5 Dating Tips For When Dating Someone With A Histrionic Personality Disorder
For a person living with a mental health disorder or condition, it can be hard to navigate through day-to-day challenges, especially when it comes to dating. However, if you’re dating someone with a mental health disorder, then dating can be a minefield if you’re not careful. In this instance, we’re talking about dating someone with histrionic personality disorder (HPD).
If your partner has a histrionic personality disorder, then they are likely to have a high emotional level and can feel extremely or excessively depending on the situation. They are also more likely to have attention-seeking behaviors or an overwhelming desire to be noticed by the people in their life.
Being in a relationship with a person with HPD isn’t impossible once you know about the disorder and understand how their behaviors might affect the relationship. Below, I’ve listed some of the common relationship challenges you may face when dating someone with histrionic personality disorder and some dating tips to help you out.
Check them out!
Histrionic Personality Disorder: An Overview
Histrionic personality disorder or HPD is a personality disorder from Cluster B (as mentioned in the DSM-5) and shares some features with narcissistic personality disorder and borderline personality disorder.
Under this personality disorder, a person may struggle with regulating their emotions along with unpredictable behaviors. People with HPD also have persistent attention-seeking behavior that might greatly affect their relationships with others.
When dating someone with histrionic personality disorder, you can notice the behavior your partner exhibits especially the way they attract your attention. Here are some common examples of behaviors that a person with a histrionic personality disorder might engage in to attract attention;
- Dressing up too extravagantly than required
- Being too provocative with other people even if they aren’t interested
- Engaging in overly dramatic conversations, mostly to “fish” for compliments
- Exaggerating their stories
- Showing emotions that might be excessive for the situation
Relationship Challenges In Histrionic Personality Disorder
Apart from attention-seeking behaviors, a person with a histrionic personality disorder may struggle with great emotional distress and pain. Some behaviors that come from this disorder might also not be easy to manage.
If the person you’re dating has HPD and constantly craves attention from others, then it might make you wary of your relationship and feelings. It’s OK to feel this way, but you need to understand that histrionic behaviors are often a “front” and are not always serious.
If you’re dating someone with histrionic personality disorder, then you might also see some self-sabotaging behaviors like arguing or flirting with others. These actions are often done to attract your attention and seek your approval.
Here are some common relationship challenges that you might face when dating someone with histrionic personality disorder;
- Flirting: Or provocative behaviors (sexually driven) can be a great challenge when you’re dating someone with HPD. It does not mean that your partner is unfaithful or will be, but it can still push your boundaries, creating a rift between you and your partner.
- Arguing: Your partner with HPD will likely have unpredictable emotions frequently. Maybe some of their emotional reactions may look overly dramatic, but it’s not their fault. However, such reactions might cause arguments between you, and you might think that ignoring your partner will help, but ignoring them could increase the arguments instead.
- Lies: Your partner with HPD might also lie or exaggerate stories to gain your attention. Their lies and embellishments might make you lose trust in them and question their honesty in the relationship. Keep in mind that these behaviors are driven by the need to seek attention and nothing more.
- Manipulation: Manipulative behaviors are also common in a relationship where one partner has histrionic personality traits. More often than not, the manipulation tactics are a way to regain control and attention that they feel they’re losing. This kind of behavior may leave you feeling confused, hurt, and frustrated with them.
Tips When Dating Someone With Histrionic Personality Disorder
To deal with someone with histrionic personality disorder, you need to first understand what is this disorder. A therapist or any professional healthcare provider can help you with understanding the symptoms and signs. However, if you care about your partner enough to make the relationship work, then here are some steps you can take to successfully date someone with HPD.
Remember, empathy, trust, and understanding can go a long way in helping each other grow and flourish – personally and socially.
Here are some tips for you to keep in mind when dating someone with histrionic personality disorder;
1.Be Patient And Calm
A person with HPD is susceptible to unpredictable emotions and if your partner often responds with extreme emotions such as yelling, then it’s common to react accordingly. However, here, you need to remain patient and calm. By doing this, you make them understand that they will not be getting the attention they crave by acting this way.
Ignoring them is also not good. Let them know you’re there for them, and that you will not engage in their reaction, but will discuss it another time.
2.Keep Open Communication
Communication is key in any relationship and even more so when you’re loving or living with someone with HPD. If your partner acts out and behaves inappropriately, then you can let them know that you disapprove of their behavior by expressing how their actions make you feel. Don’t criticize them but make them understand how it affects you.
3.Don’t Ignore Your Partner
A person with histrionic personality disorder craves attention and ignoring them could not go in your favor. If your partner feels ignored, then you can take the lead and interact with them. You don’t have to give in to their need for attention, though. Just take an approach where they don’t feel ignored but also prevent them from engaging in any attention-seeking actions that might hurt your relationship.
4.Take “Me Time”
Self-care, when dating someone with a histrionic personality disorder or any other mental health disorder, is important. If you find yourself emotionally drained, then it’s a good idea to take a step back and indulge in some self-care. If you become overwhelmed, then try to take some “me time”. You can spend time with your friends, take a walk, or maybe read a book. Anything that relaxes you.
Here, you need to also mention to your partner that you’re taking some “me time”. Let them know that you are not ignoring them but taking some time to unwind and refresh.
5.Know How To Set Boundaries
Boundaries in all relationships are important, so when you’re dating someone with histrionic personality disorder, learn how to set healthy boundaries. You can start by letting your partner know that you’re not OK with their particular behavior. A person with HPD might not have a healthy self-awareness and might not even realize their self-sabotaging behaviors. So help them learn.
When you set boundaries, you also tell your partner what they can expect from you in times of conflict.
When dating someone with histrionic personality disorder, it’s helpful to remember that HPD can be diagnosed and treated. If your partner’s HPD symptoms are making their life more challenging, then you can encourage them to seek professional help and treatment. Remind them that they are not alone and that they don’t have to go through the treatment on their own.
With therapy and other self-help strategies, you and your partner can manage a successful dating phase and move on to the next phase.
I hope the above dating tips when dating someone with histrionic personality disorder might come in handy. For more, you can write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or DM us on social media. You can also share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.