Earlier this year, the American Psychiatric Association forming a DSM revision committee, finally published the DSM-5 Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. The revision has been many years in the making since the last revisions to the DSM-IV, the DSM-IV-TR. For those of you who are unfamiliar, the DSM is like the “Holy Grail” of mental illness diagnosis.
One of the easiest changes to recognize is that instead of being titled “DSM-V” as the others have been, this volume has been titled “DSM-5” so as to make it easier for simple additions or revisions, such as DSM-5.1.
Unfortunately, the DSM-5 has not helped us who are victims of other people’s personality disorders such as the Narcissist, or the Passive Aggressive. When the “Powers That Be” were originally deciding what to include from the old DSM-III and DSM-IV, they came extremely close to removing Narcissistic Personality Disorder just as they basically have the Passive Aggressive. Instead they have moved these disorders to a section of their own in which it’s a little cloudy. Under the guise of “needing further investigation or explanation” these are not concrete diagnoses.
While we, as spouses or Significant Others are fighting so hard to get the help from someone who is educated and understands what we are going through, it seems as though the world of psychiatry/psychology are becoming more and more ambiguous.
I recently added to the “Recommended Reading List” Tina Swithin’s book regarding her custody battle against her Narcissistic husband. She is fighting for better education of the court system and the people that hold children’s lives in their hands. Unless these people fully understand what they are up against, they will continue to make poor decisions when it comes to custody in divorce cases.
Billy Eddy, author of the book “Splitting” and President of the High Conflict Institute is working diligently to get more people educated in personality disorders. He believes education should start in law school and be mandatory continuing education.
If you are hunting for a therapist as part of your support system, remember that they are going to be working for you. Ask them if they are familiar with what ever personality disorder you’re having to deal with such as passive aggressive or narcissistic. There is hardly anything more frustrating than going to a therapist for help, only to find out he/she is charmed by your spouse just as you were originally, and they too have no idea what has happened.