Friday, April 13, 2007

Schizoid personality disorder

In the American Psychiatric Association’s “Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders” (4th edition), schizoid personality disorder is indicated if a person shows four (or more) of the following symptoms:

Neither desires nor enjoys close relationships, including being part of a family
This is true. Evidenced by my apparent contentment when I am alone. I have no family in this country, nor do I want that. I also limit communication with my parents.

Almost always chooses solitary activities
Every time V and I sit down to list activities which I enjoy doing (to increase positives in my life and make it a “life worth living”, the same things come up –
Running (alone)
Playing my flute
Tramping/Hiking/climbing mountains (would prefer to do alone, but have done it with people simply as a safety thing)
All mostly solitary activites.

Has little, if any, interest in having sexual experiences with another person
Ding Ding Ding. Not only have I never had a sexual experience with another person, I certainly do not crave it. Curious maybe, but not that interested to even consider it.

Takes pleasures in few, if any activities

See “Almost always chooses solitary activities”. For the life of me I can’t seem to think of anything else to add to the list.

Lacks close friends or confidants other than first degree relatives

Definately lacking. Although I do have V at the moment. She’s my main connection to the world.

Appears indifferent to the praise or criticism of others
I probably don’t fit this criteria. I’m not usually indifferent – I’m more likely to be broken by criticisms. With praise, I think I’m just apt to feel as if it’s not true.

Show emotional coldness, detachment, or flattened affectivity
My “flat affect” has been noted in my mental health files and I’ve been told by various mental health professionals that I display this wonderful “talent”.

I guess 6 out of 7 tells me something about myself.

I researched this disorder because the last time I was in hospital after the overdose, it was listed as my diagnosis along with borderline PD in my discharge notes. This is the first time I’m aware of that people in my care team seem to think I have the disorder. But it certainly explains a few things.


Sid said...

I like how they always seem to put these little details in your chart or in other notes about diagnoses they think you have, but never bother to bring up the subject with you directly. I'd definitely bring this up with V next time you see her, get her feedback on what she thinks. Heck, I might bring it up to my T since I definitely fit the last four criteria.

Do you think this fits better than the BPD or do you think both are applicable diagnoses?

I have the same "flat affect". I can become so flat that if I'm dissociating at the same time, my daughter calls it my "death face". Says it scares the crap out of her.

Suzanne said...

From what I understand it's not uncommon for multiple personality disorders to exist together - in addition to BPD I have Avoidant Personality Disorder.

I think Sid's right - talk to V, she'll have a sodding mountain of notes about you and you've got a right to know what's in them! ;-)

sadgirl said...

Dear Polar
I wish I knew what to say. I wish I could make it better but life's not that simple eh? At least a diagnosis of any sort means you can start to think about how you can deal with it. Just keep going and keep an open mind.

Best of luck