Mental Health - Understanding Borderline Personality Disorder

Mental Health - Understanding Borderline Personality Disorder
3 min read

Borderline Personality Disorder was only adopted as an official diagnosis in 1980, so it is a very recent addition to personality disorders.

Remember Michael Douglas and Glenn Close in the movie Fatal Attraction? She played a woman with many of the characteristics of Borderline personality disorders. Another example is Winona Ryder as the girl she played in the movie Girl, Interrupted.

Mental Health - Understanding Borderline Personality Disorder

What is borderline personality disorder (BPD)?

People who suffer from this disorder exhibit impulsivity and instability in relationships, mood and self-image. Emotions can be erratic and shift abruptly, especially from passionate idealization to contemptuous anger. It is obvious that these people are emotionally unstable in their personalities.

Symptoms of borderline personality disorder (BPD)

BPD patients often appear as argumentative, sarcastic, prone to insults, irritable, and generally difficult to interact or socialize with. Their behaviour is regularly impulsive and unpredictable. Habits, which may include gambling, spending, non-selective sexual activities and eating binges may possibly be self-destructive.

Individuals are often manipulative, very sensitive to the way others treat them, reacting particularly strongly to criticism and to being hurt or feeling hurt. They often present a risk of self-harm and have suicidal tendencies.

Where does it come from?

BPD is largely to do with environmental factors and the psychosocial dynamics of patients' families. Evidence suggests that this disorder runs in families, suggesting that it may have genetic components and that it is related to traumatic events that occurred during childhood.

BPD usually begins in early adulthood and is more common in women than in men. Here are some options for treating such issues from the popular facility i.e. Mental Health Facilities in Atlanta.

Treatment options

Medications such as antidepressants, antipsychotics and mood stabilizers are regularly used to treat the co-occurring symptoms of depression, however evidence of benefit for BPD is weak.

Therapeutic support in the form of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), interpersonal therapy and psychodynamic therapy have been studied and used. To enable a therapist to work with patients with BPD requires great flexibility and the strength of the ego to project negative attributions.

In many cases, psychiatric hospitalization or at least outpatient services are required.

Seek help

Dealing with BPD in yourself or your family is not something you can manage on your own.

Remember: If you are concerned that your loved one is experiencing Borderline Personality Disorder seek outside support and ask to be seen by a medical professional.


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