Personality Disorders

Personality disorders are a group of mental illnesses that include long-term patterns of thoughts and behaviors that are unhealthy and inflexible, and that differ significantly from what is expected. Personality disorders typically cause significant problems with relationships, social activities, work and school. There are ten types of personality disorder and the symptoms of each are different. They can mild or severe. People with personality disorders often don’t know they have a problem. To them, their thoughts are normal, and they often blame others for their problems. The cause of personality disorders is unknown but many experts believe that genes and childhood experiences may play a role. If you think you may be suffering from a personality disorder, reach out to one of TherapyDen’s experts today.

Meet the specialists

I view Personality Disorders as an opportunity to grow into the person you want to be, but might not have had the environment or chance fully to do so. In particular, I have extensive experience and training in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), considered to be the gold standard for Borderline Personality Disorder. You may have heard that some therapists don't like to work with persons diagnosed with personality disorders. I am not that person. I hope to assist anyone who comes to me seeking help; to help anyone grow to the fullest potential.

— John Eichenberger, Counselor in Fairport, NY
 

Sometimes, people have personality patterns or ways of interacting that cause distress to them or those around them. When these problems are severe, the person may receive a personality disorder diagnosis. However, it can be a relief to hear that there are good treatments to help people improve their ways of interacting with the world. I have advanced training in dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and transference-focused psychotherapy (TFP), developed to treat personality disorders.

— Kerry Cannity, Psychologist in New York, NY

Narcissitic PD and Borderline PD are my personal specialties. I work with family, and those struggling with the disorders themselves. I take my study of these personalities, and the study of toxic stress and combine them in a form of treatment that helps people form a solid identity. We work to find meaning, purpose, and new skills to engage in fulfilling relationships.

— Kristin Martinez, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Whittier, CA
 

Dialectical behavior therapy is considered the best treatment for individuals who have been diagnosed with personality disorders. I am well trained in DBT and use it with all of my clients. I also am very knowledgeable about highly emotional people and trauma - and how both of these factors are often present with individuals with personality disorders.

— Deann Acton, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Austin, TX

Borderline Personality Disorder often occurs when a child from a young age experiences: • emotional, physical or sexual abuse • exposure to long-term fear or distress • neglect by 1 or both parents • parent/caregiver with a serious mental health or addiction problem When this happens it can leave you with issues of unresolved fear, anger and distress from childhood; which can lead to a variety of distorted adult thinking patterns. I have experience treating BPD using DBT informed.

— Carrie Glebe, Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Williston, FL
 

Personality disorders are often caused by some form of attachment trauma. Some people are biologically more sensitive and have been repeatedly invalidated by their environment. You may have have been told things like: “Stop being dramatic!”, “Normal people don’t react this way”, “You’re too much!”, etc. With a radically genuine and validating approach, I want to help support you in creating a life you feel is worth living.

— Rachel Jones, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Beverly Hills, CA

In my conceptualization, personality disorders are a way of describing sustained, complex relational traumas. If you have been hurt through relations with others, it makes sense that being in relationship with others will feel terrifying to you. For clients who experience symptoms related to personality disorders, I recommend consistent, long term relational therapy to practice developing skills in order to increase your capacity to love, trust, and be in healthy relations with others.

— Sam Krehel, Mental Health Counselor in Seattle, WA
 

I have been intensively trained by BTech (the company owned by DBT founder Marsha Linehan) in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT). This treatment was specifically designed to help those struggling with Borderline Personality Disorder. It is one of my favorite things to practice due to the enormous success my clients have had with it.

— Jenna Rasmussen, Counselor in Portland, OR
 

I'm internationally known for specialized work in narcissistic abuse. This means that I work with people who identify as being the victims of abuse, and are wondering if their partner or family member has a personality disorder. Often, there is an intergenerational pattern at play. I can help you define what you are seeing and feeling, sort out what is happening in these relationships in your life and how to restore balance.

