Dependent Personality Disorder


Table of Contents
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents

    Practical Help for Dependent Personality Disorder

    Whether you or a loved one suffer from the complex dependent personality disorder (DPD), D’Amore Mental Health can help.  We offer a range of specialized treatment programs.

    These include including group counseling, equine therapy, family therapy, and esketamine therapy. Together, we will choose the type of therapy that best provides effective help for your DPD.  Our residential psychiatric facilities are safe, clean, and bright. Our goal is to offer our patients the best possible experience and support in the best possible environment.

    Recognizing and Diagnosing Dependent Personality Disorder

    Dependent Personality Disorder is characterized as a personality disorder. Occurring in both men and women equally, it may start to appear in early adulthood. People who experience this mental health condition exhibit an extreme form of attachment and dependence towards others, in particular loved ones.

    It becomes difficult, if not impossible, for them to make any decision in life without the assistance of another person. In some cases, the mental disorder can be extremely debilitating, leading the sufferer to total inaction and retreat from society.

    To diagnose this type of mental disorder, it is necessary to look at some specific signs. For example, the sufferer may display a complete inability to make even the simplest, most mundane decision. They can also present a strong avoidance towards adult responsibilities and, in general, an adult lifestyle. 

    The majority of DPD sufferers also display an extreme fear of abandonment and loneliness. This can be particularly harmful, as it sometimes means that they are willing to be subject to abuse or other forms of mistreatment just to avoid being left alone.

    Causes of Dependent Personality Disorder

    There is no clear consensus among Mental health experts of what exactly causes DPD.  Like most mental health conditions, they theorize that the occurring disorders can be attributed to a combination of genetics, environment, and development. 

    However, there is some commonality among people diagnosed with Dependent Personality Disorder.  DPD is more common in people who have experienced: 

    Abusive Relationships

    Family history of DPD or Anxiety Disorders

    Childhood Trauma

    Certain cultural and religious practices that promote reliance on authority

    Symptoms of Dependent Personality Disorder (DPD)

    Someone with a dependent personality disorder may exhibit some or all of the following symptoms:

    addiction treatment programs

    Avoiding Responsibility

    Difficulty Being Alone

    Fear of Abandonment

    Oversensitivity to Criticism


    Lack of Self-Confidence

    Difficulty Making Decisions

    Professional Knowledge, Caring Attitude

    The expert clinical team of therapists, physicians, and nurses at D’Amore Mental Health have a strong understanding of dependent personality disorder. For this reason, they are in the best possible position to develop a fully personalized dependent personality disorder treatment plan between patient and mental health professional.

    By coupling medical skills and expertise with a caring, welcoming attitude towards its patients, the clinical team has treated many DPD sufferers in the Orange County area.

    Find out more about our range of specialized dependent behavior treatment programs. One or a combination of these can be used successfully to treat DPD:

    Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

    Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)

    Motivational Interviewing

    Strategic Therapy

    Gestalt Therapy

    Humanistic Therapy

    Positive Psychology

    Our “Build Me Up” Positive Reinforcement Program

    Experiential Therapy

    Strategic Family Therapy

    Play Therapy

    Integrative Functional Medicine

    Reality Therapy


    How Does the Process Work?

    Would you like to begin a specialized treatment for DPD? Or perhaps you want to send us an inquiry about a loved one? Either way, you will need to follow our quick and easy process.

    Our goal is to ease the patient into the therapeutic path that has been agreed upon.

    Step 1: Contact Us By Filling out Our Online Form

    The first step to start treatment is getting in touch with us. You can do so by completing and submitting our online form. This is required in order to verify your insurance coverage.

    Step 2: Wait for Your Free Insurance Verification

    Once we have received your query, a member of our team will get in contact with you to let you know about the outcome of your insurance coverage verification. Please note that we do not accept Medicaid or MediCal.

    Step 3: Arrange a Meeting With Our Clinical Team

    If you are ready to move ahead with your treatment, we will schedule an informal and confidential meeting with our clinical team. During this meeting, we will discuss your condition together and develop a treatment plan that is wholly customized to your needs.

    Step 4: Plan for Your Stay at Our Facilities

    You will be welcome to stay as an inpatient at our beautiful facilities in Orange County. The type and duration of your stay will have been previously agreed upon with you.

    Depression FAQs

    As a type of anxious personality disorder, dependent personality disorder (DPD) is characterized by dependency on others. It is common for people with DPD to feel helpless, submissive, or incapable of taking care of themselves. They may have difficulty making simple decisions.

    The benefits of psychotherapy include improved self-esteem and healthier relationships for someone with dependent personality disorder. This condition is often treated with behavioral therapy or group therapy, which includes assertiveness training.

    The prevalence of DPD has been found to be higher in people who have experienced certain life experiences, including: Abusive relationship: People who have had an abusive relationship are more likely to develop DPD. DPD can develop in children who have been abused (including verbal abuse) or neglected as a child.

    Try not to take on their responsibilities or encourage their dependence on you and your close relationship. Pay attention to your own behavior. Let your loved one know you are concerned. Suggest that they talk to a doctor or therapist to be evaluated and offer to come along to the first session if they want you to.

    Those living with dependent personality disorder appear unable to move forward into the unknown due to the disorder. The development of productive support strategies can help an individual living with dependent personality disorder.

    It is estimated that less than 1% of the general US population suffers from dependent personality disorder. Women are more likely to be diagnosed with it, although some studies found that men and women had similar prevalence rates.

    Related Articles

    D'Amore is in network with HealthNet Insurance

    Does HealthNet Cover Mental Health Treatment?

    It’s very common for people that struggle with mental health disorders to delay seeking help because they’re worried about the cost of treatment. This is …

    Native American Mental Health Awareness

    Mental Health Issues in the Native American Community

    The Native American community encompasses groups of people who lived in the U.S. before colonization by European settlers. Today, 4.2 million Americans (roughly 1.3% of …

    5 Principles of Trauma-Informed Care

    The 5 Principles of Trauma-Informed Care

    Trauma is an emotional response to a horrific event, such as an assault, an accident, or a natural disaster. It is common for an individual …

    Clinically Reviewed By:

    Joseph Cavins, LMFT

    Joseph Cavins, LMFT

    Joseph attended the Pepperdine Graduate School of Education and Psychology where he completed a Master of Science in Clinical Psychology. Joseph interned at Aspen community services, then remained on the team for 10 years, during which time he became a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and gained certification from the Equine Assisted Psychotherapy Association as a Mental Health Provider in Equine Assisted Psychotherapy.