Mommie Dearest is a movie based on the book by Christina Crawford. The movie tells the story of Christina’s abusive mother, Joan Crawford.
Joan Crawford was a successful actress in the early 1900s. She was also known for being a demanding and difficult person to work with. Her daughter, Christina, claims that her mother was physically and emotionally abusive.
There are several psychological disorders that could explain Joan’s behavior. One possibility is that she had borderline personality disorder. People with this disorder often have difficulty regulating their emotions. They may be overly sensitive to criticism and can become enraged easily. This could explain why Joan was so quick to anger and why she would lash out at her daughter.
Another possibility is that Joan had narcissistic personality disorder. This is a condition where people have an inflated sense of self-importance and a need for constant attention and admiration. This could explain why Joan was so demanding and difficult to work with.
It’s also possible that Joan had post-traumatic stress disorder. This can occur after someone experiences a traumatic event, such as child abuse. People with PTSD may have flashbacks, nightmares, and difficulty sleeping. They may also be easily startled and have trouble concentrating. This could explain why Joan was so quick to anger and why she would lash out at her daughter.
It’s important to remember that we cannot diagnose someone based on their behavior in a movie. However, the movie does provide some insight into the possible psychological disorders that may have been affecting Joan Crawford.
“I’m out of my mind!” Joan Crawford cries this in a confrontation with Greg Savitt about how he supposedly put Mr. Mayor above her. She curses him and his profession, and he goes up to her and begins shaking her and begging her to tell him she’s insane. Because of her mood swings in the film Mommie Dearest, this moment provides an example of one of Joan’s psychological disorders, borderline disorder.’
Joan Crawford was a movie star in the 1930s-1950s and was one of the top actresses during her time. However, she was not only an actress; she was also a mother. Joan had four children, two of which were adopted, and she raised them with her second husband, Alfred Steele.
Her children were Christina, Christopher, Catherine, and Cynthia. Out of her four children, Christina was her favorite. Christina wrote a book called Mommie Dearest that revealed how abusive Joan was as a mother, which included psychological abuse and physical abuse. The movie Mommie Dearest is based on Christina’s book and it gives examples of Joan’s psychological disorders throughout the movie.
Some of Joan’s psychological disorders include borderline personality disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, and histrionic personality disorder. Borderline personality disorder is a mental illness that is characterized by instability in moods, relationships, self-image, and behavior. People with this disorder often have difficulty controlling their emotions and they may act impulsively.
Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental illness that is characterized by an inflated sense of self-importance, a need for admiration, and a lack of empathy for others. Histrionic personality disorder is a mental illness that is characterized by attention-seeking behavior, excessive emotionality, and dramaticness.
Throughout the movie Mommie Dearest, there are several scenes that illustrate Joan’s psychological disorders. One scene that illustrates her borderline personality disorder is when she is arguing with Greg Savitt about how he supposedly put Mr. Mayor above Joan. She yells at him for being a lousy gentleman to her and insults him and his career. Greg then goes up to her and beings to shake her and asks if she is crazy, pleading for her to tell him she is crazy. This scene gives an example of Joan’s instability in moods that takes place throughout the movie.
Another scene that illustrates Joan’s narcissistic personality disorder is when she is talking to Christina about how she needs to be perfect in order to be a movie star like Joan. She tells Christina that she needs to have perfect posture, perfect skin, perfect teeth, etc. This scene illustrates Joan’s need for admiration and her lack of empathy for Christina.
A final scene that illustrates Joan’s histrionic personality disorder is when she is giving a speech at a Hollywood function. She is talking about how movie stars are like gods and goddesses and how they should be treated as such. This scene illustrates Joan’s attention-seeking behavior and her excessive emotionality.
Joan Crawford is a mentally ill actress with multiple personality disorders, including obsessive-compulsive disorder, borderline, narcissism, and bipolar disorder. The first psychological problem shown in the film Mommie Dearest is obsessive-compulsive behavior (OCD), also known as hoarding syndrome. It’s an anxiety condition characterized by recurrent thinking about things that aren’t good for you (Rathus 2010). In the movie’s opening sequence, you see Joan Crawford getting ready for work.
She has every little thing in place and in its perfect spot. Her bed is made with military precision, her clothes are laid out perfectly, and she even has a specific way of putting on her makeup. This is all part of her OCD. The second psychological disorder displayed by Joan Crawford is borderline personality disorder, or BPD. Borderline personality disorder is defined as “a mental illness marked by an ongoing pattern of varying moods, self-image, and behavior” (Mayo Clinic Staff 2016).
In the movie, you see how Joan Crawford’s mood can change on a dime. One minute she can be happy and the next she can be angry. She also has a very negative self-image and is always putting herself down. The third psychological disorder displayed by Joan Crawford is narcissism. Narcissism is defined as “an extreme interest in or admiration of oneself” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary 2016).
In the movie, you see how Joan Crawford is always talking about herself and how great she is. She is also always looking in the mirror and admiring her own reflection. The fourth and final psychological disorder displayed by Joan Crawford is bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder is defined as “a mental illness that causes periods of depression and mania” (Mayo Clinic Staff 2016).
In the movie, you see how Joan Crawford can be happy one minute and then depressed the next. She also has moments where she is very manic and feels like she can do anything. All of these psychological disorders combine to make Joan Crawford a very unstable and dangerous person.
She is preoccupied with her appearance and must ensure that she properly cleanses herself. Joan’s first action is to wash her hands and face, which she washes, rinses, and scrubs carefully. This is an example of OCD because it is a repetitive and ritualized behavior that satisfies her concern for cleanliness.
When Joan cleans her house, a second example of her need for perfection and neatness is shown. She goes through everything in her home from top to bottom, as well as all the nooks and crannies in between. She has to go through each room after her servants have finished cleaning it to ensure that it meets with her approval.
If it is not, she makes the maids redo it until it meets her standards. This control over her environment is another example of OCD. When Joan is at work, she is constantly checking her makeup and hair to make sure they look perfect. She has to have everything in its place and if something is out of place, she becomes very agitated. This need for perfectionism and control over her surroundings are both symptoms of OCD.
OCD can also be characterized by intrusive thoughts, which are unwanted and repetitive thoughts that cause anxiety or distress. For Joan, her intrusive thoughts are about dirt and germs. She is always obsessively thinking about whether or not she is clean enough and if there are any dirt or germs on her. This causes her a lot of anxiety and she has to perform her rituals and compulsions in order to ease this anxiety.
Joan also suffers from anorexia nervosa, which is a psychological disorder characterized by an extreme fear of gaining weight and a distorted body image. Joan is very obsessed with her weight and she is always monitoring what she eats. She barely eats anything and when she does eat, she makes sure it is something that is low in calories. She is constantly thinking about food and how many calories she is consuming.
Anorexia nervosa can also be characterized by excessive exercise. Joan is always exercising, even when she is not at the gym. She will do things like run up and down the stairs or do jumping jacks in her office. She is always moving and she is never still for too long. This excessive exercise is another symptom of anorexia nervosa.
Joan also suffers from body dysmorphic disorder, which is a psychological disorder characterized by a preoccupation with one or more perceived defects or flaws in appearance. For Joan, her perceived defect is her wrinkles. She is always looking in the mirror and examining her face for any wrinkles. When she does see a wrinkle, she becomes very distressed and she will try to cover it up with makeup or hide it with her hair.