How to tell if a person has borderline personality disorder?

Are you tired of not knowing whether your friend or loved one has borderline personality disorder? Does their behavior leave you scratching your head and wondering, “what in the world is going on?” Fear not! In this guide, we will explore the tell-tale signs that someone you know may have BPD. So sit back, relax, and get ready to become an expert on all things borderline!

What Is Borderline Personality Disorder?

Before we dive into identifying BPD in others, let’s first define what it is. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), borderline personality disorder is characterized by:

  • A pattern of intense and unstable relationships
  • Intense mood swings
  • An unstable sense of self
  • Impulsive behaviors

Those with BPD often struggle with regulating their emotions and can experience extreme reactions even in seemingly minor situations. They may also engage in risky behaviors such as substance abuse or promiscuity.

The Many Faces of BPD

While these symptoms are present in most individuals diagnosed with BPD, there are many different ways they can manifest themselves. Let’s take a closer look at some common traits associated with each symptom.

Unstable Relationships

People with BPD often struggle to maintain stable relationships. This may be due to their tendency for black-and-white thinking–seeing others as either perfect or completely flawed–and rapidly shifting between those viewpoints based on minute interactions.

Another explanation could be their fear of abandonment — people with this condition sometimes see rejection everywhere; small slights that wouldn’t register for most people feel like full-fledged rejections for them.

Mood Swings

BPD’s emotional instability causes its sufferers’ moods fluctuation throughout the day much more than usual humans who usually react naturally during certain events depending on circumstance so that control over emotion allows them to use that emotional energy as a motivation to do things, even when stressful.

For those with BPD, it can feel like they’re on an emotional rollercoaster, feeling happy one moment and inconsolably sad the next. The intensity of their emotions may also mean that what might be mildly upsetting to someone else is experienced by them as if some tremendous crisis is brewing.

Sense of Self

People with BPD often report feeling unsure of who they are or what they want. They may foster a dependent relationship on others for approval because they lack confidence or comfortability in solving problems themselves³

Because individuals with this disorder usually have poor self-image due to their need for validation from others), small disagreements spark existential crises- where did I go wrong? What could I have done differently?

Impulsive Behavior

Lastly, people diagnosed with borderline personality disorder are prone to acting impulsively – without pause or restraint which leads them into harmful risks such damaging relationships through having promiscuous behaviors.

Beware: These descriptions should serve merely as guidelines.

Identifying Borderline Personality Disorder in Others

Now that we know more about BPD let’s dive into how you can recognize its symptoms and behaviors within others:

1. Extremes in Relationships

Have you ever noticed your friend going back-and-forth between extremes when discussing another person? One minute he’s talking about how wonderful his girlfriend is; the next he says hesitantly “but she does some really weird stuff…”.

While not all extremes (such as ambivalence) necessarily means one has exhibited signs of BPD but exhibiting ambivalence so easily alongside seemingly dissonant opinions about particular ideas or people could indicate potential instability.

This behavior described above tends towards splitting–creating undue separation between flawed perceived characteristics(polarized idealization/devaluation).

2. Frantic Efforts to Avoid Abandonment

Do you always feel like you’re walking on eggshells around a coworker or friend with BPD? This may be because they are incredibly sensitive to the threat of being left by those they care about.

It could manifest through constant checking-in/texting others that seek validation from them, getting obsessed over people not returning calls/messages for some time might mean something much greater than normal disappointment.

3. Impulsive Behavior and Risk-Taking

Whether it’s engaging in unprotected sex, gambling away money at casinos or substance abuse – does your friend make risky decisions that you wouldn’t challenge?

This impulsivity needs cutting edge indulgences(large shopping sprees)and other harmful behaviors indicated several urgency dimensions along which their extreme behavior lie.

4. Unstable Sense of Self

Do you ever get confused by how endlessly adaptable a companion always seems to be? It’s great having plasticity when we want to take in many different ideas and try out new things—but this inconsistency could lead to something more significant if someone has borderline personality disorder² while displaying radical changes within days.

5. Emotional Instability

Lastly, emotional instability is one of the hallmark symptoms of BPD but can also be mistaken as hormonal shifts due to anxiety/stress states caused by day-to-day difficulties so observe carefully and don’t jump into conclusions easily

Watch for sudden mood swings those have exhibited even after encountering non-consequential matters(- there is no blackberry jam!). Those dealing with Borderline Personality Disorder find basic everyday experiences very distressing almost half the time⁴


In short, identifying whether someone close suffers from borderline personality disorder isn’t straightforward, All individuals exhibit varying degrees of behavior impact despite visible signs pointing towards it but observing them in combination will provide grounds reminiscently compatible with diagnosing possibilities through monitoring repeated trends,

Understanding what BPD involves ultimately familiarizes yourself better about respective sufferers develop stronger relationships , compassion and patience needed to make them better.

Random Posts