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Borderline personality disorder: Cause and Therapy

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is an environmentally aquired disorder. It's nurture, not nature, that causes it. BPD is the worst manifestation of post traumatic stress syndrome: Borderliners have received less love during childhood than the absolute minimum required to avoid serious, permanent brain damage.

Borderliners are people with unhealed third degree burns to their emotional system. This means that a borderliner is in a constant state of emotional suffering of varying intensity. This suffering is so great and the societal and personal consequences of their peculiar character are so severe, that about one in ten borderliners eventually commits suicide. The emotional pain suffered by a borderliner is such that they may be willing to exchange their predicament with a terminal cancer patient, as long as they would be emotionally "whole". In essence, the self-aware borderliner can't imagine a greater pain. Sadly, the borderliner, even when given genuine affection, usually feels uncomfortable with it or experiences it as insincere.

BPD improves with age

Borderliners' wide spectrum of problems can't be blamed on bad genes, narcissism or carelessness. They often don't finish an education, hold a job or stay in a relationship - and there is nothing they can do about it. The borderliner's psyche is that of an emotionally shell-shocked person. If you were to throw a firecracker at the heels of a person with a war trauma, he'll take cover, initially, while you'd better beat a hasty retreat or experience his fury. No matter how often you tell a person with BPD to "just forget about the past, chill out and start enjoying life" - this won't work. A borderliner's efforts to ignore the problem, apply himself and be like a normal person remain fruitless, because the borderliner is not just in a "state of mind". We can make the analogy that it is more a hardware problem than a software problem. As a child, the emotional processing part of the borderliners' brain did not develop properly. Some parts were undeveloped and certain coping- and defence mechanisms became overdeveloped. It is impossible to fully rewire those neuronal pathways, but things can in fact be done to slowly revert some of the damage. And borderliners mellow with age as well.

BPD is extremely difficult to treat because the aberrant neural pathways were formed in early childhood and reinforced for years afterward, in the child's most sensitive formative period. These abnormalities are real and visible in brain scans - both of brain stucture and activity. We can't really speak of abnormalities for they likely are sanity- and even life-preserving coping mechanisms that have proven beneficial to the borderliner as the target of abuse. To the pre-borderline child, the environment appears chronically life-threatening and there is no help available (on the contrary) from the family. These survival mechanisms cope with the abuse either actively (agressive-defensive behavior) or passively (social withdrawal and emotional coping strategies such as the creation of a fantasy world in which the borderliner is a loved and respected hero). In the borderliner, some important emotional neuronal pathways have never formed, such as feeling comfortable when given affection, and the ability to express their own desire for closeness. Whereas schizoids and psychopaths are usually content with their personality disorders and in fact consider "normals" to be impaired by their emotions or concience, borderliners are constantly aware of their "strangeness". They are unhappy misfits. They are hypersensitive, badly control their emotions and may have feelings of inferiority. And if you'd ask a borderliner: "What makes you happy", they'd likely say: "Nothing, really". Most borderliners don't have the ability to be truly happy, not even for a short while.

Essentially, BPD is what happens to a person when you spend years mentally and physically torturing them from early childhood. The torture consists at least in withholding all physical and verbal expressions of love, and often it there is the active component of telling the child that he is hated and worthless. Broken promises, emotional neglect and verbal abuse. Often, threats are made of various types, such as to harm or kill the child or expel it from the house. Borderliners often were regularly beaten or even sexually abused and generally have been treated without a modicum of emotional support or even a basic respect for them as a human being with feelings. The most irrepairable damage, the most vicious torture of all is the near-total absence of parental closeness. Instead there is rude verbal and physical rejection of the infant, resulting in the absence of any kind of bonding. This leaves severe, permanent scars and is perhaps the main cause of BPD. A classic example of the background and behavior of a person with BPD is here. Many ignorant comments by armchair psychologists, blaming the victim, assuming it's all a trivially solved attitude problem of a selfish and lazy narcissist, instead of severe brain damage caused by years of extreme child abuse.

Ironically, the overwhelming underlying cause for such a childhood is personality disorders in their parents. An example would be a passive father who for some reason (drug addiction, illness, disability) doesn't participate in the childrearing an overbearing, highly controlling mother with Aspergers syndrome. Some parents treat the child as an annoying object they are stuck with, a frustrating entity with unfortunately a mind of its own. This sometimes rebellious, attention-craving little person should be turned into an obedient drone who follows strict schedules and procedures, robbing it of everything that makes it a person. Privacy is denied. Myriads of rules and restrictions are imposed and punishments inflicted at the slightest infraction. Any form of affection is withheld. Physical contact is taboo, except when it can't be avoided, and then it is done with coarse indifference or annoyed hostility. Emotional closeness is zero. The child will feel under permanent threat and constant surveillance. It comes to realize it has no rights, only duties. It is denied its basic humanity. There is no refuge. No alternative ways of receiving or expressing affection are available. The infant grows up a feral child concerning matters to do with love. To ward off insanity, coping mechanisms develop. The borderliner withdraws in solitary hobbies and lying becomes second nature, such as not to provoke anger in people with power over him. Petty theft such as shoplifting occurs as a surrogate for "receiving something nice". The child retracts into fantasy world of its own making in which it is the center of positive attention, admired and respected by all. Terrible nightmares are common, such as dreams in which the child is chased and killed by a parent.

Borderliners need love and want to give it, too

Borderliners are misunderstood. Some call them "emotional vampires", a bottomless pit for love, a one-way street, unable to reciprocate on affection, using people for temporary relief and discarding them as used bubble gum. The borderline person comes across that way due to a total lack of love throughout their entire childhood. It should not come as a surprise that borderliners have one gigantic need: The need to feel loved. No person has a greater need for genuine affection than the borderliner. A borderliner needs love like a person with scurvy needs vitamin C. And they desperately want to give themselves to those they feel affection for - but they often have great difficulty doing so. Borderliners are so emotionally insecure that it is easy to hurt them. And because they have never experienced the safety of the knowledge of being loved, they'll "split" you one way or the other: They will immediately and often permanently reclassify you from "friendly" to "hostile", and a small perceived slight can terminate a relationship before it had a chance to come to fruition.

This oversensitive black-and-white thinking may make borderliners look "needy", but that would be oversimplification. Their sense of belonging in the relationship need regular reinforcement in the form of tenderly expressed physical affection and a genuine interest in, and respect of their persona. If that condition is fulfilled, they can become loyal partners, even when things aren't always perfect in the relationship. Borderliners do very badly with people who make careless hurtful remarks or who are unable to regularly express affection. A borderliner's fragile sense of acceptance easily becomes a feeling of being a tolerated burden. He will never again want to be an undesirable element and thus will crudely cancel a relationship in which he is hurt once too often.

Self-treating Borderline Personality Disorder

There are ways in which the borderliner can undo a little of the damage inflicted to him. The best thing a borderliner can do to partially heal himself is to be around people who give him the feeling of being loved and accepted. The more a borderliner experiences affection, the more often he is treated kindly, the more self esteem and confidence is built up. The fragile self is slowly bolstered and it becomes possible to see people as more colorful entities than merely black and white, good or bad, loving or indifferent.

Such a therapy is very hard to attain. I know someone - a classical case of Borderline Personality - who was seriously contemplating suicide. During a long phone conversation I suggested him to go on a long holiday instead. He ended up quitting his job, selling most of his belongings and embarking on a long journey of working his way around the world. Originally an office worker, he held various more glamorous jobs such as windsurfing instructor and he had many flings and short relationships. This way, he learnt that he could be a desirable, respected, loved person. He was significantly "deprogrammed" after years of living that way. His partners initially suffered the consequences of dealing with an emotional invalid, but his travels eventually boosted his self confidence and made relatively stable love relationships possible for him. The likelihood of accelerated improvement is increased when the borderliner understands what it is that ails him. But the severest of cases can sometimes be referred to as "damaged goods" and their emotional scars heal slowly.

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1.  Shellj68    Wednesday, November 30, 2011

sorry but i suffer from bpd, and disagree with some of the things said here. not all borderlines have been abused as children. misunderstood or invalidated yes, but not always an insidious form of abuse has taken place. i am able to give myself, too completely, to a lover, and take on that person because i have no 'sense of self'. we actually create the demise of our own relationships, because we are so clingy, jealous, suspicious and needy, that it drives away our loved ones. our fears of abandonment are real, and we end up making our own fears our reality.. i believe with dbt, and the right therapists plus medication to help through this time, that we can recover. we are damaged goods, but we don't always have to be.. i have hope of that, as i am a sufferer. i am being taught dialectical behaviour therapy from a woman who has been doing it for 15yrs, and is able to tell us of many many success stories of people who have overcome our illness. that gives me hope and the strength and determination to carry on. i think if we believed for one minute that there was no way out for us, the number of suicides would be a lot more than the 1 in 10.. to other sufferers, seek the answers you need, never give up, and i do believe that if we continue fighting, we can win.. peace to all.

