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Pathological Love: Impulsivity, Personality, and Romantic Relationship

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Biblioteca Digital da Produção Intelectual da Universidade de São Paulo (BDPI/USP)
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Abstract

Introduction: Pathological love (PL)-behavior characterized by providing repetitive and uncontrolled care and attention to the partner in a romantic relationship-is a rarely studied condition, despite not being rare and causing suffering. This study aims at investigating impulsivity, personality, and characteristics related to the romantic relationship in this population. Methods: Eighty-nine individuals (50 with PL; 39 individuals with no psychiatric disorder) were compared regarding impulsivity, personality, type of attachment, satisfaction with romantic relationship, and love style. Results: Individuals with PL have higher levels of impulsivity (P<.001; Barratt Impulsiveness Scale), higher self-transcendence, that is, are more unconventional and hold sense of communjon with a widerreality (P<.001; Temperament and Character Inventory) and keep dissatisfactory romantic relationships (P<.001; Adapted Relationship Assessment Scale). Conclusion: Individuals with PL present personality traits and relationship aspects that must be taken into account in devising assessment and therapeutic strategies for this population. CNS Spectr. 2009;14(5):268-274

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