Recognize the Signs

August 13, 2010

Here are some signs that a person may have Borderline Personality Disorder:

  • cutting, self-mutilation
  • drug addiction, alcoholism
  • reckless driving
  • agitated physical and mental state
  • angry outbursts “from out of the blue”
  • fear of impending disaster
  • episodes of bizarre thinking
  • occasional marked breaks with reality that usually resolve spontaneously
  • sexual excesses
  • unsafe sexual behavior
  • changes in sexual identity or gender
  • confusion
  • financial irresponsibility
  • hypochondria (to keep others empathetic)

The following are symptoms from the bible of psych evaluation, DMS-IV. The DMS-IV requires five or more of the following symptoms be present in order to diagnose BPD:

  • going to any lengths to escape abandonment
  • poor, unstable interpersonal relationships
  • uncontrollable anger
  • feelings of boredom, emptiness, loneliness
  • paranoid thoughts (temporary and stress-related)
  • intense moods or depression that can last for days
  • bizarre, self-destructive actions such as substance abuse
  • sexual confusion and excess
  • reckless driving
  • self-mutilation or suicidal thoughts or threats

This is just a guideline. If you suspect you have BPD, then you need to be diagnosed and treated by a BPD specialist (preferably one that also specializes in DBT treatment). No ordinary therapist will do. This is not your average disorder. This is a quote from the above source:

They generally attempt the same ineffective or failed strategies over and over, expecting different results, but the results are always the same.

I thought it was important to note that BPs are always repeating failed patterns. In order to get better, they need to learn how to break those patterns. Instead of superficial quick-fixes, they need to find real solutions. Instead of putting out fires when they pop up, they need to learn to get to the root of all their problems- BPD.

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