Bob suffers from depression and thinks he has dementia. He goes to see a Psychologist who conducts Rorschach test and gives the following evaluation:

The problem might be because of Inter-Personal Conflict

I am not an expert in Psychology. What does it means and what inference can we draw from it?

  • $\begingroup$ Is this a real instance of a clinical evaluation? No one really uses Rorschach tests anymore, especially not for diagnosing depression in the clinic. $\endgroup$ – Chuck Sherrington Jul 25 '14 at 15:55
  • $\begingroup$ @ChuckSherrington It's a hypothetical evaluation just to emphasize the question about meaning of Inter-Personal Conflict in Psychological sense in olden days when Rorschach tests were more popular. $\endgroup$ – manav m-n Jul 26 '14 at 6:38

A common definition of "conflict" is readily retrievable and applicable in the context of clinical evaluation – i.e., conflict has no particularly unusual primary meaning in clinical psychology. "Interpersonal" also operates as an ordinary adjective with the usual meaning. Thus interpersonal conflict is conflict between persons, as might be distinguished from intrapersonal conflict (e.g., cognitive dissonance). In some cases, one might also distinguish interpersonal conflict from impersonal conflicts with people in general, such as alienation, aggression, or other antisocial impulses when these do not have a specific person or a small group of specific persons as the object of negativity or source of opposition.

Two important inferences that one might consider based on such an evaluation include the plausibility of problems with social skills and problems arising from the other person(s) involved. People who have not developed strong social skills like empathy, conflict resolution, tolerance, or politeness experience interpersonal conflicts more often, but even people with strong social skills and other essentials of psychological health may find themselves at conflict with others who are the primary source of distress or disagreement.

  • $\begingroup$ Can Interpersonal conflict lead to depression? $\endgroup$ – manav m-n Jul 27 '14 at 9:38
  • $\begingroup$ I don't see why not. $\endgroup$ – Nick Stauner Jul 28 '14 at 6:16

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