Borderline Personality Disorder and Stalking (The relationship)

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In this blog, we will cover Borderline Personality Disorder and Stalking, and also include what is a borderline personality disorder, the symptoms of borderline personality disorder, when does BPD become stalking, and treatment of borderline personality disorder. 

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What Is Borderline Personality Disorder and Stalking?

People with Borderline personality disorder have various issues like extreme mood swings, abandonment issues, unstable relationships, and sometimes it can even get to the point of stalking as they often get smitten by someone who they could hate the very next minute. 

Let us delve deep into this matter and understand what happens when a person has BPD and how it can lead to stalking.

What is Borderline Personality Disorder?

A borderline personality disorder is a mental health problem that makes it difficult to operate in daily life because it affects how you think and feel about yourself and others. It includes issues with self-esteem, trouble managing emotions and behavior, and a pattern of uneasy relationships.

You may have a strong fear of abandonment or instability if you have a borderline personality disorder, and you may find it difficult to tolerate being alone. Excessive anger, impulsiveness, and frequent mood swings may push others away, even if you want to build meaningful and lasting relationships.

People usually develop BPD during early adulthood but it can affect anyone at any age. The issue appears to be worsening in young adulthood and may improve with age but that is not always the case and it can wreak havoc in your life and relationships. 

If you have a borderline personality disorder, don’t get discouraged. Many people with this disease improve with treatment over time and can learn to live happy lives.

What is Stalking?

Stalking is defined as persistent nuisance actions by an offender that cause negative emotional and/or bodily impacts on a victim. According to the US Department of Justice, eight percent of females and two percent of males have been stalked at some point during their lives

Diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder 

A mental health practitioner diagnoses borderline personality disorder using the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-V) or even ICD-11. 

Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder

  • Extensive efforts to prevent abandonment, whether actual or imagined, as well as experiencing intense emotions when abandonment is experienced.
  • Having experienced unstable and intense interpersonal interactions that included both extremes of idealising (“He’s amazing for me!”) and devaluing (“I can’t stand him!”).
  • Having a shaky sense of self or identity.
  • Spending money, having unsafe sex, substance misuse, reckless driving, binge eating, and other risky behaviours are examples of impulsive and risky conduct.
  • Having severe and intense moods that linger from a few hours to a few days, such as irritation, anxiety, or depression.
  • Feelings of being empty on a regular basis.
  • Having anger difficulties, such as inappropriately excessive anger, inability to regulate temper, being furious all of the time, and/or engaging in physical fights.
  • When you’re stressed, you may feel separated from your mind or body and have paranoid ideas, which can lead to psychotic episodes.
  • Suicidal conduct, threats, or self-mutilation on a regular basis.

If you’re facing this, it may be a good idea to seek the help of a therapist or other mental health professional. You can find a therapist at BetterHelp who can help you learn how to cope and address it.

Fatal attraction syndrome: stalking behaviour and borderline personality

Stalking can be defined as an unjustified or irrational obsession with another person. This diagnosis is particularly indicative among stalkers due to the peculiar and intense attachment dynamics in borderline personality disorder. 

Five studies found that stalkers have a high prevalence of borderline personality disorder, with four of them showing rates of 4 to 15%. (i.e., a small minority). Three of these studies, on the other hand, involve forensic populations, and one involves patients who stalked their psychiatrists. 

The remaining sample of stalkers, where being charged with a felony was not an inclusion condition, had a much higher rate of borderline personality disorder, at 45 percent. 

Although further evidence is needed, these findings suggest that rates of borderline personality are likely to be much higher in less forensically oriented stalker samples.

When Borderline Personality Disorder Becomes Stalking

Borderline personality disorder causes a person to feel concerned about being separated from or abandoned by people they care about. They may go to great efforts to monitor individuals they care about, such as tracking their phone or following them about. 

According to research, 45 percent of stalkers have a borderline personality disorder, though the proportion of those convicted of stalking offenses is lower, ranging from 4 to 15%.  

People with borderline personality traits may prefer not to be alone and may appear “needy” or demanding in terms of the amount of time, communication, or attention they require from their spouse, family, or friends. They may send a flood of texts to the people they care about and want to spend the most time with.

A pattern of intense or unstable romantic relationships, friendships, or ties with family members or coworkers is common in people with a borderline personality disorder. 

They may begin by idealising someone by placing them on a pedestal and treating them with reverence, but they may later devalue the person and treat them in a hostile or passive-aggressive manner. This can make partners, friends, and family members feel as if they are walking on eggshells or are being held to impossible standards.

Life of a person suffering from Borderline personality Disorder

A person with a borderline personality disorder has a confused or unstable sense of self; their perceptions of themselves can shift dramatically and be twisted from reality. 

For example, they may be unsure about their life goals, values, or convictions, or they may be easily swayed to modify their belief system or political stance without having a strong opinion on the subject.

Impulsiveness

Borderline personality disorder causes people to be impulsive in ways that can harm them or others. They may, for example, indulge in compulsive shopping, gambling, substance abuse, unsafe driving, or make severe life decisions like as abandoning a solid relationship, quitting a well-paying job, or spending a big sum of money.

Suicidal ideation or self-harming tendencies

A person with a borderline personality disorder may have recurring ideas about killing themselves or may threaten to kill themselves or participate in self-harming behaviours such as cutting, self-mutilating, or burning their skin with matches. This can cause long-term harm to their bodies. 

