Diagnosed With Borderline Personality Disorder? Understanding Your Condition

Posted on: 27 January 2015

If you've been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, you may be concerned about how it will affect your future and what options are available for treatment. Understanding your condition will help to alleviate your fears and concerns.

What is borderline personality disorder?

Borderline personality disorder is a psychological condition that causes feelings of emotional instability. It causes you to have a negative image of yourself. You may feel worthless and feel as if you're flawed or that there is something wrong with you.

These feelings of low self-worth can lead to outbursts of anger, impulsive behavior, and frequent mood swings. You may have problems maintaining healthy relationships. You may feel unworthy of receiving love and acceptance from others.

If untreated, borderline personality disorder may lead to the development of more serious mental disorders or thoughts of suicide. However, with the proper treatment, you will be able to live a normal life and learn healthy ways to cope with the disorder


Feeling alone, hopeless, empty, or neglected are common emotions seen in borderline personality disorder. You may experience episodes of severe anxiety and depression. You may find your anger is out of control and you lash out at others over minor incidents.

You may indulge in destructive behaviors such as driving fast, drinking or eating too much, and excessive spending or gambling. You may change jobs frequently. You may find it difficult to maintain friendships and relationships. You may get into arguments with others easily.

What causes it?

Borderline personality disorder may be inherited. You may have an increased chance of developing the disorder if your family has a history of other types of mental disorders.

It can also occur as the result of chemical changes in the brain. Serotonin is a brain chemical that regulates mood. If serotonin levels are out of balance, it can lead to the development of mental disorders.

Being abused, feeling neglected by a caregiver, or being abandoned by a loved one may trigger the condition in some people. Sometimes the cause of the condition is not clear.

Treatment options

If you are diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, or if you suspect you may have the condition, you should ask your healthcare provider for a referral to a therapist for counseling. A mental health professional will determine which course of treatment is best for you. Treatment options may include:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Transference-focused psychotherapy
  • Dialectal behavior therapy
  • Mentalization-based therapy
  • Schema-based therapy
  • Medications
  • Hospitalization in extreme cases

With professional counseling and treatment, you will learn effective ways to manage your borderline personality disorder. If you commit to attending regular counseling sessions and agree to work with your healthcare provider and therapist, you can go on to live a normal and productive life.

The condition may also improve with age. As you learn to value yourself, your self-esteem will increase. You will be able to enjoy healthy relationships with others, and you will be able to enjoy a normal personal and professional life.

For more information about therapy, contact Cancer Lifeline or a similar organization.