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Psych Papers

Below are a list of psych articles and papers that Silventar (aka Andrew Robertson) has written and is writing through the course of his schooling. Silventar is currently attending school to attain a degree in Psychology, and plans to become a therapist with a specific focus on assisting people with alternative lifestyles.

These articles are in chronological order, with the newest articles being last.

Borderline Personality Disorder
(Full Text PDF)

Abstract: Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) affects one to two percent of Americans today, although BPD is more common in women than in men (Kjellander, Bongar, & King, 1998). BPD has long been a troubling disorder for both patients and therapists; although very similar to Bipolar Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder has a few differences and misdiagnoses can be disastrous in many cases. The cost of misdiagnosing a patient as Bipolar, when in fact they truly are Borderline, can lead to more sever problems, and can even prove fatal in the end.

The Longterm Effects of Childhood Trauma and Abuse
(Full Text PDF)

Abstract: The longterm effects of major childhood trauma and abuse on an individuals psyche, social skills, and physical health can be debilitating in adulthood. Individuals with a history of trauma, particularly abuse or neglect, have a higher likelihood of developing one or more depressive disorders such as Borderline Personality Disorder, Paranoid Personality Disorder, Schizoid Personality Disorder, Antisocial (formerly, Sociopathic) Personality Disorder, and Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder just to name a few.

Therapy and BDSM Lifestyles
(Full Text PDF)

There is a long, dark history of the psychiatric community's bias against the BDSM community and their practices. Starting with the DSM-II, Sexual Sadism and Sexual Masochism were classified as paraphilias, most likely due to the historical writings of authors such as Freud and Krafft-Ebing. Oddly enough, for a practice that is so based in research and the scientific method, there is no research to date that proves these activities are harmful to the participant's mental state, or that they are indicative of pathology. Therapist's bias can be very harmful to the mental health of their patients; at best a therapist's negative bias can make clients distrust the therapist and the psychiatric community. In some cases, it can damage their self esteem, and can cause other issues as well. There has been a surge of positive and supportive research in the last several years that has demystified and even supported BDSM as a non-pathological sexuality by psychologists, psychiatrists and medical doctors who identify as kink-friendly or kink-aware. This article aims to add to that positive information to assist in education to prevent continuing this harmful trend of negative therapist bias towards people who engage in BDSM activities.

Critical Issue Analasys Essay: Homosexuality
(Full Text PDF)

There is has been much debate amongst the psychological community and religious communities in the past on whether or not homosexuality is a normal sexual variant, or a pathological deviance. This debate continues to be an issue; although it appears to be mostly a religiously biased issue most recently, there is still some dispute in the psychological community. This essay attempts to analyze the opposing viewpoints of two essays: Homosexuality Is Normal Sexual Behavior by C. Cornett, and Homosexuality Is Not Normal Sexual Behavior. S. Rogers, & A. Medinger.

Why Cutters Cut: An Examination of a Growing Trend
(Full Text PDF)

Self-Injury (SI) is a growing trend in the world today. More and more people are performing minor to major self-injury, and the rate of occurrence appears to be growing. Unfortunately, due to the secretive nature of self-injury, the problem is likely to be more widespread than studies predict. Individuals bash their heads, beat themselves, burn themselves, and most commonly, cut themselves. Cutting is by far the largest percentage of self-harm, followed by burning. Cutting is often done with razor blades, shaving razors, knives, broken glass, nails, and even tabs from soda cans. While cutting is often seen with other mental illnesses such as Chronic Depression Disorder, Anxiety Disorder, and Borderline Personality Disorder, it is not indicative of other more serious mental issues. Rather, it is most often a solitary issue not relating to any other mental disorders. Cutting is a form of coping with stress or emotional pain, and while extremely effective in doing so, the effects are short lived and the act itself can quickly become an addiction. Various treatment methods exist, but their effectiveness varies as each cutter is vastly different.

The impact of electronic media advertising on consumerism and cultural values
(Full Text PDF)

Mass media has further introduced advertising into our daily lives, and electronic mass media has virtually inundated the populous with a constant barrage of advertising. As advertising techniques continue to grow more sophisticated with each passing year, advertising has created consumerism. Sophisticated psychologically based advertising has turned luxuries into needs and created needs where there never was one before (Shah, 2008). Disturbing trends of deculturalization of local cultures, a rise in pollution due to consumerism, and the rise in depression due to subjection to advertising are discussed.

Motivation and the brain in refraining from drug use
(Full Text PDF)

Neuroscience and psychology have been working hand in hand for some time now to determine why and how behaviors occur in human personality, and what motivates individuals to do what they do. Perhaps one of the most studied phenomena that affects motivation, the thought processes, and social interactivity, is the study of drug addiction.

Critical Observation of Habitual Lying in Addicted Individuals
(Full Text PDF)

For the purpose of anonymity, the subject of this case study shall be called Johnny. Johnny is a methamphetamine addict born with cystic fibrosis, a terminal illness. Johnny attributes his addiction to his illness and to a stressful childhood in an adoptive family. Complicating his life further, Johnny is a habitual lier, a common symptom of substance abuse. Through the course of this case study, the behavior of lying shall be described along with some further information on the subject, Johnny. Next, the conditions that precede the lying behavior along with the consequences shall be examined, and the psychological explanations shall be used to interpret and explain Johnny's behavior. Last, ethical dilemmas that could arise from the observations within this paper shall be discussed.

Life Span Development and Personality of Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha
(Full Text PDF)

Abstract: Buddha means Enlightened One, or the Awakened One. In 563 B.C., Siddhartha Gautama was born to this world and would through the course of his life come to be known as The Buddha after attaining spiritual enlightenment. This paper serves to examine the life span development and personality of Siddhartha Gautama. Siddhartha's family issues and social support systems will be examined for their influence on Siddhartha's developmental growth and adjustment, and the influences of heredity and environment on his psychological development will be discussed. In addition, Cognitive-Social theory and Existential theory will be used to explain Siddhartha's unique patterns and traits, including which best explains his behaviors and achievements.

The Mind-Body Problem
(Full Text PDF)

The interaction of mind and consciousness with the body, and whether they are separate or not has been the subject of much discussion and debate between philosophers since antiquity. This paper shall look at how dualists, materialists and idealists view the realm of mind and consciousness and how the realm of mind and consciousness relate to the physical body. Additionally, the concept of an independent mind that transcends physical functions of the body shall be discussed along with the author's views on this concept.

BDSM and Anxiety: BDSM Is Not a Disorder Until Social Pressures Cause One
(Full Text PDF)

Abstract: Although it is illegal in the United States, BDSM participants are often discriminated against in employment. However, the social stigma of BDSM does not stop there, but rather sublimates to family estrangement, social stigmatization, and even legal issues regarding child custody. Such social pressure can cause and individual with a concealable stigma, like BDSM involvement, to develop heightened, even clinical levels, of anxiety.


©2009 Andrew Robertson
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