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Borderline Personality Disorder and the Effect on the Family

Updated on February 27, 2011

Parents With Borderline Personality Disorder are Unpredictable

 Borderline personality disorder effects every relationship a person with borderline personality disorder is involved with.  Children are no exception and when a parent suffers from borderline personality disorder, children live a life full of unpredictabilty, fear and confusion. 


Borderline Personality Disorder Puts Stress on Children

Parents with borderline personality disorder create an unstable environment for their children.
Parents with borderline personality disorder create an unstable environment for their children.

I Hate You - Don't Leave Me

Originally published in November of 1989, the newly revised version (2010) of "I Hate You - Don't Leave Me", by Dr. Jerold Kreisman and Hal Straus is a useful tool in understand the borderline personality and the effects of this mental health disorder on the family.

Similar symptoms among people suffering from borderline personality disorder include:  A shaky sense of identity, unprovoked outbursts of anger, overwhelming feelings of emtiness, self destructive tendencies and an irrational fear of abandonment.

As the title of the book suggests, people with borderline personality disorder are so caught up in their own anger yet fear abandonment so deeply that they can tell a person they hate them yet pull them close at the same time.

The "I Hate You - Don't Leave Me" behavior of a parent with borderline personality disorder can cause children to have trouble with intimate relationships as they grow into adults. 

Borderline Personality Disorder

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Borderline Personality Sufferers Do Not Enjoy Alone Time

 One common symptom among people diagnosed with borderline personality disorder is the inability to enjoy alone time.  Many borderlines feel intense emptiness that can only be filled by other people and not with their own inner thoughts and feelings.  A person with BPD will do what it takes not to have to be home alone, which could include making a spouse feel guilty for wanting to spend a night out with friends.  The person with BPD may make rude statements about these friends, wondering why their spouse would choose such horrible people over them.

Living and Parenting with Borderline Personality Disorder


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