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Personality Disorders - Dependent Personality Disorder Symptoms
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Dependent Personality Disorder Symptoms
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Dependent Personality Disorder
Symptoms

This personality disorder is characterized by a long-standing need for the person to be taken care of and a fear of being abandoned or separated from important individuals in his or her life. This pervasive fear leads to "clinging behavior" and usually manifests itself by early adulthood. It includes a majority of the following symptoms:

  • has difficulty making everyday decisions without an excessive amount of advice and reassurance from others
  • needs others to assume responsibility for most major areas of his or her life
  • has difficulty expressing disagreement with others because of fear of loss of support or approval.
  • has difficulty initiating projects or doing things on his or her own (because of a lack of self-confidence in judgment or abilities rather than a lack of motivation or energy)
  • goes to excessive lengths to obtain nurturance and support from others, to the point of volunteering to do things that are unpleasant
  • feels uncomfortable or helpless when alone because of exaggerated fears of being unable to care for himself or herself
  • urgently seeks another relationship as a source of care and support when a close relationship ends
  • is unrealistically preoccupied with fears of being left to take care of himself or herself

Criteria summarized from:
American Psychiatric Association. (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, fourth edition. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.

 

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