A personality classification system

As we suss out the personality types vulnerable to eating disorders, scientists have identified a personality classification system for eating disorders which may help (and will most certainly annoy those who eschew these depersonalizing labels. But at one time I'm sure some people objected to identifying blood types, though it turned out to be helpful and indeed completely lacking in moral judgements).
  • high-functioning
  • behaviorally dysregulated
  • emotionally dysregulated
  • avoidant-insecure
  • obsessional-sensitive types

Most interestingly, these classifications may provide information about outcomes as well.


  1. I haven't read the whole article, just the abstract, still, from the information I did read I have a couple of thoughts on this:

    - I find the use of "prototypes" problematic. When it comes to psychological differences sorting people into categories usually does not reflect reality very well, it is often more useful to use continuous scales rather than categories.

    - Personality differences are usually seen as something that is at least partially a result of early social experiences, particularly early social experiences with parents. While there is some support for this view, parents' influence (as compared to other influences) is often overstated. As a result maladaptive personality factors - just as eating disorders - are often blamed on the parents.

    - While it would be nice if categories like this would be used in non-judgmental ways this is often not the case. Professionals unfortunately fall pray to negative stereotypes just as often as the rest of us.

    - I really would like to see more of a focus on how non-pathologic personality differences influence responses to certain therapy forms. People differ in many ways, and often one type of personlity is not overall more functional than another, but each personality type is functional under different circumstances. Knowing more about those circumstances could help to shape treatments that built on people's individual strenghts.

  2. that sounds like me to a t!

  3. Fascinating stuff and I can see that it might be very useful. I did chuckle a bit at this though "High-functioning prototype scores were consistently associated with positive outcomes." - Isn't that a bit like saying that clever kids tend to do best in tests?

  4. It's a real shame that we have to pay $31.50 in order to read the whole document. I was engrossed.

    Those of you in the US have a much more switched on idea of what is happening to our youth, and indeed, to our 'middle-aged' women, where I now currently class myself.

    It breaks my heart that we have so little here. My husband is now in receipt of CBT counselling after being on the NHS waiting list for six weeks. That is not appropriate for me, so I have to wait six months or go private. And as you may be aware, I go private,

    I am now at my lowest weight ever. I am in agony with my muscles and bones. I take pills to stop this, but they are useless.

    I utterly abhor myself like this. I brought the winter clothes down from the loft-they were all massive and fell off me as I danced in them.

    Too many paradoxes and way too much pain. I vowed I would be 'better' by Christmas. I either lied, or was disillusioned.

  5. Annie, I don't know that we are doing so great on either sides - we have choices if you are wealthy or live close to a center funded for a research study. And of course, much depends on the age of the patient.

    Most patients of all ages are at the mercy of their illness, of their health "system," and luck. It is wrong.

    Please, please do not blame yourself. It is not a matter of will or wanting - you need others to TAKE OVER for you. You WILL get control back and be independent LATER, when you are well.

    Others want to help you. Please, please let them?


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