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jamms's avatar

How can I convience someone who has a Borderline Personality Disorder to seek help

Asked by jamms (609points) March 2nd, 2008 from iPhone

I know a man who has a very obvious case of borderline personality disorder and makes all of our lives miserable. I cannot seem to reach him and get him to understand that he needs help.

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14 Answers

KimboSlice's avatar

are you the one that needs help?

delirium's avatar

You wont. Give it up.
Give him the potential for that outlet, and step away from the situation. Its usually very very difficult to get someone in denial to admit that they have a problem. Be sincere. Be kind. Tell him that you’re worried, and that you would like him to just try your method. Maybe he’ll listen.

Even if he doesn’t, it’ll stick with him, and will be an option when he needs it to be.

Don’t expect him to take any of it from you. You don’t sound like you’re close enough with him for him to accept this kind of advice. shrug

gorillapaws's avatar

From everything I’ve ever studied about abnormal psychology, I would think that boredline personality disorder isn’t the kind of thing a non-professional would be able to necessarily diagnose. I don’t doubt that the guy has some kind of serious mental disorder, but personality disorders are exceedingly rare and I doubt a mental health professional has ever used the phrase “very obvious case of borderline personality disorder.” That being said, if you believe he could pose a danger to himself or others you really ought to contact the authorities who will likely be in a much better position to get him the help he needs than trying to reason with someone that has a severe mental illness.

iron7's avatar

catch them on a good day, not when you r angry at them

artemisdivine's avatar

only a psychiatrist can diagnose this. you cannot FORCE anyone to get treatment for anything. society cannot even force people to take meds if they dont want to. people generally are only helped by the official authorities if they attempt suicide or threaten to hurt other people. if they just go along on their merry way, not much you can do. if they have young children in danger, report them to the authorities. if you are married to them, divorce them. everyone is responsible for themselves. people who are mentally sick know they are, they often just chose NOT to get help or be seen as weak. i am sure you have options. sometimes you just have to say goodbye. sounds harsh, but life is harsh. people spend too long trying to fix other people. everyone has a right to live as they like, even if they are mentally unsound. its their life.

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a serious mental illness characterized by pervasive instability in moods, interpersonal relationships, self-image, and behavior. This instability often disrupts family and work life, long-term planning, and the individual’s sense of self-identity. Originally thought to be at the “borderline” of psychosis, people with BPD suffer from a disorder of emotion regulation. While less well known than schizophrenia or bipolar disorder (manic-depressive illness), BPD is more common, affecting 2 percent of adults, mostly young women.1 There is a high rate of self-injury without suicide intent, as well as a significant rate of suicide attempts and completed suicide in severe cases.2,3 Patients often need extensive mental health services, and account for 20 percent of psychiatric hospitalizations.4 Yet, with help, many improve over time and are eventually able to lead productive lives

Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline personality disorder is often a devastating mental condition, both for the people who have it and for those around them.

Perhaps shaped by harmful childhood experiences or brain dysfunctions, people diagnosed with borderline personality disorder live in a world of inner and outer turmoil. They have difficulty regulating their emotions and are often in a state of upheaval. They have distorted images of themselves, often feeling worthless and fundamentally bad or damaged.

Emotionally Unstable (Borderline) Personality Disorder is a condition characterized by impulsive actions, rapidly shifting moods, and chaotic relationships. The individual usually goes from one emotional crisis to another. Often there is dependency, separation anxiety, unstable self-image, chronic feelings of emptiness, and threats of self-harm (suicide or self-mutilation). This disorder is only diagnosed when these behaviors become persistent and very disabling/distressing.

cwilbur's avatar

You can never convince anyone to get help or treatment. All you can do is protect yourself, and break off relationships with them when they get to the point where they’re hurting you.

This is something I’ve learned the hard way.

Lissy's avatar

I can understand your frustrations because I believe my partner of 3 years has BPD. I am aware that I am not qualified to diagnose and would like him/us to receive professional help. He has been treated for anxiety disorders from a young age but refuses to admit that he needs to seek help for his anger and other symptoms of BPD. I am still at this stage hopeful that he will change his mind.I have found that it works best for me to not accept his bad behaviour but meanwhile showing him love and support and letting him know that I see the pain he is feeling. I feel that he feels more understood and more receptive to my efforts to help him.

seekingwolf's avatar

Tell him calmly your concerns, without insulting him. Never insult borderlines. Honestly, I doubt he’ll get help or even realize he has a problem (borderlines aren’t good with self-awareness).

I also suggest, if possible, cutting ties with him. Do it politely as so not to make him mad. Never anger borderline or else they will do bad things to you. The only way to be happier is to cut him out of your life. Trust me, you won’t miss him.

Nimis's avatar

I have to disagree/agree with Seekingwolf.
Just stopped being friends with someone with BPD
and I totally miss them. But I’m still better off for it.

evelyn's avatar

my advice to you is to leave the situation. it will never change. you must protect yourself and have a life worth living.

Carol's avatar

Look inside yourself. Ask yourself what attracts you to this situation. What element in you needs to fix the unfixable? Is it a repetition of your past parental relationship where you attempt to make a prior situation turn out differently?

stardust's avatar

If this person is making your life so misersable, then why won’t you take a step back from the situation? It’s you that’s choosing to be around them. The only way a person is going to get better is if they genuinely ant help themselves. Genuine care is what they need. Sometimes this involves stepping back from them.

dancingwithbpd's avatar

I don’t know what kind of involvement they have, but since so many people are saying she should leave him, I’d wonder to know how many of you have been involved with someone with BPD. I’m not saying it’s not the best thing to do, but believe me, its not by far as easy as you make it sound. Being in a relationship with someone like this is nothing like any other relationship you can imagine, and breaking up, it’s not like any normal breaking up either.
My advice to you is to learn to protect yourself and take care of yourself and realize that you’ve probably done everything you could. Unless they get help it’s a completely hopeless situation. Have no illusion about it. And if you’re not careful you’ll end up being sucked in to their madness and there will be nothing left of you but your own shadow. There’s a lot of information available. Learn how to deal with it.

cwilbur's avatar

@dancingwithbpd: I have been there, and it sucked away almost nine years of my life. That’s why my advice is to get out of it as quickly as possible.

Someone with BPD will not get help until he or she has no other choice. Unless you are the person’s absolute last resort, nothing you can say or do or threaten will have any effect. An unwillingness or inability to take responsibility for himself or herself is one of the symptoms; so is desperate measures to avoid abandonment, but the desperate measures I saw never included anything that would actually address the real problem.

You cannot fix them. All you can do is protect yourself as much as possible, which, unless the person with BPD is actively committed to seeking treatment and working on getting better, means getting yourself out of that situation. It isn’t easy, but if you want to save your own sanity, you have few alternatives.

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