Does Hearing A ‘No’ Makes You Angry? You May Be Having Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria

Rejection sensitive dysphoria is a psychological condition where a person fails to handle rejections and show impulsive reactions.

Chanchal Sengar
Written by: Chanchal SengarPublished at: May 30, 2020Updated at: May 30, 2020
Does Hearing A ‘No’ Makes You Angry? You May Be Having Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria

Failure and rejection are part of life and we should be able to accept and learn from them. Some people are extremely easy and adaptive while some tend to take rejections very seriously. It is not easy for everyone to face rejection. A lot of people take a ‘NO’ on their self-esteem and ego which makes them vulnerable. It is fine to get serious some times but if a person can no longer handle rejections, he/she might be having Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria. The negative attitude towards rejection makes a person susceptible to getting this psychological problem. To understand this issue, OnlyMyHealth spoke to Dr. Jyoti Kapoor, Psychiatrist, Paras Hospital, Gurugram. She gave us all the insights about rejection sensitive dysphoria.

What is rejection sensitive dysphoria?

RSD is a relatively new term associated with an exaggerated emotional response to the perception of being rejected or not accepted. Rejection sensitivity is a psychological reaction to perceived rejection. Everyone has a need to belong and be accepted and our environment plays a major role in establishing expectations for acceptance and rejection by surroundings. Some Individuals are biologically prone to react excessively to the perception of rejection and develop anxiety and mood symptoms in response to any such feeling that people around them may dislike them or avoid them. When unchecked and persistent, it leads to a state of dysphoria or persistent sadness which is specifically triggered by events perceived as rejection.

Signs and symptoms of Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria

It is difficult to identify the signs of RSD as they are quite similar to other mental health conditions like social phobia, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, avoidant personality disorder, etc. RSD can manifest as relationship problems, exaggerated response and behavioral outbursts in events where they feel uncared for and low self-esteem. Many signs and symptoms overlap with social anxiety disorder where an individual is anxious about being judged or criticized. People with high rejection sensitivity thus may be easily embarrassed, suffer from negative mood swings and feel like failures. Social withdrawal and depressive symptoms may follow.

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Is this condition curable?

Psychological disorders need a greater understanding of physiological and environmental aspects of a problem, cure is thus a wrong term, instead, the focus has to be on identifying and managing the non-adaptive psychological mechanisms which cause an emotional and behavioral disturbance. High rejection sensitivity is strongly associated with ADHD, Borderline Personality Disorder, Impulse-control disorder and eating disorders, etc and therefore the management of these disorders also treats RSD.

Thus, with proper psychiatric diagnosis and intervention, treatment is possible.

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Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria Treatment and Prevention

There are various options that a doctor suggests to come out of this condition. The general recommendations of a doctor would be lifestyle changes and medication. One who is on medicines for the rejection sensitivity is required to adopt a healthy lifestyle, so some exercises daily and take proper rest. Other preventive measures are:

  • Try to think positive always. Positive thinking is the key to this problem.
  • Get socially active. Get in touch with people of similar likes and dislikes.
  • Get open and talk to people.
  • Read motivational books and listen to music whenever you feel negative.

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