Borderline Personality Disorder is by far the most stigmatized mental health challenge of them all. It firstly begins with the criteria by which people are diagnosed with Borderline Personality – all traits in the DSM are human traits – not just traits of a mental health challenge. It begins with a name that doesn’t mean anything really. It continues with the idea that Borderline Personality is a brain disorder – there is no absolute or even sound proof of this. It continues with the idea that medication is needed to “control it” – wrong again!
Join the Beyond BPD Stigma Campaign on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. If you are someone with BPD, recovering from BPD or who, like myself, has recovered from BPD, share your story. Tell others what has worked for you and what hasn’t. If you’d like to submit your story about getting beyond the stigma of BPD to my new digital magazine – Dialectic Magazine’s November Issue – please contact me
Another huge, and rarely talked about stigma about Borderline Personality is that it is just a “woman’s issue”. So not true. Many men are diagnosed (or all too-often-misdiagnosed with something else) and have BPD. So much is written from a patriarchal view of BPD – which in and of itself is rather misogynist by definition – it often leaves men and their feelings, issues, challenges out of the equation. We need to address this in the general addressing of BPD stigma.
Everyone with or who has recovered from BPD – we are the voices and face of the most stigmatized mental health challenge. Let’s find ways widely across the internet, with the Nea BPD campaign as a good start to do this in a way that isn’t just tied to any one organization. Fighting the stigma of BPD and getting beyond the stigma of BPD means lots of us standing up to it and living successfully and refusing to take on the judgment of others, be they Mental Health Professionals (Many not all involved in systemic BPD stigma) or people who (as I experienced recently) continue to try to “see you” or “paint you” as “borderline” (in my case) 20 years after recovery. That opened my eyes recently to just how unending this BPD Stigma is. This stigma kills many – they can’t feel their own worth, they can’t get through the shame it spreads. Let’s help each other and hopefully those who seek to forward this stigma to finally learn that it only has “power” if we let it. Each person, in life has issues, at least from time to time. There is nothing reasonable about the way in which stigma and negative judgement is applied to anyone with BPD or who, like myself, has in fact recovered from BPD only to still experience the negative stereotypical stigma that served some group of bullies agenda. Really says more about them than me. Just as you can free yourself from the stigma by realizing the judgments of others do not define you and are not true about you.
© A.J. Mahari, September 28, 2014 – All rights reserved.