Borderline Personality Disorder

What is a borderline personality disorder and what is the best therapy for it? The Disorder is something that can affect all aspects and areas of your life. It changes the way you think, act, and function. Awareness regarding various mental health conditions is growing by the day.

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a condition characterized by intense mood swings and impulsive behavior. Although similar to depression and other behavioral issues, BPD is different. Individuals who may have borderline personality disorder may engage in risky and destructive behavior.

Shedding light on these problems provides insight into handling and overcoming them.

borderline personality disorder


People diagnosed with the disorder are prone to self-harm. Substance abuse, bodily harm, or even binge eating are common manifestations as well as sudden bursts of emotions such as intense anger and sadness. 

Left untreated, the mental illness can be debilitating and negatively impact life. Relationship problems are common due to over-dependency and the development of toxic behavior.

Some cases even show paranoia caused by fluctuating moods. Overall, The condition can be destructive and harmful to patients and the people around them.

Despite these effects, the disorder can get effective treatment through a specialized combination of medication and psychotherapy. Treatments for borderline personality disorder focus on understanding the condition and reducing impulsive actions.

Therapy is impactful in allowing patients to manage their emotions. People with BPD can live happy and meaningful lives with the help of these guided treatment plans. 

Are you seeking help for yourself or a loved one with BPD? Here are the frequently asked questions about therapy that might help. 

What is the best therapy for a borderline personality disorder?

Dialectical behavioral therapy is the most common type of treatment to address BPD. It is a cognitive behavioral therapy aiming to teach patients how to regulate emotions and tolerate stress.

This type of treatment applies to individual and group therapy. In group dialectical behavioral therapy, you will undergo meditation, muscle relaxation, problem-solving, and breath training.

psychotherapy for borderline personality disorder

Can the condition be treated successfully?

A borderline personality disorder is often ingrained in a person’s personality and identity, but therapy and medication can successfully treat it. Medication controls the symptoms, while psychotherapy addresses the root causes of BPD.

You will learn how to react healthily to your thoughts and emotions through cognitive-behavioral therapies such as dialectical and schema-focused therapy. Psychodynamic therapy is also helpful in changing unhealthy patterns of behavior developed in early childhood.

How long is the treatment for a borderline personality disorder?

Psychotherapy spans 1 to 3 years for the successful treatment of BPD. This condition requires a lot of work, as it deals with the interior workings of your brain. It may take a long time to manage, monitor, and reduce borderline personality disorder symptoms, but it is possible to treat them.

What triggers a person with Borderline Personality Disorder?

Feelings or situations of rejection and abandonment trigger borderline personality disorder. These situations may arise from relationship issues or random memories of child abuse.

When exposed to conditions evoking these feelings, they tend to feel intense fear and anger. These reactions then lead to impulsive actions, self-harm, and suicide ideations.

borderline personality disorder

Can a person with Borderline Personality Disorder love?

A person with a borderline personality disorder is caring and affectionate. However, they can sometimes give too much or too little, making their love unhealthy or toxic at times.

Being in a relationship can be dysfunctional for them at times. But with sufficient psychotherapy, they will learn to control feelings and actions and thus adapt how to love healthily.

What is the best mood stabilizer for a person with a borderline personality disorder?

Lithium carbonate and anticonvulsant medications prove useful in controlling mood swings and impulsivity.

Anticonvulsants tested for borderline personality disorder include Lamotrigine, Carbamazepine, and Oxcarbazepine. But remember, mood stabilizers, however compelling, should be taken alongside psychotherapy treatments.

Can someone with BPD ever be happy?

People with borderline personality disorder feel emotions at high intensities, so yes, they can be overly happy. As for being truly happy and content, people with the illness can learn how to regulate their emotions and actions healthily through therapy.

How can you tell if someone has a BPD?

There are nine distinct symptoms found in most BPD patients. BPD patients fear abandonment and rejection, intense feelings of anger, and emotional mood swings. As a result, they also have a history of unstable relationships.

Chronic feelings of emptiness, self-destructive and impulsive actions, and self-harm are also symptoms that borderline personality disorder patients exhibit. They also have a vague sense of self and can thus be out of touch with reality and even paranoid.

If you have these symptoms, immediately seek the help of a medical professional.

A person experiencing symptoms of borderline personality disorder

What is a high functioning borderline personality disorder?

High functioning borderline personality disorder or quiet BPD is when a patient manifests symptoms inwardly. High-functioning borderlines tend to hide their mood swings, which can last from a few hours to a span of days.

People with high functioning BPD can also take things personally and get upset, to the point of cutting off people. They may also have low self-esteem and often feel numbness, guilt, and emptiness. High functioning BPD even goes to great lengths to please people and feel worthy.

Are borderlines intelligent?

Borderlines are often associated with being hyper-emphatic and are thus intelligent in an emotional and mental sense. They are highly perceptive of other people’s emotions and intuitive when it comes to difficult situations.

They have interpersonal intelligence, which makes them aware of other people’s feelings.

Are people with BPD aware of their behavior?

Borderlines tend to focus on other people to avoid feelings of rejection. However, studies have shown how people with borderline personality disorder were more self-aware than healthy people. Self-awareness can lead to more self-shame and guilt, resulting in an endless cycle of unhealthy coping mechanisms.

How do borderlines think?

Borderlines think in extremes. They can often gloss over complex situations and only see cases as being entirely good or completely bad. Borderlines may also be paranoid sometimes and think of scenarios wherein they may get abandoned, leading to impulsive behavior.

What is quiet borderline?

Quiet borderline is also called the high-functioning borderline. Having a quiet borderline may make it harder for therapists to diagnose your condition because of its inward effect. The symptoms are the same with BPD but are sometimes self-inflicted and bottled up.

Thus, a quiet borderline can seem well on the outside while experiencing borderline personality disorder symptoms in their mind.

How can you tell if a woman has a borderline personality?

Borderline personality disorder symptoms for men and women are almost the same and can thus be used to identify borderlines. Here are the nine characteristics of borderlines:

  • Fear of rejection and abandonment
  • Impulsive behavior
  • A fragile sense of self
  • Feelings of emptiness
  • Wild mood swings
  • Intense and irrational anger
  • Paranoia
  • Unstable relationships
  • Self-destructive actions
people with borderline personality disorder having healthy expressions of emotions. 

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is seen by many as something scary or dangerous. It is usually caused by severe stress and may run in the family.  Even risky and impulsive behavior, comes with BPD. Symptoms can be managed and controlled. 

When symptoms of BPD are spotted, it is critical to seek professional help. Although there are gaps in our current knowledge about BPD, psychologists and therapists can help patients with this condition.

Acknowledging this problem as early as possible is crucial to reducing harmful behaviors brought by the condition. 

The outlook for people with BPD is generally favorable.

Therapy, medication, and most importantly, lots of time are essential to the process. Still, it will be worth it.

A woman with borderline personality disorder seeking therapy

You may encounter standard methods such as dialectic behavioral therapy that can help reframe the way you think and act in your life. 

Finding the right mental health partner, whether a mental health professional or therapist, is vital to your journey in controlling your condition. Continuous treatment for BPD will diminish its hold on your life.

Final Thoughts And Takeaways To Consider

Over time, people with BPD can form long-term relationships and have healthy expressions of emotions. 

Pushing through the whole treatment process may be a difficult path, but things will get better. It is important to get treatment. However, keep in mind to communicate with your therapist about this. Plans are only effective when they are personalized and suit your needs.