Where Your Demons Hide

Demons may play a more impactful role than you think when it comes to personality disorders

Often times those struggling with a personality disorder are easy targets for demons to attack.

Rebekah Sems

Often times those struggling with a personality disorder are easy targets for demons to attack.

What would you do if someone were to tell you he hears voices whispering his name? You would probably take a few steps back and regard that person as crazy. In fact, hearing voices say your name is a symptom of schizotypal personality disorder. 

According to Mayo Clinic, “A personality disorder is a type of mental disorder in which you have a rigid and unhealthy pattern of thinking, functioning, and behaving.”  

This can look different with each disorder. Mayo Clinic categorized each personality disorder in clusters A, B, and C. Cluster A is described as disorders that include odd or eccentric thinking, as well as behavior. Personality disorders such as paranoid personality disorder, schizoid personality disorder, and schizotypal personality disorder are in this grouping. Cluster B includes dramatic and overly emotional disorders like antisocial personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, histrionic personality disorder, and narcissistic personality disorder. And finally cluster C consists of disorders that involve anxiety and fearful behavior like obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCD), avoidant personality disorder, and dependent personality disorder.

Many people who suffer with any type of personality disorder are not sure how to relate to people or situations, which can cause lots of difficulties in relationships, school, or work. Mayo Clinic reports that personality disorders are a result of genetics and the environment surroundings during childhood. Physciatrists will usually treat these disorders with medication and therapy and will sometimes, if the patient is extremely sick, place the patient in a mental hospital. However, as I began to read through symptoms of these disorders, I started wondering if there was more to these disorders than simply the mental causes and effects.

While some personality disorders don’t strike me this way (particularly the ones in cluster C), cluster A and cluster B forced me to consider the possibility of the spiritual realm and its interference with humans.

Most Christians I know do not deny the fact that demons are real, and Jason Wilkins, a senior worldviews teacher, agrees that the spiritual forces in the world are both very real and very dangerous. 

“Demons are opportunistic. They aren’t just going to sit back and wait around — they attack and will take every opportunity they can get to do damage,” said Wilkins. 

When humans have the genetics for a personality disorder and/or grew up in an abusive environment, they have become even more susceptible for demons to take advantage of them and their mental illness. Cluster A, specifically, includes symptoms that sound unnervingly like how demons can act through humans.  

“Humans were created with a heart, mind, body, soul, and will. Doctors and naturalists tend to focus on just the mind and body part which is the physical aspect of humans. They conclude that if you’re hearing voices then there must be a chemical imbalance in the brain, and that very well could be the case, but Christians know that there is also the spiritual aspect and realm that plays a part in all of this, so we can approach the situation with more tools in our toolbox. Often times there can be a mental/physical problem going on and a spiritual force, too,” said Wilkins. 

C.S. Lewis, a famous theologian and Christian author, also believed that demons are opportunistic and will take whatever chance they can to influence the thoughts and actions of humans.

“There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased by both errors and hail a materialist or a magician with the same delight,” said Lewis.

Christians have to be careful not to fall into either of the traps Lewis describes or to disregard the physical aspect of humans and only focus on the spiritual. 

“Just as doctors are silly and wrong for only paying attention to the mind and body, we are also silly and wrong if we only pay attention to the spiritual part. For example, some people may know that someone is suffering from some sort of mental illness and jump to the conclusion that they must have sinned in order to have that illness, which is just not biblical. Instead, both parts can be true; the spiritual and physical can both be affected by a sickness or disorder,” said Wilkins. 

When it comes to how we handle the spiritual realm and its effects on us, Christians must be aware of how to respond and react to demonic forces. However, while they can be terrifying to think about, demons are not victorious over Christ.

“I believe that Christians are protected from being possessed by demons because we belong to Jesus, but we are not immune from attacks,” said Wilkins. 

Christ-followers must be confident and strong in the Lord and pay attention to the Holy Spirit when it nudges them, alerting them that something is wrong or darkness is present. Personality disorders may be caused by chemical imbalances in the brain, genetics, and/or childhood upbringing, but whatever the cause, they can become an easy target for demons to act through. Even if we don’t suffer from a personality disorder or any type of disorder, the world is full of sin, and demons are a real threat in all situations. Christians must be aware of them, yet not infatuated by them, as we cling to the hope that is Jesus Christ and His protection over us.