Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Counselor Education (PhD)

Degree Level



Rehabilitation, Human Resources and Communication Disorders


Kristin K. Higgins

Committee Member

Mary Ramey

Second Committee Member

Roy Farley

Third Committee Member

Kate Mamiseishvili


Psychology, Codependency, Dependent personality, Healthy relationships, Maritial dysfunction, Narcissistic personality, Personality traits


The concept of personality theories and personality disorders has developed in modern times from deep roots in philosophy and psychodynamic theory. This theory orientation has evolved to diagnostic and treatment application. Much of the literature has focused on personality disorders as independent and singular constructs. Phenomenological discussions and deeper understandings of dysfunctional relationships between the two specific disorders of dependent personality and narcissistic personality are lacking. Significant longsuffering, abusive, and pathological behaviors at times are observed among dependent personality types in bad relationships. The objective of this study was to gather data from a sample of dependent types to discover and reference their developmental traits, their self-awareness, and their awareness of their partner. The search was for important indicators of unhealthy relationship potential which may have existed from the relationship beginning. The study was specific to dependent individuals who experienced intimate relationships with narcissistic personality types.