I just finished the show “Crazy Ex Girlfriend” and was so impressed with how they depicted the experience of loving, befriending, or being the family member of someone with borderline personality disorder (or BPD). It is, maybe indisputably, one of the most difficult mental disorders to have for the one suffering, and one of the most difficult ones on everyone around the affected individual. It’s also difficult to spot because those with borderline personality disorder display a lot of traits that many of us see in a lot of people, ever day. Issues with impulse control, extreme mood swings, fixation and obsession on one thing…Everybody, at some point, acts a bit like that. But when your family member exhibits all of those traits on a near weekly basis—which is common of someone with BPD—it can be very hard on everyone around them. Having a family member who just doesn’t have her life together yet versus one with BPD are two different things. Here is what it’s like having a family member with BPD.
You never know what’s a real issue
When your family member with BPD is obsessed with a certain issue—a loud neighbor, an annoying coworker, a friend who didn’t text her back—you never know if this is something they’re genuinely upset about, or just the thing they’re using to distract themselves from their real issue.