2.  destal7    Thursday, February 16, 2012

As a former sufferer of BPS (Borderline Personality Disorder), I can relate to most of what you've stated. I was the classic type, diagnosed in my twenties (although I had it since my teens) and now recovering in my late 40's.

It should be noted, however, that it doesn't take nearly as much childhood trauma and abuse to cause BPS as you suggest. My childhood was abusive and painful, but I did have relatives (grandparents) who were there for me. Even my mother was, on limited occasions, loving and kind. But it's all relative .... I was a highly intuitive and inquisitive child who was often ridiculed, insulted and treated with contempt. Other children might have reacted differently and even experienced worse situations without significant emotional damage. But I was more sensitive than my sibling and needed extra guidance, support and love. I was also very aware and perceptive at an early age (1-2 yrs. old). Maybe that's why some things affected me more deeply.

3.  Chelsie    Thursday, June 14, 2012

I enjoyed this post and found it very informative and insightful in helping people understand bpd. The only thing I will object to is the last sentence; "But they are damaged goods and they will always be". Wtf?? Maybe you dated a bpd and have resentment towards them? I dont think anyone should be called "damaged goods' because they are in essence being compared to an object. Secondly, there is definitely a chance for recovery for many people with bpd. I am 28 and I have found that I can function well if I dont date. For now I think its ok...

4.  Sarah Vaughter    Thursday, June 14, 2012

Thank you for your comment.

"Damaged goods" is a common expression for someone who has been irrepairably hurt by others.



"Someone who was once healthy and/or normal but isn't anymore due to unfortunate, traumatic events in his/her life (i.e. physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, drug abuse.."

I am not going to apologize for using this expression, because this expression is spot-on, otherwise the person would not have BPD. BPD is a very damaging personality disorder, and I think the is sufficient evidence that it is caused by childhood emotional neglect. Hence, if you have BPD, you are "damaged goods" as per the expression. It's tough and it's unfair but it's true.

As to "Maybe you dated a bpd and have resentment towards them?": I never write articles without doing my homework on it first. This site has been up for years, and there are only a few dozen articles on it. Why? Becuase I never voice an uninformed opinion. As to my experiences with BPD: My husband dated a borderliner. Yes, I have a classic case of BPD myself. As someone with many decades of experience having Borderline Personality Disorder, seeing how I had trouble working my way through the educational system, my issues with authority, my black/white splitting behavior, how I never held a job for long and especially seeing how I hurt the people I love, I thought it was a good idea writing an article from the point of view of someone who was a particularly severe case in her youth and still is a borderliner - albeit much less, since time shaves off the rough edges of BPD - especially when the person has insight into her condition.

I think the key to strong improvement with BPD is self-insight and exposure to positive people-experiences. And just to be absolutely clear about that my view is on "borderliners": I have the greatest pity on them in the world, because it is hell. It really is hell, because as I said,I think it is caused by the near-total absence of love during childhood, and the consequences are a big hole in that part of the personality. There is a reason for borderliners' very high suicide rate.

5.  Thhii    Monday, July 2, 2012

I agree with Chelsie. Maybe you didn't mean it negatively but I think the phrase "damaged goods" carries a very strong negative emotional connotation in our society. So I could see that someone would take offense at the statement that they are and will always be "damaged goods". Maybe in a very literal, dictionary definition sense it is true, but I think that phrasing is not necessarily the most sensitive choice. I mean you could technically tell people with Schizophrenia that they are and will always be "insane", but I think that might upset many people because of the very negative connotation of the word "insane". I would say the same situation applies here.

6.  Sarah Vaughter    Monday, July 2, 2012

I understand that it is painful for someone with BPD to receive an extra kicking while lying down by me calling them (ourselves!) "damaged goods".

However my point is that someone with severe BPD is not able to maintain a healthy relationship with a partner. It just won't work until the BPD has mellowed.

So I stand by the "damaged goods" terminology. When visiting self-help forums for spouses of people with BPD, one can read desperate pleas for help, only to be told that there is little to no hope. I agree with that. Only when the "borderliner" has self-insight and works hard on him/herself, and often only when the partner is particularly impervious to the borderline behavior, and/or only when the "borderliner" has aged to the point where the condition became less pronounced, will it be realistic to be able to expect that a healthy, lasting partnership can occur.

That's just my opinion. BPD is a terrible, terrible mental disorder that makes it in many or even cases impossible to achieve a career, follow through with an advanced education or maintain a healthy, long-lasting relationship. I think "damaged goods" is putting it mildly. The suicide rate amongst borderliners is sky-high and we can only guess about the murder rate.

7.  Sweetmelissa3576    Thursday, July 26, 2012

I was severly physically, sexually, and psychologically abused and neglected my entire childhood. Ive been diagnosed with Bipolar, Borderline Personality, polysubstance abuse, OCD, ADHD, PTSD, eating disorder, anxiety disorder, sleeping disorder, and fibromyalgia, I think "damaged goods" is the right words. Thats exactly how I feel, like damaged goods!

8.  BPD101    Tuesday, August 14, 2012

This is completely and utterly wrong. You have painted a picture of bpd that doesn't exist. Not everyone who suffers from bpd had a traumatic childhood. There are some that have a bad childhood and there are some who have an amazing childhood and loving parents and still have bpd.

It is due to ignorant fools like the author of this article that bpd's don't tell others they have this illness. It is due to people like you that bpd's suffer in silence and eventually kill themselves.

This is a disgraceful article and should be removed immediatley.

9.  Sarah Vaughter    Wednesday, August 15, 2012

I wrote the article you want removed.

Fortunately for me and BPD sufferers in general, I am also the owner of this website, so my article stays, and I permit you to spew your hatred against me here, calling me an ignorant fool instead of offering arguments of substance.

Without backing up any of your claims, you state that not everyone with BPD had a traumatic childhood. Instead of believing you on your word, I ask you to consider an alternative explanation: That their diagnosis is simply wrong. Shrinks are known to make mistakes. Some go further and say that the entirety of Psychology is a pseudoscience and most of Psychiatry is a criminal racket intended to sell drugs. I am one of those.

I understand that there are a lot of parents with BPD-afflicted children that feel attacked by my article. I appear to be laying the "guilt" and "responsibility" with them. However, things are not that black and white. My own mother was a high-functioning autist, she had a very severe form of Aspergers and was not able to give love - only beatings and threats. Can she be blamed? Hardly. She suffered from a severe personality disorder herself. My father was dependent on her and afraid of her, and, being an epileptic, he was medicated with Valium, Librium etc. to such an extent that he did not involve himself in the upbringing of the children at all.

If you feel the need to defend yourself or attack me, you need something called an "argument". "Arguments" are not "You are an ingorant fool, the article is a disgrace and should be removed immediatley [sic]" but you need to prove your assertion that there are a significant percentage of people who score high for BPD and who had a loving childhood. Based on my study of the available literature (sorry, not all my postings contain lists of literature references) I think they do not exist. Merely claiming "I have a child with BPD and I loved him dearly" is not sufficient evidence for your assertion.

I know I'm being controversial, I know I did not offer solid proof for my own claim as to the cause of Borderline Personality Disorder, but since the enormous stake parents have in attacking the messenger, ad-hominems are particularly suspicious, not to mention the possibility of denial from the side of the patient, given the natural propensity to respect and even love one's parents.

As to your accusation of me driving my fellow borderliners into suicide: I think it is the opposite. When the cause of a problem is found, we can start working on both prevention and effective therapies. Increased insight can never be harmful. I offered suggestions as to how borderliners could make a start healing themselves, based on my own experiences.

Using your own terminology: You are a disgraceful commenter and your reaction should never have been written. However, I let it stand as an example of agressive denialism, not just denial of the cause of BPD but also the denial of justice for us BPD folks: The public recognition that children have not been, and still are not sufficiently protected against a loveless upbringing. With "loveless" I do not mean the parent(s) did not love the child. I mean that the child did not experience enough of that love to prevent BPD developing,

10.  deepdoc    Wednesday, September 5, 2012

As a practicing psychologist for 30 years, I can attest to the accuracy of this article on BPD. Furthermore, I have never seen a patient with a mood or personality disorder that couldn't be traced back to childhood and the unconscious effects of the parents' own issues. In other words, I have never seen a presenting problem that could not be accounted for in the patient's history, even though it might not be apparent without deeper investigation. Many people idealize their parents which is a survival/coping skill in childhood. Children will go to the ends of the earth to protect their parents and the greater the idealization, the greater the pathology in the parents.

