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Avoidant Personality Disorder Test - Understanding the Signs and Getting Help

Feeling like an outsider is common, with 9.1% of U.S. adults experiencing symptoms of personality disorders like Avoidant Personality Disorder (AVPD).

If you’re wondering whether you’re simply shy or truly suffering from AVPD, take our test below to find out!

AVPD goes beyond shyness, and if you’re currently struggling with it, call us today for support — we’re available 24/7.

Avoidant Personality Disorder Test - Understanding the Signs and Getting Help

Avoidant Personality Disorder Self-Test

Are you exhibiting signs of AVPD? Take this simple self-test to find out! While this is not a substitute for a professional diagnosis, it can offer initial insights.

Below each question, choose the option that best describes your recent feelings and behaviors.

What Is Avoidant Personality Disorder?

AVPD is a personality disorder characterized by extreme social discomfort and ongoing avoidance of interpersonal interaction.According to NIMH, AVPD affects about 5.2% of the population in the United States of America.

Shies away from professional pursuits and any major interpersonal interactions due to deep fears of disapproval, condemnation, or rejection.

Hesitates to engage with others unless they’re assured of being well-received.

Demonstrates restraint in close relationships, influenced by a fear of experiencing embarrassment or mockery.

Fears being taken advantage of by others

Perceives themselves as socially incompetent, personally unattractive, or inferior to their peers.

Displays an unusual reluctance to undertake personal risks or embark on new activities, driven by the fear of potential embarrassment.

People with AVPD often believe that they’re unable to relate well to others, leading to feelings of disconnectedness and isolation.

If you find it hard to connect with those around you — not because you don’t want to, but because you’re held back by a whispering fear of rejection — know that your feelings are valid, and you’re not alone.

The roots of these fears could lie in past experiences. You may have early memories of caregivers who were cold, critical, or inconsistent, shaping a belief that others will inflict the same pain.

These shadows from the past often linger, influencing how you view and interact with others.

As an adult with AVPD, the anticipation of rejection can become a heavy burden, potentially leading you to seek an escape through substance abuse. Social situations may spike your anxiety, and it’s natural for you to replay conversations in your head, scanning for signs of judgment or disapproval from others.

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Distinguishing AVPD From Shyness and Introversion

AVPD is akin to living in a glass box — you can see connections forming all around you, but the fear of breaking through is almost paralyzing.

It’s not just about feeling anxious in new situations or preferring quieter environments. It’s a persistent challenge, one that can limit your ability to interact with others comfortably from day to day if left unchecked.

This is because people with AVPD tend to source stress from several situations due to an exaggerated fear of rejection. They avoid interacting unless they feel completely safe — which rarely occurs.

And without treatment, AVPD can quickly lead to substantial life impairment that lasts into adulthood.

That said, AVPD does occur on a spectrum. You may experience only mild avoidance that doesn’t significantly impact your life, in which case the AVPD label wouldn’t be appropriate.

If you feel your symptoms are severe enough to warrant a diagnosis, it may be time to seek out a mental health professional to clear up those suspicions.

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AVPD and Social Anxiety

AVPD and Social Anxiety

Social anxiety also exists on a spectrum, ranging from a slight discomfort to a fear so intense it stops you from leaving the house.

Imagine 15 million Americans feeling that way, with 2.4% facing even tougher struggles due to avoidant personality disorder. For them — and possibly you — every social interaction feels like a mountain to climb.

Research published in the National Library of Medicine shows that AVPD and social anxiety disorder (SAD) often walk hand-in-hand. People with AVPD don’t simply shy away from others; they feel a crushing fear of rejection, which can lead to avoiding relationships altogether.

And those with SAD? They’re afraid of more than just mere embarrassment — they’re deeply stressed about being judged, which can cause crippling panic attacks.

Both conditions can diminish your quality of life, turning a “life worth living” into “just getting by” and keeping your relationships from flourishing.

For those with AVPD, it can also translate to a higher chance for other mental health struggles, including depression.

If this sounds like you, our avoidant personality disorder test could be the resource you need to get to the bottom of your struggles with AVPD and SAD.

While not professional advice, it’s a great starting point for those experiencing consistent symptoms.

Signs and Symptoms of AVPD

AVPD isn’t just shyness or a love for alone time. It’s a distinct set of behaviors that can make social connections particularly challenging.If you recognize these signs, you’re not alone — and understanding them is a powerful step forward:

Preference for solitary activities

Feelings of insecurity and inferiority

Declining invitations to social events

Excessive need for approval from others

Extreme sensitivity to rejection or criticism

Limited friendships and intimate relationships

Negative self-view and feelings of inadequacy

Extensive anxiety when interacting with others

Seeking jobs with minimal person-to-person contact

Preoccupation with criticism or rejection in social situations

Not becoming involved with others unless certain of being liked

Avoidance of eye contact or appearing uncomfortable when conversing

Do you avoid social interactions out of fear that you won’t relate well to others? You’re far from alone.

Many individuals with AVPD carry the weight of past coldness or criticism from early caregivers. As a result, these shadows from the past can cast a deep fear of rejection and abandonment.

What comes next? Fear-driven isolation that harms more than it helps.

