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Patrick Bateman Psychological Analysis

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Julien Yacek

on 15 May 2014

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Transcript of Patrick Bateman Psychological Analysis

Patrick Bateman
Patrick Bateman is the protagonist in the film "
American Psycho
", and he suffers from three personality disorders, Antisocial Personality Disorder, Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and Borderline Personality Disorder. These disorders are never mentioned in the movie, so DSM-IV classification was used to help diagnose his three personality disorders.
Antisocial Personality Disorder (Cont)
9. Disorderly behavior before the age of 15
10. Is at least 18
Out of these ten behavior patterns Patrick Bateman scores with a nine out of ten (or eight out of ten if murders are fantasies). With symptom Nine (Disorderly behavior before the age of 15) being excluded because we never see Patrick in his childhood. We also see Patrick exhibit additional symptoms of this personality disorder as well.
Antisocial Personality Disorder (Cont)
The symptoms are;
1. Comes off as charming (shown many times throughout the movie, one example being when he and his friend from work are at a club and he picks up a girl, using his superficial charm)

Patrick Bateman Psychological Analysis
Written By: Julien Yacek
Antisocial Personality Disorder
Antisocial Personality disorder is diagnosed by the following traits;
1. Repeated law breaking (If the murders aren't fantasies then this is true)
2. Lying to others repeatedly (Lies about stains on sheets early on in the movie, attempts to lie to Lewis about his identity)
3. Irritable and aggressive (Easily set off in multiple scenes)
4. Remorseless or justifies behavior that has harmed others (Lacks remorse when breaking up with fiancee)
5. No regard of safety for self or others (Doing drugs with Timothy in the stalls)
6. Lack of planning ahead (Calling Dorsia and asking for a table that day instead of calling ahead)
7. Impulsive behavior patterns (Not calling Dorsia in advance, picking up prostitutes)
8. Irresponsible behavior (Never shown working, he usually is just listening to music or making lunch arrangements)
Antisocial Personality Disorder (Cont)
2. He has a sense of superiority (Illustrated by his behavior around some of his colleagues, namely Luis Carruthers, his general attitude of how he isn't worth his time shows Patrick's sense of superiority, another example being his sudden disdain for "
Huey Lewis and The News
" When detective Donald Kimball shows interest)
Antisocial Personality Disorder (Cont)
3. Poor relationships (The fact he and his Fiancee show disdain for one another and his cheating on her plainly exhibits his poor relationships)
4. Manipulates others (While talking to detective Kimball he tells him Paul Allen was in some sort of "Yale thing" which he describes as "Well, I think for one that he was probably a closet homosexual. Who did a lot of cocaine... that whole Yale thing")


