People with high conflict personalities (HCPs) clog our courts as plaintiffs with inappropriate claims against their personal "targets of blame," and as defendants who have harmed others and need to be stopped. Everybody knows someone with a High Conflict Personality. "How can he be so unreasonable?" "Why does she keep fighting? Can't she see how destructive she is?" "Can you believe they're going to court over ______?"
Some HCPs are more difficult than others, but they tend to share a similar preoccupation with blame that drives them into one dispute after anotherand keeps everyone perplexed about how to deal with them.
Using case examples and an analysis of the general litigation and negotiation behaviors of HCPs, this book helps make sense of the fears that drive people to file lawsuits and complaints. It provides insight for containing their behavior while managing and/or resolving their disputes. Characteristics of the five "high-conflict" personality disorders are explored:
BorderlineNarcissistic Histrionic ParanoidAntisocial
Bill Eddy is a lawyer, therapist, mediator, and President of the High Conflict Institute. He developed the "High Conflict Personality" theory and is an international expert on the subject. He is a Certified Family Law Specialist and Senior Family Mediator at the National Conflict Resolution Center. He has taught at the University of San Diego School of Law, is on the part-time faculty of the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at the Pepperdine University School of Law and the National Judicial College, and lectures at Monash University in Australia.
Part I: Understanding High-Conflict Personalities
1. The Problem: Personalities Drive Conflict
2. The Pattern: An Enduring Pattern of Blame
3. Borderline Personalities: Love You, Hate You
4. Narcissistic Personalities: I'm Very Superior
5. Antisocial Personalities: Con Artists
6. Histrionic Personalities: Always Dramatic
7. Paranoid Personalities: Always Suspicious (NEW CHAPTER)
8. The Enabler: Family, Friends and Professionals
Part II: Managing and Resolving Their Disputes
9. Bonding: Providing Security and Limits
10. Structure: Containing Emotions and Focusing on Tasks
11. Reality Testing: Cognitive Distortions and Legal Standards
12. Consequences: Motivating Reflection and Behavior Change
13. Legal Decision-Making: Presenting Your Case (NEW CHAPTER)
14. A United Approach: The Key to Resolving High-Conflict Disputes
About the Author