It's important to keep in mind that no one is to blame. If we investigate the parents' childhoods deeply enough, we would find that they were affected by their own parents' unresolved unconscious conflicts. Healing involves understanding causes of the damage, not blaming anyone for it.

11.  Sarah Vaughter    Friday, September 7, 2012

I now think my article is a bit harsh, more than a year after I wrote it. I have come to new insights into my own flaws. I had blamed them previously all on my BPD, but now I understand that most of my quirks in that regard in fact stem from Aspergers. BPD aggavates certain aspects of Aspergers and vice versa.

I now think that BPD poises much less of a social-interaction problem than Aspergers, and that BPD also has much better prospects of "getting less" with age compared to Aspergers. I only recently fully realized that I am a classic Aspie, and it explains a lot of things from my childhood that I previously blamed on BPD, for lack of an alternative.

My self-analysis is an ongoing project and I certainly am not an expert (yet ;-)

12.  kaydmac    Saturday, October 6, 2012

You are so dead on with your observations Sarah. I come from the full spectrum of child abuse: abandonment, sexual, emotional, and physical abuse. I just turned 60 (already!), and to say I am better emotionally now than say when I was 20 would be an understatement. I have found out, purely by accident, that being around loving, calm, and even tempered people produces and allows me to maintain a steady feeling of well-being. I read that for the FIRST time in your article and the truth of it was like a blinding burst of light! It's true! I am in the process of ending my 5th marriage, and moving to a state where I can share a daily life with life long friends who treat me and have always treated me with love, kindness, and respect. Am I ever going to learn to be happy? The truth is I don't know, nor do I really expect to be. But I have learned that, for me at least, having BPD is learning to live with an emotional handicap that can throw me a curve ball any moment of any day without warning. I've learned it's not a good idea for me to be married. It's not a good idea for me to work in a conventional job where I have to interact shoulder to shoulder with co-workers. I have established a sterling reputation as a self starter, and not needing micro managing. I work well and stay focused working on my own. I take the few strengths I have and try to improve upon them. Slowly, so, so slowly I seem to finally be able to "see" a little better emotionally. If I split, I realize what I've done and am getting better at not going off the deep end. Your statement about "always being damaged goods" was hard to read, very hard, but after I read a few more of your comments, I can see what you meant. It made me think about something I do almost compulsively and I was able to compare myself to this for the first time. I love to take old, damaged, unwanted things and polish, clean, scrub and paint till they look pretty again. They are still damaged goods, but they've been repaired to the point where they have restored value and even in strong daylight they can shine with the best of them. Thank you for your website, God Bless.

13.  Bluejay2fly    Saturday, January 12, 2013

I disagree that it is all nurture. I was married to a women with BPD for over a decade and I gave her all the love and loyalty that my traditional Catholic personalty could muster. In her case she has no empathy and I suspect that many people with BPD are just that sociopathic. I went to a psychiatrist for years thinking somehow I was failing or somehow responsible. He basically stated BPD is incurable. Our marriage ended when as a teacher she had sex with and later married a prison inmate who is doing life for murder. My point is that we had four children together. Despite my love and compassion for our children they are cold and indifferent to me. When I was in the war and web cammed them they were bored and utterly unconcerned about by situation. They asked about their needs, when they were getting their gifts etc. They behaved unemotionally towards me to the extent that I could no longer tolerate their sociopathy. I did not want this for my ex or my children and sought answers everywhere. In the end I have come to the conclusion that it is virtually incurable and most probably genetic. Life for a person with BPD is a selfish one based on doing what is in their interest that is why they blend in so well in this modern culture. People with BPD do not think of consequences and how their selfish interactions cause harm to others. My ex did whatever she could to undermine my parenting because the children were her possessions. Not once did any of them break ranks or show any potential that they were going to be different from Mom. When my wife and I rescued grey hounds I would tell my children not to let them outside. They would do so constantly which I explained could result in their traffic death. They eventually went to their mother who got them a dog and that lasted a few days before the puppy was killed by a car. Not surprisingly they all blamed the driver for not being attentive and driving too fast. They also demanded I by them a new one, immediately. My daughter (17) just had a child and she refuses to reveal who the father is as it is her child ,and so continues the cycle. If it is nurture its only because they push all the sane people away, but you would think with 4 children one would have said I miss Dad or I love Dad, which never happened. It has now been three years since we last spoke even though once in a while I get asked for a particular possession they left behind. I am dead to them as if I never existed now tell me that is not sociopathic and not human.

14.  ord slip    Saturday, January 19, 2013

I have BPD and I had it worse than you or everything described above, and I am here to tell you it is not passed down to children. It is not in anyones genes. It's more complicated than that, your comments sound like they come from someone hurt, but not someone trying to understand.

15.  ord slip    Saturday, January 19, 2013

Thank you for your comment. I have BPD, with all the depression, anxiety, anger, aggressiveness. I am considered dangerous if provoked. But at the same time, I am not selfish, and I don't live a selfish life. I want it to all end, and I want to be on with my life, and I glad to here that it can improve. I was told it can't be cured, the only thing you can do is take every situation as it comes and try to control your behavior if at all, and try only try to make small changes to self improve and to try to trust again.

16.  Bluejay2fly    Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Maybe its both nature and nurture whereas people may be predisposed to it and certain environments develop that disorder. I lean towards believing it may be a mixture of both but certainly not one or the other. I was shocked to imagine you think marrying a murderer and wanting him to be the father of your children while simultaneously alienating the loving parent in an effort to push him out of the picture is not completely evil. By NYS Law a prison employee who has intercourse with an inmate committing felony rape. When I (As a Law Enforcement Officer) discovered she was having sex with a convict she demanded I keep quiet (risking criminal prosecution myself) and mind my own business. My observations on BPD were not forged because I had a passing interest in this disease. I wanted to understand my ex whom I spent over a decade with, and I certainly did not want my children to become the monster that my ex has become. I also happen to work in a prison where probably 60% of the inmate population have BPD. My personal safety and continued employment rely on my understanding of this illness ,so I do not take my interest in this disorder lightly. One fact that I have learned is you cannot grow empathy. People with BPD have a serious lack of empathy and compassion towards others. Most of the BPD people I see at work do not harm others and follow the rules only out of pure self interest and not because of some higher moral code. I shall admit there maybe varying degrees of this phenomena and my children, ex, and many of the inmates whom I see may gravitate towards the extreme end, but no matter what the degree if someone does not care about anybody else's feelings you have nothing to salvage. If you have BPD do you feel badly about all the times you abused, embarrassed, berated, frustrated, and both physically, economically, and emotionally hurt others?

17.  25_F_BPD    Tuesday, January 29, 2013

I was happy when i saw a psychiatrist and got my BPD diagnosis, for once in my life there was a reason for why i was behaving the way i was behaving. But when i started reading online negative things about it (for example: health professionals dred working with us and we are a waste of time when being hospitalised) is when i started getting really depressed about my diagnosis, also became really suicidal because of it. I'm sick of seeing so much negativity towards us, its not our fault we were treated so badly in our childhood and that other people had a problem with the responsibility of being trusted!!

18.  justmef27    Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Hi Sarah and everybody,,
Believe me, when I red your article I cried for the first time in a lot of time... Here goes my story:
I am 27 years old and been married for 4 years.
I'm in a desperate situation, my husband and I are separated for 3 months now. It was me who made the final call, this being the second attempt of separation by my part.
I suspect he has BPD because I can identify in his personality 7 of the 9 traits.
I was so unhappy during our marriage because I always felt HE wasn't happy with me. I got to the point I questioned my own sanity: how can anybody feel so miserable being in a relationship with me? I have a good personality, I have an extremely high level of tolerance ( I just learned that that's what kept me from setting or negotiating boundaries with my husband...huuuuge mistake)
He was manipulative, made me feel guilty all the time, he was acting out from little nothings while the important things in life seemed worthless to him. When we were with our friends he was the life of the party, he could do a one man show like no other, always the center of attention, super entertaining and hilarious. A lot of times no boundaries here either, he would cross the limits A LOT.
To me he would say something like: You were the most beautiful woman on the beach.... and then after a couple of minutes: Who cares what you look like, What's inside that matters, don't you see how you truly are??? You're........and he stars name calling, so I can see splitting a lot in his personality.
He used to tell me about abandonment issues that he had and that my behavior triggered in him: when he was small his father used to kick out his mother, him and his older sister out of the house. I can see borderline structure in his father too, but now is more mild due to age.
What's painful is that he kept telling me that by his parents house is the only place he felt loved and that's where his heart remained, not with me.
Other times he said his parents never gave him what he needed.
Because of his behavior I went cold on him, gave him the silent treatment, I was afraid not to provoke him. In my mind he was a monster determined to destroy me. All I could see was his selfish ways, lack of respect for me, my family and for anybody who stepped on his toes.
I didn't understand how could he not get from me my enthusiasm, love for life, empathy. I felt he was sucking the life out of me: once I told him I felt him like a worm that's eating me from the inside out, draining me of...me. It's like I was blind. I did it all wrong with him. My conduct, my invalidation of his feelings and emotions, the way I separated my self from him, by telling him I didn't love him anymore from the day he first emotionally abused me (even physically, i have scars) made his defense mechanism hit the wall. You haven't seen drama, I tell you...

