Borderline Personality Disorder: Myths and Facts

MYTH: Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) cannot be treated.

FACT: BPD can be treated with a combination of medication, therapy and emotional support. The treatment can help the person manage the condition and improve the their quality of life. Depending on the severity of the disorder and adherence to treatment, the person may take between six months and a few years to show a marked improvement.

MYTH: All people with suicidal tendencies have BPD.

FACT:A person withborderline personality disorder may impulsively try to harm themselves or attempt suicide. However, not all people who die by suicide have BPD. The person must exhibit other distinct symptoms to be diagnosed with BPD.

MYTH: People with BPD don’t actually want to die when they attempt suicide. They’re just trying to be the center of attention.

FACT:Like with most other people who attempt or die bysuicide, a person with BPD tries to kill himself or herself because, at that moment, their agony is so great that they think life is not worth living. They may be experiencing intense, painful emotions and think that suicide is the only way out. Suicidal behavior is a desperate cry for help.

MYTH: People with BPD don’t have any real disorder. They are just doing it to manipulate others.

FACT:Borderline personality disorder is an illness, just like diabetes or arthritis. A person with borderline personality disorder may act in a way that others see as unpredictable or strange.. To others, this may look like a conscious choice with the intention of manipulating others or seeking attention. The fact is that a person with BPD suffers from instability of emotions and self-image. Their low self-esteem and fear of rejection makes them go any lengths to do something that they think will help them be close to their loved ones. The intention is not to harm or manipulate others but is a desperate cry for help.