Antisocial Personality Disorder (Cont)
5. Irresponsible work behavior (All times Patrick is seen in his office he is never really working, just listening to music or talking about arranging lunch plans)
6. Lying to deceive others (Him not trying to correct Paul Allen, who mistakes him for someone else throughout most of the movie, and him trying to lie to Luis about his identity)
Antisocial Personality Disorder (Cont)
7. Repeated violation of the rights of others (Drugging the wine when he has one of his acquaintances and the prostitute over)
8. Intense egocentrism, exhibitionism specifically (In the scene where he is having sex with the two prostitutes he marvels at himself in the mirror, flexing at himself and doing poses)
9. Lack of remorse when harming others (When leaving his fiancee he shows a lack of compassion and quickly leaves as she creates a scene, clearly emotionally distressed)
Narcissistic Personality Disorder(Cont)
3. Believes he is special and can only interact with people who he believes are equally special (His circle of friends are people who he respects, namely Timothy)
4. Needs constant admiration (During the scene where he is being show business cards he becomes annoyed people aren't paying as much attention to his, aside from his envy that contributes to his annoyance)
Narcissistic Personality Disorder
The diagnosis criteria for Narcissistic personality are;
1. Exaggerated sense of self importance(At one point in the film Patrick asks two prostitutes if they're interested in what he does, when they sigh he becomes annoyed)
2. Preoccupied with fantasies of beauty (The beginning of this movie when he is grooming himself, or when he says he could always be thinner and look better)
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (Cont)
5. Sense of entitlement (Shown when he decides to not call Dorsia in advance)
6. Taking advantage of others (When Patrick gives his sheets to an acquaintance of his so she can talk to the shop owners for him)
7. Unable to recognize others' feelings (When Courtney tries to talk to Patrick about her issues and Patrick responds with "You look...marvelous. There's nothing to say.")
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (Cont)
8. Envious (Specifically when others are showing their business cards)
9. Arrogant or Haughty ( His haughtiness superiority is illustrated by the way he treats various people, an example being Luis Carruthers or detective Kimball)
Patrick Bateman shows all of these symptoms, he also shows some additional symptoms of this disorder.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (Cont)
These symptoms are;
1. Appears as unemotional (Throughout the better half of this movie he behaves in an unemotional way, the way he doesn't pay attention to his fiancee or how he doesn't even feign shock at the fact Paul Allen has disappeared)
2. Believes he is better than others (His interactions with Luis Carruthers)
3. Trouble keeping healthy relationships (His disdain for his fiancee and how he cheats on her shows how poor his relationships are)
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (Cont)
4. Jealousy (His envy is illustrated in the scene where they show business cards to one another, also when he sees Paul Allen's apartment)
5. Feels disdain for those he believes are lesser (At one point in the movie he comes across a homeless man who he tells to get a job then kills him, which could have been a fantasy)

Borderline Personality Disorder
The diagnosis criteria for Borderline Personality Disorder are;
1. Fear of abandonment (Not exhibited)
2. Pattern of unstable relationships (The two relationships he's involved with in the film aren't stable, he and his fiancee show disdain for one another and he's just sleeping with Courtney)
3. Unstable sense of identity (In the opening sequence where he is grooming himself he says "There is an idea of a Patrick Bateman; some kind of abstraction. But there is no real me")
Borderline Personality Disorder (Cont)
4. Impulsive (Him hiring prostitutes, not calling in advance of going to Dorsia)
5. Self destructive (Not exhibited)
6. Suicidal behavior (Not exhibited)
7. Wide mood swings (Several times throughout the movie Patrick becomes annoyed, almost out of nowhere, with people and lashes out, at one point he lashes out at a server in a restaurant who asks him if he wants to see the specials, Patrick declines with "Not if you want to keep your spleen)
Borderline Personality Disorder(Cont)
8. Chronic feelings of emptiness (At the end of the movie Patrick says to himself "But even after admitting this, there is no catharsis; my punishment continues to elude me, and I gain no deeper knowledge of myself.")
9. Anger issues (His lashing out at people, such as the server)
10. Periods of paranoia (Not exhibited)
Borderline Personality Disorder(Cont)
Other symptoms he experiences;
1. Depersonalization (In the opening scen he remarks "There is an idea of a Patrick Bateman; some kind of abstraction. But there is no real me: only an entity, something illusory.")
2.Risky behavior (When he sleeps with the prostitutes or does cocaine with Timothy)