For the first time since we got separated I cried reading your post, and believe me for a week now I have been obsessed with searching information about this mental health problem. And none made me cry like your article did. It was like, I don't know, the feeling that he and I have to pay for his parents neglect. I want to screeaaam...

Tomorrow I will consult a psychologist to give me a diagnostic for him or something... maybe for me too, who knows what the effect of this is on me.
I didn't mention the distortion campaign he's conducting.... our common friends avoid me... he's victimizing himself like always. After we got separated he threaten to commit suicide if I don't take him back... My heart stopped every time the phone rang...
So much to tell... PLS HELP!

19.  b333    Tuesday, April 2, 2013

wow i am suffering from this disease and the childhood is basically mine in a nutshell mother controlling, father was amazing but very very aloof and unemotional. Mom left (she was the one who gave me love) out of no where and i didn't see her for years my dad tried his best and he did his best she came back into my life later on but it was too late i was already 15 and the damage was done.. i remember sleeping in closets etc when i ws a kid. Now i am suffering from BDP i tried cymbalta it does not work. It started around when my life turned around about the age of 24 or 25 i am 26 now.

I did have slight things before but never like this, everything happens all at once broke up wiht my gf, lost my scholarship just all the shittiest things happened and all the pressure and stress cracked me. I get into so many fights on the street i have a huge temper i turn it all into anger all my depression etc. I Don't know what to do actually and i just found out i have bdp 100% i have the kind where you don['t hurt yourself but you get offended easily i snap easy little things make me feel shitty and i say stupid things i regret th same day or the same hour.
i am a good looking guy and genetics did bless me with that and i did work out from around 17-25 i rarely do it now but my b9ody is still the same.
But most relationships especially here where i live LA are not for me i hate it here and i don't wanna leave my father. He has been there for me from the start.
I have ad alot of sexual partners at first to feel like oh look i can do it it was easy as well. I now feel differently about it i don't want meaningless sex but i want to meet a girl whenever i do it seems like they say something stupid and it really offends me and i just stop talking to them. I get offended easily especially when a girl says soemthign that is not right but when smoeone would just get mkad or make a joke i take it overboard by about 100x and just cuss them out and never talk to them again.
I am not as bad as it is described and can be normal for years at a time but when shit goes bad it kicks in as hard as it can ever kick in. Especially my relationships with friends and family. i feel so alone and shit it just sucks.

20.  b333    Tuesday, April 2, 2013

I have had relationships lasting 4 years where thins were great untill the final year (when i changed and became nicer) i still don't know how mild or not my bdp is but i know i have it. I did cahnge and become a better person recently i am nto slefish i am nice i think my case is lighter then the others because my mom and dad are still in my life and trying to help. She is trying to make up for what she did whe ni was a kid but if this is for life i guess im screwed. I still think i can ahve a real relationship because i can. I need a girl who won't stay rude and messed up things for no reason someone who can joke but not insult i guess thats how my ex was untill her own meds stopped working. She was bipolar and i found out in the third year back then i was very happy whit life, i looked great nothign could bring me down nothing, Now its ilke the opposite i still look good but don't feel it i don't even feel like leaving the house now a days i need a change and i dont know what it is a vacation"? leave this shitty city? what can i do i live in hollywood the worst place u could live and have this crap i thought i just had anger issues but when i read all the things about bdp. besides hurting yoruself i match it pretty well. I think maybe 3 or 4 out of 6 possibly 4.

21.  Gov    Sunday, April 14, 2013

Ehm...only 25% of all borderliners have been neglected by their parents. It is vbery much a combination of things. The people I knew with borderline for instance had more familly members with mentaldisorders, but let's say that research has shown a strong genetic component there.

What makes this so problematic in a nutsheel, from my point of view, that their social make up is such that they do what has been done to them: abuse, ngelect etc of significant others. Because borderliners are frantic to make clear it is all about "me, me and me". So others NEED to understand them. And once a few do, that is the way of reasoning in general. Relationships, romantic or not, are bidirectional. It seems very difficult or impossible for borderliners to see that, acknowlwedge that etc. At least from my experience with some of them. So their abandonmentt fears all to often become a reality, because all the understanding in the world cannot make up for peoples own needs.

22.  Gov    Sunday, April 14, 2013

Yes, the problem with this is that trained psychologists, physicians and others tend to believe their subjective views. They are the specialists, right..But they are just liek everyone lese when it comes to assessing these things. research, done multiple times on many patiesn have revealed that a traumatic childhood is not always evident in BPD or other illnesses. Brain structures have been researched too and they indicate a strong difference in some essential parts of tyhe brain that are related to impulse cpontrol, emotion regulation etc. Now: these could be caused byt their upbringing or not. But it is sure that very loving and carrying parents can end up with a BPD girl/boy. I sugeest you read the literature and not base yourself on your subjective findings. I understasnd you do that, most people do this. But boy, we are pretty awful in it. Better do scientific research with statistical analysis on the significance of the findings etc just trust our experience. Believe me..

23.  Gov    Sunday, April 14, 2013

all I can say is that mindfullnes based cognitive therapy or just mindfulness meditation seems to help a lot here. marscha Linehan has said that the only thing that really helps in her DBT is the mindfullness. All the other things, she at least thinks, are windowdressing.mostly. I am not sure if this is true, but you can consider BPD the almost perfect opposite of a mindfull person. This is not an attack, I do not blame any person from becoming what he/she has become at all. Just looking at what mindfulness stands for and how bPD tend to behave, this seems to be correct. No wonder that if you can learn some of those skils, you life changes. anyways: good luck and keep your head up!

24.  Gov    Sunday, April 14, 2013

Well, my experience with a borderline GF is virtualluy identical. And I am not angry at all. If she could, she really would be different. But my experience at least is indeed that it is all about "me". she has really make her familly suffer big bigtime by some actions when she went into psychosis, left us for four weeks and had another boyfriend. Just liek that. She was 800 miles away in France.She had her mums keys, stole from her visiting aunt at night, stoleher moms bike and went off. Nopw, she being psychotic diue to stress and heavy canabis use, was what made me understand her. i did not blame her and I never will. her familly have a longer trackrecord,, so spome were fed up and others far less so. Anyways: when she returned back to her norma self, every time this subject cam/comes up she gets furious about her familly. Why did they not give her money when she called them 4 weeks later, in France when she asked. They should have done that, they were sane, she was very ill and they did not care They were bastards!!! She simply cannot understand that she was completely unreliable. She cannot understand that no one, including me, blieved this money was for anything else but cannabis given the fact she was in the company of a heavy user. No way. She simply cannot get into the shoes of others and see why they did what they did. In fact, yes, infact her version is that THEY abondenned her, she did not abandon us. She simply cannot see that it is not about blaming, but it is about the fact that her familly has feelings too, Can be hurt too, So when asked, she is not responsible.accountable because she was very ill. When told ""we knew that so we did not trust you" we all of a sudden SHOULD have. At least in this case, the double standards are incredible. But the main point and I believe many BPD share this trait is that it seems impossible to stand in the shoes of other people in a balanced way. It is like we are perfect robotos that have duty to accomodate her in her best interest, because we are healthy. Suffice to say no one has a close relationship, certainly not after this episode, anymore. All people love her, but this is emotionally so unsafe and so oneway that you distance yourself.

25.  Patrick Folman    Sunday, April 14, 2013

I have no understanding why you make such a sweeping negative comment?
I think this is the best description of BPD I have ever read !

26.  Patrick Folman    Sunday, April 14, 2013

You sound like an angry parent of a BPD child and maybe do not like the connection your own behavior might have in this relationship ?

27.  Patrick Folman    Sunday, April 14, 2013

I agree on almost everything you said. However, I disagree on the part "no one is to blame". I think we have a responsibility as parents to behave lovingly towards our children and if we simply let our emotions run wild while being parents, I do think that some blame could be evoked; the blame for not seeking support.

