Borderline Personality Disorder? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 01-20-2009, 06:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Does anyone have it or know someone who does? I'm trying to find out more about it. Thanks!
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#2 of 11 Old 01-21-2009, 12:34 PM
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Yeah, I had an abusive ex with it. There's some good information out there. BPD Central is a good link for people who have someone in their lives with BPD.
I think in a lot of ways BPD is a misunderstood disease, and it seems like there are many degrees of severity. But I will say this: severe, untreated BPD is very, very difficult to have in your life, whether you're the one with it or you're the non-BP dealing with it.

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#3 of 11 Old 01-21-2009, 06:54 PM
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It remains the best guess diagnosis with regards to my first husband ... "best guess" just because he was never officially diagnosed, and there remains a great deal of debate with regard to where it overlaps the spectrum of bipolar disorders, whether or not it even is a seperate disorder, etc.

At any rate, I did quite a lot of reading on the subject just about a year ago ... if you had particular questions I could maybe direct you to decent resources for finding answers.
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#4 of 11 Old 01-22-2009, 12:03 AM
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I have mild BPD and I am a social worker and have worked with several people with BPD. I would reccommend the book "Stop Walking on Egg Shells"
Here is some infor from the DSM:

"pervasive pattern of instability of interpersonal relationships, self-image, and affects, and marked impulsivity beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:

1. frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment. Note: Do not include suicidal or self-mutilating behavior covered in Criterion 5.

2. a pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships characterized by alternating between extremes of idealization and devaluation.

3. identity disturbance: markedly and persistently unstable self-image or sense of self.

4. impulsivity in at least two areas that are potentially self-damaging (e.g., spending, sex, substance abuse, reckless driving, binge eating). Note: Do not include suicidal or self-mutilating behavior covered in Criterion 5.

5. recurrent suicidal behavior, gestures, or threats, or self-mutilating behavior

6. affective instability due to a marked reactivity of mood (e.g., intense episodic dysphoria, irritability, or anxiety usually lasting a few hours and only rarely more than a few days).

7. chronic feelings of emptiness

8. inappropriate, intense anger or difficulty controlling anger (e.g., frequent displays of temper, constant anger, recurrent physical fights)

9. transient, stress-related paranoid ideation or severe dissociative symptoms"

I have been almost diagnosed bipolare, which I clearly am not but I do have more intense mood swings than the average bear. There has been talk of changing the name to Emotional Intensity Disorder. IMO theraoy is the best way to overcome/manage BPD. I also have had some success with Zoloft to reduce my anxiety and self destructive behaviors. I have struggled with the gamet of addictions and self-destructive/risk taking behaviors.

For me the hardest part of being BPD is that I know now how irrational and overly intense my thoughts, feelings, and reaction can be so I second guess myself alot. The best policy for me is to stop and wait to do anything when I am feeling intensly emotional. Usually I am thinking more clearly withing 10-20 minutes. This has helped me maintain an increasingly happy marriage and avoid self-mutilating/risky behaviors.

If it is someone in your life realize that when they are having an "episode" or acting irrational the best thing you can do is tell them you love them and support them then disengage. You can not say or do anything right in that moment!! Hope that helps.
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#5 of 11 Old 01-24-2009, 04:16 AM
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Hi, I'm still new to these forums, but I want to post on this. I'll admit I'm a little nervous, since I've never written about it before and it seems some people have very harsh views of people with BPD...Anyway, last year I went to get some counselling for severe depression/anxiety issues. Normally I would never have gone, but it was affecting my relationship and I was more afraid of losing my DH than being stubborn or prideful.

First of all, I'm one of the small percentages of people who have extremely empathetic BPD. That means I feel people's pain far too strongly. I'm terrified of annoying people, or bothering people in any way. I hurt myself internally if I feel I'm doing that, and it makes me feel completely worthless...While I'm not suicidal, in extreme emotional conflict, I do have urges to cut myself. It's about releasing some of the pain I feel inside. (thankfully I've gone so many monthes without feeling this need, I can't remember when was the last time! In addition, I feel strong guilt over social issues. When I think about how wasteful and shallow we are in developed countries, I get so depressed...and even though I try to live ethically, I can't always. I don't know where my shampoo came from, or if someone was taken advantage of to make it. I don't know what big, immoral corporations I'm supporting indirectly by making use of their products. While these don't really sound like big issues, thinking about them can actually put me in a sense of crisis that I can't deal with.

Then comes the Splitting, Black and White thinking, the All or Nothing approach that really categorizes us Borderlines! While I generally think people are basically good, when I hear of horrible crimes, etc...I start to lose hope in people and just think that humans are selfish, arrogant creatures. It's hard for me to recognize the middle ground. It's only recently that I've realized just how much Splitting has affected my life...for example, I rarely write email to friends...not because I don't want to, but because I feel I have to say *everything* So I start writing and can't stop for hours, and my emails become like novels, lol. However, if I don't write, I start to feel like a bad friend and feel's a vicious cycle...

I don't have many close relationships...mostly because they're too stressful for me. When I love someone, I love them completely. As such, I get hurt very easily if I feel they don't care about me. Now, I realize that this is just something in me, and I don't expect too much emotionally out of other people. However, I do feel rejection strongly...just another silly example, if I post a message online like this, and nobody responds to it...I get overly sad.

