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How to Deal With Borderline Personality Disorder

Hemangi Harankhedkar
Self-harm and suicide attempts by the affected person are some of the extreme symptoms of borderline personality disorder, which is said to affect nearly 10% of the population. You need to be very careful while dealing with a person suffering from this disorder. In this article, learn all about BPD, and the ways to cope with it.
A person with borderline personality disorder (abbrev. BPD), often, has to go through turbulence in personal relationships, apart from many other serious negative consequences. BPD is a personality disorder, typically found in people over the age of eighteen, characterized by extreme emotions and mood changes in the affected person.
Women are more likely to develop this disorder than men, the reasons for this observation are not known. This article delves deeper to understand BPD, and also presents some effective ways to deal with it.

What are the Causes?

There is not a single influencing factor that causes BPD, and so the prognosis is not clear. There are in fact, many factors that may provoke the disorder in a person. Abuse and neglect during childhood, environmental and biological factors, abnormalities in the brain, are some common causes that are believed to influence the development of borderline personality disorder. The risk of a person developing BPD is high if someone in his/her family had this disorder in the past.

What are the Symptoms?

  • Frequent mood changes are observed in the person.
  • The affected person has a highly unstable emotional frame of mind, and thus lacks control over emotions.
  • These people can either be very vocal about their anger, or fail to express anger.
  • They fear loneliness and ignorance, and to counter it they indulge in throwing tantrums and a manipulative behavior.
  • They are vulnerable to fits of rage and phases of depression.
  • In extreme cases, when the person is not administered treatment he may attempt suicide, or indulge in self-harming actions.
  • To cope with such extreme emotions, the person is at a high risk of resorting to binge eating and other addictions, like drug abuse and excess consumption of alcohol.

How to Deal with It?

You can surely learn to deal with the extreme emotions in you, though in extreme cases, you should not hesitate to seek professional help. Some tips given below would help you cope with BPD effectively.
  • When you face emotional fury and feel insecure, engage yourself in some work. The activities could be simple like cleaning the garden, or your house. Engaging in these activities would distract you from your inner insecurity.
  • Take care of your health and plan a routine. Give time for each activity; exercise, play some sport, go jogging, and spend time fruitfully. Keeping yourself engaged in these activities will indirectly help you in obtaining mental peace.
  • Deep breathing and meditation will also help you maintain a positive and cheerful frame of mind. Remember that you have to take care of yourself, so take the best efforts possible.
  • Don't keep yourself restricted and spend time with friends and family. When you are feeling insecure and lonely, call a friend and share your worries with him/her. Talking out with someone would make you feel lighter and less stressed.
  • Learn to express your emotions in a positive way. You should not keep your anger and emotions unexpressed but should let them out positively, that is, by talking them out.
  • Next time you face hateful thoughts about life, channelize your thoughts to positive actions. Think about the good times and don't let regret and some bad memories affect your today.

How to Help a person with BPD?

Borderline personality disorder needs to dealt with care and sensitivity. It can be hard for you to deal with the intensity of emotions and mood changes, but you should take all the effort to understand and help the person. Read through the following guidelines for help.
  • People with BPD tend to give in to addictions that can prove disastrous for them. So, take all possible efforts to keep the person away from addictions of any kind. You can do this by motivating the person to join some activities, and keeping them busy.
  • Make the person feel special and do not ignore them. It is caring that works. Stay connected with the happenings in the person's life and guide him/her if there is any problem.
  • When in a bad mood, the person with BPD may become abusive and use foul language. Do not take such abuse seriously. You might want to run away from them, and sometimes dealing with them can be really tough. In the end, remember the person is your loved one and the way he behaves sometimes is something he does unknowingly.
  • The least you can do to help the person is by caring for him/her, and ensuring that he/she is having proper food and is following a hygienic and balanced lifestyle and routine.
  • If the situation is getting out of control and, you suspect, the person may indulge in self-harming behavior. You can counter it by providing professional help to the person.
Borderline personality disorder can be really difficult to handle for the suffering person, and also for his/her near and dear ones. The best you can do is understand, care and help the person to make his/her life better.