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Borderline Personality Disorder is a severe mental illness in which the sufferer experiences instability in moods, emotions, relationships, and behavior. Often, the sufferer falls victim to self-injury and other harmful impulses. BPD has a very negative stigma surrounding it, and sufferers may be seen as scary, dangerous, and frustrating, by friends, family, and even their own therapists. However, there is hope and there is support. One day, people will understand.

Please note: Just because you can relate to the above description or any of the posts on here, does not mean you have BPD. There is a lot of overlap with other mental illnesses, and common emotional instability, especially before your 20s, when personality stabilizes.

BPD is NOT something you want. If you think you have it, please see a professional to be sure and to get help. We cannot diagnose you and you cannot diagnose yourself. We will always recommend you see a professional.

This blog relies heavily on submissions, so please submit all you want! :)

FAQ    Getting diagnosed    Suicidal? Self harming?    Under 18    BPD Info & Resources    For friends & family

Anonymous asked: In regards to the DBT handbook, I was just wondering if there was anyone with personal experiences of reading/utilising it. I struggle to communicate how I'm feeling enough to be able to work with how I'm feeling with others and I feel it's something that I need to control by myself but it's never easy. Obviously when something clicks, and I feel hurt or offended it's all down hill but some of what I've read seems really helpful. So just wondering if you would suggest to buy it. Thank you.


Answer:

Hey Anonymous,

It’s great that you’ve checked it out and found parts of it helpful! DBT is the gold standard for therapy for Borderline Personality Disorder, and formal DBT involves using the handbook. I’d definitely recommend it, along with DBTSelfHelp.com (to provide some less clinical perspective and additional links/thoughts) if you’re going to do a self study.

I’ve also been reading a simple, inexpensive e-book called Stop Sabotaging: A 31 Day DBT Challenge to Change Your Life, by the woman who runs HealingFromBPD.org. I’m just running through it quickly right now, but it looks like a nice alternative for something a little less daunting, or maybe to start out with. So that might be another option if you want to give yourself a one month challenge, with both readings and exercises :)

As for how you’re feeling, this is very normal with BPD. It’s common to have difficulty accessing your feelings, and communicate that to others. We have a lot of barriers in the way, due to a number of factors. That doesn’t mean we are impervious to hurt or offense. Best thing to do is tell someone (calmly) if they’ve hurt you, and work to repair any hard feelings. One major component of DBT is Interpersonal Effectiveness, and it sounds like you could benefit from that in your relationships.

You’re on the way to being happier and healthier!

All the best of luck,

~ Stephanie

— 1 year ago with 12 notes
#bpd  #borderline personality disorder  #borderline  #resources  #dbt  #relationships 
gulsumusul asked: Hi there. I just wanted to ask you how can I leave bad thoughts behind. I don't know what to do anymore. Everything hurts, everyone hurts. I went to a therapist and she said : "you should stay here for a couple weeks so we can help you and make you feel better" and I can't talk anyone I know anymore. All of them says "you will be better try to think better things,u try to be happy you are always bad, its enough" and I am tired of this sentences. I tried to kill myself many times. Yet I live. If


Answer:

Hi gulsumusul,

Ugh, don’t I know it. I’m so sorry that you are in so much pain. Everything seems to be full of cheery platitudes that are just “if you think it, you’ll feel it”. Even Tumblr — it can be so depressing to scroll by so-called positive quotes and feel completely invalidated and discouraged.

Unfortunately a lot of traditional therapy is still built on this premise. This is why something like DBT is so revolutionary. Have you looked into DBT, or other forms of therapy shown to work with Borderline Personality Disorder

You can also start practicing it right away by using the DBT handbook and doing the homework yourself. There is DBTSelfHelp.com as well. 

It’s okay to be frustrated by those kinds of sentences. They don’t work very well for us (or many people, honestly) but they sound good in a pretty picture or from a therapist. 

I hope you can find someone in your area to work with who can really help you. Would it be possible to find a therapist who specializes in personality disorders? I don’t know your situation but I’m sure there’s someone who would be able to help better than the ones you’ve been working with. 

In the meantime, here is an assortment of links that may help you:

All the best, and I hope you are able to get the help you need in order to be healthy and happy <3

~ Stephanie

— 1 year ago with 8 notes
#bpd  #borderline personality disorder  #borderline  #therapy  #dbt 
Anonymous asked: Do you have chronic boredom as your symptoms?? Cause I do and it leads to doing even more impulsive things.


