What is BPD?
Borderline personality disorder, called BPD for short, is a personality disorder affecting up to 5.9% of adults in the United States. Some of the hallmark symptoms for BPD patients are patterns of unstable interpersonal relationships, intense emotions, mood swings, and impulsive behavior — among many others.
What are BPD Subtypes?
Borderline personality disorder traits are categorized into four “subtypes” of BPD. Almost no one fits neatly into one subtype, and almost no one is split equally between all four subtypes. Instead, many people with BPD find that they might relate with traits of some subtypes more than other subtypes.
BPD behaviors can be the same across different subtypes, but the reasons behind them might differ. For example, people with impulsive borderline and people with self-destructive borderline traits are both prone to risky behaviors. But for a person with impulsive borderline, the motivation is likely to gain attention or acceptance from others, while a person with self-destructive borderline personality disorder is more likely to engage in risky behavior because they simply don’t care about themselves or their well-being.
All subtypes of borderline personality disorders are treatable, and understanding the subtypes that best describe your experience with BPD can help you seek the best treatment for your case.
What is Petulant Borderline Personality Disorder?
Kylie came to Optimum Performance Institute at age 20 for help treating petulant borderline personality disorder, which had made healthy relationships nearly impossible for years.
No one could deny that Kylie’s childhood was difficult. Her mother was an addict, and her father had never been in the picture. She was six years old when she and her sister were removed from their home.
They moved foster homes three times before before their mother’s parental rights were terminated and they were adopted. Her new “parents” were kind, helped her with schoolwork, and included her in everything the rest of the family was doing. Kylie became accustomed to them, but never felt close to them. In fact, she made it a point to keep secrets from her family. Whether the secret was big or the secret was small, it didn’t matter. She liked to know that she wasn’t depending on them and they didn’t know everything about her.
"All subtypes of borderline personality disorders are treatable."
While Kylie liked her family, she never quite trusted them. The same was true for her friends at school, especially as she got older. What might have been a minor disappointment to someone else, like a friend feeling sick and canceling plans, was an unbearable event to Kylie that often resulted in self-harm to numb the pain and “tell” others that she wasn’t okay. Kylie envisioned that her new friends were flawless, and when they didn’t meet her high expectations of them, she would feel intense frustration or anger and tell her friends that “if you really cared about me, you would…” This was usually too much for her friends to handle, and she had only a few relationships that lasted longer than a year.
What are the Symptoms of Petulant BPD?
Kylie was showing several common symptoms of petulant borderline personality disorder, some of which are:
- An inability to express feelings
- Outbursts of anger
- Feelings of being unworthy and unloved
- Socially anxious
- Extreme fear of abandonment
- A need to control others
- Experiencing dissatisfaction in relationships
- Co-occurring disorders, such as substance abuse or eating disorders
- Suspicion of others/paranoia in relationships
- Self-harm tendencies
- Intense mood swings
- Posing ultimatums in relationships
- “Proving” that someone doesn’t love her
- Constantly searching for validation
- Push and pull in relationships
- Wanting others to feel guilty for their actions, or lack of actions
- Passive-Aggressive https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-passive-aggressive-behavior-2795481
- Shutting others out of their lives
- Using suicidal behavior or self-injurious behaviors to control others
Most petulant BPD behaviors stem from a fear of abandonment, lack of self-worth, and an inability to self-soothe. With the right treatment, you can resolve these challenges and overcome petulant borderline personality disorder.
How Do You Treat a Petulant BPD Diagnosis?
Kylie went to two residential treatment programs as a teen for symptoms of BPD, but found only mild relief. While there, she gained an understanding of mental health issues and learned to recognize her symptoms, but she wasn’t yet able to grasp how her symptoms would impact her long term goals. She lacked the motivation she needed to fully engage in healing from BPD.
Years later, when she was 20 years old, Kylie was asked to leave her college and get help after attempting suicide in her school apartment. Kylie chose the Optimum Performance Institute, or OPI, because our emphasis on helping young people with BPD heal and transition to independence seemed to fit her needs perfectly.
Once Kylie arrived at OPI, she worked closely with her therapist to unravel her BPD behaviors and come up with a plan that would work best for Kylie’s specific symptoms and challenges.
Kylie initially focused on learning dialectical behavior therapy skills (DBT skills) so well that they became second nature. She especially focused on self-soothing techniques to learn how to calm herself down when her emotions felt out of control.
Once Kylie and her therapist felt she had enough practice with dialectical behavior therapy skills in real-life situations, Kylie decided she was ready to take a deep dive and work through the experiences she hadn’t been ready to tackle while in treatment as a teen.
Opening those wounds and examining the emotions and beliefs that lived within them was excruciating. Her peers at OPI, who had done their own healing work, gave Kylie reassurance that she could make it through and shared their best advice for coping. Trips to the beach and the hip hop class she enrolled in helped get her mind off the intense therapeutic work for a few hours each week.
Before long, it was time for Kylie to practice the skills she had been learning — particularly her relationship skills — outside of the OPI community. She got a job at a veterinary clinic since she hoped to one day be a veterinarian. Before the next school term started, Kylie worked with the director of education to plan out the classes she’d need to take for veterinary school. She enrolled in a few classes at a local college, and worked with her OPI life coach to find the study skills that worked best for her.
For eight months, Kylie learned and practiced how to balance school, work, relationships, and therapy with the support of her team at OPI. Kylie was ready to go home with a firm understanding of what triggered her BPD symptoms and how to manage them when they inevitably came up. She now had a handful of healthy relationships from work, school, and OPI, and she transitioned home ready to duplicate the success she found at OPI.
"Petulant BPD is not usually something you can treat on your own."
How Do I Find Help for Petulant BPD?
Petulant BPD is not usually something you can treat on your own. There is usually deep pain associated with the development of borderline personality disorder, and this pain only compounds as BPD symptoms tend to create the very monster you’re trying to avoid: unstable relationships.
If you need help healing from symptoms of BPD, its co-occurring disorders, and developing healthy interpersonal relationships, call us now at 866.661.3982. We want to hear what you’re looking for in a treatment program and work with you to determine if our program is the right fit for your needs.