Undergoing major personality changes in early adulthood - how common?

  • Thread starter Pleonasm
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  • #1
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Main Question or Discussion Point

Having regained touch with someone I acquainted online (only) in their late teens, I get the impression that major changes to this individuals personality has taken place, and I wish to know how much of that is attributed to the natural evolution of ones personality and maturity versus mental health issues?

The person as a teen exhibited a fairly normal demeanor over text and did not express much excentric views and opinions at all. Now several years later, this individual in their mid 20s appears highly quirky and excentric, completely unrecognizable from the 19 year old I originally got to know. The feelings towards me are however consistent over time and there is still a common ground.

Is what I'm describing indications of possible mental health issues, or are major personality changes in early adulthood common?
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Ryan_m_b
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Being quite different to your teenage self is not only normal it’s quite desirable. Rarely is an adult being described as “unchanged since teen years” a good thing.
 
  • #3
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Being quite different to your teenage self is not only normal it’s quite desirable. Rarely is an adult being described as “unchanged since teen years” a good thing.
The said person has experienced major psychological crisis, but apparently suffered from depressions long before we got in touch.

What frightens me is that I would not be able to identify this person over text just 6 years later, and this was someone fairly close to me online that I routinely socialized with. What amazes me further is that the soft spot this person had for me is still present.

So regaining touch is a mixed blessing.
 
  • #4
Ryan_m_b
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Many people suffer from mental health problems but that’s by no means the only factor in differences between people as adults and people as teens. Do you honestly expect people and relationships not to change? It’s a fact of life that, through different experiences, we all change to some degree over time and many relationships fade as people drift apart.
 
  • #5
CWatters
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It's impossible to diagnose a change in personality over the internet! Could be normal, due to injury, drugs, previous medical condition, genetic, adiction who knows.

You will have to get to know them again before deciding if you want them in your life. If your first instinct is to be frightened I would go very carefully.
 
  • #6
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It's impossible to diagnose a change in personality over the internet! Could be normal, due to injury, drugs, previous medical condition, genetic, adiction who knows.

You will have to get to know them again before deciding if you want them in your life. If your first instinct is to be frightened I would go very carefully.
Would you give it a try if you really cared for the person, as I did? I don't know what I'm getting into here but I really liked the person. Like I said, the affection towards me is unaffected by all of this, and that's at least somewhat reassuring.
 
  • #7
Stephen Tashi
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Having regained touch with someone I acquainted online (only) in their late teens, I get the impression that major changes to this individuals personality has taken place, and I wish to know how much of that is attributed to the natural evolution of ones personality and maturity versus mental health issues?
If your interest in that topic is confined to the case of one particular person, it's not a promsing line of scientific inquiry. As a general question, you can find lots of statistical studies about how personality changes with age. Look up studies about how the MMPI score changes with age.
 
  • #8
berkeman
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It's impossible to diagnose a change in personality over the internet!
Indeed. Thread is closed temporarily for a Mentor discussion...
 
  • #9
berkeman
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@Pleonasm -- please encourage this person to see a medical professional. We cannot offer any medical advice here at the PF.

Thread will remain closed.
 

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