Free Essay on Personality Disorder - Case Analysis of Sally

Published: 2019-11-18
Free Essay on Personality Disorder - Case Analysis of Sally
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Psychology Mental health Personality disorder
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1694 words
15 min read

A competency is also referred to as ability or a capability. While analyzing a person suffering from a personal disorder, different behavioral sets of a client are required. Such behavior is acquired by identification of the behavior portrayed by a customer while responding to the questions. Therefore, while analyzing Sallys disorder; behavioral sets were analyzed using the Gray and Zide assessment model as shown in the table below.

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Gray and Zide Diagram Model

Competence assessment Coping and adaptation Influencing factors Available support

Biological Strengths weaknesses She is addicted to drugs. Drugs are the main influencing factors in the life of Sally. She has support from her father, grandmother, whom she loves and teachers.

She is a focused girl, who is neat in her way of clothing. She uses her body and sleeps with old men. Social She has a friend, so she has a positive social strength. She meets up with older men and come back home late and hence ruining her relationship with her parents. She does not want to be told by parents and teachers about anything. She might be using drugs and hence influence her low performance in school. She has support from her parents, and school guidance counselor.

Psychological She is positive about herself. She hates being told by both parents and teachers. She is used to live a life of drugs and sleeps with old men. Drugs, friends, and old men are the major influence in Sallys life.

She has access to a counselor, who can help in changing her.

DSM-5 Categories

Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, fifth edition (DSM-5) is a classification of mental illness that is mainly used by psychiatrists to treat patients with mental condition. A professional is likely to diagnose Sally with both substance and personality syndrome. A substance use disorder in the DSM-5 combines both the DSM-4 categories and the dependence of a drug substance into a single disorder. Sally suffers from a substance disorder since she steals money from her stepmothers purse to purchase drugs. Her behavior, as noted in the case attached, shows addiction to a particular substance. In most cases, personality disorders are often related to thinking and feeling about oneself. Moreover, such diseases affect individuals in that they think other people are not satisfied and happy with everything they do. In this case, Sally suffers from personality disorder since she thinks that not everybody likes her. For instance, a personality disorder is portrayed when she fails in an English paper and thinks that the teacher intentionally marked the paper in an awkward manner leading to the failure of students. In addition to that, Sally questions her parents parenting and rarely complies with the rules. Therefore, this shows that the girl is suffering from a personality disorder since she thinks that everyone is doing wrong by blaming it all on her.

The personality disorder of the patient was analyzed by looking at the various traits suggested by the symptoms observed. Consequently, the evaluation of particular impairments such as the way in which a client typically experiences herself in all the personality traits, in Sallys behavior, was conducted to diagnose her personality disorder. Therefore, I used the alternate methods criteria to assess the nature and diagnose the personality disorder suffered by Sally. Some of the traits such as the antisocial personality disorder were ruled out since Sally has a friend attends her party. Therefore, this shows that she has a social life and hence eliminating the disorder.

As seen in the diagnosis, Sally is suffering from a borderline personality disorder, a mental disorder marked by her sudden behavioral change and her functioning. She questions her parents parenting and defies home rules by coming in at odd hours. Additionally, Sally also suffers from schizotypal personality disorder characterized by her paranoia and unconventional beliefs. She fails in an exam paper, for instance, and blames her English teacher for marking it difficultly and hence leading to the failure of students. Such belief may be rendered as eccentric resulting from anxiety.

Screening Tools

Self-administered tests may be used as a screening tool in identifying personality disorder. In most cases, interviews are used to analyze a person with the condition. Interviews are mainly utilized in the identification of borderline personality disorder. In sallys case, I would use interviews with at least 150 questions divided into four sections, cognition, affect, interpersonal relationships and patterns of impulse actions. The answers given by Sally during the interview will be relevant in describing critical features of borderline personality disorder. Usually, the interview would take about 45 minutes to one hour. On the other hand, the performance assessment study will be conducted on Sally to identify a variety of personality disorder such as Schizotypal disorder. The process is carried out via an interview targeting some areas such as pessimism, worthlessness, anxiety, and shyness amongst others. I will also administer a dimensional questionnaire to Sally that will measure at least four personality dimensions, that is, reward dependence, harm avoidance, and uniqueness seeking. Therefore, the tools mentioned above will significantly help in finding out the actual personality disorder of a client.

