Developmental issues

Parental deprivation and deviance during the critical period (rapprochement subphase of separation-individuation) seem to be a critical factor. Robins (13> showed that having a sociopathic or alcoholic father was a powerful predictor of antisocial personality disorder in adult life. However, Glueck and Glueck (3°) stressed the importance of inconsistent maternal care. Future antisocial individuals were neglected and 'psychologically undernourished' children. Violent acts witnessed during childhood and/or severe physical abuse caused splitting of their inner world and development of borderline personality organization. Splitting remains the main defence, identity diffusion prevails, and object constancy is never achieved. Severe superego pathology is also present.

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