Crisis Line Response: Helping People with Personality Disorders




A universal experience of crisis call centers is burnout among staff because of seemingly endless, often repetitive interactions with callers who are in distress and suicidal but do not respond to the usual suggestions of self-care or follow-up. An hour-long phone call can leave the worker exhausted and the caller in worse shape than at the beginning of the call. These are callers with personality disorders. They have a different agenda than the crisis worker.


This 1-hour training will provide basic information about personality disorders – specifically borderline personality, dependent personality, and histrionic personality. We will make a distinction between personality related symptoms and symptoms from primary anxiety and depression. We will also talk about the interaction patterns and some interventions that might be useful.




  • Have a good understanding of the most common interactional patterns seen in people with borderline, dependent, and histrionic personality disorders
  • Be able to distinguish personality disorder depression from major depressive disorder
  • Receive guidance in distinguishing an acute suicidal crisis from chronic suicidal behavior
  • Learn how to set realistic goals for a limited interaction with personality disordered callers




Registrants who fully attend this event or training will receive a certificate of attendance via email within two weeks after the event or training. 




David Mays

Dr. David Mays, MD, PhD, is a licensed physician in the state of Wisconsin, where he is a clinical adjunct assistant professor in the University of Wisconsin Department of Psychiatry. He is Board Certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and is a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He is also a member of the Wisconsin Psychiatric AsSsociation. Dr. Mays has received the Distinguished Service Award from the Alliance on Mental Illness in Dane County, the Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness, the Exceptional Performance Award from the Wisconsin Health and Family Services, the Outstanding Professional Award from the Wisconsin Association on Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse, and the Outstanding Mental Health Professional Award from the Wisconsin National Alliance on Mental Illness. 



The Great Lakes MHTTC is offering this training for individuals working in HHS Region 5: IL, IN, MI, MN, OH, WI. This training is being provided in response to a need identified by Region 5 stakeholders.

Starts: Nov 2, 2022 10:00 am
Ends: Nov 2, 2022 11:00 am
Event Type
Webinar/Virtual Training
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