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TherapistMarryAnn
TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5806
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Trying to find a way to have a diagnostic test on BPD for my

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Trying to find a way to have a diagnostic test on BPD for my husband. After 2 years of therapy, it turns out that he probably has BPD but don't know where to turn to find someone that could do the actually diagnostic. We leave in Ottawa, Canada.

Annie
Hello, I'd like to help you with your question.

There is no standard test for Borderline Personality disorder unfortunately. Because the symptoms can vary so much and often overlap with other disorders, it is very difficult to diagnose someone with BPD. The three therapists that your husband has seen already should have been able to recognize the traits and diagnose him, but treating the BPD is another story.

Personality disorders are typically ingrained behaviors that someone develops, usually in response to being raised in a dysfunctional home. The person could not get their needs met (for unconditional love and attention) so they developed other ways to get what they needed which usually involved dysfunctional behaviors. When they grew up, they continued these behaviors even when they were no longer needed.

Treating someone with a personality disorder can be difficult. For one, they have to recognize they have a problem and be willing to get help. Also, personality disorders are hard to treat because they are ingrained in the personality of the person. So treating them is altering the person's perceptions and some basic personality traits. That does not mean they cannot be treated, but the effort it takes on the part of the person is more intense.

There are some on line tests that can be done to get an idea if your husband has BPD. Along with self help and information, you can determine if he may have BPD. Follow up with a therapist who has experience treating personality disorders is the best way to help your husband. Here are some resources to help:

http://psychcentral.com/news/20 09/05/25/borderline-personality-disorder-difficult-to-diagnose/6070.html

http://psychcentral.com/quizzes/borderline.htm

http://therapists.psychologytoday.com/rms/prof_search.php

http://www.nmha.org/go/information/get-info/personality-disorders

I hope this has helped you,
Kate
TherapistMarryAnn and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Thank you for your answer. I am a little devasted and I am not sure how to act. He is a very nice,loving man, when in a good place and an awesome father to a 6yr old and an 8 yr old. I am not sure how to handle the situation best. Would you have tips for me to go through these moments when he takes a distance and becomes emotionnaly numb.

It can be difficult when you live with someone who has a personality disorder. You want him to be consistent in his behavior and responses to you and the kids, but he is not able to be.

Try to keep in mind that how your husband acts is not because of anything you did or is it about who you are. This is about his past and how he learned to act this way. If you can distance yourself in that way, it will help.

If he acts in a hurtful way, use a response such as "I'm sorry you feel that way (or are acting that way)" and leave the situation. Find a place in the home for you and your kids that you feel comfortable in and stay there until you feel he is ok to be around again.

Highlight the good things he does to him. Tell him that you appreciate when he is so good to the kids or does something nice for you. It'll help him know the right way to act. It is hard to think that an adult would not know the best way to act, but if he has a personality disorder, he probably was never taught or he was taught the wrong way to act.

Most of all, be as supportive as you can be without sacrificing your own safety and well being. If you need to leave or walk away, do so without guilt. He needs to understand that you have to protect yourself and the kids emotionally, if necessary.

Kate