Answer:

Hey Anon,

Yes, this is something I’ve experienced, and I know it is common in those with Borderline Personality Disorder. It is exactly what can lead to impulsive behaviours, and learning how to deal with those feelings of emptiness and boredom will help you to avoid the impulsiveness. 

With BPD, everything is a series of ups and downs, and when things are “in the middle”, they can feel utterly boring. I have both BPD and Bipolar I, and when I started stabilizing on medication I thought I was going to go nuts (ha) because things felt so empty and flat, and I wanted to act out even more. 

It’s easy to feel so empty, low, and understimulated that you completely lack the desire to do anything to improve yourself, so you just succumb to going back to bed or an impulsive behaviour. That emptiness is typical for BPD sufferers and still gets me in its grip occasionally. Then I’m facing wasted hours or days or weeks, low mood, and vulnerability to negative emotions.

It’s not like I don’t know there are a million different things I could do with my day: clean up, go for a walk, go to the gym, watch a movie, do work. But instead I just reload Tumblr or get myself emotionally dysregulated.

Are you in therapy, or DBT? Dialectical Behavior Therapy is an extremely valuable toolbox of skills for learning how to:

  • Be more mindful — focusing on one thing in the moment like playing with a pet, going for a walk, or even doing the dishes
  • Do positive activities that you enjoy, and that build a sense of mastery and new skills rather than boredom — learning a musical instrument, working on a project or craft
  • Feel sensations — healthy intense feelings that can take the place of impulsive or self destructive behaviours: a bath with essential oils, holding ice in your hands or a cool shower, looking at art at a museum
  • Take the best possible care of yourself, physically, to be able to lead a more enriched and low-distress life — getting good sleep, eating right, getting exercise

You may want to consider it, or check the Resources page or DBTSelfHelp.com for self study.

I find the best thing to do is a small task, a very small task even, especially that will help you feel like you’ve accomplished something. Wipe the counter. Do 10 minutes of homework. Draw a picture. Put clothes in the washer. Don’t worry about the next thing, just do that one thing for a few minutes and see how you feel. 

I also found this other great blog post on dealing with Borderline Personality Disorder and boredom that you might find useful.

I understand how much boredom sucks. I hope this helps and I wish you luck on avoiding those impulsive behaviours. 

~ Stephanie

— 1 year ago with 16 notes
#bpd  #borderline personality disorder  #borderline  #impulsivity  #dbt  #dbt skills 
Anonymous asked: Is cheating on a signifcant other common in bpd? I was diagnosed with bpd recently and I am looking back at what I have done in other relationships, its kind of embarrassing to admit. Also compulsive lying. Does this all have to do with the impulsiveness and manipulation for attention (when I would lie)?


Answer:

Hi Anonymous,

This is a controversial question. It’s impossible to speak for all of those with Borderline Personality Disorder, but it’s safe to say that infidelity falls under the impulsivity DSM criterion #4 in particular, and two others:

  • Impulsivity in at least two areas that are potentially self-damaging (e.g., spending, sex, substance abuse, reckless driving, binge eating).
  • A pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships characterized by alternating between extremes of idealization and devaluation
  • Chronic feelings of emptiness

Anecdotally, you’ll find a lot of people talking on forums and such about those with BPD cheating on their partners. So yes, it’s likely that BPD sufferers do cheat more than the general population. That doesn’t mean everyone with BPD cheats. There is no hard evidence of this either way, so am just making a casual observation.

People with BPD often have an intense need to feel loved and accepted, along with a lot of ups and downs in their relationships. And, when they are feeling abandoned or rejected, they may engage in impulsive or risky behaviors. This means that they might do things without considering the consequences of their actions, just to “feel better” in the short term. Certainly, infidelity could fall into this category.
(source)

I can speak to my own situation — I am a serial cheater. I’ve even thought about going to S.L.A.A. meetings (Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous) because the impulsive urge is so strong at times and I’ve had myself wrapped up in external relationships that felt like an addiction. In my previous seven and a half year relationship, I cheated probably ten times… got caught a couple of those times and it was horrible. It does feel embarrassing to admit such an impulsive and damaging behaviour, and I’ve only recently come to terms with it. I also have Bipolar disorder, which makes things complicated since I get hypersexual when I am trending towards mania.

