Signs that Borderline Personality Disorder is Ruining Your Life
Most everyone harbors some degree of emotional sensitivity when it comes to how others treat them and the opinions others have towards them. For someone with borderline personality disorder, this sensitivity takes an extreme form, greatly affecting his or her ability to cope with day-in, day-out interactions with others.
According to the U. S. Department of Health & Human Services, an estimated 18 million Americans will develop symptoms of borderline personality disorder at some point in their lifetimes. Those affected suffer a range of consequences from the thoughts, emotions and behaviors this condition incites. In effect, the earlier you can spot signs of borderline personality in your life the easier it is to treat.
Features of Borderline Personality
What most characterizes borderline personality disorder, or BPD, lies in a tendency to base one’s sense of self and self-worth on the reactions and emotions of others. This reactionary state, combined with an extreme level of sensitivity, leaves a person at the mercy of his or her surrounding environment.
According to the U. S. National Library of Medicine, this degree of emotional dysfunction interferes with most every aspect of person’s life experience, including:
- His or her ability to “read” or correctly interpret what others say and do
- Incites inappropriate behaviors
- Distorts a person’s sense of identity
- Makes it difficult to develop and maintain relationships with others
People with borderline personality disorder also lean more so towards a negative affect in terms of interpreting situations from a negative standpoint rather than a positive one. This disposition predisposes a person to negative mood states where feelings of fear, sadness and/or anger predominate. These features combined make for highly unpredictable behaviors where emotional outbursts can develop at any given time
Signs of Borderline Personality Disorder
Like any form of personality disorder, signs of borderline personality disorder appear as patterns of behavior that have adverse effects on a person’s quality of life in general. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, someone affected by borderline personality disorder will exhibit five or more of the following signs:
- Impulsive and even dangerous behaviors, such as casual sexual encounters or reckless driving
- Relationships wrought with turmoil
- Persistent feelings of emptiness and overall boredom
- Volatile emotional displays in response to feelings of abandonment
- Suicidal tendencies and self-harming behaviors such as cutting
- Inability to control feelings of anger
- A changing or warped self-image
- Feeling disconnected from self
Effects on Daily Life
It doesn’t take long before symptoms of borderline personality disorder start to interfere with major life areas making it all but impossible to function effectively in daily life. The extreme emotional shifts a person experiences makes holding down a job or maintaining an intimate relationship difficult to say the least.
Likewise, the tendency towards erratic, unpredictable and dangerous behaviors can easily cause problems with the law. As some of the more extreme symptoms of BPD may well warrant hospitalization, this condition only grows progressively after so many hospitalization episodes.
Considering the degree of dysfunction that comes with borderline personality disorder, the need for treatment is essential in terms of a person having any chance at living a stable, normal life. While psychotherapy can work wonders in helping BDP sufferers better manage their thinking, emotions and behaviors, oftentimes medication therapy may be needed to help stabilize one’s emotional state.
If you or someone you know struggles with borderline personality disorder and have questions about available treatment options, please feel free to call our toll-free helpline at to speak with one of our phone counselors.