Today, my husband and I attended an evvent for sufferers of and family of people with borderline personality disorder. First, a psychiatrist spoke about what BPD is. He was interrupted mid-sentence by three women who had BPD themselves and felt they were in a better position to tell what it is. This looked a bit foolish as it was obviously planned. After the women were finished, the psychiatrist took over and explained about causes and treatment. One important point is that there is no one cause of BPD. In fact, BPD is caused by many factors interacting, such as environment, traumatic experiences, genetics, neurobiology, etc. Another interesting point was that there are four different therapies for BPD which are on average each equally effective. Also, the therapeutic alliance is more importan than what type of therapy you’re following. He said that therapeutic skills are important in all psychotherapy practice, but to an exaggerated extent so in BPD treatment.

Then we went to meet some peer supporters who told their stories and had us ask questions. I had expected to sit and listen but ultiately was the most talkative on my table. One of the peer supporters said she suspected she was born borderline. I have discussed this topic before. Some personality traits, such as aggressivness or risk-taking, make someone more prone to end up in traumatizing situations. Also, people with certain traits experience more seemingly minor evetns as traumatic. For example, my husband later told me he had experienced the same event that one of the peer supporters said was traumatic to her, and he was unaffected. This is one reason I don’t like the narrow DSM-5 definition of trauma in PTSD. PTSD too is as much a brain-based and genetic condition as it is trauma-based. So are the dissociative disorders by the way. I hope eventually the DSM developing people will realize this and remove the mandatory connection of PTSD to specific traumas. Science is already there on the dissociative disorders, but sufferers need to follow. Note please that I am not saying that abuse or trauma has no role in these conditions, or that it isn’t horrible when it occurs. All I’m saying is that it’s not like you’ll only and always develop PTSD or a dissociative disorder if you’ve experienced a certain trauma.

24 thoughts on “BPD Day

    1. BPD stands for borderline personality disorder. If you’re in the UK, you might’ve heard of it as emotioonally unstable personality disorder. It means that a person has trouble regulating emotions.


  1. Thanks for sharing this, I studied psychology back in college and none of these were talked about much or at all. It sounds like an interesting event. Thanks for sharing what you learned and your personal thoughts on it too.


  2. I’ve never heard of this before…but being a teacher for 6 years of some children, I would say that they definitely had it. They had a very difficult time dealing with and handing their emotions.


  3. There’s never a one size fits all diagnosis for anything relating to mental health. I wish DSM would realize that and make adjustments. We’re all so different, and our life experiences impact us- for good and for bad. That conference must have been an interesting experience for you- probably prtty “heavy” emotionally


  4. Thanks for sharing info on BPD. I am a nurse and don’t remember learning much about it in my studies. It would have been nice to have some of this info in my early nursing year, I know I could have helped some of my patients with identifying their symptoms. Thanks for the info.


    1. For clarity’s sake, I am the one who has BPD, not my husband. I was using that example about trauma to illustrate that many people who endure trauma never become mentally ill.


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