with NPD know what happens when they don't get their attention fix.

I had a breakthrough a couple of months ago. That I cannot get love and support from a person who never experienced it and has no desire to change. DUH! The best I can do is love my sons and show them what intimacy and caring truly are. And show them the love of Christ and how in His love, there is no selfishness whatsoever.


#27

[quote="Edmundus1581, post:25, topic:244270"]
I've been through that word for word, including the therapy and the diagnosis of the healthy spouse (me) as the sick one. I look back at our therapy sessions as a bizarro world. My poor little wife (probably NPD) holding back tears while she explained how her "needs" weren't being met, and the psychiatrist sympathising and leading the conversation back to what would I do about it. I spent 10 years of that. In that 10 years I never complained about my needs not being met - I didn't even notice that they were being treated with contempt, as I tried ever harder to please her. Your last two sentences are most apt.

Having been thru it, I can offer a little insight into why the abused partner goes along with it. *They learn very early in the marriage that the NPD spouse will never back down in any dispute, that the tiniest thing will be a battle to the death, and that reasoning with the person is impossible. So, to protect themselves, and their job, and the children, they avoid arguments and start practicing appeasement, and start hoping (rather than working) for a change. It eventually eats away all their self confidence and judgement (and, in my case, my faith), and, of course, only gets the spit treatment from the spouse.
*

Your other cautions, about entering a relationship as the martyr, or to heal someone, are spot on.

I think there's a significant difference between a congenital personality disorder and a disorder caused by trauma. There does seem to be a good prognosis in the case of trauma, when there is the right counselling, the right support, and time. However it is very easy to mistake a congenital disorder for a temporary one ("with my love, I'll build up his/her self-confidence").

[/quote]

That is exactly what happens. One ends up hopeless because they always win. Always. And when you fully realize that the person you promised to stay with your whole life really doesn't give 2 flips about YOUR needs, only their own, that can plummet you into the depths of despair. My positive quality of persistence does not serve me well when it comes to expecting any sort of two-way relationship from my husband. Neither did my optimism - "Surely he will eventually want to meet my needs..." NOPE! Even if it's the case that he might want to, but doesn't know how, it doesn't matter, because the end result is the same.

This is a good page that was linked from the "Narcissism Sucks" blog. Recognizing the Problem


#28

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:26, topic:244270"]
Perfect. I know a person who needs to read that. Unfortunately enough, he is a minor narcissist himself.

[/quote]

Gulp

Just kidding... somewhat.

Anyway, women are prone to wanting to change the man. In extreme cases, it has to do with change itself, no matter from what to what. In other cases it's a resocialisation project, possibly driven by the flattering idea that she's just the one who can do it.

With men, I'd say it's rare. On the other hand you do have the knight in shining armour complex that has a lot to do with distressed damsels. Much of it will rely on being unable to leave someone or give up on her in some other way due to her suffering from what is is first of all a personal misfortune, a result of past mistreatment, in other words, a wrong inflicted on her by someone. And you don't want to go back on your word anyway. As for how the picking of such women (by "such women" I mean just reference, it is not a figer-pointing expression) works, I don't know. I seem always to end up there without specifically intending it, as if by accident. I'm not sure I've ever had any romantic affair with a normal person unless a short flirtation that has led to nowhere and had been too short to tell anyway.

[quote="GraceDK, post:24, topic:244270"]
I totally understand.. precisely meant that.. get away from excessive work and from time spent at the computer and join Christian groups:)

[/quote]

That'd be such a major challenge. You've no idea how odd I feel in a group, let alone religious ones. Charismatic renewal has tried it on me, it hasn't worked and the last attempt with a community really backfired when I confronted a celebrity priest on some injustice.


#29

[quote="chevalier, post:28, topic:244270"]
*

That'd be such a major challenge. You've no idea how odd I feel in a group, let alone religious ones. Charismatic renewal has tried it on me, it hasn't worked and the last attempt with a community really backfired when I confronted a celebrity priest on some injustice.