28.  Patrick Folman    Sunday, April 14, 2013

Melissa, I am sorry <3

29.  Patrick Folman    Sunday, April 14, 2013

I truly believe that the emotional abuse and emotional neglect (over any other form of abuse) is what causes the emotional trauma, the dysregulation, which is the hallmark of BPD.

30.  Patrick Folman    Sunday, April 14, 2013

I completely agree that it is nurture and nature at all.
Thank you for this insightful article.

31.  Gov    Sunday, April 14, 2013

I am not exactly sure what you reply on. What I say above is simply derived from the scientific literature on it. And it is also correct that physicians themselves have the same troubles we all have when it comes to assessing succes, failures, significance etc. I have commented on a few things here, so you might be answering that more than the message of mine above? Could be. Well...all I can say is I am not angry at all, nor do I have any negative feelings towards anybody. What exactly in my message comes across as "angry"? I reread it and I don't see that.Written, that could come across that way I think which is the general problem with written messages. So I understand I can come across that way. Now let's not get ad hominem but stick to the point that is not personal but seems ot be a discussion where BPD originates from. OP poster, in her first message seems outspoken that it has to be nurture and not genes. Again: there are people (and lots of them) that were brought up in loving families as attested by both the parents and siblings and still get borderline. If it would not be genes, logic would indicate the siblings would have contracted it too. But I know first hand cases where this was not the case at all.

Now, in the end, it would only be usefull to be very sure about that if it would help for the solution. AFAIK that is not the case. The best thing I have come across are medications for comomrbid problems 9depsression for instance) and mindfullness based therapy, DBT and schematherapy and may be Rational Emotive therapy. All are some form of cognitive therapy's I believe. Mindfulness seems also helpfull in changing patients from not tolerating the therapies (and dropout) to people that now can tolerate it and make further progress.

May be the remakr of the OP can be attributed to some other thing I have found in many borerliners and that it they seem to feel comfortable in the rol e of the victim. If you look at youtube and the many clips BPD have put on ti it almost excusively revolves about how awfull their disease is. even that can be seen as quite distastefull. I have rarely come across a terminal cancer patient behaving like that. It is not right or wrong, but many non BPD people do not take the message the way they seem to intend to: we should be aware and treat them differently. In general people tend to frown at what can be seen as selfpity. What I consistently fail to see are clips in which BPD people acknowledge that their problems also cause (great) harm to others. May be they have difficulty in accepting this without blaming themselves. May accepting this to them means they are responsible, which I do not think is the case. However, the downside is that if you do not acknowledge others and their suffering because of your illness this can lead to averse reactions. People are not robots or perfect. All people are sensitive to acknowledgment to some degree. If someone that is the cause of psychiological havoc in their lives also only can react form their own perspective, you'll sure to lose a lot of friends or rarely will have a strong bond with someone. This could aggravate the disease because it seems BPD crave relationships. Relationships...to relate..if people do not relate to you or cannot, this is sure to hamr or destroy it.
All in all it is a very sad story that can easily make BPD sufferers into a vicious circle. On youtube, the frantic efforts to make us non BPDs understand them to me means they do not get it. It, to my mind, means that regardless of the cause int his case, the solution is in yourself and you views on yourself, people and what can be accepted, what are clear no-go areas, what you should not do etc. The solution is in themselves and it would be nice but strictly speaking not obligatory if close relatives or lovers help. Helping is something different from making others responsible for your health. That is up to yourself.

32.  Kayla    Tuesday, April 16, 2013

totally agree, like when he wrote, "Essentially, BPD is what happens to a person when you spend years mentally and physically torturing them from early childhood." not all suffers of any type of personality disorder have to meet a criteria of how they were brought up. many other aspects contribute much more. i had a fairly normal childhood, loving parents, no emotional/physical abuse but even then i did not feel connected to them in a normal way, i either needed them too much or felt like i couldn't breath around them. part of me almost wished i had been abused, i'm embarrassed to admit, because then i could point to that and say that's it! that's the reason i'm the way i am but it's never that easy. i don't think its fair to say of any mental illness that indifently "it is nurture not nature with this disease." how could you even begin to come to that conclusion? very biased article and full of misinformation.

33.  Mr. Masters    Thursday, April 25, 2013

Like 90% of all BPD articles on the web, this one is also guilty of the exact same thing. Massive Sugar Coating. Tons of people all over the world have the exact same experiences as BPD's but don't develop the personality problem. Do you know why? Because they're not BAD PEOPLE. Law of large numbers, 1 out of 10 people are naturally bad. There's your BPD population percentage right there. Why does our weak, pathetic, hand holding, disgustingly delusional and dishonest society always have to pull this crap? Call a spade a spade, cowards.

34.  Amy DjTurkey Rouse    Sunday, June 9, 2013

I was never abused as a child physically or sexually, nor was I neglected. Emotionally I was abused, but only by other children...I do actually have severe BPD...I'm only 18..but that's a long life for me...Since a young age, I wish I was never born. I'm going fuck my life up before it gets better...Didn't finish school like normal kids...had home school for the last year of it...Other people constantly make me feel really angry and all I want to do is blame it all on them.

35.  Jonathan Glickman    Friday, June 14, 2013

It seems this article was written with concern but unfortunately it is filled with statements that aren't in line with what is known about BPD. Please see below my comments on PDAN's Facebook post of this articlce... the first is my initial angry/reactive post and the followups are more balanced and have citations. I was initally pretty pissed off at the author of this article, as there is quite enough misinformation out there about this disorder...

-The state of the research on BPD does NOT AT ALL support the idea that it is solely an "environmentally acquired" disorder... Nor is it currently considered a form of PTSD, nor can it be meaningfully compared to brain damage. All of this bologna is from the first paragraph of this article.

-So-just to be a bit more dialectical *ahem*: recent twin studies have found that genetics accounts for 44%-60% of BPD's development, with the remaining percentage accounted for by environment. As for PTSD, there are many features it shares w/ BPD including effecting similar brain regions, but traumatic experiences are neither necessary nor sufficient to cause the disorder. On average those with BPD do have measurable differences in certain types of brain activity but can hardly be considered brain damaged. Please see Gunderson, et. al. in Focus Vo. XI, No 2 athttp://focus.psychiatryon...

-See also: "This model specifies that genes and environment influence the covariance between four main features of BPD in qualitatively similar ways, through a single latent factor representing the BPD construct. The heritability of the latent BPD factor was 51% and the remainder of its variance was explained by unique environmental influences." fromhttp://ncbi.nlm.nih...

36.  Sarah Vaughter    Friday, June 14, 2013

I am aware that quite a few of my opinions voiced on this site are controversial. I often back up my articles with (medical) literature references but I haven't done that here. Which means that this article is basically nothing more than an opinion piece.

Contrary POV's such as yours are welcome here, when they don't contain invectives :-)

37.  Patrick Folman    Friday, June 28, 2013

The overwhelming percentage of children who turn out to have BPD later on where abused, despite other reports. PD's develop from inappropriate attachment between caregiver and child that often is marked by neglect, abuse, chaotic style, substance abuse, a.s.o. Even if a person has aberrant brain chemistry; it doesn't mean they turn out to get a PD. On the other hand, when they were mistreated they most often do. Also, it does not necessarily end up in a PD, but could show up in traits and symptoms if the person is more lucky, since those are easier to treat.

38.  Patrick Folman    Friday, June 28, 2013

I am sorry, but your love came in way too late in that person's life.You do not understand the issues involved. This develops in childhood and adolescence and is stable throughout life, then tapers off sometimes with age. Simply loving and being there does nothing . Intense therapy would have helped.

39.  Patrick Folman    Friday, June 28, 2013


40.  Patrick Folman    Friday, June 28, 2013


41.  Patrick Folman    Friday, June 28, 2013

Write about it, talk about it, create a website on WIX about it. The more people know the better.

Attachment in childhood is the main issue.

42.  Patrick Folman    Friday, June 28, 2013

Can you please not only throw numbers around, but back them up with references , preferably less than 10 years old? Thanks.

43.  Patrick Folman    Friday, June 28, 2013

uneducated and ignorant remark

44.  Bluejay2fly    Friday, June 28, 2013

If you are referring to therapy being too late my ex wife you definitely are correct. As far as my not understanding the issues my opinions are the consensus of a couple psychiatrists, two social workers, and a few other people who were involved in the numerous court proceedings. You could state that at worst we are conflating sociopathy with BPD but whatever the underlying illness is very few people take interest in it as a problem. There was no pressure for my ex too seek counseling from friends, family, coworkers, or the forensic psychiatrist who evaluated her. Perhaps our "me" centered society with it's diminishing lack of compassion for others makes her personality seem quite normal and socially acceptable. There is a lot I do not understand and about this entire situation ,but what I do know is to me, our societies advances on mental health seem less impressive everyday.

