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Crisis Prone Personality

Lido Wellness Center Blog

Crisis Prone Personality

March 14, 2023

Do you get text messages that seem like the world is going to end? Is it a common occurrence? Do most of these texts come from the same person? Maybe this person feels like the sky is always about to fall. Or it’s falling right now! You might know someone with a crisis-prone personality. Running from one emergency to another to the degree that even simple tasks seem filled with impending doom. Things often get out of control, and they constantly let everyone know how bad it is.

In mental health terminologies, a crisis refers to a traumatic event and a person’s reaction to a situation. It also means an experience or perception of an event as an intolerable difficulty that surpasses the individual’s present resources and coping mechanisms.

A crisis-prone individual wakes in the morning and has to deal with life’s daily activities filled with potential crises and distress. For these people, being in an emergency is their way of life. The typical characteristics include significant discomfort or impairment in occupational, social, or other crucial areas of functioning. Just about anything can trigger it.

Causes of Crisis Prone Personality

Your personality—how you feel, think and behave—primarily forms during childhood. Your experiences, environment, and temperament all work to shape your character.

Some contributing factors to crisis prone personalities that might have come from environmental factors in their childhood include:

  • Childhood trauma
  • Chaos
  • Instability
  • Abuse
  • Genetic predisposition

Personality Disorders That May Contribute to Crisis Personalities

But there is more. While it’s important to note that not everyone with a personality disorder is necessarily “crisis-prone,” certain personality disorders may contribute to an increased likelihood of experiencing or perceiving crises in life.

Some of these include:

  1. Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) – Individuals with BPD often have unstable emotions, intense mood swings, and a fear of abandonment. They may engage in impulsive or self-destructive behaviors, which can contribute to the perception of a crisis or create crises in their lives.
  2. Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) – Those with NPD have an inflated sense of self-importance, a constant need for admiration, and a lack of empathy for others. They may have difficulty handling criticism or perceived slights, leading to interpersonal conflicts and crises.
  3. Antisocial Personality Disorder (ASPD) – People with ASPD exhibit a pattern of disregard for the rights of others, impulsivity, and irresponsibility. Their behaviors may lead to frequent legal, financial, or interpersonal problems, increasing the likelihood of crises.
  4. Histrionic Personality Disorder (HPD) – As mentioned earlier, individuals with HPD seek attention and validation from others. Their dramatic, attention-seeking behaviors may contribute to the perception of crises or result in the creation of crises in their lives.
  5. Dependent Personality Disorder (DPD) – Those with DPD have an excessive need to be taken care of, leading to submissive and clinging behaviors. They may struggle with decision-making, and their reliance on others can create tension or crises in relationships.

Living with Someone with Crisis Prone Personality 

At Home and Work:

When managing crisis-prone colleagues in the workplace or at home, it’s important to really, honestly look at the situation objectively. Taking everything at face value will allow extra stress and drama. Determine whether the crisis is genuine or fabricated to place the individual in the spotlight.

If the crisis is genuine, appropriate action should be taken. However, if the facts don’t line up or things feel manipulated to maintain an emergency mindset, staying calm will help others recognize that the issue does not warrant immediate attention and discourage the drama.

In a Relationship:

Being crisis-prone in relationships probably includes frequent drama. Individuals with such tendencies may start fights for diversion, excitement, or to play the rescuer. They might also be drawn to makeup sex, finding emotional extremes enticing and sex more appealing after arguments.

To handle a crisis-prone partner, be prepared for unexpected turbulence in an otherwise peaceful atmosphere. When a conflict begins to emerge, avoid getting entangled in it. Instead, try to understand your partner’s feelings and determine whether the issue stems from genuine concerns or a desire for stimulation caused by boredom.

Addressing these underlying needs may prevent the argument from escalating. If you’re the one inclined towards crisis, strive for self-awareness and examine the underlying needs that conflicts might satisfy.

Seeking Professional Support

If you or someone you know struggles with crisis-prone behavior, seeking professional help can move you towards a healthier and more stable life. A mental health program can provide valuable guidance and support in identifying the underlying causes of the behavior and developing effective coping strategies.

By engaging in therapy and working towards self-awareness, individuals with crisis-prone tendencies can learn to manage their emotions, improve their relationships, and cultivate a more balanced approach to life’s challenges. Do you want to talk more about this behavior and how a mental health IOP such as Lido Wellness can help? Call us today: 949-503-9655.


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