What is Borderline Personality Disorder?

Borderline personality disorder or BPD, also called unstable personality disorder, is a mental health condition causing people to have trouble regulating their emotions and thoughts. Individuals frequently experience distorted self-images and confusing behaviour.

For example, someone might feel like they are pushing people they care for away even though they yearn for a stable and long-lasting relationship. The experience of feeling intense emotions that change rapidly can be gruelling to manage.

Additionally, there may be a tendency to engage in impulsive or reckless self-harming behaviour.

The good news is that many people improve their lives following a borderline personality disorder diagnosis. With the appropriate treatment and enough time, people can learn to manage their emotions, have a joyful life with close secure relationships.


Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder is characterised by an intense fear of abandonment, a pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships, impulsivity in at least two areas that are self-damaging (for example, substance abuse or sex), and mood disturbances.

If you are suffering from BPD, you might also experience:


  • An unstable sense of self: People with BPD often feel they have no sense of who they are or cannot fit in the world. They may change goals and values from day to day as they struggle to gain a sense of belonging.


  • Intense but unstable relationships: Relationships with friends, family members, and partners can be unpredictable for people with BPD.  For instance they may idealise someone and then turn against them and this can become cycle.


  • Impulsive behaviours: People with borderline personality disorder tend to act impulsively when feeling very upset or stressed out. The emotional turbulence can be so intense that impulsive behaviour can lead to substance abuse or self-injury.


It is not yet fully understood what causes borderline personality disorder. For now, scientists believe it is a combination of environmental effects like traumatic events, emotional regulation functions, and possibly genetics. 

]My approach, using a combination of dialectical behaviour therapy, psychodynamic approaches, and family systems therapy, can help you gain understanding of how you operate, learn mechanisms to manage your emotions, develop compassion for yourself and live a joyful life.


Treatments for Borderline Personality Disorder and Unstable Personality Disorder

There are many treatments for borderline personality disorder, and dialectical behaviour therapy, or DBT, is one of them. DBT is an effective treatment for this condition because it helps people learn how to manage emotions and control impulses by changing their thoughts and behaviours.

The most notable difference between DBT and other types of therapy is that DBT focuses on the person’s life skills. 

With DBT, I can help you learn, or re-learn, how to manage your emotions, tolerate distress, and moderate behaviours to make better choices for yourself.


Are You Suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder?

If you feel like the symptoms described in this post are what you are experiencing, or have already been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, you should look for treatment.

I use a tailored integrative approach for everyone including a combination of psychodynamic approaches and family systems theory to understand the mechanisms behind your personality and behaviours.

Using this understanding, we can work together on healing your traumas and create space to recognise mood swings and their triggers enabling you to respond in a healthy manner to challenging situations.

You can reach me at 086 3835910 or email info@engageconselling.ie if you are ready to work towards improved mental health.