45.  Bluejay2fly    Friday, June 28, 2013

I think to understand something using a methodology that is reliable like the scientific method you have obtain large amounts of data. Using a benchmark like detachment disorder, abuse, neglect, etc. and then linking that to BPD is difficult. Whatever standard you use to determine those benchmarks might be so low or speciously collected that nearly everyone falls into that category. Have you ever read the questionnaire for depression or alcohol abuse. The standard is so low almost everyone has depression or alcohol abuse problems. I think the diagnosis of BPD is accurate but linking it to events that seems very dubious. Firstly, these may be events many normal people experience and do not develop BPD. Secondly, we have not sampled everybody in the USA so maybe there are many with BPD who have had not childhood trauma and therefore this linkage is coincidental. We may learn 100 years from now that this is all brain based and is due to some malfunction in chemistry or composition that we do not quite understand. Regardless your anger is valid. Many people with BPD destroy other's lives and reek all kind of havoc and misery in society and many times people do not take those factors into consideration. Worse yet are the health care experts who claim to be an expert in the field of social science and are arrogant, aloof, mean spirited academics who are quick to dismiss others. Why enter the field if you have such distain for people? I am a christian and as such I try to treat my fellow man with dignity and respect which at times is greater compassion than extended here.

46.  Freya Love    Monday, July 8, 2013

i agree- the most succinct writing regarding bpd i have read! thanks

47.  Patrick Folman    Monday, July 8, 2013

Agree with the first of your paragraphs, but disagree that psychology is a pseudoscience. Sadly, psychiatry has succumb for the most part to a pill describing profession. I believe from everything I have researched (and there are some conflicting studies out there) that BPD is triggered by caretaker behavior and not by chemistry or brain lesions. The guilt part only applies to caretakers who never sought help and afflicted their children with unnecessary pain. Think about it, according to your statement nobody could seek help from either of the professions you mentioned, but I think that is not correct. I am a mental health professional and I have great understanding for people with this problem, due to my personal experiences. Please reconsider ; not all individuals in a profession are the same. I agree that discussion should include references to make a point, instead of attacks. I think it is great that you started this blog.

48.  Patrick Folman    Monday, July 8, 2013

Agree with one addition to make. Caretakers need to learn to seek help for their issues as soon as they feel something is not right, in order to protect the children.

49.  Patrick Folman    Monday, July 8, 2013

I agree with the OP.

50.  Patrick Folman    Monday, July 8, 2013

I think this will be different for each person, depending on the exact level and severity of impairment.

It might be helpful to some while others could benefit from EMDR, autogenic training, or psychodynamic - existential therapy. I am not a believer in CBT for this particular problem, since it doesn't explain anything to the person.

51.  Patrick Folman    Monday, July 8, 2013

It is more complicated, since often different issues are hard to separate. People who suffer from BPD also suffer from depression , anxiety, and sometimes PTSD or other co-occuring issues. One needs a good professional who is empathetic and interested in treating people with these complex issues.

52.  jon    Sunday, July 14, 2013

This is a very good description of what BPD is for me. I Cannot speak for others, but for me nurture and not nature definitely made me who I am and my life is not at all easy. I barely talk to my parents or siblings. We are all estranged from each other. I hate that this is so, but I guess it is easier for us all. When I am with my parents, especially my mother, every word she says annoys me. I cannot stand to be around her. She is ultra-religious and has always forced religion on me since I was little. It is like I have a rage or hatred for her that has always been there really. I feel bad about it, but I can't seem to change it. I will go see my father once in a while bc he likes to drink and get high with me, so I can tolerate him. I think he is really sorry for all the things that have happened and feels genuinely guilty. I grew up in a violent home. My parents always seemed to bring myself and my two sisters into their battles which eventually ruined us. By their battles I mean physically as well as the mental battles. There was never really any stability for us....always chaos. I remember every little kid in school waiting for the last bell to ring to go home and I always wished I could just stay there at my desk all night and pick back up the next day. I never wanted to go home. I saw so much blood and mayhem growing up that when I joined the military at 18 and went to the middle east, seeing people blown to pieces and having to kill other humans didn't phase me. A lot of my fellow soldiers said they felt safe when they were with me because I was never afraid, but they also would tell me that they were afraid of me sometimes just because of the look in my eyes. Thanks guys...I have a really hard time now with my identity. I have had every job and career out there, but nothing ever feels like it is for me. I watch movies a lot and I totally get into them and may feel I identify with a certain character for a few days and then it wears off and I am trying to figure out who I am again. Nothing makes me happy is an understatement. I hate this fact about myself too, but I use drugs every day from morning till I fall asleep, if I fall asleep. And hard drugs are my preference. People who know me have no idea. I work in the modeling industry and I am very conscious about my looks and physique, but I am destroying the inside of my body quickly. I secretly hope I die in my sleep every night so I don't have to feel so empty everyday and put on the act all the time for everyone. I have burned every bridge I ever built with people. No one in my life besides my family have I known for more that 2 years. I think very black and white. If you slight me once, I will never talk to you again. So obviously, I don't have many friends. I do not ever get close to anyone. I have multiple women that I date at one time. Some have been such good people and truly cared for me, but I just had to tell them every time that we will never be married or have a future. When I feel them falling for me I end it. I used to think I was just a player and liked the chase to much. Now I realize that I just dont have what it takes to go any further than that. After I seduce a woman I lose interest and move on. I hope this does get easier with age. It is exhausting at this point. But it is my life.

53.  jon    Monday, July 15, 2013

Wow! You seem slightly self righteous and seem to know everything Mr. Master. Please enlighten us with your infinite wisdom.

54.  jon    Monday, July 15, 2013

Neglect during childhood...not neglect from you when you were married dude. Wow! Some brainiacs on here!

55.  Bluejay2fly    Friday, July 19, 2013

Internet punk!

56.  Daath Gnosis    Saturday, November 9, 2013

Excellent article, there are tons of information on how meditation and magic mushroom improves neurogenesis, the neurological pathways can be reprogrammed, btw its common knowledge that parents is an extreme high percentage of amygdala programming, the thing is that people can be born with dna creating a poorly developed prefrontal cortex in the adult , therefor explaining how they never develop any emotional maturity, without this higher emotions, the human being is a soulless drone that is unable to be guided by Carl Jung; self. Sorry for my method of writing.

57.  Vicky    Sunday, February 9, 2014

Thank you sarah for an amazing article. It was written with such compassion and empathy, god bless you x

58.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014

Wow..I felt like I was reading an autobiography.....to a tee...down to the last detail.I have said I wish I was never born..many many times..suicide attempts as well..slashing my wrist,trying to drink myself to death and sleeping pills..
There is this weight that's always there..a sad weight..having so much love to give..not having one boyfriend yet treat me with full respect...wasting years with each of them.
I didn't sleep a lot at nightas a child because..it was so nice and quiet...I enjoyed not being yelled at or commanded to do things, when I was supposed to be sleeping...I started drawing and reading and singing and every possible thing I could think of to make my own little world...and I have surrounded myself with Great friends...and at 42 I am still hoping to find the love for me...because I have so much love to give

59.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014

Hello Sweet Melissa....We can go anywhere we want once we have the wheel...I hope you soar !! <3

60.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014

sounds like a case of mistaken identity..(BPD) Borderline= an emotional disorder, being mistaken with the genetic mental disorder (BPD) Bipolar disorder trigger by an emotional trauma...POSSIBLY

61.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014


62.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014


63.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014


64.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014


65.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014

WE HAVE A SAD VEIL LYING OVER US FROM CHILDHOOD....but just like the knees wear out on a pair of heavy jeans..this veil shall also.wear. thin

66.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014

we can't change what happened...but we can create what will happen !!!!

67.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014


68.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014


69.  libramagyc23    Monday, February 17, 2014


70.  Anonymous Coward    Saturday, March 29, 2014

This article is pretty much complete and utter garbage. I exhibit many of the symptoms belonging to BPD yet I HAVE NEVER SUFFERED ABUSE. 'Nurture not nature' is absolute rubbish as well. For those of you who possibly have a more intense form of BPD please get off this bullshit website and for the love of god SEE SOMEONE WHO IS A TRAINED PSHYCHOLOGIST/PSYCHIATRIST. Sorry to be harsh but its websites like these that misinform people. I learnt the hard way that the internet is not a good place to get help, long term at least. And to the writer of this article if you thinks it a bit harsh, take the bloody thing down then, your doing a disservice to those who legitimately need help.

71.  solojay    Friday, April 4, 2014

I agree with you. It is indeed "DAMAGED GOODS". I've had bpd all my life and don't see any light of me having a normal life. I'm 25 and I've been mentally and emotionally dead as far as I can think.