I have a hard time when I disagree with someone I'm in a relationship with. I feel like they just don't understand me and then I get very frustrated. However, I don't generally take it out on the other person, I'll isolate myself internally and feel desperate, alone and terrified. It's a horrible feeling...thinking back on things that happened before DH and I were married, I must have seemed completely crazy...naked in the bathroom screaming and crying "You don't listen to me! You don't understand me!" While my poor guy desperatly tried to tell me that he was there and he was listening...there's just a point where I would *snap* and feel like everything I was believing wasn't real. I would panic, and either try to run away (girl in underwear running through the street...woohoo!) or hurt myself (DH has had to tackle me to the floor a couple times to keep me from the knives...)

The only people I've had such strong cases with have mostly been close family, or boyfriends. In general, I'm rather shy, unassuming, open and friendly. I guess I'd say I'm sweet and likeable, hehe...

I just see things through a different filter. Since starting counselling last year, I've learned soooo much about myself!! I usually know when to trust what I'm thinking, and when to know that I'm being illogical. I know when to push myself, and when to pull back. I try to set small, realistic goals for myself to avoid becoming overwhelmed. (if I clean, I need to clean *everything*, which takes a long time and is hard, so instead I do *nothing*! I'm working on being able to say, today is vacuuming. I don't really need to scrub the walls/ceiling/everything else, too!)

Therapy is really important for people like helps clarify my thought processes. I get very confused otherwise and I doubt myself constantly. I get to the point where I'm basically disabled and feel disgusted with myself. I once spent 3 hours at the video store trying to decide which movie to rent...because I couldn't just pick one. I had to pick the best one, or what was the point? Finally I ended up just leaving feeling frustrated and angry with myself!

For the past 5 months I've been taking Zoloft. I was initially very opposed to medication, since I wanted to be natural. But I started it because I'm pregnant and I didn't want my anxiety to negatively affect my baby. I'm working hard to be peaceful and keep my balance. When I get upset, it often results in very physical side effects. I get terrible pains in my body, my joints get stiff, I get blisters on my tongue and my gums start bleeding! (weird, I know!) Anyway, I do eventually plan on switching to natural remedies to help with my struggles, but for now the zoloft has been working very well. I haven't had any major "freak-outs" and it's help me control my emotional vulnerability so that I don't get bone-crushingly depressed because I have to fill out a form, my friend didn't reply to my email and my DH gave me an annoyed look (when I spilled something all over the floor...)

My DH has been so terrific with supporting me! I know he loves me more than anything in the world. Sometimes we still struggle, trying to keep the balance between me feeling my opinions are right, and feeling like my opinions are completely worthless, but we're getting there! Life is about learning and growing together!

So yeah...does that give some kind of image of someone with Borderline Personality Disorder? I know I don't write things clearly...I read a funny thing once that said someone with BPD could describe themselves for hours, and you'd still have no real clue what they were like! Of course there are lots of different stories I could tell, and it's hard to stop...but if you want to talk more, just msg me I'm really open-minded and I think we all see the world differently. BPD doesn't define me, it's just another lense colour, same as cultural lenses, gender lenses, etc! We all have challenges. I have a friend who gets very cranky when she's hungry, I know that if she seems terse, it's nothing personal and it's kinda funny. We just get her some food ASAP! My friends know me, and love me. They understand if once in awhile I withdraw from everyone, and I know that they'll be supporting me from afar, even if I don't go to them. And when I get better, they're there waiting to give me a big hug and remind me how much they love me!!

So there it is, the most personal thing I've ever written! It's an accomplishment of sorts!

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#6 of 11 Old 01-24-2009, 06:52 PM
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To pp: I'm glad you are feeling better on Zoloft and with counseling. That is a really big step to take...especially when you have someone pointing out when you may not be thinking clearly. It is interesting how much the black and white thing affects my thinking. I have been working on being less critical of my husband whcih is something I do to make myself feel better. Now that I have stopped trying to prove my superioty I feel I am inferior. I realized that in all of my relationships I either have to feel superior or I feel inferior and worthless. My therapist and I are working on how I can have mutual relationships where neither of us are the good guy or the bad guy but we are equal!! I'm glad you are taking care of yourself during your pg. I refused to be on medicationd during my previous pregnancy and it was a living hell. I am taking Zoloft this time far so good. Good luck!!
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#7 of 11 Old 01-24-2009, 09:23 PM
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Wow Eimichan! I really appreciate you posting your perspective. As someone who has known several people with BPD it's interesting to hear what the otherside might be experiencing.

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#8 of 11 Old 01-25-2009, 11:39 PM
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#9 of 11 Old 01-26-2009, 07:53 PM
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I have heard this is a really good book written by someone with BPD.

Mommy to a wonderfully passionate little one
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#10 of 11 Old 02-05-2009, 12:17 AM
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BPD is a common mental health disorder. Get ahold of books by Marsha Linehan the guru of the Dialectical Behavioural therapy (DBT).
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#11 of 11 Old 04-17-2009, 12:51 AM
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I have clinical depression & just recently my DH & I just learned that it's perhaps a combo of this & BPD that drive my anorexia.

Apparently the answer for me is DBT - I have already worked through the New Harbinger DBT Workbook, but I'm seriously rusty and really never took the stuff to heart. :

Like I said (and say) of the eating disorder, I wouldn't wish it (BPD) on my WORST ENEMY.

My daughter is my inspiration. She doesn't deserve these demons in her life...

SAHM to Chloe (02/28/08) & Samantha (10/06/10)... not quite crunchy - think of us as al dente, finding our way to self-sustainability & full-out crunchy living ... trial and error, one day at a time! 
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