Borderline Personality Disorder – A View From The Inside.
I have a story to share. It is not something that should be shrouded by hushed voices or stigmatized until the word has lost all meaning. It is something real, something that exists and affects the lives of too many people; almost certainly someone you know even if you are not equipped with the capacity to realise it. With the words on these pages I will attempt to equip you with the knowledge required to read below the surface. Only as a sufferer will you fully understand the meaning of my words, but I hope you continue to read so that you may recognise the signs and commit yourself to some form of intervention when witnessing damaging behaviour. One fragile life saving another.
I could begin my narrative with a bold statement: One day I awoke to find I had Borderline Personality Disorder.
But this would be a lie. I didn’t simply just ‘discover’ this one day. I had been a sufferer for years, it just took someone to point out the symptoms and give me a label before it was real. The way I felt, the things I did; the constant static in my head finally had a name. I had Borderline Personality Disorder, and suddenly I felt enlightened by the knowledge that I am the way I am because of a disorder. Insanity no longer scared me because I had a reason to be that way. Myself, I find the term ‘personality disorder’ somewhat controversial. It implies that a person’s whole personality is flawed, rather than just one aspect of them. The term ‘borderline’ in itself is misleading. Borderline between what and what? Originally ‘borderline’ was a term applied to people who seemed to be on the border of being diagnosed with Schizophrenia. But some psychiatrists argue that the ‘borderline’ aspect is seen to express being on the border of psychosis. Recently, doctors and psychiatrists refer to this disorder as ‘Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder’, in an attempt to shrug off the stigma attached to the controversial uncertainty of the term ‘borderline’. To me, the term ‘emotionally unstable’ comes with much more stigma and no doubt in a few years the label for this ‘unspecific’ personality disorder will have changed again.
Before I begin to tell the tale of my own experiences with this disorder, it is first important that you understand exactly what being diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder entails. What symptoms do the sufferers have to be experiencing in order for this label to be applied to them, a black mark on their medical record that (unbeknown to most diagnosed sufferers at the time) will affect the rest of their life, not only in personal relationships, but in their working life too. Employers of a caring profession don’t often want the risk of having someone on their company employee list that is susceptible to damaging behaviour.