Try not to think of it as manipulation for attention, even though it is easy for us and others to see it that way. We have a mental illness. There is a desperate need to fill that empty void, and cheating can be triggered by the slightest feelings of abandonment. It’s also a distraction from emotional pain. Also the intense feelings we get from new relationships acts exactly like a drug, making it a habit that’s hard to break. The lying is just a consequence of the cheating, but it makes things worse.

Are you in therapy of some kind? Your therapist will have heard it all, and I hope you can find the courage (or maybe already have!) to discuss this with him/her. The cheating won’t go away on its own. It takes hard work to recover, and you need to deal with the root cause of BPD in general in order to address the cheating.

Relationships are probably difficult for you right now and I hope that you can find some peace with this issue in the meantime. Just try to be as honest as you can with your partner in the early stages of flirtation (or whatever it is that starts things rolling). That’s the only thing that’s helped me stay true — being able to say “hey, I flirted a bit too much with so and so and things started heading in that direction, but I did/would like to stop”. That may sound difficult but if your partner knows you struggle with this, the communication is going to be better all around.

Good luck,

~ Stephanie

— 1 year ago with 15 notes
#bpd  #borderline personality disorder  #borderline  #mental illness  #relationships  #impulsivity 
Self-Harm or No Self-Harm: Is Borderline the Problem?

tatteredsheets:

Controversy:  
Anyone who self-harms probably has Borderline Personality Disorder.
And.
All people with Borderline Personality Disorder self-harm.

False and false.


Cutting.
Burning.
Hitting.
Banging.
Pulling.
Scratching.
Any Self- harm is a way to release emotional pain.
It’s a way to gain a sense of control over your life.
It’s a way to punish.
It’s a way to remind yourself that you’re living.
It’s a way to keep yourself going.
Yes, it can be a cry for attention.
It can also be an aesthetic art (scarification).
Any of these, and more, can be your reason and you might or might not have BPD.


With the exception of the Scarification as an aesthetic option, using self-harm as a means of coping with something probably does indicate some turmoil in the mental health arena.

From what I’m told, it’s not a “normal” way of coping.
And sometimes yes, it’s not so much about coping, as a cry for attention made obvious for everyone to see.

Then there are those of us that use self-harm for very meaningful reasons when it feels necessary for us.

By meaningful I don’t mean it is necessarily healthy, or that the behavior should be approved of, but to us there is a very valid reason for it at the time.

I’ve personally known people who self-harm that were diagnosed Bipolar, Major Depressive, General Anxiety Disorder, PTSD, DID, Other PD’s, Obsessive-Compulsive, and many that had no diagnosis at all.

There are still more personality disorders and mental health disorders that could lead to self-mutilating behavior as well.  

Many others might assume that you are Borderline by how you behave who have never self-harmed at all.
At least not in the way that is meant by the diagnostic criteria.

There are 9 diagnostic criteria to qualify for Borderline Personality Disorder.
Self-harm and self-mutilating behaviors is only 1, one, of those criteria.

That still leaves many combinations, and a lot of options open for qualification without cause for self-harm.

Drugs and alcohol can be argued as self-harming behavior, but those fall into their own category under the diagnostic criteria.

Everyone who self-injures isn’t Borderline, and everyone that is Borderline does not always self-injure.  

While it may be a symptom of Borderline Personality Disorder, that does not rule out the possibility that it can occur with other people as well.

— 1 year ago with 16 notes
#borderline personality disorder  #bpd  #borderline  #self harm 
underlyingtransitions asked: I keep a journal. And today I took a long walk and appreciated the trees and sky. It was realllllly calming :) I've been doing talk therapy a while so that's been working. And I get homework to do. Thanks for the additional links. And I've managed my need for self harm. Since last year. It still comes up but I can control it now. I was first diagnosed with depression then bipolar then dysthymia and today borderline. It was a huge shock. Then I just knew I wanted to be better. Thank you.


Answer:

Davia, we could all learn a lot from you :) Thanks for the follow up.

