Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a disorder characterized by a pervasive pattern of instability in interpersonal relationships, self-image and emotions. People with borderline personality disorder are also usually very impulsive. The cause is extreme abuse, a mother with a personality disorder, or an extremely dysfunctional family.
This disorder occurs in most by early adulthood. The unstable pattern of interacting with others has persisted for years and is usually closely related to the person's self-image and early social interactions. The pattern is present in a variety of settings (e.g., not just at work or home) and often is accompanied by a similar lability (fluctuating back and forth, sometimes in a quick manner) in a person's emotions and feelings.
Relationships and the person's emotion may often be characterized as being shallow.
A person with this disorder will also often exhibit impulsive behaviors and have a majority of the following symptoms:
- Frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment
- A pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships characterized by alternating between extremes of idealization and devaluation
- Identity disturbance: markedly and persistently unstable self-image or sense of self
- Impulsivity in at least two areas that are potentially self-damaging (e.g., spending, sex, substance abuse, reckless driving, binge eating)
- Recurrent suicidal behavior, gestures, or threats, or self-mutilating behavior
- Affective instability due to a marked reactivity of mood (e.g., intense episodic dysphoria, irritability, or anxiety usually lasting a few hours and only rarely more than a few days)
- Chronic feelings of emptiness
- Inappropriate, intense anger or difficulty controlling anger (e.g., frequent displays of temper, constant anger, recurrent physical fights)
- Transient, stress-related paranoid ideation or severe dissociative symptoms
The most important thing for you to realize about this, though, is that almost everyone who has been abused, can look like this at one time or another, and not be Borderline. When you have BPD, behavior is *always* the most extreme; there are NO good relationships... and the person never considers whether these problems are about them -- they blame everyone else.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder characterized by uncontrollable, unwanted thoughts and repetitive, ritualized behaviors you feel compelled to perform. If you have OCD, you probably recognize that your obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors are irrational - but even so, you feel unable to resist them and break free.
Like a needle getting stuck on an old record, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) causes the brain to get stuck on a particular thought or urge. For example, you may check the stove twenty times to make sure it's really turned off, you're your hands until they're scrubbed raw, or drive around for hours to make sure that the bump you heard while driving wasn't a person you ran over. The cause is a brain issue.
Being abused as a child causes MANY problems that look like a million other things. There is a book called, "Adult Children of Alcoholics" by Janet Woititz, where she discusses things that abused children experience. She lists these things:
People who were abused:
1. Guess at what normal is.
2. Have difficulty in following a project through from beginning to end.
3. Lie when it would be just as easy to tell the truth.
4. Judge themselves without mercy.
5. Have difficulty having fun.
6. Take themselves very seriously.
7. Have difficulty with intimate relationships.
8. Overreact to changes over which they have no control.
9. Constantly seek approval and affirmation.
10. Feel that they are different from other people.
11. Are either super responsible or super irresponsible.
12. Are extremely loyal, even in the face of evidence that loyalty is undeserved.
13. Have money dsyfunction, such as hiding it or being disorganized with it.
BPD and abuse can look very similar. So before you decide you are BPD, why not check that out with a Psychologist?
Finally, what makes you think you are BPD?