How was Patrick Treated?
The only treatment that seemed to be going on in Patrick's life was a prescription for Xanax. No doctors are ever met throughout the movie, and only one seems to have been present.
Treatment Options for Antisocial Personality Disorder
One treatment option for people with Antisocial Personality Disorder is psychotherapy. which for people with Antisocial Personality Disorder focuses on their helping the person suffering from this disorder better understand said disorder and understand the consequences of their behavior.
Treatment Options for Antisocial Personality Disorder
Another form of treatment is Cognitive Therapy. This form of therapy is used to help educate those with Antisocial Personality Disorder about how they create their own issues as well as how they see themselves differently from how other people see them.
Treatment Options for Antisocial Personality Disorder
A third option is medication, this form of treatment is best used in combination with other treatments because it is usually used to help mitigate anger. Sometimes it can be used to help remedy other disorders that coexist with Antisocial Personality Disorder, and thus reducing antisocial tendencies. But alone it is not effective.
Treatment Options for Narcissistic Personality Disorder
Most forms of treatment for this disorder revolve around psychotherapy. One form of psychotherapy that can help is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This treatment allows for the person suffering from Narcissistic Personality Disorder to identify their unhealthy patterns of behavior, as well as find healthy ways to behave.
Treatment Options for Narcissistic Personality Disorder
Another form of treatment is Family Therapy. This form of therapy centers around trying to solve relationship issues that come from the disorder. Common subjects tend to be related to communication and conflicts.
Treatment Options for Narcissistic Personality Disorder
The third option for treatment is Group Therapy. This form of therapy helps to allow for people with Narcissistic personality disorder to relate to one another and bond. It helps them recognize emotions and relationships.
Treatment Options for Borderline Personality Disorder
There are seven ways to treat Borderline Personality Disorder, five of which are forms of Psychotherapy. One form of Psychotherapy that is effective is Dialectical Behavior Therapy. This form of Psychotherapy was specifically designed for Borderline Personality Disorder. It focuses on using skills based approaches, physical, and meditation like exercises. These practices culminate to help you regulate your emotions, tolerate distress, and improve your relationships.
Treatment Options for Borderline Personality Disorder(Cont)
Another treatment option is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This therapy focuses on helping the person suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder identify ineffective, negative, or inaccurate ways of thinking. This allows them to view situations more objectively and find alternative solutions to issues.
Treatment Options for Borderline Personality Disorder(Cont)
The third form of treatment is called Mentalization-Based Therapy. This from of therapy helps people with Borderline Personality Disorder separate their own thoughts from those around them. It also emphasizes thinking before reacting.
Treatment Options for Borderline Personality Disorder(Cont)
Schema-Focused therapy helps people with Borderline Personality Disorder evaluate repetitive life patterns and life themes. It also allows for the identification of positive and negative behavior patterns.
Treatment Options for Borderline Personality Disorder(Cont)
The final form of Psychotherapy related treatment is Transference Focused Psychotherapy. This therapy looks to help those with Borderline Personality Disorder to understand their emotions and interpersonal difficulties. This is achieved by the therapist building a relationship with the patient. They then use what they learn from their relationship with the therapist and apply it to their outside relationships.
Treatment Options for Borderline Personality Disorder(Cont)
Another form of treatment is to use Medication. This is best used in combination with other treatments or when the person is suffering from other mental illnesses as well (such as depression or anxiety). Otherwise it is not an effective treatment for the disorder.
Treatment Options for Borderline Personality Disorder(Cont)
The final form of treatment would be Hospitalization, which is generally used when the person suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder is posing a threat to themselves or they are in need of more serious forms of treatment.
How to Treat Patrick Bateman
The best way to treat him would probably be to hospitalize him, or detain him in some way. This is because even if the murders were fantasies there's no way to tell if he won't suddenly lash out and hurt someone. Treating his Antisocial Personality Disorder would probably be done the best through Cognitive Therapy. This is because it would allow Patrick to get a better image of himself and learn how he creates his own problems. This should be used with medication to reduce his aggressive behavior.
How to Treat Patrick Bateman
To treat his Narcissistic Personality Disorder it might be best to do Group Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This is because Group Therapy would help him relate and listen to others. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy would be helpful because it will allow him to replace negative behavior patterns, as well as help him rectify negative beliefs.
How to Treat Patrick Bateman
To treat Borderline Personality Disorder would probably be using the Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that Patrick would be on along with Transference-Focused Psychotherapy. This is because Transference-Focused Psychotherapy would allow him to better his interpersonal relationships and better understand his emotions. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy would work similarly to how it would with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, but would have the added effect of helping him view situations more objectively.
Work Cited
1. Mayo Clinic Staff. "Borderline Personality Disorder." Treatments and Drugs. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 May 2014.
2. Mayo Clinic Staff. "Narcissistic Personality Disorder." Treatments and Drugs. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 May 2014.
3. Mayo Clinic Staff. "Antisocial Personality Disorder." Treatments and Drugs. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 May 2014.
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