As you all know I have been making quite a few posts about mental health, specifically BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder). I was misdiagnosed for years until I had a complete mental break and was hospitalized. Only then was I honest with myself and with the therapist, and finally got the correct diagnosis. It is believed that BPD stems from childhood trauma, so for many loved ones it is a hard diagnosis to accept. Accepting a BPD diagnosis means recognizing that there was trauma, and no one liked to speak about childhood trauma. When it comes to childhood trauma, many people only think of certain types of abuse, but childhood trauma comes in many forms. I am not here today to discuss mine yet, I am not ready. I feel like it is important to note, not ONLY childhood trauma is the cause, many other factors play into it. Other thought causes are: neurobiological factors, brain abnormalities, genetics, environmental factors, social factors, and psychological factors. I am going to save my thought causes for another day because quite honestly, I am not ready. I am here to talk about my specific type of BPD.
Impulsive BPD is what I am diagnosed with, and it makes so much sense looking back on my life. This type is the most charismatic of the four and is close to Histrionic Personality Disorder (Defined by the APA as a pattern of excessive attention-seeking behaviors, usually beginning in early adulthood, including inappropriate seduction and an excessive need for approval) People with this form can be very energetic, charismatic and fun to hang around. The downside is they are quick to be come angry, bored and extremely upset when others let them down. They are typically dealing with many conflicts with friends and loved ones. While IBPD love attention and to be noticed, they also have strong antisocial tendencies, in the manner that they like to control their social environment/engagements. The need to be the center of attention is often the cause of impulsive behavior. They typically take rash action without any regard for the consequences.
From my own personal experience and research on this disorder, I have spent a ton of time realizing the things I have been doing my whole life. At times it’s almost like I am standing outside of myself and seeing myself doing something fucked up, and I know it…. but I can’t stop. Not all of the time, but there are times I know it’s happening. I think back to my teenage years and understand why I acted out the way I did. I can’t help but be upset that no one saw the signs and symptoms, but then again that was a long time ago, and much is still unknown about BPD. I knew something was going on with my emotions and actions, but I was completely left in the dark as far as mental health goes in my younger years. It was not until I was 19 that I got a diagnosis of Bipolar. I feel like it is important to note that at this time, I was in a very abusive and codependent relationship with the person I thought I would be spending the rest of my life with. I was forced to go a psychiatrist, but was also told to not tell the truth about many things. I believe this was a big reason for my misdiagnosis…but also because back then BPD was not well known, and was often misdiagnosed as Bipolar.
Impulsivity can be extremely dangerous because often the person does or says things, and they do not care of the consequence. I know for me this is something I struggle with constantly. Since becoming a parent I have discovered coping mechanisms to help, but I am only human. I will share some info from a site about the signs and symptoms of IBPD.
This information is from a website called www.optimumperformanceinstitute.com and I will share the link at the bottom of this blog, along with help numbers if anyone needs.
Signs and Symptoms for Impulsive BPD
A person with impulsive borderline personality disorder often displays the following signs and symptoms of the subtype:
- Flirtatious with others, sometimes without even realizing it
- Captivating, able to act with a natural magnetism
- Elusive and mercurial
- Superficial, easily entertaining others on a surface level but avoiding more meaningful interactions or relationships
- High levels of energy and easily bored
- Thrill-seeking and risk-taking behaviors without regard for consequences
- Attention-seeking behaviors
- Charismatic and charming
- Highly manipulative of others, particularly in order to position oneself as the center of attention
- Complaints of chronic or recurring illness
These signs and symptoms of the impulsive subtype overlap with or complement some of the more general BPD symptoms.
General BPD Signs and Symptoms
Some of these signs and symptoms might include:
- A low or unstable self-esteem and self-image
- Excessive self-criticism
- Ongoing feelings of emptiness
- Dissociative states, particularly when under distress
- Instability in regard to goals, aspirations, career path, or core values
- Hypersensitivity, especially in regard to perceived criticism or rejection
- Black and white thinking
- Tendency to idealize or devalue people
- Emotions that are easily aroused
- Emotions that are disproportionately intense when compared to the cause for the emotion
- Increased anxiety, nervousness, tension, worry, and panic
- Discomfort and fear of the uncertain
- A fear of losing control
- Deep and pervasive feelings of shame
- Separation anxiety
- Feelings of hopelessness and powerlessness
- Suicidal thoughts
- Difficulty with creating or sticking with plans
- Risk-taking behaviors, like sexual promiscuity and gambling
Types of BPD:https://www.optimumperformanceinstitute.com/bpd-treatment/bpd-symptoms-examined/ Impulsive BPD: https://www.optimumperformanceinstitute.com/bpd-treatment/impulsive-borderline-personality-disorder/ Do you know a young adult with BPD? Call to talk about help.
I will be posting more frequently, but with virtual school and trying to keep it together… it has been sporadic. Thank you for reading.