Diagnosis of Fatal Attraction Essay

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1. What is the name of the movie you watched?
For this assignment, I watched “Fatal Attraction.”

2. Describe the demographics of the character of “patient” that you are evaluating.
Alex Forrest was the patient in this movie. She is a white female in her 40’s. She is single and works as an editor for a publishing company, however she is not shown working after the beginning of the movie.

3. Summarize the plot of the movie.
As the movie begins, Dan and his wife, Beth, go to a company party when he meets Alex Forrest for the first time. The next morning Beth and daughter, Ellen, leave for the weekend to look at a house they are considering moving into while Dan stays at home for a business meeting. When he arrives at the
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When Beth goes out looking for Ellen she gets in an accident and is taken to the hospital. That night Dan goes to Alex’s apartment and attacks her and tries to strangle her, but then stops. While they are catching their breath Alex tries to stab Dan with a kitchen knife, but he gets it from her and leaves. Dan brings Beth home from the hospital and helps take care of her, Dan is downstairs as she starts a bath when Beth discovers Alex in the room with a knife. Alex attacks her and Dan hears the screaming and rushes in to attack Alex. He tries to drown her in the tub, but she comes back alive and is then shot by Beth.

4. Formulate a DSM-IV-TR diagnosis for this character and outline how he or she meets each of the criteria for that disorder.
After reviewing the behaviors of Alex Forrest, I have decided that a borderline personality disorder is most appropriate for her. It also seems like Alex may have a mild form of histrionic personality disorder, but does not actually meet all of the criteria to be fully diagnosed and therefore is not a comorbid diagnosis. A list of the diagnostic criteria for borderline personality disorder and a description for how they are met is following, Alex meets six of the criterion and the DSM-IV-TR requires at least five criterion be present.

Criterion 1: Frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment; note: do not include suicidal or self-mutilating behavior covered in criterion 5.
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