[/quote]

How odd do you feel? Social phobia? Go and get help with it if you have that.. its no life otherwise.
How will you meet a wife if you wont go to the places where you can find a nice Catholic girl?
I myself feel most home among charismatic Christians but you can probably much easier find non-charismatic groups in the neighbouring churches, so you shouldnt' have to worry:).


#30

[quote="chevalier, post:28, topic:244270"]
Gulp

Just kidding... somewhat.

Anyway, women are prone to wanting to change the man. In extreme cases, it has to do with change itself, no matter from what to what. In other cases it's a resocialisation project, possibly driven by the flattering idea that she's just the one who can do it.

With men, I'd say it's rare. On the other hand you do have the knight in shining armour complex that has a lot to do with distressed damsels. Much of it will rely on being unable to leave someone or give up on her in some other way due to her suffering from what is is first of all a personal misfortune, a result of past mistreatment, in other words, a wrong inflicted on her by someone. And you don't want to go back on your word anyway. As for how the picking of such women (by "such women" I mean just reference, it is not a figer-pointing expression) works, I don't know. I seem always to end up there without specifically intending it, as if by accident. I'm not sure I've ever had any romantic affair with a normal person unless a short flirtation that has led to nowhere and had been too short to tell anyway.

That'd be such a major challenge. You've no idea how odd I feel in a group, let alone religious ones. Charismatic renewal has tried it on me, it hasn't worked and the last attempt with a community really backfired when I confronted a celebrity priest on some injustice.

[/quote]

If you see a consistent pattern in your life, it's probably because a relationship in your life gave you the pattern or template for this. Try an Al-Anon or Adult Children of Alcoholics group, I'm betting you will feel right at home. I know I did, and at the time I thought it was only b/c of my husband's work addiction, but my mother's side of the family is rife with the disease. I fit right in and feel right at home. :shrug: I could do worse, maybe I might have felt at home in a gang too, but I'm glad I found Al-Anon first.


#31

Another related article: counsellingresource.com/lib/therapy/self-help/loser/

There are many different types of personality disorders, as well as degrees of severity. It is my belief that those with NPD should be avoided entirely when it comes to personal relationships.


#32

I am kind of saddened after reading about adults who attempt to have romantic relationships with a person with personality disorder. Although my daughter does not have narcissistic personality disorder, borderline personality disorder is equally damage to others.

Now I wonder what hope there is for her to find a husband. As a mother I would not wish my heartache and physical fears on another adult. Maybe I am in denial about her future. I have ups and downs. I have been completely upset in tears that I will have to take care of her for the rest of her life because she cannot take care of herself as in job, bills, scheduling, etc. Then we have breakthroughs in therapy and she responds with remarkable clarity of thought.

As long as she is on her medications she does not cut, she eats, she exercises and she goes to church with a positive attitude. When she lies and stops taking her medication, she refuses to eat, becomes demanding and then I have to take charge of her meds again. It is so hard because at 17 years old now, she should be growing in independence and I should not have to hand her a pill and watch her swallow. So her hormones and pituitary glands are telling her to break free of mom and dad and her other hormones like serotonin and dopamine are out of whack and force us to maintain control. It is a walk on a tight rope. Thank you RealJulienne for your prayers. I will pray for you, too.


#33

[quote="EEgirl, post:31, topic:244270"]
Another related article: counsellingresource.com/lib/therapy/self-help/loser/

There are many different types of personality disorders, as well as degrees of severity. It is my belief that those with NPD should be avoided entirely when it comes to personal relationships.

[/quote]

Yeah, that's not so easy to accomplish. Some of them, perhaps most of them, are quite good at hiding their disorder, and can be VERY charming in the early stages of a relationship (not just romance). Most of us without the disorder cannot even begin to fathom the DEVIOUS nature behind their personality (the shell they create for the world). Over and over again they surprise, shock, and confuse us. After a while, one grows numb, but that comes with an immense cost - our feelings get squashed down until we basically stop feeling anything, either lows or highs.