The symptom may appear in conjunction with other symptoms, such as a dread of abandonment. For example, if someone they’re dating wants to stop the relationship, they can threaten to self-mutilate or commit suicide, or they might send ex-partners texts threatening to kill themselves if they don’t return.

Unstable mood and emotions

A person with a borderline personality disorder has a highly reactive temperament, jumping from one overwhelming emotion to the next. If they go from being really angry to being excessively frightened or joyful, they may appear emotionally unstable. 

It can make their spouse, family, friends, or coworkers feel obligated to be cautious about what they say or do in case it bothers them, as well as insecure due to the mood swings.

Feelings of emptiness

A person with a borderline personality disorder may feel empty all of the time because they are unable to find profound or significant experiences, accomplishments, conversations, or feelings. 

They may make romantic partners, family members, or friends feel as if nothing can bring them joy. They may also appear to be unsatisfied with any employment, activity, or interest. Some symptoms may assist people with the condition in filling that void. 

For example, an intense love relationship in which a partner is constantly bombarded with messages may reduce a person’s sensation of emptiness in other areas of life.

Anger issues

A person with a borderline personality disorder may become irrationally furious or have trouble controlling their anger. In circumstances where the reaction is out of proportion, they may lose their cool, become furious, or argue. 

Anger, disputes, and outbursts of rage through physical confrontations, slamming doors, or hitting things can produce a lot of drama in a relationship or friendship with someone with the condition. People may feel afraid and concerned about their personal safety in circumstances where stalking behaviour is evident.

When a person with a borderline personality disorder is anxious, they may become paranoid, feeling that others are planning against them or gossiping about them behind their backs. During times of severe stress, they may also exhibit dissociative symptoms, which include a sense of being unreal or detached from reality.

Treatment of borderline personality disorder 

  • Psychotherapy

The most common treatment for BPD is psychotherapy. Your mental health provider may suggest cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), or schema-focused treatment.

CBT can help you identify and change dysfunctional ideas, habits, and incorrect impressions about yourself or others. It teaches you how to behave in a healthy way when you’re angry, insecure, nervous, or suicidal.

DBT teaches you how to recognise, accept, and be aware of your thoughts and behaviours. You’ll also learn healthy ways to respond to these behaviours.

Schema-focused therapy enables you to see yourself and the world in a more positive light.

  • Medication

BPD is not curable, but medication can help with symptoms. In addition to psychotherapy, your doctor may prescribe medication. They may, for example, prescribe:

Depression is treated with antidepressants.

Antipsychotic medications are used to treat violent symptoms.

Anxiety is treated with anti-anxiety medicines.

  • Hospitalization

If your symptoms are severe, your doctor may recommend that you seek care in a hospital. You could also be admitted to the hospital if you engage in suicide behaviour, have suicidal thoughts, or are considering killing yourself or others.

  • Alternative ways

In persons with BPD, omega-3 fatty acids may help to alleviate symptoms of depression and violence. More research is needed to validate omega-3 fatty acid’s advantages.

Conclusion 

We discussed what borderline personality disorder is, how it affects a person’s life, BPD and stalking, fatal attraction syndrome, and how to get treated for BPD. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): What Is Borderline Personality Disorder and Stalking?

What is a borderline personality person like?

BPD is characterized by intense, unpredictable emotions and relationships, as well as insecurity and self-doubt. When a person has BPD, everything about them feels unstable, including their moods, thinking, actions, relationships, and sometimes even their identity.

How to deal with intense emotions with a borderline personality disorder?

  • Sleep well
  • Eat properly
  • Direct your time into physical exercises or any physical activity
  • Spend time outdoors
  • Stay away from alcohol and drugs
  • Make good friendships
  • Seek therapy and medications to manage your symptoms

What is borderline personality disorder caused by?

BPD can be caused by a variety of factors, including: People who have been sexually, emotionally, or physically abused are more likely to develop BPD. Neglect, mistreatment, or being separated from a parent are all factors that increase the risk. Borderline personality disorder is a genetic condition that runs in families.

Is bipolar disorder and BPD the same thing?

Ans. Although BPD and bipolar disorder share some symptoms, they are two distinct disorders. Bipolar disorder is a mood disorder, while BPD is a personality disorder. Treatment for BPD might be difficult. New ways for caring for people with BPD and improving their quality of life are being developed as a result of continuing research.

How can we protect ourselves from cyberstalking?

  • Regularly change password
  • Set strict privacy settings across your social media profiles
  • Remove your data from any publicly available calendars or itineraries
  • Don’t share too much with people on social media except for close friends and family
  • Report immediately if you ever feel you are being stalked online or outside the internet world.

Can borderlines have friends?

Yes, they have friends but it takes forceful communication skills and a high level of self-awareness to recognize when it’s time to take a step back. If you put in the effort, you can have a long-term, rewarding friendship with someone who has BPD.

References 

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/borderline-personality-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20370237#:~:text=Borderline%20personality%20disorder%20is%20a,a%20pattern%20of%20unstable%20relationships.
https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-science-mental-health/202010/when-borderline-personality-disorder-becomes-stalking
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20532158/
https://www.verywellmind.com/a-diagnosis-with-a-bad-rap-2330646
https://www.healthline.com/health/borderline-personality-disorder#treatment

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