View Full Version : "Complex Emotional Disorder"

01-16-11, 04:47 PM
Hi everyone, I'm back!

I have a quick question, because I haven't managed to seek answers anywhere else, perhaps I will from here.

What does "Complex Emotional Disorder" mean?

I cannot seem to find this anywhere in google, only thing I can find is "Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder"

I have Complex & Severe Emotional Needs - that I understand, but this disorder that I was labelled with last year has confused me greatly.

Does anyone know the meaning of this disorder?

Thank you.

01-16-11, 05:13 PM
Never heard of it, Sarey.

Off-hand, it sounds like either Complex PTSD (believable, given your history, eh?) or perhaps Borderline Personality? Do either of those seem to fit?

FWIW, I probably looked a bit like borderline personality in college. It was the PTSD, plus the complete lack of boundaries/structure in my family life after my father died. It was largely alleviated by talk therapy, though the PTSD lay in wait, still, and got me later on.

Good to see you back.

01-16-11, 05:19 PM
Hi Sandy, thank you for your quick response.

Both of those seem to fit, actually. I was diagnosed with "Emotional Dysregulation" - which apparently is a term used for BPD, but Complex PTSD could fit also.

This is why I am confused.

Or, it could be a completely different diagnosis & something that means I have a mixture of emotional problems.

I really don't know.

I will soon be going to Adult Mental Health Services, so I will ask them when that happens(however, this may take months to happen, hence why I am asking here), I am just generally very confused.

01-16-11, 05:22 PM
I wonder if some of the UK members will recognize it.

"Emotional dysregulation" does sound quite a bit like borderline, but what the heck do I know???!!! :o

01-16-11, 05:26 PM
lol, you know quite a lot I think!

I guess I will have to be patient & wait & see.

Confusion makes me agitated because I want to know what's going on, you know?

01-16-11, 05:35 PM
Yes, I am the same way. I suspect that the UK system would frustrate me a little because you can't just call up your psychiatrist like I can. Seriously. I have his cell phone number.

I suppose that the thing is that you can always care for yourself in similar ways to the recommendations for either of those two diagnoses, even if you don't ultimately have them. It's not like they're wildly disparate in the recommendations, are they, and it's not like certain recommendations are bad, right?

You'll likely want talk therapy, right? So you can start the process of hunting that down as early as possible.

Exercise is always a good thing.

Fish oil probably can't hurt (but can be expensive).

Do you and your fiancée have any sort of pre-marital counseling available to you? Maybe through a church? Not sure how conservative English churches are, but there are certainly churches here in the US where you'd be able to get some help, as well. That might be good since you're a young 'un, and there are a lot of very practical considerations that go with planning a life together. It helps to get some structure to how you plan for those things, if you know what I mean? It's kind of like, if you talk about some things in advance, then it's a lot less difficult when things happen in the moment. Like how to handle financial issues. Discussing that in advance can reduce tension later.

01-16-11, 06:30 PM
Since I am now 18, I'm waiting to be referred to Adult Services, so I have no help as of yet.
Waiting sucks. Patience is not a trait of mine.

Exercise - I would do if I didn't have M.E. I also have chronic Anemia, my low ferritin levels are consistent with iron deficiency, so that makes everything worse.

Fish oil - I shall look into that!

Talk therapy - I will def. look into that once referred.

Regarding church & such, we don't go to churches. When we move in together, we will be getting professional help from the same service I am assuming, so that will be good for both of us.

Both of these disorders seem to fit me anyway, but it's just understanding this diagnosis, it confuses me & I can't contact the person who diagnosed me with it as he is no longer on my treatment team & well, I'm an adult now, he's part of CAMHS.

01-16-11, 10:42 PM
Nice to cu back as well.

Also congrats.

As a US clinician, I've never heard of it.

Strictly as a guess, I'd say it might be the same as one of the qualifiers we use in

the DSM IV TR, like "mild, moderate or severe (with or without psychotic features)."

Something along those lines perhaps.

Now I'm curious as well and would like to hear from some of our UK, or perhaps

Aussie members on their take.




01-16-11, 10:52 PM
What do you mean by "Strictly as a guess, I'd say it might be the same as one of the qualifiers we use in

the DSM IV TR, like "mild, moderate or severe (with or without psychotic features).""?

I've found out it is not on the diagnostic list of disorders, so it's not an actual disorder.

The specialist wasn't qualified to even make this diagnosis, it was probably a random guess & it was not his place to even diagnosis this.

I think because I have already been told to have severe & complex emotional needs & emotional dysregulation, as well as many other mental/emotional health problems, that he just came up with this disorder because it seemed to "fit" with my other labels. I'm not entirely sure. =/

It actually offends me because I wasn't even there for that reason, and it makes me feel patronized & well, other words I don't know how to explain.

01-16-11, 11:04 PM
If it's not some UK standardized nomenclature, and it's not in the DSM,which it isn't,

then it's just a made up descriptor with no clinical weight.