And if you end up with an NPD in your extended family? What then? My kids have contact with this disorder, and have been affected although they don't yet know all the ramifications. It's already caused suffering in my younger son's life. The older one, not so much, as he keeps his distance more easily and the narcissist hasn't found a way to wrap his poisonous tentacles around him yet.

If I ever think to minimize NPD, I consider all the destruction that just ONE of these beings can cause, throughout their entire life. The pain and suffering they transmit, like King Midas, just by coming into contact with others and sucking the life out of us (the blogger compares them to vampires which is very apt), leaving us drained, suspicious, untrusting, and depressed.


#34

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:30, topic:244270"]
If you see a consistent pattern in your life, it's probably because a relationship in your life gave you the pattern or template for this. Try an Al-Anon or Adult Children of Alcoholics group, I'm betting you will feel right at home. I know I did, and at the time I thought it was only b/c of my husband's work addiction, but my mother's side of the family is rife with the disease. I fit right in and feel right at home. :shrug: I could do worse, maybe I might have felt at home in a gang too, but I'm glad I found Al-Anon first.

[/quote]

Thanks. Even though none of my parents had an alcohol problem, I actually did score very high on one ACA test. But that'd explain sticking too long with people rather than picking them. I can't pinpoint any specific common trait I might have gone for in all cases that could be traced to a disorder and I'm fairly perceptive (body language has been my hobby for almost half a lifetime and I spot liars better than a normal person should be able to). But I guess it's not really accidental, either. Maybe the voice or mannerisms. Gonna have to find out. Or maybe there wasn't anything wrong with the picking but I simply didn't give up soon enough after things started showing.


#35

[quote="chevalier, post:34, topic:244270"]
Thanks. Even though none of my parents had an alcohol problem, I actually did score very high on one ACA test. But that'd explain sticking too long with people rather than picking them. I can't pinpoint any specific common trait I might have gone for in all cases that could be traced to a disorder and I'm fairly perceptive (body language has been my hobby for almost half a lifetime and I spot liars better than a normal person should be able to). But I guess it's not really accidental, either. Maybe the voice or mannerisms. Gonna have to find out. Or maybe there wasn't anything wrong with the picking but I simply didn't give up soon enough after things started showing.

[/quote]

Could be a grandparent or g-grandparent. In my case, the closest alcoholic is my mother's father, but my mother knew nothing else as she was growing up. Her mother and dad eventually divorced and my mom was always very protective of her mother. I think she was the sacrificial child who gives up her own life to protect and give support to the untreated Al-Anon, the spouse of the alcoholic. I know I tend to sacrifice my own needs, dreams, desires, etc. somehow hoping that if I do that enough, the love and care will flow back to me from the other person.

Well, I won't go on since this is getting kinda psychological. But yeah, I guess I sort of have a bad "picker" too.


#36

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:35, topic:244270"]
Well, I won't go on since this is getting kinda psychological. But yeah, I guess I sort of have a bad "picker" too.

[/quote]

One of the links you posted said that it is very helpful for victims of NPD spouses to share their experiences - to be reassured that they are not the only ones, and that their perceptions of the strange world of the NPD are valid!

Thanks for your posts (and everyone else too). I've found this thread helpful.

Blessings,

Edmundus

ps. Please say a prayer for me and my kids (all grown up now - 2 girls and a boy), as I will for you and yours! :)


#37

[quote="Christian4life, post:11, topic:244270"]
No offense but this is a load of discriminatory bull.

[/quote]

I agreed with this completely....but you derailed here:

[quote="Christian4life, post:11, topic:244270"]

  1. Saying there is little to no hope they can change is also very untrue. I have read about BPD (borderline personality disorder) which is probably the worst one. MOST people who have it level out by middle age. If you ask me it's all traits of being a troubled youth anyway, and that person eventually learns to grow up.

[/quote]

Kiddo, I didn't just "grow up", I healed from the inside out. I learned how to relate better and understand people better. I have made great strides, it's nothing to do with 'growing up'. I wish it had been that simple.

I have Borderline Personality Disorder. I used to fit the description to a tee, but I am currently a work in progress. I knew I needed help, because I pushed so many people away from me, and I got it. Thank God.

