People with BPD often experience instantaneous shifts in their attitude toward people close to them, veering from idealization (love and admiration) to devaluation (anger and dislike).
Borderline personality disorder triggers turmoil and rage
by Gail Johnson
For as long as she can remember, 26-year-old Tannis Jackson has found herself routinely slipping into fits of rage. After one particularly bad day at work, she became so infuriated she made her own head bleed
“I remember being so angry I pulled out two fistfuls of hair and smashed my head against the wall,” Jackson tells the Georgia Straight in a phone interview. “There was no other way to express how I felt.”
Jackson (who requested anonymity), who works in a health-care field in the Interior, didn’t know why she couldn’t control her everyday emotions. She just knew that the most minor conflict would aggravate her delicate state of mind, leading to explosive outbursts. Imagine a cup of water filled to the rim: when everything is going smoothly, the water stays still and calm. But any slight disruption, such as a disagreement, has an effect like a tsunami, making the water churn and spill over, with devastating consequences.
“I wasn’t able to cope with anything,” she explains. “I would have temper tantrums, and I would take things out on myself. If I had a bad day at work, I figured everything was my fault. Every day was a struggle.”
People with BPD often experience instantaneous shifts in their attitude toward people close to them, veering from idealization (love and admiration) to devaluation (anger and dislike). Although people suffering from depression typically endure the same low mood for weeks, those with BPD may experience intense bouts of anger, sadness, or anxiety that last just hours.
They often feel misunderstood or mistreated and lack a sense of identity. They might make desperate attempts to avoid being alone and act impulsively, spending excessive amounts of money or having risky sex. They can come across as manipulative, controlling, unwilling to change, and attention-seeking.