Hell, everything is "complicated" and "complex" in mental health.

I was merely being polite and deferring to your UK system.

Over here it means nothing.

Hope that's a clearer explanation.

If the person's not qualified then that shows it.




01-16-11, 11:09 PM
Well, as I just said, I think it was "diagnosed" because of my already cluster of labels, & that seemed to fit in with my labels.

Quite unprofessional & not very right to do, it's not even a bloody disorder.

Trooper Keith
01-16-11, 11:14 PM
Is it possible that he wasn't using it as a diagnosis? But rather as simply two adjectives and a noun? For example, a mood disorder can be complex, and it is emotional, and it is a disorder.

"A complex emotional disorder, such as bipolar disorder with rapid cycling and psychotic features . . . "

01-16-11, 11:35 PM
He didn't expand on what he meant as to what disorder he was referring to me as having.
It just said
Diagnosis; Complex Emotional Disorder

Trooper Keith
01-16-11, 11:37 PM
Maybe that's UK code for Mood Disorder Not Otherwise Specified. It is a mystery!

01-16-11, 11:43 PM
But he wasn't a specialist in mental health, this is why I am also confused about how he could diagnose such a disorder.

I dislike being confused.

I'm going to lie down lol.

01-16-11, 11:49 PM
Hmmmmmmmmm.... Sarey, may we ask what the context was?

I've seen stuff like this before in my work. It's not uncommon for a lay (or at least non-professional) person to "opine" like this in court documents when he or she is really just trying to summarize what medical professionals are saying. To quote Ali-G, it's "well annoyin'."

It may not mean a lot. But whether it does or not will depend on context.

Trooper Keith
01-16-11, 11:51 PM
That's probably exactly why he didn't make a precise diagnosis, but instead left it vague and just wrote down a description. Sounds reasonable to me.

01-17-11, 12:00 AM
Yeah, the fact that he never saw her AND he's not a mental health professional makes me think this the most. It sounds like something some sort of lay case manager would put into a file.

The annoying part is when that gets quoted and re-quoted and slightly garbled and mis-attributed to a professional and yada yada yada over a period of years until it's almost like it's gospel even though it never had any validity in the first place. Don't even get me started! :mad:

01-17-11, 12:08 AM
It wasn't a description though, it was a diagnosis, as it said on the letter to many people, right at the beginning, "Diagnosis: Complex Emotional Disorder", it wasn't an opinion, it was an actual diagnosis on what he thought I had.

I don't think it was reasonable, or even allowed to do by him, he's not specialised to diagnose any mental/emotional disorder, I wasn't there for that, I was there for a completely different reason, and he decided to get my mental health problems involved & make a diagnosis which I quite frankly find already offensive & patronizing, I don't need anymore labels mentally or emotionally, & this isn't even a disorder on the diagnostics.

It really has angered me, and upset me, as well as confused me greatly.

I originally went there as he is an M.E specialist, and he discriminated against me because of my mental health problems, & he talked down at me & treated me as if I was some lunatic, & he didn't focus on the fact I had quite bad&awful M.E symptoms, (which I was later then told by my own psychiatrist who also treats others with M.E that she thinks I DO have it, so in the end, I did get some validation as such, and I was not spoken down to/belittled/patronized/discriminated) he said he won't diagnose me with M.E because of my mental health problems - which to me, was very unfair & discriminating me.

My mental & emotional health has gotten worse since developing M.E, so I would have thought a diagnosis of M.E would lead to treatment, which may then improve my M.E(right now I am in the process of getting treatment, but since I am now 18, I do not have the treatment of my psychiatrist for my M.E, but I did see this pain clinic specialist who has said to do physiotherapy ((small, specific tasks to prevent my muscles from seizing up)) & acupuncture), which then would improve my mental/emotional health.

He really angered me. & to diagnose me with this disorder when I was not even there for my mental/emotional health angered me further, & I saw no reason for such a diagnosis, on such a disorder that does not even exist, where he seemed to make a fool out of me & patronized me, as I have said.

I'm sorry this is so long & it's turned into something other than this topic, but that's what happened & ever since, it's confused me greatly, as I have no clue why/how he could diagnose this.

01-17-11, 12:28 AM
That's like me saying I'm a BA, MA and a BFD :p

I wouldn't worry because this person is obviously FOS.




01-17-11, 01:23 AM

Aha! Ok, now I get the context. And it also sounds like his "diagnosis" is being reviewed by medical professionals, so they're probably scratching their heads saying, "who is this moron anyway?"

I second Robert's proposal that you not worry about it under those circumstances. Thank goodness you found a good doctor, now, eh?

You will find this a lot with pain cases, Sarey. Doctors will be all over the map about them, and there will always be those who chalk pain up to various mental illnesses.

I'm glad that it wasn't something different.

01-17-11, 04:18 PM
Thanks you two. I won't worry about it.