72.  Oliver JR Cooper    Sunday, May 18, 2014

At the end of the day, someone can only offer what they know. And as human beings don't know everything, they are going to come up short at times. However, that does not mean they have the intention to harm or confuse others.

So instead of blaming the author and acting as if she has some kind of malicious intent, it would be better to be grateful for what she has written.

For it is only through one 'knowing' something else, that they can come to the conclusion that certain parts of this article don't reflect the 'truth'' about BDP.

What someone writes about is going to be the result of what they currently understand. So as someone grows, this is going to change. We are all learning, so wouldn't it be better to show appreciation and then make a suggestion?
I thought this was very well written. That doesn't mean I agree with everything, but then that's part of life. I can take what I need and overlook the rest.
And as for people saying their childhood was fine, and they have it, it takes a lot to face what actually happened. The mind can stop one from facing the truth that their body is only to happy to reveal.
When it comes to genetics and how twin studies show this or that, what about epigenetics?
Thank you for writing this,

73.  Gogo    Sunday, May 18, 2014

This article is full of lies. BPDs don't "just need love", they need psychiatric help. Being caring and understandind DOES NOT WORK ON THEM. Dealing with a Borderline means constantly putting them in check. It's a never-ending fight.

Let me reiterate: BEING LOVING AND NICE WILL GET YOU DESTROYED. DO NOT LISTEN TO THAT ADVICE. I'm warning you all. Why the **** do you think it's a disorder? Because being loving toward them has the OPPOSITE EFFECT.

F-ing misleading article. FTW.

74.  Sarah Vaughter    Sunday, May 18, 2014

Thank you for your insult (a "lie" means the deliberate telling of a falsehood). I disagree that doping down people with BPD is a better idea than exposing them to affection. The heavy psychopharmacological intervention you're proposing has severe side effects and does not address the problem - only the symptoms.

We all know that "psychiatric help" is a euphemism for drugging them with Zyprexa or other (very) harmful chemicals. It's intellectually dishonest of you to use the euphemism. "Love is bad for them, they need to be doped down" is exactly what you say.

You're making too many assumptions, and you build one assumption upon the next as in a house of cards. You're assuming the person who hurt you was correctly diagnosed with BPD. You're assuming that the sole cause of this person hurting you is his/her BPD. You're assuming that you exposed this person to a lot of genuine physical as well as emotional affection closely prior to the abuse. You're assuming that this abuse would not have been worse, without this affection. And you're assuming that my own opinion is that people with BPD of all ages are "hopeless" and the only thing that will work is doping them down, but that I deliberately hide this from my readers.

Finally, it's rather bold to claim - based on anecdotal evidence of 1 individual, most likely - that the more you shower love upon a person with BPD, the worse the BPD gets. Sounds unlikely to me.

From your acrimonious contribution it's clear that you have issues yourself. You curse and shout at me and you use meaninless, infantile expressions as "For the win" underneath your agression. Are you sure you're not a "borderliner" yourself?

You say you feel the need to constantly put a BPD person "in check". You understand that term? You play Chess? Putting the King in check is an act of extreme agression. It's the equivalent of putting a knife on someone's throat. It means: "My next move, I will kill you". Perhaps you meant something else? Like defending _against_ a "check"? BPD needs affection, not threats. Your shouts, insults and childish behavior make me doubt your claim of bestowing affection on someone with BPD.

75.  Lisa    Wednesday, May 21, 2014

I am in so much pain I find unbearable yet gut wrench ing nevertheless I press on. Who will save this torment ed wretched soul I scream yet I'm in the shadows crying for freedom to just live life.

76.  Sarah Vaughter    Wednesday, May 21, 2014

I think I know how you feel but sadly the words fail me to cheer you up. Perhaps you need to make a major change in your life, turn the rudder as it were towards greener pastures somehow.

77.  Edward Castle-Herbert    Wednesday, May 28, 2014

I quite agree that BPD individuals have suffered harm during development phaeses of their lives.I work with people who have had awful abuse sufficient to take them into hospital care for many years of their lives.
However not all are as damaged as you note and can appear well and capable although their hurtness is well hidden.A somewhat crude comparision perhaps to a person with an artificial limb might be that if its a good one others may not notice for a long time or not at all.
Studies that I have read support the idea that BPDs brains do not work in quite the same way as Non-BPDs as I believe there is less processing{activity} in the higher regions of the brain responible for rational thought and overactivity of the limbic portions alert for threats and harm awareness.This neatly relates to BPDS early experiences I think.
I also have had a rather more intimate connection with a woman showing many BPD characteristics and know both how hard it has been for her and also for me.
Whilst I cannot agree with those who can be found bashing BPDs on all sorts of sites I cannot condemn them either as I know that they may have suffered rather a lot also to have become so hostile and taken away quite a lot of harm themselves.

78.  Rachel    Friday, September 25, 2015

I have always know I had PTSD and why. And I was told at age 16 or 17 I was in danger of developing BPD but had no clue what that meant. Now, after reading this.... everything I've gleaned has been put into one solid statement. And now I know what I am. Now I know what's wrong with me. And now I feel utterly shattered. How will I find someone to treat me for BPD in my area? I could barely find a therapist to take my insurance, let alone someone to treat me for this alone. I feel lost and yes, as I am now approaching 32 I think often of killing myself. I am just so tired. I don't want to do this anymore. I don't want to be numb and unfeeling anymore except to hurt so much! Everything...EVERYTHING in this article is true! And describes me, my childhood, and my parents!!

79.  guest3    Monday, September 28, 2015

As upside down as the Australians are, they do have youth intervention programs, most notably HYPE for troubled youth. If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it could be a duck. We know the teenage years could be madness, but we must also be aware of the statistical representation of the BPD as adisability. I think the harm of a false positive is really negligible, compared to a false-negative or defaulting to no action. It is easier to undo an incorrect Borderline diagnosis, that it is to undo years or decades of maladaptive coping mechanisms. If it takes lets say 10 years to cement a personality disorder then it by all reason would take 10 years of daily work to undo it.

80.  guest3    Monday, September 28, 2015

I believe the description of Borderline as a neurological deficit will produce distortion of reality. Let's say the parents try to protect the child from making gross mistakes, but the child sees it as overly critical and PUNITIVE then what to do? If the parent acts like any normal parent, but the child calls it abuse then it is truly a matter of distortion of reality. A lifetime long accumulation of non-bizarre delusions. The abuse cajoling is incorrect due to cognitive distortion that IMHO is the hallmark of the Borderlines disability. All of them! but to varying degrees. However the "high" functioning borderlines ability to blame their spouse when they somehow succeed to sail into a matrimonial harbor. The BPD / NPD share the same abusive behavior against their spouses: endless blaming.

81.  Dante    Tuesday, October 6, 2015

I consider this disorder to be completely misunderstood and continuely misdiagnosed.

Their have been a number of twin studies done in american and europe
which show BPD to be 60 % genic up from 40 % in the 90s and 0% in
the 60s. These studies discuss the problems with misdiagnosed
patients. The rate was at a stagering 60 percent. Therefore, two of
three BPD diagnosis is incorrect.

So lets say its genic. Then a specific physical change would
correlate to the BPD gene. Everyone agrees that BPD lies in the brain.
Their is a study of BPD children which found a large percentage had
A smaller than normal amygdala. The smaller part of the cerebellum,
considered by some cultures the home of a persons soul, had more
connections to interconnecting tissue.

I hold out hope that genetics and brain chemistry studies
can put context to a vastly misunderstood condition

82.  Toni Oxton    Friday, May 13, 2016

i was diagnoised 6 mnths ago with BPD, lots of things make sense now, but for my lack of wanting physical contact, since around 7-8 iv felt that i hated contact from ppl, iv just started theapy but havnt yet discust this with anyone,

83.  vixxy    Saturday, May 14, 2016

It sounds like you are assuming that your children were the same as mother because of genetics by what you are saying in here. It still can apply to "nurture" they were around their mother and her behaviors were they not? I'll be honest I think BPD is probably a genetic thing as well. There are children who are abused that do not get BPD. It's entirely possible that there is a genetic trait that makes someone more likely to get BPD without the "right" kind of parenting. Another thing is that with most of the psychological disorders sharing symptoms that it makes it difficult to diagnose many times. It's possible your wife and children could have had Asbergers. Honestly if there is no empathy I almost lean towards thinking it was Asbergers over BPD. I am in no way shape or form a doc though so I wouldn't stake my life on it.