This entire thread is very disturbing. All of you "amateur" psychologists- STOP LABELING PEOPLE! They may very well have the disorder you suspect, but you are not a professional, stop shoving people into pigeon holes, you do them a major disservice.

Dr. Jim Asher wrote a very general, broad, and useless article in my opinion. Quirks do NOT indicate a personality disorder, nor is it simply someone who 'won't do the dishes', what a trivial example to make. I am infuriated that a Catholic publication published this- it is simply bunk. My therapist, who by the way is a christian therapist, would die if she read that. It is dis compassionate and contrite.

I believe that I am a good wife and mother. I work very very hard at it. My disorder does not doom me to a life of being single and not 'marriage material', thank God my husband didn't think so. I think a lot about others, and I am a wonderful advocate for those that Juliane, a normally eloquent and insightful poster, referred to as "abnormals". I hope she didn't mean that the way it came across.

The thing about that article that angers me the most is that he makes all people with personality disorders out to be the same uncaring, selfish people. He portrays them (us) all as unable to relate to others, unable to perceive the needs of others... that's just not true.

You know what I do 4-5 times a month? I volunteer as a victims' advocate for survivors of sexual assault. When someone is raped, I go to the hospital and make sure they get out of their with as little trauma as possible. I have to be very sensitive to what they need from me and hospital staff, and I put the survivor first. Even if it means I am at the hospital for up to 8 hours in the middle of the night, I do it because I am providing an invaluable, free service to society. It's how I decided to give back.

Last time I checked, my advocacy role requires a lot of ability to do all of the things Dr. Jim Asher says I am not capable of. I am not being narcicistic or self-serving, but I know that I am good at what I do. So much in fact, I decided to make a career of it and am going to school in the fall to get my Master's in Social Work.

I was perhaps born with the propensity to be this way, but it was definitely exacerbated by the sexual abuse I endured at a very young age, and many other traumas that snowballed during my formative years.

It is not my fault, and I am working very hard to be the best person I'm capable of. My actions are my fault, but my maladaptive ways of thinking are not. I have to second guess and check myself all the time. With God's love and mercy, I will hopefully beat this, but it's hard.

Don't steal the power of the individual by saying there is no hope for personal change. Do you really feel that way? Does that not sound like the sin of despair? I think so. There is always hope, if God can move mountains and flood the Earth he can help me function as a productive member of society.


#38

Dear themeginthemoon,

I apologize for using the term "abnormals." It was an abbreviation for the term abnormal pyschology. I did not mean to insult you or someone like you in any way. There is a range of human experience and there's a lot of so-called "abnormal" that is not well understood - and having a son with "ADHD" I do not believe that every condition is a syndrome. Something I struggle with every day - does this really exist or am I medicating him for just being a certain personality/mental type?

Praise God for you and your desire to use the gifts that God gave you! And thank you for sharing yourself and your own struggle with us. I know that borderlines are in a much less understood category...and yes, there is a lot of hope that people who are BPD can improve and live productive lives. I would put BPD on a scale far above true NPD. That's just from my experience. I applaud you for working with rape victims. You are definitely performing a much needed service that few people could do.

We're not psychologists or psychiatrists, most of us have stated that in some way. What we are, are people who have been deeply affected by individuals with NPD. I didn't grow up around this kind of mental/spiritual disease so I really had no idea what I was dealing with. My natural optimism and belief in people's goodness blinded me to the sort of being I was dealing with. But once burned, twice learned as they say. I am not in despair, I was angry, but now I am just aware. I will NOT let this person ruin my children's lives whatever it takes. I will pray for him but I am not going to ever trust him again. I have witnessed the destruction he causes and I don't intend to be a victim of it.

The article was somewhat simplistic, but the blog that was put up is far from that. I think these discussions do a lot to help people who may not recognize the type of being they are truly dealing with. There is a tendency to think "It must be something I am doing" to cause them to act that way, but this is of course a fallacy. And then there are those of us who get attached and think that somehow, our love can change him, if we can just fill up that leaking bucket inside them....:shrug:

Please don't take anything I say personally. I am just writing about my own experience with NPD in particular. I hope that it helps others to recognize what they are dealing with.