Explored Areas

First, I would ask her if her stepmother has been kind to her for the past years. Sally sounds desperate to get out of her fathers house and stay with her mother. In most cases, she plays slots machine and hopes that she will win and move in with her mother. Her fathers divorce may have affected her grievously and has significantly contributed to her gradual behavioral change. Therefore, getting to know what Sallys problem is will help in treating her condition. Additionally, Sallys father and mother had divorced when she was at a tender age. As seen in the case, her father never allowed her to speak to her mother since she says she has been secretly talking to her mother and her father would be furious if he found out. Therefore, I would ask her if she had a mother figure to communicate with freely about girls and the biological behavior change they undergo. Lastly, I would ask about her friends and get to know their kind of relationship. Mostly, Sallys behavior change may be due to lack of a confidant and friend that she would often hang out with to discuss personal matters. Getting to know about the questions stated above would help me know the type of personality disorder Sally is suffering from.

Sallys Problem List

Sallys behavior can be categorized into eccentric, erratic and dramatic behavior. For instance, when her father dropped her at her friends party she slammed the door of the car and shouted that she would try pot that night and hence be showing dramatic behavior. The girl also has an emotional disorder and hence explaining her excessive drug usage. Her mind is affected and could sometimes forget or ignore essential details of personal hygiene. She may also suffer from insomnia due to wild, fearful thoughts. Sally is likely to have a hard time socializing with other people. With her condition, she is not likely to get along with her peers. Besides that, Sally is probably going to feel abandoned and without family or friends. During stressful events, she may have difficulties in finding a solution. As a result, she may have sessions of paranoia and engage in dangerous activities. She may be more dramatic and sexually aggressive. On the other hand, she is likely to think that she is more important that other people. Therefore, she is liable to indulge in small arguments to prove heroic.

Personal Reaction to the Client and the Potential Barriers

Some of the problems am likely to experience with Sally is her inability to co-operate with me. For instance, she may not respond to my questions and hence helping her may become tough. Most people with personal disorders often identify themselves as failures and may not have the zeal to be treated. Consequently, individuals like Sally tend to be more anxious when in an interactive and social setting. As a result, she may withhold some information from me. Additionally, Sally is likely to be arrogant and hence affecting the answers, which she gives.

In my personal reaction with the client, I would first ensure that she is comfortable and she is willing to talk to me. Creating a friendly atmosphere will lessen the anxiety she is likely to experience. My way of approach will be easy and in a language that is well conversant with Sally. I will make symptom assumptions to make her feel comfortable around me. Symptom assumptions are statements made assuming a particular condition of a client. For instance, I may ask, Lately, I know you have not eaten properly due to the situation you are undergoing. Such a question will show Sally that I can identify with her situation. As a result, she will develop some level of trust and hence she is unlikely to withhold some information from me.


I am competent enough to assess the condition of the client. However, I have to improve on some areas to strengthen my diagnostic skills. First, I need to improve on my conflict identification ability. One of the tasks I need to do when assessing Sallys case is to identify if there are any conflicts. Thinking of a patient in a holistic way will help improve the diagnostic skills. It is good to ask a client trivial matters such as their diet, sleep, relationships and different life stressors. Moreover, exercising humility when speaking to a patient helps lessen a patients anxiety and hence improve my diagnostic skills. In addition to that, respecting a client will assist in generating a relationship with the patients. Proper knowledge of the personality disorders will help me diagnose a patient in a rightful manner and hence improve my ability. The above can be done by understanding the way people suffering from certain disorders behave. As a result, this will help in improving my diagnostic skills and woo my clients trusts as well. Therefore, in sallys case analysis, she has been diagnosed to have both schizotypal and substance use disorder by the help of the DSM-5 categories

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