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abnormal psych ch 1 A.doc

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PSYC 2240
Rebecca Jubis

Chapter 1 Definitional and Historical Considerations andCanadas Mental Health SystemBretts ChildhoodHis recent inability to maintain an erection when making love to his wife was the immediate reason for his seeking therapyBrett didnt have a happy childhood His mother died suddenly when he was only 6 and for the next 10 yrs he lived either with his father or with a maternal aunt His father drank heavily and the mans moods were extremely variable he had even been hospitalized with a diagnosis of manic depressive psychosisBrett often became depressed for no apparent reason and sometimes this was followed by periods of manicHe felt self conscious with ppl who he felt had authority over him and he was esp sensitive about his clothes which were old compared to his peersHe entered the police academy and he had hopes that his badge and uniform would give him the instant respect that he seemed incapable of earning on his ownHe wondered if he was actually avoiding the responsibility of having a childHe attacked her both verbally and physically about her alleged infidelity and then got help Psychopathology the field concerned with the nature and development of abnormal beh thoughts and feelingsChallenge in studying abnormal psych is the need to remain objectiveAbnormal psysh is most popular but it has one distinct disadvantage which is that all of us bring to your study preconceived notions of what the subject matter is WHAT IS ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGYChallenge is how to define it Abnormal beh patterns of emotion thought and action deemed pathological for one or more of the following reasons infrequent occurrence violation of norms personal distress disability or dysfunction and unexpectednessStatistical infrequencyOne aspect of abnormal beh is that its infrequentNormal curve or bell shaped curve places majority of ppl in the middle as far as any particular characteristic is concerned very few ppl fall at either extreme An assertion that a person is normal implies that he or she does not deviate much from the average in a particular trait or beh patternsStatistical infrequency is used explicitly in diagnosing mental retardationWhen an indiv IQ is below 70 his or her intellectual functioning is considered sufficiently below subnormal to be designated as mental retardationViolation of normsConsider whether the beh violates norms or threatens or makes anxious those observing it Violation of norms is too broad and too narrowCultural diversity can affect how ppl view social norms What is the norm in one culture may be abnormal in anotherPersonal distressPersonal sufferingthat is beh is abnormal if it creates distress and torment in the person experiencing it But some disorders dont involve distressDisability or dysfunctionDisability impairment in some important area of life cuz of the abnormality can also be a part of abnormal beh It applies to some but not all disorders Ex transvestism Cross dressing for sexual pleasure is diagnosed as a mental disorder if it distresses the person but isnt necessarily a disability1
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