Maybe social gatherings become that much more difficult to attend, you stop responding to friends and family, or fear of judgment eats into your sleep — or you could be facing all of the above.

As this cycle continues, your self-critique and avoidance tendencies may start to settle, which is why early identification is key.

AVPD can send ripples throughout your life if left undiagnosed, causing you to lose out on opportunities that thrive off of personal connection and potentially spiraling into a life of isolation and dependence.

Thankfully, our avoidant personality disorder test is designed to give you an initial indication so that you can determine whether professional help is needed.


Self-Tests for Avoidant Personality Disorder

There are a number of AVPD self-tests or quizzes available online. These ask a series of questions about things like social avoidance, anxiety, and feelings of inadequacy.

Based on your answers, they provide feedback about the likelihood you may have AVPD. AVPD self-tests can be helpful in screening for the disorder and determining if pursuing a professional assessment is warranted.

However, they cannot provide an official diagnosis. Only a qualified mental health provider can diagnose AVPD through an in-depth clinical interview.

If you take an avoidant personality disorder test and your results indicate a likelihood of the disorder, consider sharing the results with a mental health provider.

They can determine if your symptoms truly align with AVPD criteria, or if another condition may be at play.

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Diagnosing AVPD

Mental health professionals use the DSM-5 criteria to diagnose personality disorders like AVPD. This involves an interview exploring your symptoms, as well as a discussion about your personal and family history.

The DSM-5 states that to meet AVPD criteria, symptoms must:

Begin by early adulthood at least

Lead to significant distress or impairment in functioning

Not be attributable to the physiological effects of a substance or medical condition

Occur across a range of situations (i.e. not limited to public speaking or test-taking)

Not be better explained by another mental disorder such as social anxiety disorder

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Treatment for Avoidant Personality Disorder

Since people with AVPD often avoid therapy, it’s considered one of the more complex personality disorders to treat. However, with an experienced therapist and targeted treatment strategies, those affected by AVPD can overcome their symptoms and reclaim social functioning. Common AVPD treatments include:


Psychotherapy, or talk therapy, can help you examine and identify the core beliefs that drive your extreme social anxiety. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is commonly used to shift negative thought patterns and gradually face scary social situations.

Group Therapy

Group therapy exposes people to social interactions in a safe setting, and helps combat isolation tendencies by providing feedback that disproves false self-perceptions.


Antidepressants like SSRIs can help reduce social anxiety, and anti-anxiety medications may help in the short term to facilitate social interaction.

Social Skills Training

Social skills training will arm you with techniques for assertive communication, eye contact, initiating conversation, and other areas of struggle for people with AVPD.

With consistent treatment, people with AVPD can challenge their beliefs about themselves — and finally realize that they’re capable of healthy relationships.

Recovery takes time and hard work, after all, as avoidance patterns don’t just disappear overnight. But by repeatedly exposing themselves to fearful social situations, those with AVPD can reduce anxiety and regain social functioning.

Tips for Living with Avoidant Personality Disorder

If you identify with AVPD, the following strategies may help you better manage daily life while undergoing treatment:

Join an AVPD support group to exchange coping strategies with peers.

Start with low-key social settings to build confidence before larger events.

Share your diagnosis with loved ones to foster understanding and support.

Tackle avoidance by breaking tasks into steps and celebrating each success.

Missed a social event? Reach out afterward, showing you value the connection.

Gradually expand your comfort zone with activities suited to your anxiety level.

Embrace self-compassion; your feelings are valid, even if not universally grasped.

Question the assumption that others judge you harshly; their views may be milder.

Choose collaborative work with manageable social interaction to hone relational skills.

Living with AVPD is far from easy, but the disorder doesn’t have to restrict your life indefinitely.

Just imagine: Social gatherings are no longer daunting, but opportunities for joy and connection.

Each morning you look in the mirror with confidence and smile, content and proud of the person in front of you.

You no longer shy away from the chance to make new friends, and have silenced the doubtful voices in your head.

With professional help from The Edge Treatment Center, this is the kind of transformation you can achieve as a sufferer of AVPD.

You’ll feel supported every step of the way as you adapt behaviors and practice confronting your fears — enabling you to build the meaningful connections you deserve.

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Consider The Edge Treatment Center

Studies show that an overwhelming number of people with avoidant personality disorder also struggle with substance or alcohol addiction, making it difficult to spot the signs of dependency. This overlap of symptoms can mask the issue, leading to deeper troubles like financial woes, strained relationships, and health problems.

In turn, those struggling may reach for drugs or alcohol to escape these challenging situations.

But there’s hope: If you or someone you care for are struggling with AVPD and addiction, medical help is advised — such as an accredited drug rehab center that caters to patients with dual diagnoses.

At The Edge Treatment Center, we understand how avoidant personality disorder and addiction intertwine. Our specialized care for dual diagnoses can help untangle those threads, as we guide you or your loved one toward true healing and independence.

We’re a fully-accredited institution on a mission to aid those in need of help and recovery. Our approach is patient-centric, delivering a tailored holistic experience for each member and offering much-needed services such as: individualized treatment programs, behavioral therapies, aftercare programs

Recovery is a lifetime process that’s full of ups and downs. The silver lining? We’re by your side for every step of your healing journey.

Reach out to us today, we're here for you 2/7.

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