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Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 7663
Experience:  35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
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Is it hard to diagnose bpd? My therapist thinks I have this,

Customer Question

Is it hard to diagnose bpd? My therapist thinks I have this, and the signs seem to describe me. Not sure about a diagnosis though
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 1 year ago.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Seeking expert counseling is a sign of strength. A personal relationship with a caring professional is proven clinically effective.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Dear friend,

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I believe that I can help.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

You are diagnosed with BPD when you meet certain criteria in the estimation of the assessments or interviews she or he has done.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I do not understand the "team" approach of your organization.

Customer:

Sure. My therapist isn't qualified to do these assessments. I think they have to be completed by a psychiatrist

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

That is not true.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Psychiatrists are no better trained in making assessments than other mental health therapists. They just give medications, and the best treatment for BPD is psychotherapy and not medications. However, psychiatrists approach most disorders with medications.

Customer:

Are you in the UK...the team approach is based on primary and secondary mental health care. My therapist is classed as primary care but she is private not part of NHS

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I have lived in the UK but I am in the US.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

What are your symptoms?

Customer:

She recommends DBT but think I have to have an official diagnosis for this. Was wondering about the diagnostic process

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you get very angry? Do you fly into a rage?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you hurt or cut yourself?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you engage in reckless behaviour?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Are your triggered by feeling abandoned?

Customer:

Symptom wise, dissociation when very distressed. I've always called it a transient personality where younger distressed parts of myself come to the surface

Customer:

Yes self harm. Yes am triggered by rejection and not understanding emotions or relationship

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

You have other personalities within you with different characteristics (including personalities, voices changes, etc.)?

Customer:

Yes some voice changes, my bodily movements change and speech becomes stunted

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Hurt yourself?

Customer:

Yes most recently burning

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Fly into a rage?

Customer:

No, neither reckless

Customer:

I can get very angry but gets internalised into distress

Customer:

That will then affect relationship

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Reckless includes spending, driving, gambling, drugs, sex.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you get very angry at others?

Customer:

I tend not to communicate in that state because it makes the situation worse,

Customer:

Reclessness as defined above is not something I do

Customer:

If someone hits my triggers then yes I get angry

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

What is your biggest trigger(s)?

Customer:

People misperceiving me or rejecting me

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Were you abandoned or abused as a child?

Customer:

If I can't make myself understood or think people are not listening. Yes I was badly abused as a child

Customer:

Went into care when I was 15

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Do you have moments of forgetfulness?

Customer:

Yes

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Don't remember important personal information sometimes?

Customer:

Especially if my personality switches

Customer:

Not so much that, more that I might not remember what I was doing, have done that day, what day it is or what I'm meant to do

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

DBT, by the way, is the best therapy for you.

Customer:

Yes I think so from looking into it, just wondering how I go about accessing it

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

If I were your therapist I would give you a dual diagnosis and begin treatment immediately

Customer:

Not so common in UK. What is a dual diagnosis?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Borderline Personality Disorder and Dissociative Identity Disorder (multiple personality disorder was the old term for it).

Customer:

Ah right, not heard of it. It's not like my alter personality is called Fred or anything. I worry people won't believe me

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Let me give you some helpful information: the official criteria for diagnosing these two disorders - both of which are related to childhood trauma and abandonment.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Personalities may not have names but you may conveniently name them. I have a client with several: one is a baby and she names it Baby.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Here are the official (DSM-IV) criteria for BPD:

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

 


BPD – DSM-IV


1. Frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment.


2. A pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships characterised by alternation between extremes of idealization and devaluation.


3. Identity disturbance - markedly and persistently unstable self-image or sense of self.


4. Impulsivity in at least two areas that are potentially self-damaging, e.g. spending, sex, substance abuse, reckless driving or binge-eating.


5. Recurrent suicidal behaviour, gestures, or threats, or self-mutilating behaviour.


6. Affective instability due to a marked reactivity of mood, e.g. intense episodic dysphoria, irritability or anxiety, which usually lasts for between a few hours and several days.


7. Chronic feelings of emptiness


8. Inappropriate, intense anger, or difficulty controlling anger, e.g. frequent displays of temper, constant anger or recurrent physical fights.


