Most mental disorders lie on a continuum with “normal” behavior at one end. For example, nearly everyone has a fear of something, but it does not rise to the level of a phobia. A behavior may seem abnormal in one context but completely normal in another context. These two aspects show why it can be challenging to properly identify mental disorders.
Using your textbook and the Argosy University online library resources, research the principles and methods of identifying mental disorders. Note particularly the diversity of views and the challenges of identification. Based on your research, write a reflective essay. Use the following question to direct your thoughts and organize your essay:
- Why is determining abnormal behavior or a mental disorder so difficult?
To develop your essay, keep in mind issues such as the role of social norms in defining the abnormal, the multiplicity of indicators of what is abnormal, the stigma suffered by those identified as abnormal, and finally the need for objectivity in dealing with the concept.