One form of illness we treat at CeDAR is called a personality disorder. This is an example of a ‘psychological illness’ in that it involves defense mechanisms, patterns of relating with others, and dysfunction from developmental years to adulthood. A personality disorder can be very pervasive and affect many areas of a person’s life, including career, friendships and marriages. Examples of personality disorders include Borderline Personality, Narcissistic Personality, and Antisocial Personality. These illnesses often involve relational drama, strong swings in emotions, and an unstable sense of self. Many times, childhood abuse can lead to these psychological patterns.
If you or a family member has received many different diagnoses from psychiatrists over the years and it is tough to know what to believe, often times a personality disorder is at the heart of the problem.
While depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia are often treated with medications, a personality disorder is treated best with the use of psychotherapy. At CeDAR, we provide some specific therapy tracks that help patients with personality disorders lead better lives. One example of this therapy is called Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) and is very helpful for a person with Borderline Personality Disorder. DBT helps patients build coping skills and tolerate the ‘gray zones’ in life (rather than always living a life of love versus hate). We also stress helping patients and their families hold firm boundaries in relationships. This is imperative for helping anyone with a personality disorder. By helping patients with personality disorders get the care they need, they stand a better chance of maintaining their recovery, staying clean and sober, and living a life in peace. Please ask us about the care we provide, and we’ll be happy to explain more.