What is Borderline Personality Disorder?

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What is Borderline Personality Disorder?

Borderline personality disorder is a personality disorder that impacts the way you view yourself and others. Often it coexists with very strong fear of being alone or abandoned. Symptoms include intense mood swings, impulsive behavior, violent outbursts, volatility in relationships with others, aggressive behavior, low self-worth, frantic attempts to hold on to those close to you, self-harm, suicidal thoughts/ideation, paranoia, and psychosis.

It is easy to confuse borderline personality disorder with other disorders like bipolar disorder, as symptoms often overlap. One of the major differences between bipolar and borderline personality disorder is the intense fear of rejection and abandonment associated with borderline personality disorder.

There is a strong correlation between childhood emotional neglect and abuse and borderline personality disorder. Often people who have borderline personality disorder did not learn how to process emotions in a healthy way growing up. Many may have had their emotions either ignored or punished in childhood. This may have led them to repress emotions and expressions of their personal identity. This repression is correlated strongly with the development of borderline personality disorder. Beyond these environmental factors there are also biological factors in the development of borderline personality disorder.

Psychotherapy, including cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy, are commonly used to treat borderline personality disorder. There are no medications that are currently known to be effective in treating borderline personality disorder.

Comorbid diagnoses of borderline personality disorder with other disorders like clinical depression and bipolar disorder are quite common.

For more information about borderline personality disorder visit Mental Health America’s website.