According to NBC News, approximately 1 in 5 young Americans suffers from a personality disorder. Personality disorders are often characterized by rigid and unhealthy patterns of thinking, functioning, and behaving. Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder, bipolar personality disorder, and borderline personality disorder are just a few disorders that many have heard of. Understanding the diverse types of personality disorders and getting an official diagnosis from a licensed health professional is the best way to determine if you suffer from borderline personality disorder. Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is characterized by the following:
- Having an unstable or dysfunctional self-image
- Feelings of isolation, boredom, or emptiness
- Having trouble empathizing for others
- A history of unstable relationships
- A persistent fear of abandonment or rejection
- Intense, highly changeable moods that last from a few days to a few hours
- Strong feelings of anxiety, worry, and depression
- Unstable career plans, goals, or aspirations
- Impulsivity, self-destruction and other dangerous behaviors
Approximately 80% of people who have this disorder display suicidal behaviors, according to Psycom, an online resource that provides a multitude of information on various mental health conditions. Psychology Today explains that people who have BPD are often considered to be at the “border” of psychosis and neurosis, and have difficulties regulating emotion. BPD can lead people to hospitalization if untreated. If a person is experiencing a bad mood swing, they will often not be able to remember what the “good” mood swing felt like. If you suffer from a number of the symptoms mentioned above, you may suffer from borderline personality disorder.
While BPD can cause much instability and destruction in someone’s life, this does not mean that a person can’t learn to manage their symptoms and lead a happy, productive life. The National Alliance on Mental Health has identified psychotherapy as a very effective form of treatment for those who suffer from BPD. Psychotherapy may consist of dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), which focuses on teaching coping skills to combat destructive urges, regulate emotions, and improve relationships. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) helps change negative patterns of thinking and may also occur in therapy. Mentalization-based therapy (MBT) teaches people to become more aware of their internal states and can help people develop empathy.
If you suffer from BPD, seek a therapist today. There are so many effective tools that you can use to help manage your symptoms and make daily life more enjoyable. Having this disorder does not mean it’s the end of your life. There are so many people ready to help you work through your symptoms. Take that first step and call someone today.
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