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If you’re clicking on this, you may or may not know what BPD is. You could also be a friend of family member of mine looking for more information. Whatever made you click on this link, it’s nice to have you here. BPD is one of the most highly stigmatised mental health disorders; People can be so quick to judge and make comments that are extremely rude.

You may read this, and some of the stuff you read might raise questions and concerns about myself or someone else you may know. For the record, I am being treated and in therapy. I am very open about this online; In person, it’s extremely difficult to deal with face to face. Please keep in mind that sometimes, life happens. You may feel bad for what I struggle with, or what someone else struggles with. You may also disagree with this disorder and it’s diagnosis.  It is a struggle; A battle to the death. If you have ignorant comments to leave on my blog posts about anything, please refrain from doing so.

Here are some things you should know:





Brief Overview

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a serious mental illness that causes unstable moods, behavior, and relationships. It usually begins during adolescence or early adulthood.

Most people who have BPD suffer from:

  • Problems regulating their emotions and thoughts
  • Impulsive and sometimes reckless behavior
  • Unstable relationships


Did You know

  • BPD affects 5.9% of adults (about 14 million Americans) at some time in their life
  • BPD affects 50% more people than Alzheimer’s disease and nearly as many as schizophrenia and bipolar combined (2.25%).
  • BPD affects 20% of patients admitted to psychiatric hospitals
  • BPD affects 10% of people in outpatient mental health treatment


To be diagnosed with BPD, a person must experience at least five of the following symptoms:

  1. Fear of abandonment
  2. Unstable or changing relationships
  3. Unstable self-image; struggles with identity or sense of self
  4. Impulsive or self-damaging behaviours (e.g., excessive spending, unsafe sex, substance abuse, reckless driving, binge eating).
  5. Suicidal behavior or self-injury
  6. Varied or random mood swings
  7. Constant feelings of worthlessness or sadness
  8. Problems with anger, including frequent loss of temper or physical fights
  9. Stress-related paranoia or loss of contact with reality


Causes of Borderline Personality Disorder

Research on the causes and risk factors for BPD is still in its early stages. However, scientists generally agree that genetic and environmental influences are likely to be involved.

Imaging studies in people with BPD have shown abnormalities in brain structure and function, evidence that biology is a factor.  In people with BPD, more activity than usual has been seen in the parts of the brain that control feeling and expressing emotions.

Certain events during childhood may also play a role in the development of the disorder, such as those involving emotional, physical and sexual abuse. Loss, neglect and bullying may also contribute. The current theory is that some people are more likely to develop BPD due to their biology or genetics and harmful childhood experiences can further increase the risk.



Borderline personality disorder often occurs with other illnesses. This can make it hard to diagnose, especially if symptoms of other illnesses overlap with the BPD symptoms

Women with BPD are more likely to have co-occurring disorders such as major depression, anxiety disorders, substance abuse or eating disorders. In men, BPD is more likely to accompany disorders such as substance abuse or antisocial personality disorder.

According to the NIMH-funded National Comorbidity Survey Replication—the largest national study to date of mental disorders in U.S. adults—about 85 percent of people with BPD also suffer from another mental illness.5

Most of these are listed below, followed by the estimated percent of people with BPD who have them:

  • Major Depressive Disorder – 60%
  • Dysthymia (a chronic type of depression) – 70%
  • Substance abuse – 35%
  • Eating disorders (such as anorexia, bulimia, binge eating) – 25%
  • Bipolar disorder – 15%
  • Antisocial Personality Disorder – 25%
  • Narcissistic Personality Disorder – 25%
  • Self-Injury – 55%-85%


What does the name “Borderline Personality Disorder” mean?

Historically, the term “borderline” has been the subject of much debate. BPD used to be considered on the “borderline” between psychosis and neurosis. The name stuck, even though it doesn’t describe the condition very well and, in fact, may be more harmful than helpful. The term “borderline” also has a history of misuse and prejudice—BPD is a clinical diagnosis, not a judgment.

Current ideas about the condition focus on ongoing patterns of difficulty with self-regulation (the ability to soothe oneself in times of stress) and trouble with emotions, thinking, behaviors, relationships and self-image.  Some people refer to BPD as “Emotional Disregulation.”


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