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Thread: BPD

  1. #11
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    I agree with the warning issued by Metaphor and Rebe about diagnosing yourself. It's dangerous. But the biggest reason it's dangerous isn't because you'll be inaccurate. It's because disorders aren't actual THINGS. The correct way to think about disorders, imo, is as a set of cognitive/affective/behavioral patterns, and patterns are nothing but reliable cause and effect relationships. If you can really remember this, then you can investigate all you want because they're no real danger of confusion. If you see patterns you like/dislike, you can figure out the cause and address it as best you can. (That's something that'll improve as your understanding of yourself improves.)

    The danger is when people make diagnoses into THINGS. They treat them like objects or viruses that you can get, and then they think they have this thing called BPD disorder. It's not that they don't have the symptoms (meaning, the patterns); it's that that's ALL they have. When they believe they have a disorder, then they get confused. I would be confused too. Uprooting something abstract like a disorder is trickier than uprooting a set of cognitive-behavioral patterns. The patterns are there. You can touch them and feel them. The disorder is only an abstraction.

    The other problem is that when you find a disorder and start reading about it, you can easily convince yourself you have symptoms that you don't actually have, in order to remain consistent with the diagnosis. That leads to lots of confusion.

    In sum, look at yourself. Look and see what patterns are already there, and address those. Don't bother trying to diagnose yourself because it's a waste of time.

  2. #12
    Occasional Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThatsWhatHeSaid View Post
    I agree with the warning issued by Metaphor and Rebe about diagnosing yourself. It's dangerous. But the biggest reason it's dangerous isn't because you'll be inaccurate. It's because disorders aren't actual THINGS. The correct way to think about disorders, imo, is as a set of cognitive/affective/behavioral patterns, and patterns are nothing but reliable cause and effect relationships. If you can really remember this, then you can investigate all you want because they're no real danger of confusion. If you see patterns you like/dislike, you can figure out the cause and address it as best you can. (That's something that'll improve as your understanding of yourself improves.)

    The danger is when people make diagnoses into THINGS. They treat them like objects or viruses that you can get, and then they think they have this thing called BPD disorder. It's not that they don't have the symptoms (meaning, the patterns); it's that that's ALL they have. When they believe they have a disorder, then they get confused. I would be confused too. Uprooting something abstract like a disorder is trickier than uprooting a set of cognitive-behavioral patterns. The patterns are there. You can touch them and feel them. The disorder is only an abstraction.

    The other problem is that when you find a disorder and start reading about it, you can easily convince yourself you have symptoms that you don't actually have, in order to remain consistent with the diagnosis. That leads to lots of confusion.

    In sum, look at yourself. Look and see what patterns are already there, and address those. Don't bother trying to diagnose yourself because it's a waste of time.
    I pretty much agree -- but I don't think it's a waste of time to use a label. Sure, you have to remember that the label is just an approximation of a set of traits (that may or may not fit the prototype). But it may be helpful to compare yourself to others that the label also applies to, and even more importantly, it's important to see the realistic treatment options out there. Not saying you have to buy into it, but you don't have to reinvent the wheel either.

  3. #13
    Senior Member ThatsWhatHeSaid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evan View Post
    I pretty much agree -- but I don't think it's a waste of time to use a label. Sure, you have to remember that the label is just an approximation of a set of traits (that may or may not fit the prototype). But it may be helpful to compare yourself to others that the label also applies to, and even more importantly, it's important to see the realistic treatment options out there. Not saying you have to buy into it, but you don't have to reinvent the wheel either.
    Yeah, I agree with that.

    I was going to update my post to clarify, but I didn't have time. My basic complaint of diagnoses is that they carry the same dangers as types, in that people can get confused about what a diagnosis really is.

    For example, I post on a few sites where people are constantly wondering which disorder they have. They sift through different ones, trying to see which one fits best, but get confused when they find some factors of one and some factors of another. They they make the mistake of twisting their history and self-concept to match the disorder, like they're trying on an uncomfortable outfit and adjusting to make it fit. They think this thing -- narcissistic personality, ENFP, Republican -- is this thing out there, as if people are born in discrete flavors of personality. It's very confusing. If they focused on the components instead -- their behavioral responses, cognitive patterns, and political ideas -- and didn't worry about the classification, there wouldn't be any confusion that arises from trying to classify. They would just be what they are, and then they can choose to modify that or accept it.

    I agree, though, that knowing what to look for and how things work together (triggers and responses) can be helpful. But you do have to be clear about what you actually have (symptoms, not a label) in order to benefit from it. Otherwise it can be really dangerous.

  4. #14
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marmalade.sunrise View Post
    The fact that you even want to manage it is HUGE. A lot of people with borderline personality disorder are impossible to treat because they want to say everything is everyone else's problem.
    Yeah. I would go as far as saying that if you can understand that you have BPD, then you only have a very mild form of BPD, which should be manageable with some effort.
    ENTj 7-3-8 sx/sp

  5. #15
    Scream down the boulevard LadyJaye's Avatar
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    The suggestion of contacting NAMI is an excellent place to start. They have a whole arsenal of resources to get you going in the right direction. Also, there's the United Way. I spoke with both organizations when my BP parent needed serious intervention, and they were both very helpful and compassionate.

  6. #16
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    It takes a lot of positive self-conditioning to break the negative thought cycle associated with BPD. It took me several years to turn myself around. I began with physically not allowing myself to do the things I used to, for example breaking a relationship off completely, walking out on a job. As sticking around became more habitual, I began to work on the psychological aspect. I would constantly remind myself in my head why I value the relationship so much, why I love my job so much (or at least, what my job represents -- independence, stability, socialisation).

    You have to start somewhere, so start with what you can control. At first, you won't be able to control your irrational thoughts and feelings, but you can put the phone down/walk away from the computer/reach out your hand and hold theirs when you're in a fight. That last one really helps me. I know that if I can just overcome my pride and hold my boyfriend's hand when I'm giving him the cold shoulder for whatever ridiculous reason, everything will be okay, because that always breaks the ice and we can laugh about my tizzy fit.

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