Borderline Personality Disorder

Why giving your mental illness a name can help you recover

Being diagnosed with a mental illness can be life-changing.

Why giving your mental illness a name can help you recover

Fiona Thomas for
Sunday 5 Nov 2017 8:00 am

Studies show that one in four people have been diagnosed with a mental illness at some point in their lives, but how does the diagnosis itself impact the individual?

You would think that labeling someone with a mental illness might illicit a negative response, and maybe even make their symptoms worse.

But Dr Jelena Goranovic, Director at the Sussex Wellbeing Company, confirms that there are positive aspects when someone receives a formal diagnosis. Dr Goranovic says you may be ‘feeling like you’re not alone and that others are on the same boat with you’ and that naming your condition ‘helps you feel more ‘normal”.

She suggests that patients may also be in a better position to receive treatment from a GP, support group or access financial support. ‘Once there is a diagnosis, it’s easier to get help.’

Ali Strick has been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, but only after years of struggling internally with the mental illness. ‘I spent many years thinking I was a bad person who was going off the rails but to know I was sick and not bad was comforting, and to know other people felt the same was comforting.’


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