4 Things to Remember When You Have BPD
Having a diagnosis of borderline personality disorder (BPD) can be really challenging at times. Not only is it tough having intense emotions, difficulties with self-criticism and near-constant fear of abandonment, but the condition is still shrouded in misunderstandings and misrepresentation. I have found it beneficial to remind myself of the following four things and wanted to share them in case they help you.
1. You’re Not Attention-Seeking
People with BPD have emotions that rise very quickly and feel very strong. As a result, people with this condition can become extremely distressed in a matter of seconds. When someone with BPD is upset, it's because they are genuinely distressed and struggling to cope with those feelings. Everyone deserves to have their distress listened to, respected, validated and believed. You're not deliberately "being dramatic," you're an individual trying to manage an incredibly painful mental health condition.
2. You Are Lovable
Many people with a BPD diagnosis have experienced trauma and chronic invalidation which can lead to feeling as though you are "too much," "too sensitive" or '"oo difficult to love." Furthermore, it seems quite common for people with this condition to be in abusive relationships in which they are told over and over that their emotions are wrong. One thing to remember if you have BPD is that it’s not your fault you’re struggling. It’s not a personality flaw or a failure on your part, but rather a response to many complex factors which happened outside of your control. You are likely to have numerous lovable traits. I have noticed that people with BPD tend to be highly empathetic, caring, creative, fun and generous, for example.
3. Don't Believe Everything You Read
The last time I saw my psychiatrist she acknowledged that searching online (as well as in books) for information about BPD can have devastating consequences. There are numerous websites and online videos depicting people with this condition as abusers, monsters and bullies. Additionally, some books and research papers portray people with BPD as helpless, unable to feel better, vengeful or vindictive. Whilst depression and some anxiety disorders are becoming increasingly more understood and better represented, it is taking time for personality disorders to receive the same level of understanding.
4. Borderline Personality Disorder Is Treatable
The pain can get better and the condition can be well managed, even to the point that a person no longer meets the diagnostic criteria. There are a number of therapies and treatments that people use for BPD such as dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and mentalization-based therapy (MBT). Many people use art therapies, activities such as yoga and spending time in nature as a means of healing. If you ever hear the myth that people with this condition are untreatable, then please know that this view is outdated and has been proven wrong. (More on borderline personality disorder treatment here.)
I hope you found these things to remember about borderline personality disorder helpful. Is there anything you would like to add to your own list? Share your thoughts in the comments.
Cappuccino, R. (2019, October 23). 4 Things to Remember When You Have BPD, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, February 26 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/borderline/2019/10/4-things-to-remember-when-you-have-bpd