Borderline Personality Disorder

Hope in fight against borderline disorder

Borderline personality disorder is not the same as bipolar disorder.

Hope in fight against borderline disorder
Nathan Gibson
April 2, 2015, 9:40 am

It is almost impossible to write about this important issue in a calm and reflective way. The “issues” of self-harm, chaotic or risky behaviour, and overwhelming emotional instability and distress are often too raw for individuals, families and care services to discuss calmly.

The important themes of adolescent self-harm, youth suicide and emotionally volatile young adults who struggle to engage with services continue to attract public attention and often overwhelm us as a community.

But among these struggles, there is hope. There are established and effective therapies, and the majority of young people with existing or emerging features of borderline personality disorder go on to lead meaningful lives.

Borderline personality disorder is characterised by unstable relationships, volatile emotions and self-esteem, and impulsive behaviour. Feelings of emptiness and abandonment, as well as self-harming, are common. The impact on function can be significant, and the emotional distress severe.

Borderline personality disorder is not the same as bipolar disorder. Less than one in 50 people have borderline personality disorder but more people than this have milder symptoms which are not as intrusive. Tragically, about 10 per cent of people with borderline personality disorder suicide in their lifetime — it’s not a low risk.


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