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seattle 09-17-2006 06:02 AM

(Antisocial) Personality Disorder?
My daughter is 18, and we are having serious issues with her. She just moved back to Seattle after living with her dad for the past 2 years, and my husband and I are at the end of our rope with her.

She sleeps alot, her room is a mess all the time and she's sooo disorganized (despite all of our best efforts to help her by buying her organizers, etc.) She cannot hold on to money - she is constantly buying stuff, and she doesn't seem to acknowledge how much she spends. We make her show us her checkbook once per week to ensure it's balanced and that she hasn't taken out more than agreed upon - yet she always does.

She plays the role of the victim or makes stupid, non-logical excuses when confronted about not meeting basic expectations. She always has to have the last word in a conversation (especially an argument). She acts as though rules are optional or that they don't apply to her at all.

She only thinks of herself unless she's trying to get something out of you. She'll make commitments but break them at the last minute (if she rells you at all). She steals once in a while.

When confronted, she seems to try to manipulate instead of just telling us what we're asking for; she never says she's sorry unless she has no other out. She seems to lack feelings most of the time.

Yet, she can be very outgoing and talkative when we are in public or with others. At times it seems she truly wants to act normal but can't, and we see a glimmer of anger directed at herself.

My husband said she probably has multiple personalities, or perhaps antisocial disorder. Sometimes I look at her after we've argued about her breaking agreed-upon rules, etc., and I see a spark of worry/sadness behind the empty and emotionless face.

Thoughts? If it is a personality disorder, what treatment is out there? Support groups? What are a few tips that my hubby and I can do to help her?

Thank you so much!

strongernow 09-17-2006 11:08 AM

Re: (Antisocial) Personality Disorder?
It sounds a lot like a Histrionic Personality disorder. And sometimes the disorder can look like an Antisocial personality disorder. Also she could have bipolar.

The best way to go for her is hardcore cognitive and behavior therapy. She is young so there is still hope for her to improve.

Possibly check out a board certified psychiatrist and get second and even third opinions of course. Psychiatrists only administer medication. They are medical doctors not therapists. They do not offer advice or counseling.

You could ask a psychologist or two to administer a MMPI or PAI assessment. Those are tests that try to find out what disorder the person has. The tests are not 100% reliable but they are the best tests out there today to test for the disorder.

BUT I still think that cognitive and behavior specialists will treat the disorder the best! Another good idea would be to find an Adlerian Therapist who also uses cognitive and behavior techniques and specializes in personality disorders. A key note to you is that most therapists do not like working with people with personality disorders. You have to call around, ask and find a therapist who will say that they specialize in personality disorder treatment. Ask if they are interested in treating a young adult who might have a Histrionic Personality Disorder with some antisocial traits and ask if they will use cognitive and behavior procedures to help cure or manage the disorder. Always get background information from the therapists licensing board to see if any complaints have been opened or filed against the therapist. I would also stay away from counselors as they do not follow a medical model. They believe that people don't have "Disorders". So in other words they practice in denial of the fact that mental illness exists. I think that is totally bogus. Also stay away from Christian counselors because they don't use psychological based procedures to help manage or cure the disorder. They will only put pressure on your daughter to memorize scripture, pray, and attend church which she could easily do on her own for free.

Let me know if you have questions.

jakcpk 09-21-2006 12:56 PM

Re: (Antisocial) Personality Disorder?
I completely agree with the counseling at the church. Don't waste your time. I was really difficult as a teen mostly from moves while I was in highschool. I went from one environment to the way I went to intercity seattle school district. Cleaveland High. If you know there then you know it's a nightmare. She may be reacting to change but having her tested by a psychologist and a psychiarist is absolutely needed. Even if she fights it still do it. It changed my life to finally learn there wasn't something weird or wasteful about my life. Going beyond your limits is just one symptom in what is sounds like are a host of other problems. Try to get her help with a respected doctor.

isitme 11-17-2006 10:22 AM

Re: (Antisocial) Personality Disorder?

lotuslady 11-28-2006 01:03 PM

Re: (Antisocial) Personality Disorder?
Please try to be kind to her. It's really difficult trying to live a normal life when you're battling mental issues as disabling as it sounds like she's experiencing. Those problems are truly beyond her control and she's trying to get control of her life but it can be so hard when you have chemical imbalances. It's hard having chemical imbalances so please be kind to her... she probably wouldn't have anywhere else to go if it weren't for you and your husband.

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