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Is it possible to make accurate psychological diagnoses based on forum posts?

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posted on Mar, 8 2017 @ 10:18 AM
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a reply to: Profusion

I think it depends on the case, the forum itself, and other variables, but yes, it is perfectly possible.

There have been posts on this very site, which were clearly the result of someone having lost their grip on their faculties. People whose mother tongue is English, suddenly speaking in the most fractured grammar, writing huge text walls which exclusively featured the poorest spelling and syntax, posts which tried to make a point, but actually left that point entirely unmade. Not only that, but the sort of things they appear to be trying to say, while utterly failing to engage in anything even roughly approximating effective communication, indicate something very disturbing is happening to the psyche sometimes.

There is one particular individual who springs to mind, a former member here so the story goes, who uttered some utterly bizarre twaddle on the site, before going and making himself "famous" with a pistol. That, however, is a rabbit hole well explored, and I will go no further on that topic.




posted on Mar, 8 2017 @ 12:31 PM
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No

signed

-a professional psychotherapist

Want more detail? I can handle that....but please see above statement

no

It's complete BS. Here is why

1. These are words. NOBODY, even someone trained like myself, has any context, nonverbals, or proof that said person is posting words because they are losing grip, being a troll, or somewhere in between.

2. Even if it WERE somehow proven that the words were of a member losing grip, trained professionals know that having some simple words are not nearly enough due to hundreds of variables. Not least of them are that we are looking at a slice of a person in both chronology and personality. Example...

Tomorrow I post a rant and it comes off as highly suspect of psychosis. What now? Should we diagnose that I am schizophrenic? Or maybe I was having an epic bad day because a family member died. Maybe I accidentally took too much of a medication. Maybe I am on a new medication that caused a psychotic episode. Maybe a hundred other possibilities.

Maybe tomorrow, I will have come to grips with my stressor or life event. Maybe tomorrow my postings are far more coherent.

3. NOBODY HERE IS A PROFESSIONAL WHO IS CAPABLE OF DIAGNOSING ONLINE! Please read this again...OVER AND OVER

Even those of us like myself who are trained and licensed know this to be true. Because it comes down to two factors.

a. If you aren't trained....stop diagnosing people...period. I don't give a whooey how arrogant this comes off. STOP diagnosing. People think that they don't need advanced work to become a therapist or pretend to be one. Invariably, those same people make insanely basic diagnoses and ignore insanely basic principles and variables.

b. If you ARE a professional, I would hope your schooling taught you that, even aside from the ethical issue, that you should know the hundreds of variables involved in a forum. Not to mention that, let's say we removed ethics and made it legal, did you, the professional use a diagnostic routine or assessment? Did you ask the many questions needed AND go through differentials? If not...than major failure going off simple words

So...again...TL
R

no you cannot



posted on Mar, 9 2017 @ 05:39 AM
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a reply to: KyoZero

When someone reports hearing voices in their heads whose words they take seriously, who claim that hostile agents are eavesdropping on them or 'gangstalking' them or trying to control their thoughts, does that not suggest a certain psychopathology? Even -- absent a rational profit motive of some sort -- if they are aware that they're making it all up?


edit on 9/3/17 by Astyanax because: of punctuation



posted on Mar, 9 2017 @ 09:42 AM
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a reply to: Astyanax

That's a valid question...and the answer is it can "suggest" anything

But again I can come on tomorrow and say things true or false and it could suggest a lot of issues

However, the question being, can we make an accurate diagnosis from words on ATS....no I do not believe there is anyway



posted on Mar, 11 2017 @ 11:13 PM
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a reply to: KyoZero


But again I can come on tomorrow and say things true or false and it could suggest a lot of issues.

And if you did, the issues would be real. No sane person makes a pretence of insanity to total strangers unless a profit motive is involved.



posted on Mar, 12 2017 @ 01:32 AM
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I hate seeing lay people proclaiming their psychological diagnosis of other on forums - it's so silly.

Diagnosis of one psychological state is rather complex and difficult, and isn't a matter of black or white (you're this or your that). It always seemed to me that tendancies are measured on continuums, and diagnosis of extremes sort of rely upon the ensemble of measures. Most people, (me included) don' t even understand exactly all the terms used.
My parents used to call it Pop Psychology, even back before there was internet. Terms get popular and lose their original meaning as people start throwing them around like chimps with their excrement.

Though I do think we might be able to assume that whatever people post could be considered a partof their personality. Even if they are "lying" or role playing...that indicates it is a part of them they would not normally express in person, for various reasons.. but if they are doing it online, of their own choice, that suggests it is a part of them they usually repress and would like to manifest, no? Psychology doesn't take into account only your conscious awareness and choice of behavior - it attempts to include the sub and unconscious mind as part of the whole.

But still, recognizing some fragments of someones psychology does not paint a full picture.



posted on Mar, 13 2017 @ 08:23 AM
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a reply to: Bluesma

precisely...but even I, not a lay person, know that I cannot offer a proper diagnosis without having someone in office or at the very least on video over an assessment period



posted on Mar, 13 2017 @ 04:10 PM
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originally posted by: KyoZero
a reply to: Astyanax

That's a valid question...and the answer is it can "suggest" anything

But again I can come on tomorrow and say things true or false and it could suggest a lot of issues

However, the question being, can we make an accurate diagnosis from words on ATS....no I do not believe there is anyway



I agree with your assessment and it also appears that psychology is taking a turn towards using positive psychology techniques, rather than evidence-based techniques (of which is relatively new and not well developed as yet).

lukemuehlhauser.com...




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