People with borderline personality disorder often feel misunderstood and alone. You may be aware that your behavior is destructive, but feel powerless to change it. For people with BPD relationships are tough and often characterized as love-hate relationships. You may idealize someone one moment and then shift to hate over perceived slights or misunderstandings. It’s hard for you to accept the so called gray areas in life — for you things seem to be either black or white.
Borderline personality disorder symptoms may include:
· Impulsive and risky behavior, such as reckless driving, unsafe sex, gambling or recreational drug use
· Intense episodes of anxiety or depression
· Inappropriate anger
· Difficulty controlling emotions or impulses
· Suicidal behavior or self-injury
· Fear of being alone
Borderline personality disorder should be diagnosed by a trained mental health professional, such as a psychologist or psychiatrist. Psychotherapy is the primary treatment for borderline personality disorder. The most effective psychotherapeutic approach to date is Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), designed by Marsha Linehan, Ph.D. to specifically to treat borderline personality disorder. DBT uses a skills-based approach to teach clients how to take control of their lives, their emotions, and themselves through self-knowledge, emotion regulation, and cognitive restructuring.
If you notice symptoms discussed in this article about yourself talk to a mental health provider. The right treatment really can help you live a more stable, enjoyable and rewarding life. If you notice these things in a family member or friend, talk to them about getting help. But remember you can’t force them to seek treatment. If the relationship with this person is causing you stress, to avoid the trap of codependency you would most likely benefit from therapy or a support group yourself. Look for a therapist who specializes in DBT or contact my office in Portland, Oregon or Vancouver, Washington.