It gets better. Borderline Personality Disorder isn’t seen as the hopeless diagnosis as it used to be. With willingness and treatment, most of us do recover and no longer meet the criteria for BPD after a few years.

xoxo

— 1 year ago with 3 notes
#bpd  #borderline personality disorder  #borderline  #diagnosis  #therapy  #mental illness 
underlyingtransitions asked: I just got diagnosed with BPD today. And I'm not sure what to do to heal myself. But for the first time in my life i want to help myself recover. I want recovery. Any suggestions ?


Answer:

Hi Davia, 

Thanks for writing. It is so great that you are dedicated to recovery. That is the first step — willingness to do what it takes to get better. I won’t say that you’re halfway there, but you’ve made a very big step. It can be a rollercoaster.

I assume you were diagnosed by a psychiatrist, psychologist, or therapist? Are you seeing someone for talk therapy? This is the most important thing for recovery, making sure that you are talking to someone regularly and managing your symptoms and any urges for self harm and the like. 

Educate yourself! Check out the Resources page and get a book or two. It’s worth it rather than only browsing around online for info, which can be outdated, negative, and just completely incorrect.

Did he or she recommend any course of treatment, such as Dialectic Behavioral Therapy or medication? DBT is the most proven form of treatment for BPD, and involves weekly group sessions with homework. If this is available to you, I would highly recommend it. If not, there are books (see the resources page) for working through DBT yourself, and dbtselfhelp.com.

I noticed from your blog that you are into books and writing and nature. Do you  keep a journal? These are all wonderful interests and can help keep you mindful (an important DBT and life skill). Taking a walk and touching the leaves can calm a distressing situation, and writing your thoughts down can diffuse emotional dysregulation. 

I wish you the best on your path to recovery, and good luck!

~ Stephanie

— 1 year ago with 3 notes
#borderline personality disorder  #bpd  #borderline  #DBT  #therapy  #diagnosis  #mental illness 
Question

I am struggling w my intense urge to rush into a relationship I keep thinking to myself that I am in love with with this one guy but I don’t know because I’ve felt so in love before and then began hating the person just as intensely within a short span of time (few weeks). I can never trust how I feel toward someone and I always feel really lonely unless I am in a relationship..it doesn’t matter how many friends I have it’s not enough I don’t feel satisfied without an intensely intimate relationship.

I always am in a relationship but I had a recent breakup due to my bpd the guy couldn’t handle it anymore :\ I now feel weird without a relationship. I feel like “what’s wrong w me that I can’t have a lasting relationship” I think I’m a fantastic girlfriend and I’m really nice to everyone I try my best to be honest, helpful, and loving. idk how to get rid of this craving to be entangled with someone :( I also haven’t had therapy in a little while but am meeting w a new therapist tomorrow.

Answer:

Hi Anonymous,

This is definitely BPD behaviour so you are in good company with the rest of us. Those with Borderline Personality Disorder feel things very strongly — the good and the bad. That’s why you and your partner feel such intense emotions.

Splitting is something that’s extremely common to those with BPD:

“Splitting” is a term that describes difficulty with the ability to hold opposing thoughts, feelings, or beliefs about oneself or others. In other words, positive and negative attributes of a person are not joined together into a cohesive set of beliefs.

Splitting is very common in people with borderline personality disorder (BPD), and it leads people with BPD to view others and themselves in “all or nothing” terms. For example, a person with BPD may view one family member as always “good” and another as always “bad.” Or, a person with BPD may see themselves as “good” one minute, but shift to seeing themselves as all “bad” or even evil the next.

Because of splitting, it is difficult for individuals with BPD to recognize that “good” people sometimes do things imperfectly or make mistakes. The experience of splitting is very confusing and frustrating for people with BPD and their loved ones. Splitting can interfere with relationships and work life, and can lead to intense anger and self-destructive behaviors.

(source)

It sounds like this is what’s happening in the first part of your question.

It’s also very common to crave this kind of enmeshment. Those with BPD have a very shaky sense of self, and this can lead to the need for a very close relationship with another, in order to feel like a “whole” person. I’m sure you are a fantastic girlfriend :) But with BPD, it’s going to take some work in order to make it so that you can have healthy, lasting relationships without entanglement.

The good news is that with dedicated therapy, these behaviours will get better. I’m very glad you’re seeing a therapist this week and I hope it goes well. 

All the best,

~ Stephanie

— 1 year ago with 14 notes
#bpd  #borderline  #borderline personality disorder  #splitting  #relationships  #submission