84.  Bryan    Monday, June 27, 2016

I am hoping I might find some guidance from the bpd community on how I might help a friend of mine. My friend has been raped on several occasions by her husband and I have counseled her to leave him immediately. The problem is that she oftentimes has little regard for her own person so it is very difficult to know what to do. As a result of his attacks, she has contemplated suicide but has convinced herself that she is so dependent upon him that she doesn't know how to leave. Right now, she is numbing herself to her emotions and shutting down on me. How can I assist in helping her to decide to leave him? I greatly appreciate any advice offered.

85.  Arkojyoti AJ Basu    Wednesday, July 13, 2016

HI Sarah, I read your article a few weeks back and I loved it, I'm a BPD myself and I can relate to it perfectly. But your site //owndoc.com is down and not working properly, and I desperately need this article on BPD, as soon as possible, is there any other site where I can find this or any blog or any other link? I need it urgently

86.  Leslee    Sunday, July 17, 2016

My son is currently married to someone with BPD. She has two children from a previous relationship and my granddaughter is the youngest at 16 months old. I currently have custody of her the other paternal grandmother has the older girls.
Here are just a few of her behaviors that are unbareable: extremes abuse of over the counter drugs Aderral, Zoloft, Xanax and marijuana. These drugs exaberate the BPD and throws her into a psychotic rage that is much like a freight train physically destroying everything and everyone in her path. She is perpetually self absorbed ignoring her children and perpetually dumping their care on others. My granddaughter suffered a skull fractured at age 8months because she threw her on the bed with the 6 year old,walked away and subsequently the baby fell off the bed onto to the hard wood floor. The parents waited a full week before taking the baby to the doctor. She could have died.
The most recent event that enabled DSS remove the children was my daughter in law literally ran through a glass storm door in a rage and the glass was broken to smithereens.
The older girl sliced her foot.
Other behaviors are she solicits sex with strangers on Craigslist with strangers and disappears abandoning my son and the children. She returns home in a towel and Tshirt and nothing else. My son and her end up in an altercation where she tries to stab him in the neck with a screwdriver.
She also seems to suffer from a delusional paranoia thinking she, my son and the children all have parasites. She takes her feces and strains it all day long looking for parasites. She believes the children has them and takes them to unnecassary doctor visits for testing. The most disturbing aspect of this is I found parasite medication for a 1250 pound horse in their home after the children were removed....Borderlines have been known to hurt their children for attention getting...
We have committed her to the mental hospital 3 times. Once for a week because she barreled into my sons father's home screaming in a psychotic rage and threatening to kill the secretary. When she got out she was able to manipulate her psychiatrist to believe she was competent to take care of her children. My son committed her a couple of weeks ago and she was able to run away and showed up at my door at 3am in the morning. I have to call the police. Last week after assaulting my son with a screwdriver and busting out all the windows in their home she was sent to a mental ward. All they did was detox her and release her to cause more terror.
A loving environment does not help because that requires 24/7 walking on eggshells catering to her every whim, being a 24/7 nanny and maid regardless of your own needs. You can't even leave her to go make a living because of the fear of abandonment. My son has lost 45 pounds from the stress and abuse she imposes. ..To protect the children and try to help my son be able to go to work to make a living I personally sacrificed being able to work so I could be around to take care of the kids...
She was arrested because someone took her parking place and she backed up and rammed their car...
Some Borderlines are just non-functional in families or society and the disorder renders abuse and neglect to their children as well as perpetual stress and lack of sleep to all.
She shoved my son with the baby in his arms down to the floor in front of me and I had to run out of the house to call the police...
My daughter in law functions as a person with no morals, decency, is violent, she screams and text extremely vile sexual content to everyone beyond belief... She texted photos of her feces to everyone and smeared it all over their home....
And this is the tip of the iceberg......so much more......oh last week she stole my son's father's truck and rammed a gas grill into my truck...
Regardless of the cause genetic or environment you are forced to deal with the behaviors....Remove children, then it is either jail or mental institution for everyone's safety...normal people are not equipped to rehabilitate her. It will keep you stressed, in constant chaos and suck you in a toxic black hole where your entire life is sacrificed to compensate....this article is spot on but if the writer has never experienced first hand what it is like to deal with a family member that has an extreme case of BPD where innocent children are involved you may want to consider that a loving environment doesn't work....
I invite you to trade places with me and experience the trauma to our lives.....to me a loving environment to my daughter in law is simply moving on to their next group of victims where she will idealize him,her or them until she is offended and cycle continues.

I am exhausted as many are with this illness......I have compassion but there is nothing more I can do but raise my granddaughter. Believe me I am the most positive person ever but this situation is more than a nightmare. At least we finally have the children safe from her delusional and violent nature.....God Bless anyone dealing with this Disorder.

87.  LCU    Friday, July 22, 2016

Inferences are made through correlational studies in psychology using randomized control trials. Research does suggest genetic, biological, and environmental contributes to the disorder. However, it is complex. Some children are not affected by a tumultuous or neglectful environment, possibly due to variables such as personality (resilient traits), biology, and other strengths in the environment. And other children have a seemingly supportive environment and later develop the disorder. Genetic history, early invalidation, and/or lack of mother child bonding are likely contributing factors. Evidence does support differences in brain chemistry and structure mentioned above. But whether this is something the child is born with, and/or due to environmental factors remains unknown. Loving and supportive people do play a role in helping the person with BPD recover, but they also need to do a lot of work themselves (DBT has shown tremendously good results). Understanding possible causes can be helpful, however, blaming the person with BPD and/or parents is NOT helpful and only causes more pain and separation for all involved.

88.  Jon    Friday, August 26, 2016

This article makes someone with BPD look like they have a shred of empathy when they don't. I was married to woman with BPD and she is the most destructive person I have ever known. She only acts like she cares when she needs something from someone. As soon as she gets it, she's off finding some other source of supply to suck off of. I tried to find some reason to not think of her as all bad but honestly, every time I did, she would do something to remind me that she only wants to destroy those who show her love. It's like love makes her so uncomfortable that she has to hurt the people she loves so she doesn't have to deal with them abandoning her. It's so sad. But no way will I ever put myself in harms way ever again. I don't believe people with BPD can have normal relationships. It's like saying someone with spina bifida at some point will be able to walk again. It's an emotional disability and these people, sadly, will never be able to love and give to anyone in a relationship the way they should. I feel bad for my ex wife. I really do. I loved her more than anything in the world and wanted to stay but she destroyed all of me and then left. She even said it when she left that she knew she could not stop hurting me. Even after she left, when I decided to cut off all contact with her because her behaviour actually started to scare me, she accused me of being abusive when I never was. In fact, she hit ME and she verbally abused me all the time. That was her pay back when I decided to cut her off. To call me abusive. To tell all her friends that I had been. Thank god my character stood for itself. These are the kind of women that create false accusations against men and ruin it for actual women being abused. They are completely destructive to EVERYTHING. It's not fixable. Accept it. Do your best but honestly, it would take a completely self loathing human being without a spine to stay in a relationship with someone with BPD forever. I was on the verge of killing myself because she destroyed so much of my self esteem. Thank god she left me. It was the most loving thing she could have ever done.

89.  Peter    Thursday, January 4, 2018

I've read much about BPD, and this article is like a description of my life. I like it very much.
I was never physically abused but obviously emotionnally neglected or threatened, and made to feel I had no value whatsoever from a very early age. Despite all my efforts, my parents could never acknowledge they made any mistake and always said they loved me. I wonder then why I've never felt like I was at home with them, why I thoroughly hate my mother, or why I've never felt love for anyone in my family. I've spent most of my life in depression, desperately trying to lead a normal life, only to see I am unable to feel what others feel. I utterly lack self-confidence, always feel I have no value, that I do not count, that I am not wanted, that I am in the way. Whenever someone finds interests in me, or find me attractive, I suspect them of being deranged. These messages obviously come from a very early age, and I can't recall a time of ever being happy or feeling full, or not feeling misplaced. I do feel my brain doesn't function like the brain of normal people, as I am unable to share pleasant experiences like people normally do. I am keenly sensitive to others pain, and I have a special ability to notice when someone is sad, angry, distressed, despaired, even when they're trying to hide it. My brain has been wired to feel and to recognize pain. Though I made no attemps, I do feel suicidal very very often. The level of pain and distress I have to deal with every day is just tremendous. I've tried some meds, but I hate the way they make me feel, like zombified, or numb (no to mention the side effects). I think I prefer to feel "real", even if I cry all the time, rather than living a lie. BPD is hell on earth. It is just a technical word to hide the reality of broken children who were raised in loneliness, despair and (in my case) subtle but very effective repression. In the article, I felt deeply the words : "absence of any kind of bonding".

90.  Peter    Thursday, January 4, 2018

#86 This is not BPD. This is psychotic behaviour.

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