Borderline Personality Disorder

For Ray M.

Mayo Clinic defines borderline personality disorder, with symptoms, causes, risks, and treatment options very clearly and with no doctor talk. Not that I mind doctor talk, but - not being a doctor or clinician - I appreciate the plain language here.

I tend to value peer generated research (largely because they usually include resiliency and self-care), and I just LOVE Marsha Linehan's work on BPD and the therapy she invented called Dialectic Behavior Therapy. The stigma of mental illness is so great that when she "came out" as a person living with M.I. there was actually an uproar over whether her research was valid.... because... bigotry. No other reason.

Brandon Marshall, an American Football player and an advocate living with BPD, was actually fined by the NFL for wearing green shoes during Mental Illness Awareness Week! The guy is an absolute warrior for mental health awareness in America and I think his advocacy and activism is just plain awesome.

From what I've read on the topic, it's a very difficult illness to live with - both for the sufferer and their family and friend groups. I like The Mighty for finding personal stories on just about everything resiliency related. But there does appear to be great hope with DBT, anger management classes, and mindfulness practices.

And as always, I can't say enough about NAMI's free classes and groups for personal and family support.


Erica Kitzman