Let’s start with the obvious statements most of you might be making. All disorders have some misconceptions right? So why should BPD be any different? There are tons of inaccurate statements, leading to misconceptions, made on the internet about Borderline Personality Disorders and this is my attempt at clearing the air,about some of them. As a person diagnosed with the same, it is frustrating to be misjudged.
It’s not a WOMAN only disorder, Men can be diagnosed with it as well,
Lets look at the facts first before we dive into this common misconceptions:
DSM-IV-TR states that borderline personality disorder (BPD) is “diagnosed predominantly (about 75%) in females.” A 3:1 female to male gender ratio is quite pronounced for a mental disorder and, consequently, has led to speculation about its causes.1
So as you can see, yes women are the majority population diagnosed with this disorder but not the only one. Additionally, there isn’t a lot of study yet to tell us why. There is still the consideration that it could be a diagnostic bias, or a deeper reason for the same.
Sexual promiscuity is not a mandatory criterion
Yes, I am sure that people who have been around someone diagnosed with BPD might disagree with me, but I am making this statement based on the facts. According to the DSM V manual – sexual promiscuity is a sub part of one of the main criterion of impulsive behavior in a BPD patient. Sexual promiscuity is not the only way to exhibit impulsive behaviors, there are others such as shopping sprees, rash driving etc.
Extreme mood swings doesn’t mean we are crazy bitches
So apparently, having extreme mood swings and a fear of abandonment warrants the name ” Crazy Bitch Syndrome”. Yes we are sometimes not in control of our emotions, and sometimes our emotions take the best of us, does not justify us to be called as crazy bitches. This nickname also reinforces the first misconception about it being a women only disorder. These misconceptions really make you wonder, if only women can be seen as emotional or someone having a hard time with their feelings.
It is not the same as Bipolar Disorder
A very basic difference between Bipolar and Borderline Personality Disorder is that the former is a mood disorder and the latter is a personality disorder. The commonality between the two being they both involve extreme mood swings. The bipolar is plagued by extreme mood swings periods. But they are their own self once the period ends .Whereas the mood swings in a borderline are a part of their lives with no specific periods but triggers that effect their moods. 2
Borderline Personality Disorder is not a myth/excuse
As someone who is dealing with borderline personality disorder, it is appalling to read or hear about how people believe that this disorder is given as an excuse for bad behavior. Let me reassure you that it is a serious mental disorder with self harm and suicidal thoughts being a main criteria for diagnosis. Yes , we have to agree that it might not be easy living with a person with BPD, but it is much harder for the person who has borderline personality disorder.
So the next time you read or hear about these common myths, I urge you to not only ignore them, but also to correct them. It would go a long way in helping debunk these misconceptions.