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So, I've recently come to believe that Avoidant Personality

zen-man's picture

So, I've recently come to believe that Avoidant Personality Disorder is the best diagnosis for me. I based this off a well regard psychologists test on the web ( I agree with it because the symptoms fit me so well, both externally and internally.

Hypersensitivity to rejection and criticism
Self-imposed social isolation
Extreme shyness or anxiety in social situations, though the person feels a strong desire for close relationships
Feelings of inadequacy
Drastically reduced or absent self-esteem
Mistrust of others or oneself; exhibits heightened self-doubt
Emotional distancing related to intimacy
Highly self-conscious
Self-critical about their problems relating to others
Problems in occupational functioning
Lonely self-perception, although others may find the relationship with them meaningful
Feeling inferior to others
Uses fantasy as a form of escapism to interrupt painful thoughts

I've felt this way all my life (I'm 53 now.) I've been in therapy for depression and anxiety before. Therapists never delved into my past or even brought up this disorder.

So, my fiancé and I have been having a hard time of it the last few months. When he gets angry and goes on a rant about things, he's always bringing up every major thing I've done wrong in the 3 years I've known him. One of his big things is I never communicate with him.

So, I took the online test, got the diagnosis of AvPD. Researched it some, and when I found it fit, I forwarded the link to my fiancé. No response. He was pissed all weekend about other things, and I didn't want to confront him about it at the time.

So, the other day he goes on a typical rant, this one started because he noticed a few new pee stains from our rescue dog. He calls me up at work and goes on a 1/2 hour rant. Part of that rant was, I'm tired of hearing about all the bullshit you deal with at work, I never brought home the B.S. when I was working.
I just felt smaller and smaller as he was doing this. It just drains me completely when he does this. So, when I get home, he's not apologetic, but he's taking the dog out when I get home, he wants to cook me dinner. I'm quieter than my usual quietness and drained. So, I just laid down on the couch to watch tv. I fell in and out of sleep. Ate the food he cooked, although not all of it. He even made muffins for dessert, didn't eat all he laid out then either. I took the dog out for his evening walk and went to bed.

So, next day, I had printed out the wiki page for AvPD so that we could discuss it. Wednesdays I work from home, so I put it out on the coffee table before he gets up. Well, he gets up and he's already pissed off. I'm not sure if it's me, or other things, so (per my personality) I avoid talking to him. I really don't remember what set him off, but he eventually starts ranting in general, and then towards me. He went to the bedroom for a while, and that's when I noticed he turned the pages over on the coffee table.

So, it got to "you don't communicate" and I asked him, did you even read the info on AvPD?

"I've been in therapy since I was 3, I know all about that, I don't need to read about it. You have to man up and want to get better."

That just really killed me, because if he knows what AvPD is, then he should know criticism can be a trigger. So, if he knows what triggers me to go back in my shell, then should he not bring up the past in a hurtful way. And I told him just recently that it makes me feel like crap when he brings up the past like that. His reaction to that was, good because you made me feel crappy then.

And it's not like I don't have things I want to say back to him, but often I get "I don't want to hear excuses." So, you want me to communicate, but don't want to hear "excuses" (which is usually just me trying to explain the facts,) he doesn't want to hear my B.S. from work (even though he would call me up while he was at work to compain about work,) and often doesn't like the tone or phrasing of what I say.

It's hard enough for me to talk about my feelings and emotions but when he does this it feels just like when I was a child. My parents fought a lot when I was growing up, and my sister and mother fought constantly. I avoided (there's that word again) getting into arguments because I was always quiet. These recollections have just been reinforced lately as I try to search for a way out of my shell.

I don't know what to do about this right now. Mostly wanted to vent somewhere. But any advice would be appreciated (other than "man up, stop being a p, and deal with your crap.") Thanks...

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norseduncan's picture
Apr 15, 2018

I hope the venting helped. AvPD is a very complex diagnosis, and no online test no matter how well it seems to fit can tell you if you have it. can you try having discussions based on fixing the issues between you and leave any diagnosis out of it until and unless it becomes official?


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