#39

[quote="themeginthemoon, post:37, topic:244270"]
I agreed with this completely....but you derailed here:

Kiddo, I didn't just "grow up", I healed from the inside out. I learned how to relate better and understand people better. I have made great strides, it's nothing to do with 'growing up'. I wish it had been that simple.

I have Borderline Personality Disorder. I used to fit the description to a tee, but I am currently a work in progress. I knew I needed help, because I pushed so many people away from me, and I got it. Thank God.

This entire thread is very disturbing. All of you "amateur" psychologists- STOP LABELING PEOPLE! They may very well have the disorder you suspect, but you are not a professional, stop shoving people into pigeon holes, you do them a major disservice.

Dr. Jim Asher wrote a very general, broad, and useless article in my opinion. Quirks do NOT indicate a personality disorder, nor is it simply someone who 'won't do the dishes', what a trivial example to make. I am infuriated that a Catholic publication published this- it is simply bunk. My therapist, who by the way is a christian therapist, would die if she read that. It is dis compassionate and contrite.

*I totally agree with you.. what an unscolarly piece. It was way way to vague and just causing confusion. Some people are like that, they label other people for minor things.. *

I believe that I am a good wife and mother. I work very very hard at it. My disorder does not doom me to a life of being single and not 'marriage material', thank God my husband didn't think so. I think a lot about others, and I am a wonderful advocate for those that Juliane, a normally eloquent and insightful poster, referred to as "abnormals". I hope she didn't mean that the way it came across.

The thing about that article that angers me the most is that he makes all people with personality disorders out to be the same uncaring, selfish people. He portrays them (us) all as unable to relate to others, unable to perceive the needs of others... that's just not true.

You know what I do 4-5 times a month? I volunteer as a victims' advocate for survivors of sexual assault. When someone is raped, I go to the hospital and make sure they get out of their with as little trauma as possible. I have to be very sensitive to what they need from me and hospital staff, and I put the survivor first. Even if it means I am at the hospital for up to 8 hours in the middle of the night, I do it because I am providing an invaluable, free service to society. It's how I decided to give back.

Thats very interesting. You are amazing. Please can you tell me more about your work.. what you do precisely. Were you abused yourself (know that many borderliners are) ?

Last time I checked, my advocacy role requires a lot of ability to do all of the things Dr. Jim Asher says I am not capable of. I am not being narcicistic or self-serving, but I know that I am good at what I do. So much in fact, I decided to make a career of it and am going to school in the fall to get my Master's in Social Work.

I was perhaps born with the propensity to be this way, but it was definitely exacerbated by the sexual abuse I endured at a very young age, and many other traumas that snowballed during my formative years.

It is not my fault, and I am working very hard to be the best person I'm capable of. My actions are my fault, but my maladaptive ways of thinking are not. I have to second guess and check myself all the time. With God's love and mercy, I will hopefully beat this, but it's hard.

Don't steal the power of the individual by saying there is no hope for personal change. Do you really feel that way? Does that not sound like the sin of despair? I think so. There is always hope, if God can move mountains and flood the Earth he can help me function as a productive member of society.

****AMEN :thumbsup:

[/quote]


#40

Dear themeginthemoon,

I apologize for making over-general remarks from my own personal experience. I have suffered deeply from an NPD spouse, and I continue to suffer as I see the effects play out in our children's lives. It's not just the NPD behaviour - there are still serious practical consequences, 15 years after divorce, which I continue to battle as well as I can.

That's the way a "psychology" thread would pan out. We combine our personal experiences (as you have also done) and external material (in this case, the original article). However, I can see that my remarks went too far.

You make a very good point that a person with a disorder can recognize it and work with it. As far as I know, we all have some sort of disorder (well, I certainly do!), but there do seem to be some clinicial extremes, particularly NPD, which are recognized as having a very low remission rate, because the individuals almost never acknowledge that there's a problem.

Thankyou for your very helpful post,

Edmundus


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