Signs your child might have borderline personality disorder

  • Borderline personality disorder is a rare condition that results from physical or emotional neglect in childhood.
  • If teens have shown signs of BPD for a year or more and have reached puberty, they can be diagnosed.
  • Signs include self-harm, reactive moods, and substance abuse.

It is normal for children and teens to feel intense emotions as they grow up.

But if the teen engages in self-harm, uses substances or sex as an escape, or has an extreme mood for more than a year, his or her feelings and behaviors may be Signs of borderline personality disorderAnd the Dr.. Blaze Aguirrea child and adolescent psychiatrist who specializes in borderline personality disorder told Insider.

appreciate 1.6% of Americans Living with borderline personality disorder (BPD), a condition in which a person acts out when they believe someone will emotionally or physically abandon them. When a person with BPD experiences a stimulus, they have Trouble calming down of feelings such as anger, shame, and self-loathing, according to the Child Mind Institute.

According to Aguirre, mental health professionals used to avoid diagnosing people under 18 with BPD due to concerns about stigma and misdiagnosis. Today, Aguirre said, if a patient has reached puberty and has developed worrisome symptoms over the past year or more, that is sufficient evidence for a diagnosis of borderline personality disorder. He added that most of his adult patients told him they began noticing symptoms when they were teenagers.

That’s what Aguirre said he looks for when meeting patients.

They beg their parents not to leave them, even for work

When someone has BPD, they are triggered by Feelings of abandonment rooted in childhood experiencesfrom the inside mentioned previously.

With BPD, a person who has experienced significant abandonment — such as a parent’s child who has gone to life imprisonment, or someone whose parents have consistently failed to provide emotional support — learns to believe that everyone will leave them.

For teens with BPD, this may feel like pleading with a parent to stay home from work and then frantically texting them every few minutes begging them to come back, according to Aguirre. These actions are attempts to stop the spread of loneliness.

“There is a chronic feeling of emptiness, and emptiness has the property of feeling detached and lonely,” Aguirre said, which anyone with BPD would do anything to stop it.

They use drugs and sex as a means of escape

Most teens experience drugs, alcohol, and sex due to peer pressure and as an act of rebellion. For teens with BPD, Aguirre said, the substances have different uses.

People with BPD feel “desperate” to integrate and escape intense, difficult emotional states, according to Aguirre. This often prompts affected teens to use sex and substances in unsafe ways.

“He’s like, ‘I need to take drugs so I don’t feel as bad as I feel. I need to have sex, even if I don’t enjoy it, because I’m desperate to feel desire, desire, or connection,” Aguirre told Insider.

These behaviors are not the pleasure of attention, but mechanisms for escaping from distressing emotions that they do not know how to regulate.

They engage in self-harm

Likewise, a teen with BPD may use self-harm tactics such as cutting to escape emotional distress, Aguirre said. For them, the physical sensation provides relief from the mental pain that feels inevitable.

When teens receive treatment for borderline personality disorder, self-injurious behaviors tend to dissipate as they are Learn healthy coping mechanisms through dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)Aguirre said.

that It is estimated that 10% of people diagnosed with BPD will die by suicideIt is estimated that 70% of people with this condition will At least once attempted suicide.

They act like they can’t live without someone, until that person gets it wrong

People with BPD feel as if they are in a constant spiral of emotional mood swings, according to Aguirre.

When they are in a good mood, everything seems to be on the right track. But when they are in a bad mood, it tends to affect every aspect of their lives. According to Aguirre, they may feel foreign, even while surrounded by friends, or unable to get work done.

The mood shifts associated with BPD also affect relationships. If a teen with BPD becomes close to another person, they may feel they can’t live without them and put them on a pedestal.

But Aguirre said that if they feel separated from or misunderstood by that person, whether it’s a friend, a romantic interest, or a parent, they may criticize in “harsh” ways. This may sound like hurtful phrases and bodily outbursts.

After someone with BPD has a negative reaction, they feel intense guilt and shame about it, which contributes to their cycles of emotional distress, according to Aguirre.