As is human nature, your loved one will inevitably test the limits you set. If you've tried and failed and your loved one won't respect your boundaries and continues to make you feel unsafe, then you may need to leave. The problem for people with BPD is that the disorder distorts both the messages they hear and those they try to express. Try exercising, sipping hot tea, listening to music, grooming a pet, painting, gardening, or completing household chores. Focus on the emotions, not the words. Walk away if you need to give yourself time and space to cool down. Anything to Stop the Pain Treatments for Borderline Personality Disorder — Explore the types of treatments currently used in the treatment of borderline personality disorder. The person with BPD fears rejection and is sensitive to any perceived slight.
Think of setting boundaries as a process rather than a single event. Encourage your loved one to explore healthy ways of handling stress and emotions by using sensory-based stimulation, practicing mindfulness, and employing relaxation techniques such as yoga, deep breathing, or meditation. Enable by protecting the person with BPD from the consequences of his or her actions. You need to take care of yourself but the process can help you grow as an individual and strengthen the relationship between you. Setting healthy boundaries with a borderline loved one One of the most effective ways to help a loved one with BPD gain control over his or her behavior is to set and enforce healthy limits or boundaries. People with BPD have trouble reading body language or understanding the nonverbal content of a conversation. They may act out with self-destructive activity i. By lowering expectations and setting small goals to be achieved step by step, you and your loved one with BPD have a greater chance of success. Take baby steps rather than aiming for huge, unattainable goals that only set you and your loved one up for failure and discouragement. Because its symptoms are largely interpersonal, causing many to view it as a relationship issue, not a mental health one. People with BPD tend to be clueless about how their behavior affects others. I need you to make this change for me. Be consistent and predictable. Defending yourself will only make your loved one angrier. Ultimatums are a last resort and again, you must be prepared to follow through. Avoid getting defensive in the face of accusations and criticisms, no matter how unfair they may be. This may be easier for your loved one to agree to and may eventually encourage him or her to pursue BDP therapy. Talk about things other than the disorder. The feelings of the person with BPD communicate much more than what the words he or she is using. Instead of hitting your loved one with a long list of boundaries all at once, introduce them gradually, one or two at a time. The problem for people with BPD is that the disorder distorts both the messages they hear and those they try to express. Resources and references Help for Families — Videos, book recommendations, and links to support programs for family members of people with BPD. Try exercising, sipping hot tea, listening to music, grooming a pet, painting, gardening, or completing household chores. Setting goals for BPD recovery: Establishing boundaries in your relationship can replace the chaos and instability of your current situation with an important sense of structure and provide you with more choices about how to react when confronted by negative behavior. Even if this is the case with your loved one, you can still offer support, improve communication, and set boundaries while continuing to encourage your friend or family member to seek professional treatment. By developing an ability to tolerate distress, your loved one can learn how to press pause when the urge to act out or behave impulsively strikes.
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LIVING WITH BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER
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