What to do if you think your partner has borderline personality disorder

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Illustration: Angelica Alzona

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a mental disorder that affects how you perceive yourself and others. Those with BPD may have a hard time regulating their emotions, face it problems with self-image and experience a model of unstable relationships. At the heart of the disturbance it is an intense fear of abandonment, which can create romantic relationships particularly difficult. It is esteemed 1.6% of the general population has BPD and if you are in a relationship with someone who has—Or you suspect it may have—BPD, it is important to educate yourself about the disorder, for the benefit of your relationship. But don’t go on with yourself …

First, you need a diagnosis

You can recognize aspects of BPD from their representation in popular media, e the benefits of the diagnosis are equal played publicly via titles of recent years. Actor Pete Davidson was famous for his voice struggle with BPDand he said he feared that his diagnosis would prevent him from having a healthy relationship with hers-time fiancée Ariana Grande. In the end, however, giving a name to his experiences it helped him: “I was diagnosed with BPD a few years ago,” Davidson later said in an interview published in Variety,and i was always so confused all the time, and i just thought something was wrong and i didn’t know how to deal with it … then when someone finally tells you, the weight of the world feels lifted off your shoulders. You feel much better ”.

While a diagnosis can definitely be helpful to someone who has BPD, it is important not to attempt to diagnose someone on your own. Dr. Lawrence Tuckera Newport Beach therapist, advises to gently approach someone, when I am in a stable mood, e suggesting to see a professional—but without specifically citing the BPD. “Just tell them their behavior worries you because you love them and want them to be happy,” advises Tucker. “Offer your support every step of the way. ”

It is vital to recognize that many people can attach to much of from stigma to mental health problems. Some may not yet be willing to admit they have a problem. Everyone’s mental health journey moves at their own pace, and it is essential to be aware of this. The most important thing you can do for your partner and for be patient, and stay aware of the fact which can take time for them be ready to accept help.

When a loved one is ready to ask for help

There is no “cure” for BPD, but the ailment is negotiable – lthe style changes like it therapy e taking medications can help relieve symptoms. The road looks different for each person, but with the right treatment and support, many people with BPD can and do find better ways to function, and as a result their relationships can become more stable and rewarding. Keep in mind that your partner’s decision to do so to seek the treatment will also impact you and that you have to support their efforts. If you think you can’t, it might be time to reevaluate yours relation.

A A therapist who specializes in helping those who have BPD is essential. More effective therapy for BPD is dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), so look for a therapist who can support it. (Our guide on how to find a therapist is here.)

Cath, a 24-year-old diagnosed with BPD in 2020, recalls: “I’ve always had emotional instability and reacted to things in a much more intense way than my counterparts … that’s what made me go out and try to get a diagnosis “. After diagnosis and treatment, things impwandered. I am extremely self-aware and, on a rational level, understand that I am overreacting to things, ”said Cath. “I can’t always control the emotional part of my brain. The things that help me cope are to be with [my partner]…or take deep breaths to ease my anxiety.

Encourage, understand, and appreciate your loved one with BPD

According to Cath, “The best way to show support is to be understanding and empathetic, and to offer reassurance and validation when [they] express feelings in a certain way, no matter how strange it may seem to a neurotypical person. Someone with BPD can often feel unappreciated in relationships. The best way to combat this is to show your partner that you love and appreciate them in the how they will do better receive it.

R.Research the signs and symptoms of BPD and be prepared to support your partner in whatever way they manifest. A person with BPD typically experiences “black and white thinking,” which means she may be thinking absolutely:going from adoring you for being furious with you in moments. However, even when someone with BPD is expressing that they “hate” you, chances are they are also living in real fear that you will abandon them.

This imbalance can create enough relationships volatile, so it’s important offer as much comfort and reassurance as you can. It can be useful, on occasion moments of conflict, to remind your partner that you understand that he is feeling overwhelmed, and that you will not leave them and continue to support them.

Understand that it is not your partner’s fault. Nobody wants to be dominated by their emotions, and it can be difficult to manage symptoms, especially in the beginning. When they experience a flare up, remember I’m not really inside control of one’s actions. Neuropsychiatric research has found common evidence structural brain abnormalities in those with BPD –which means that there are biological factors that influence their behavior. Yyou wouldn’t blame a loved one for having cancer, Like this you shouldn’t blame a loved one for having a mental illness.

Find a support group

BPD is a lifelong condition, but tThe right treatment and support can help people with the disorder form more stable and rewarding relationships. For your part, remember that in order to provide the best support for others, your health matters too. Take care of you. There are many support groups for those struggling in relationships with someone who has BPD. To start looking support groups for family memberscontact the local chapter of the National Alliance on Mental disease (NAMI).