[Continued from PART I]

The cluster of dramatic/emotional/erratic includes histrionic personality disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, and anti-social personality disorder.

The main features of histrionic personality disorder (HPD) are self-dramatization and a set of attention-seeking behaviors that include seductiveness, exaggerated displays of emotions, and demands for reassurance and praise. Such emotional displays are manipulative and are aimed at attracting attention and sympathy. They always try to be the center of attention. Seductive or sexually provocative behavior is a way they use to seek attention. They tend to be frequently and inappropriately flirtatious. Initially, they seem to creative, entertaining, and charming, but later turn out to be shallow and self-centered.

Maintaining a relationship with histrionic personalities can be exhaustive. Their relationships are fragile. They often alienate their friends with their demands for constant attention. They are easily bored and highly susceptible to group pressures. Their frequent seductiveness makes it challenging for them to have friendships with the same sex. Individuals with HPD are quick to make friends, but have a difficult time keeping them. Since they are easily bored, they often quickly abandon a friend when they meet someone else they find more interesting.

Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) mainly features extreme vanity, grandiosity, and a need for admiration. People with NPD seek attention and demand admiration. They are highly self-centered and lack empathy. They brag about their achievements and entertain grandiose ideas about their abilities. They are prone to feelings of rage and humiliation if others ignore or criticize them. They also, at times, tend to behave irresponsibly, to the extent of being anti-social. They believe of themselves to be unique and deserving of special treatment. They behave in such a manner to protect their weak self-image.

Relationships of people with NPD are usually superficial and difficult. They are exploitative, choosing friends on the basis of what they can get from them. They demand a lot of favours and give little in return. They usually form friendships or romantic relationships if the person seems to enhance their self-esteem. They alienate others with their inflated self-esteem, excessive bragging, and exaggeration of their abilities. Due to all this people with NPD have long histories erratic interpersonal relationships.

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is primarily marked by instability of mood, self-image, and interpersonal relationships. It involves difficulties in establishing a secure self-identity, distrust, impulsive and self-destructive behavior, and difficulty in controlling anger and other emotions. They also experience major episodes of depression, which is linked feelings of extreme self-condemnation, feelings of emptiness, and fears of abandonment.

People with BPD have stormy and unstable relationships. They want close and meaningful relationships, but their unpredictability drives others away. Their excessive moody, needy, and demanding behavior makes them very difficult fiends or partners. Their relationships are filled passion, love, and hate. For them people are either all good or all bad. At one moment a person can be kind and generous for them, and at the other moment, the same person can be cruel and evil. Dealing with people with BPD is extremely difficult. Even if they want to, others cannot end their relationship with them. An intense fear of rejection and abandonment causes these people to behave frantically and desperately to seek attention of others. Such behaviors mainly include suicide attempts and self-mutilation. Because they lack stable relationships, people with BPD are always accompanied by feelings of loneliness.

Antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) by a persistent and pervasive disregard for and violation of the rights of others. They have a predatory attitude towards other people. They are continuously engaged in behaviors that are harmful to others and are indifferent towards how their behavior might affect others. They show a consistent failure to obey the law and may engage in such acts as destruction of property, harassing others, or theft. They do not feel any guilt for the acts they do. They are cynical, callous, arrogant, extremely intelligent and at times charming. They are manipulative and potentially dangerous people.

People with ASPD usually have turbulent relationships. They are often irritable and aggressive and indulge in physical fights. Their aggression may extent to family members. People with ASPD are often involved in domestic violence. As parents they may be extremely irresponsible, abandoning their children and family members on the spur of moment without arranging any financial support.

This is the end of Part II. The next (and final) part will be about the relationships of people with personality disorders that come under the anxious/fearful cluster.

Saif Farooqi

A PhD in Psychology (from the University of Delhi). I have been blogging about psychological issues for more than ten years. I am extremely passionate about teaching psychology. I'm a writer, podcaster, and TEDx speaker. I also conduct workshops and awareness programs in schools and colleges. Currently, I'm also working as an Assistant Professor at the Department of Psychology, Faculty of Social Sciences, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, India


Anonymous said...

Hey Nicely written.........

Goin through your older posts too.

Keep writing

dr.chaitra said...

nice blog..
but i cant follow u tro NB ...ther s no option for it on urpage..
i liked ur article

Saif Farooqi said...

@ Vijay
Thanks! :)

@ Dr. Chaitra
It's alright if you couldn't follow my blog ... it's good enough to know that you liked my article. :)

ME said...

Great writing . I read your profile and I'm quite impressed with the kind of career you have at present.Studying about relationships means you must be an excellent son,brother,partner and a friend !
The 5 Factor Personality Test
Personality as per the 5 most telling factors.

Saif Farooqi said...

@ ME
Thanks a lot for the appreciation. You'll have to ask my parents, brother, and friends to corroborate what you think about me when it comes to these relationships :D ... can't say anything about how good a partner I am, because I don't have any ... haha

take care ... and thanks again :)

Shah Wharton said...

There is a great deal of controversy surrounding the topic of DID. The validity of DID as a medical diagnosis has been questioned, and some researchers have suggested that DID may exist primarily as an iatrogenic adverse effect of therapy. DID is diagnosed significantly more frequently in North America compared to other areas of the world, for example?

Anyway - personality disorders are an interesting study - liked your articles. And following your blog! ;D

Shah from

Saif Farooqi said...

@ Shah Wharton
I think you saw my comment on DID on the post above this one, but somehow you commented about it here :D :)

Yes, there is a lot of controversy about DID. Earlier there have been times when schizophrenia has been misdiagnosed as DID and vice versa. The literal meaning of schizophrenia is the splitting of the mind. Also, when schizrophrenics have auditory hallucinations, it may seem to them as being a distinct personality, which again makes it being confused to be DID.

Iastrogenesis itself is controversial topic. It is difficult to tell the degree to which medication can effect a person giving rise to other symptoms.

I appreciate the point that you have put forward as it adds clarity to those who may not know much about DID.

I'm glad to know that you liked my articles and thank you for following my blog.

Take care! :)

Betty Move said...

I agree with you that people, living with this problem are not easy to understand and live with, but I think that if there is a partner who can accept us, this is proof for love, isn't it? So here is the good side of the situation, if a partner is with us despite the problem, this is love! :)

Saif Farooqi said...

@ Betty
Yeah true, but as mentioned in the fist part of the article, this love can become a problem with certain types of personality disorders. Although this in no way means that we should abandon them.

Nel said...

How do you diagnose such personality disorders?

How do you know whether your partner is capable of dealing with you if you are diagnosed?

Barbara Leighson said...

As a person who has borderline personality disorder, I can say from experience that relationships are very difficult to maintain. The symptoms that this article mentions are pretty spot on. If people with BPD are interested in learning to control your BPD and improve your relationships, I recommend visiting It has a lot of great information.

Companies Removals said...

If I have to point out one thing that is common between all the types of personal disorders listed in the article that would be namely the interest they are trying to evoke, the love amd approval that they need. These orders come as result from issue dating back to the childhood- the lack of love, appraciation, cares and interests toward the child will one day make him/her seek them desperately by all means possible.

Ami said...

Thanks for explaining. I had always wondered about those people who find it so easy to drop a friend. It seems like weird behavior to people who are more inclined to lasting friendships.