avoidant personality disorder

noun

Medical Definition of avoidant personality disorder

: a personality disorder that is characterized by excessive sensitivity to social criticism and rejection, low self-esteem, and social withdrawal despite a desire for acceptance and affection Like individuals with social phobia, patients with avoidant personality disorder are sensitive to criticism and the possibility of disapproval. However, because of discomfort with others, they usually avoid personal relationships, rather than just specific social situations.— H. Michael Zal, Psychiatric Times, May 2003

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