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Schizoid Personality Disorder

Recovery From Schizophrenia

How one man overcame poverty, orphanhood, and schizophrenia to become an author, an LCSW, a leader in the mental health advocacy movement, and an inspiration for many others.

Related content:
Schizophrenia and Post-Psychotic Adjustment
Autism and Schizophrenia

Schizoid Personality Disorder

A large and comprehensive study recently performed in Korea has produced a surprising and disturbing result. The rate of autism is reported to be an astounding 1 in 38...

This book is recommended for therapy trainees who are interested in relational psychodynamic approaches and concerned with putting these seemingly abstract concepts into “real world” practice.

Autism is demanding increased attention by professional and lay audiences; prevalence seems to be increasing. There are differing opinions about whether the increase is due to greater recognition and reporting, diagnostic expansion and substitution, or increasing acceptability.

In 1944, Hans Asperger published a description of 4 boys who had major social problems despite adequate cognitive and verbal skills. His original term for the condition was Autistischen Psychopathen im Kindesalter, usually translated as autistic psychopathy or autistic personality disorder in childhood. His use of the term “autistic” occurred a year after Leo Kanner’s classic description of the syndrome of early infantile autism but, because of the war, Asperger was likely unaware of Kanner’s paper.

Following trends in medicine, psychiatry is faced with limited resources and third-party administration of resource allocation. This has affected psychiatric practice in many ways and altered the doc-tor-patient relationship. Trends toward resource-sensitive, third-party–related psychiatric practice may be accelerated by the current social concerns regarding the economy. Thus, an awareness of social context and the growing recognition that autonomy-enhancing alternatives to paternalistic care are fundamental to improve both the effectiveness and accessibility of care in limited-resource environments are each becoming vital for an informed clinical and risk-management practice perspective.1

He was young, schizoid, and had experienced brief periods of psychotic-like disorganization. We worked together in psychotherapy for many years. None of the then available psychotropic agents were helpful. He believed, however, that marijuana was helpful, and, if he smoked a joint in the hours preceding a session, his way of relating to me was different. He was less "there," more deeply into himself. His descriptions of the marijuana experience never varied. "I am," he would say, "at peace. I feel connected to everything. I am part of the universe, part of nature, part of God." He was, I thought, a person with significant ego boundary problems who, for the most part, maintained his basic sense of self by distancing himself from both the world and inner turmoil. Marijuana appeared to lead to the internal experience of greater connectedness and peace, although I felt he was less available to me after using it.

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