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Saturday, November 14, 2009

PTSD and Borderline Personality Disorder - Relationship between PTSD and Borderline Personality Disorder

Six years ago I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), four years after the trauma I experienced with my son’s birth. When my daughter was 2 I was hospitalized while I was taking anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medication. During my hospitalization, I was diagnosed with BPD. I found this article and I intend to explore the relationship between these two disorders.
...As mentioned previously, BPD has been found among people with PTSD and vice versa. One study of veterans with combat-related PTSD seeking treatment found that 76% of them also had a diagnosis of BPD. Likewise, another study found that approximately 56% of individuals with BPD also have a diagnosis of PTSD.
Why are these two disorders so inter-related? BPD and PTSD have both been found to stem from the experience of traumatic events. The thoughts, feelings, and behaviors seen in BPD are often the result of childhood traumas. These childhood traumas may also place a person at risk for developing PTSD. In fact, people with both BPD and PTSD report the earlier experience of trauma as compared to people with just PTSD.
The impulsive behaviors and unstable relationships seen among people with BPD may also place a person at greater risk for experiencing a traumatic event such as a motor vehicle accident, physical assault, or sexual assault.
Finally, the symptoms of PTSD and BPD do overlap. For example, individuals with PTSD may have difficulties managing their emotions. Therefore, they may experience intense feelings and have constant mood swings. They may also experience problems with anger. People with PTSD, especially those who lost a loved one, may also begin to fear being abandoned...
PTSD and Borderline Personality Disorder - Relationship between PTSD and Borderline Personality Disorder

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for posting this. I've just recently been diagnosed with BPD after long-lasting depression (since childhood, for as long as I can remember, without a cause that I can remember.) After delivering my son I had terrible postpartum depression, which I later learned was coexisting with PTSD (I didn't know there was a difference.) From my research, I believe that people who already suffer from BPD would view an event such as childbirth as more traumatic than someone without the disorder. I also believe that the added hormones present during pregnancy and childbirth, specifically corisol, combined with the already high levels of cortisol in people with BPD, could cause a flood of stressful emotions.

    This may be off-topic, but my PTSD surrounding my son's birth stems mostly from how I felt mistreated by the hospital staff. Now that I've been diagnosed with BPD, I'm wondering whether they were really as terrible as I remember them being, or if I'm exaggerating their accusations and rude behavior. I'm not sure if this "realization" helps me cope because it wasn't as bad as I thought, or stresses me out more that my feelings may be invalid.

    Either way, I feel your pain and agree that BPD combined with PTSD is very difficult. Good for you for seeking help and support!