9. Transient, stress-related paranoid ideation or severe dissociative symptoms.


Anyone with six or more of the above traits and symptoms may be diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. However, the traits must be long-standing (pervasive), and there must be no better explanation for them, e.g. physical illness, a different mental illness or substance misuse.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :



and for Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID):



Diagnostic criteria for 300.14 Dissociative Identity Disorder


(DSM IV - TR)


A. The presence of two or more distinct identities or personality states (each with its own relatively enduring pattern of perceiving, relating to, and thinking about the environment and self).


B. At least two of these identities or personality states recurrently take control of the person's behavior.


C. Inability to recall important personal information that is too extensive to be explained by ordinary forgetfulness.


D. The disturbance is not due to the direct physiological effects of a substance(e.g., blackouts or chaotic behavior during Alcohol Intoxication) or a general medical condition (e.g., complex partial seizures). Note: In children, thesymptoms are not attributable to imaginary playmates or other fantasy play.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :



I have a couple of books to recommend to you. The first is about a young woman's recovery from BPD and it will inform and inspire you (available to order online in the UK - just click the link).

Customer:

Thank you that is helpful and the book sounds good too

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :


and a book to get started on DBT - a workbook:

Customer:

The crisis team report says my history is consistent with an emotionally unstable personality disorder. Is that another way of saying BPD in your opinion?

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :


Yes, in words that are obscure and not plain.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

It means that people with your childhood history can get a personality disorder (usually BPD). The same history can produce DID or PTSD (posttraumatic stress disorder).

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :


I have a couple of choices for DBT workbooks.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

 


and one other

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :


I hope that this helps. I see you have left the chat and gone offline.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Please remember to leave me positive feedback for our session.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

I shall keep you in my prayers.

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Warm regards,

Elliott, LPCC, NCC :

Elliott, MAE, LPCC, NCC, CCMHC

Customer:

Thanks just had a call

Customer:

Will leave your feedback now

Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 7663
Experience: 35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
Elliott, LPCC, NCC and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 1 year ago.
Our chat has ended, but you can still continue to ask me questions here until you are satisfied with your answer. Come back to this page to view our conversation and any other new information.

What happens now?

If you haven’t already done so, please rate your answer above. Or, you can reply to me using the box below.
Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 1 year ago.
Dear XXXXX,

Thank you. You can be helped. Stay away from meds if you can.

May God bless you.

Elliott
Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 1 year ago.
Thank you again. Elliott
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi


 


Thanks for your help and recent email. I have had the good news that the complex care and treatment team have taken me on from referral and there is a dbt service in my area. Waiting to hear from them. I got the skills manual from above and think it's a good help.


Regards Susie, UK

Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 1 year ago.
Dear Susan,

Thank you so much for getting back to me. I am delighted that you have been accepted for therapy, particular if it is DBT. I am glad that the skills manual is helping you.

I recommend reading Rachel Reiland's book. It will give you much needed encouragement that you can get beyond this.

May God bless and protect you.

Warm regards,

Elliott

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What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
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  • I can go as far as to say it could have resulted in saving my sons life and our entire family now knows what bipolar is and how to assist and understand my most wonderful son, brother and friend to all who loves him dearly. Thank you very much Corrie Moll Pretoria, South Africa
  • I thank-you so much! It really helped to have this information and confirmation. We will watch her carefully and get her in for the examination and US right away if things do not improve. God bless you as well! Claudia Albuquerque, NM
  • Outstanding response time less than 6 minutes. Answered the question professionally and with a great deal of compassion. Kevin Beaverton, OR
  • Suggested diagnosis was what I hoped and will take this info to my doctor's appointment next week.
    I feel better already! Thank you.
    Elanor Tracy, CA
  • Thank you to the Physician who answered my question today. The answer was far more informative than what I got from the Physicians I saw in person for my problem. Julie Lockesburg, AR
  • You have been more help than you know. I seriously don't know what my sisters situation would be today if you had not gone above and beyond just answering my questions. John and Stefanie Tucson, AZ
  • I have been dealing with an extremely serious health crisis for over three years, and one your physicians asked me more questions, gave me more answers and encouragement than a dozen different doctors who have been treating me!! Janet V Phoenix, AZ
 
 
 

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Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Mental Health Professional
7663 Satisfied Customers
35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.