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Borderline Personality Disorder in the News

In the news (and movies): Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) doesn’t get a lot of “press” or screen time.

We have all seen movies and news stories about people with bipolar disorder. (Girl Interrupted, Mad Love, Borderline Personality Disorder Newsand the unforgettable Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf, drug addiction) (Chris Farley, Philip Seymore Hoffman, and Anna Nicole Smith), and major depression (Robin Williams, Owen Wilson, and Princess Diana).  Many of these movies or real-life examples also show how mental disorders are intertwined.

Depression comes with alcoholism, bipolar disorder comes with drug addiction, bipolar disorder comes with a lot of issues – but not much attention gets paid to Borderline Personality Disorder.

Borderline Personality Disorder has a few issues:

  1. It is a personality disorder and not a psychiatric disorder that can be treated with medication
  2. It is hard to diagnose and can often be confused with other disorders
  3. Borderline patients may misrepresent their behavior to medical professionals
  4. Borderline patients are often “difficult” to be around
  5. Borderline personality disorder is not well known – make it not well known… and, for this reason, there is no reason to write a news story or make a movie about it.

“Good news”;

I put that in parentheses because the diagnosis is not great – but it is good that BPD is getting a bit of attention.  Two notable examples – one not so great and one which may or may not be great.

Not So Great;

The trial of Jodi Arias.  In 2008, Travis Alexander was brutally murdered.  He was stabbed over 20 times, shot, and photographed after his death.  The alleged perpetrator: his girlfriend, Jodi Arias.

The case has been pending for many years – one of the reasons may be the development of a clear understanding of why Arias acted the way that she did after the murder.  Reportedly, Arias was witnessed immediately after Alexander’s memorial (including explicit text messages sent for “flirting”), and she has been pegged as a possible borderline patient.  This is in addition to Alexander’s former friends that reported her stalking behavior, and her statements that the boyfriend was a pedophile and a domestic abuser.

Arias’ own friends and a court psychologist have reported erratic behavior, similar to that of BPD.  No verdict has been issued as of yet, and we may never know, but it does bring BPD into the news (not in a nice way but into the light, however).

In fact, some mental health professionals have expressed the belief that BPD patients may be more dangerous – both emotionally and physically – than most other mental disorders, some likening it to a form of sociopathy.

Possibly good news;

Borderline Personality Disorder in the NewsOn the movie front, Kristen Wiig (of Bridesmaids –and the new, all-female Ghostbusters) has starred in a”dramedy”. Dramedy is  a combination of a comedy and drama that is centered around a woman with BPD.   In Welcome to Me, the character, portrayed by Wiig, wins the lottery and uses part of the money to start a talk show.

Along the way, she skips out on treatment, quits taking her meds and ends up living in a casino.  No word on reviews for the show, but it has some big names including Joan Cusack and Tim Robbins. It is produced in part by Will Farrell, and even though it premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival, theater showings have not been announced.

If you know a BPD patient – imagine what he or she might do after winning the lottery.  BPD is hard to diagnose, hard to predict and even tougher to be around.

Whether the movie is any good, whether the trial comes to a just end…

Melissa Lind

Borderline Personality Disorder has gotten some attention!

Anxiety – When to Seek Help

When should one seek for help if anxiety occur?

(Video article) Article as text, and with Video for blind and partially sighted people

Some measure of anxiety is normal, and no treatment is necessary. However, there does come a point at
which seeking treatment for anxiety is vital to your well-being. Essentially, there are three instances where treatment should be sought.

The first is if you experience a panic attack. For people who have never experienced a panic attack, they may mistakenly think that they are suffering from a heart attack, and they will usually seek emergency treatment for that. Doctors perform tests to determine if a heart attack has occurred, and if it has not, based on the symptoms that occurred, a panic attack may be diagnosed.

When your anxiety has escalated to this point, you do need treatment for anxiety. The treatment that you receive from emergency medical professionals, thinking that you had a heart attack, is not sufficient treatment for anxiety.

Anxiety - by Telise RodelvIf your anxiety is unusual and extended, you should seek treatment. You know what a normal amount of stress is for you, but feeling anxious for a prolonged period or feeling an unexpected increase in the feelings of anxiety usually indicates that treatment is needed.

If the anxiety starts interfering in your life, treatment is required. Anxiety could keep one from doing things in life that they might do otherwise if that anxiety did not exist. For example, someone who is developing social anxiety may stop going to events or functions as frequently as they used to, and this does interfere in their life.

There is a fourth reason to seek treatment. Sometimes, we are too close to ourselves to see the big picture. If you have a fear or anxiety that you feel is perfectly normal, and someone close to you says it is not, it doesn’t hurt to seek the advice of a trained professional.

That other person may be wrong, and your fear or anxiety may be perfectly normal — but you do need to be sure.

Related article on Huffington Post – I Hate Being Bipolar – It’s Awesome!

Generalized Anxiety Disorder – GAD

GAD – More than a Worrywart.

Everybody worries from time to time, but a person worrying extends to interrupt daily life and cause debilitating anxiety, those persons may have Generalized Anxiety Disorder, or, in short – GAD. While people with GAD may start out by worrying about everyday things, this disorder can easily take over people’s life and be the cause other medical problems. If one thinks they have GAD, one should see a doctor immediately and talk about various treatment options.

General Anxiety DisorderPeople with GAD worry about everyday things like money, health, relationships, and jobs. It is normal to worry about these things, even on a daily basis. However, if a person has GAD, worries are constant and excessive, and in many cases, irrational. People diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder are often distracted and consumed with fear. These things are something that is difficult to think about, and it is difficult to do anything else but think of all that worries. To be worried is a part of life for everyone – from the moment one awakes to the moment one falls asleep, but that worries have no real foundation in reality.

Numerous of symptoms occur as a result of GAD. Such as; squeamishness, muscle tension, sleeping problems, exhaustion, breathing difficulties, changes in appetite, sweating or hot flashes, headache and restlessness. Medical professionals do not yet know what causes GAD. Treatment and diagnosis can, therefore, sometimes be difficult. If some of these symptoms are experiencing and one find they are worrying often, one should seek for medical help with what could be Generalized Anxiety Disorder.Anxious

It is essential to be extremely specific about the symptoms since treatment for GAD begins with ruling out other anxiety disorders. Treatment that works well can than include both therapy and medication. Every person worries in a different way, so every person needs different treatment, as well. To find the best form of medical treatment for his or hers GAD situations one should always work together with a doctor. Work with one`s own body`s wants and needs.

No matter why people have developed GAD, they can get help. Most people suffering from GAD do not know that they can be helped.

If people find themself constantly consumed with worries, they should talk to a doctor immediately to find out how medical treatment can help.
One may feel as though there is always something to worry about – from having enough money to pay for bills to getting that job promotion. In a normal life, one may think about these things at least once or twice a day.
A doctor can help achieve this, even if one has GAD.

More about GAD here (Video): Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) and how it affects my life