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Question
Posted by: WORRY WORT | 2008/06/05

Split Personality

My son-in-law has just been diagnosed as having a "split personality". I have searched the web for info, but everything reverts back to schizophrenia, which I believe is not the same thing. Where does "split personality" come from? Is it a genetic disorder or is it caused by trauma or chemical imbalance?

He cannot cope with any disappointments in life (seems to get a type of epileptic attack, passes out and is back to normal after a few days) and now does things and cannot remember afterwards what he has done.

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Our expert says:
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If any clinician actually made the stupid diagnosis of "split personality" they should be stopped from practising and sent back to medical school, as no such diagnosis exists ( or has ever existed ) and it is an obsolete popular term used many many years ago for various conditions, including schizophrenia and others. It was never accurate or useful, and any professional who uses it is sadly displaying their ignorance. Their is no such thing. Period.
Your SIL needs to see a competent mental health professional who has actually read a textbook in the last 50 years, can apply proper modern criteria, and make a proper diagnosis. I wonder what sort of treatment they suggested for this non-existent condition ?
From your description you seem to be describing someone who has a personality problem, has difficulty in coping with challenges in life, and who responds when he feels upset, by using dissociative mechanisms or passing out and refusing to recall whatever happened. He would benefit from seeing a competent modern shrink for a proper diagnosis and treatment, which should be aimed at helping him fel more self-confident and able to cope.

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