— Tiffany Kettermann, Counselor in Portland, OR

I received foundational DBT training through Marsha Linehan's Behavioral Tech. DBT is a cognitive behavioral treatment and is the gold standard for suicidal people and those diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. While BPD is a highly stigmatized diagnosis, I work to reduce the client's shame. I believe it is a result of early attachment trauma and it can be treated. I am supervised by Dr. Suzanne Wallach, who is comprehensively trained in DBT through The Linehan Institute.

— Daniele Lewin, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Beverly Hills, CA
 

So often misunderstood, Borderline Personality Disorder can be described as occurring within the context of relationships. It's characterized by rapid mood swings, impulsivity, an unstable sense of self & a lot of anxiety. So what does this mean? Your relationships tend to be intense & chaotic. Emotional pain literally feels intolerable & your fear of relationship rejection, can lead to frantic, erratic behavior, in an attempt to just to feel better. Your emotions don't have to run you life!

— Sara Weand, Licensed Professional Counselor in Annville, PA

While many people (therapists included) see personality disorders as unsolvable problems, I look for the person behind all that. I seek to understand what makes people thrive, and what gets in the way of their most fulfilling life. I aim for helping anyone do better, reach higher, and find greater joy. My extensive background and experience with DBT is especially helpful for this goal.

— John Eichenberger, Counselor in Fairport, NY

Sometimes, people have problematic patterns in their personality or interactions with others. When these problems are severe, they may receive a personality disorder diagnosis. The good news is that we have effective treatments to help people change such patterns. I have received advanced training in dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and transference-focused psychotherapy (TFP), both designed to help people diagnosed with personality disorders.

— Kerry Cannity, Psychologist in New York, NY
 

Mood Swings. Drama. Empty. Lost. Chaos. Impulsive. Anger. Regret. Intense Emotional Pain.

— Sara Weand, Licensed Professional Counselor in Annville, PA
 

Personality disorders can emerge following trauma, unhealthy relationships, or other difficult experiences - for many, these 'disordered' ways of connecting to others have emerged as a survival tactic. Our work is to understand how these survival tactics can be shifted to more effective ways of interacting with others and managing emotions. I primarily use Dialectical Behavior Therapy to empower my clients to effectively manage their emotions and interactions with mindfulness and coping skills.

— Laura Knudsen, Counselor in Newton, MA

In my conceptualization, personality disorders are a grouping of symptoms related to sustained relational traumas. If you have been hurt through relations with others, it makes sense that being in relationships will feel terrifying to you, depriving you of the very things you may want: love, closeness, care, and intimacy. Consistent, long term relational therapy can help you practice developing skills in order to increase your capacity to love, trust, and be in healthy relations with others.

— Sam Krehel, Mental Health Counselor in Seattle, WA
 

I work with a wide variety of individuals ranging from 14 to 74, some of which struggle with symptoms of Borderline, Histrionic, Narcissistic, Avoidant, and Dependent Personality Disorders. These individuals have stories revealing a great deal of pain from wounds that did not heal properly or completely and manifest in patterns throughout their lives. Together we will uncover and process through experiences while establishing a safe and healthy therapeutic relationship towards hope and healing.

— Jon Soileau, Licensed Professional Counselor in Kansas City, MO

I have experience providing comprehensive Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) services to individuals struggling with personality traits. DBT was originally developed by psychologist Marsha Linehan to support those struggling with Borderline Personality Disorder. DBT, however, has been found to also be helpful for individuals struggling with other mental health concerns, such as anxiety, addiction, and eating disorders.

— Leslie Aguilar, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in , CA
 

I have experience and success in teaching people how to manage the negative behaviors associated with Antisocial and Borderline personality disorders so they can live a fuller life that also helps them reduce their harm to others. I keep up with the latest research and treatment for both disorders and utilize evidenced based approaches for treatment. It is an absolute myth that both disorders can't be treated. It takes more work but it is possible.

— Michelle Fortier, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Tallahassee, FL

I welcome working with people who have previously been diagnosed with a personality disorder (most often borderline personality disorder). I conceptualize these "personality disorders" as typically being the result of complex developmental traumas. If we can treat the traumatic reactions we can begin to help change behaviors that are no longer adaptive or useful to you.

— Rachel Stanton, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Boston, MA