How can I manage my borderline personality disorder?

Advice from people who have successfully managed this illness includes:

  • Set clear, realistic goals.
  • Be patient with yourself.
  • Develop methods to manage specific problem behaviors.
  • Avoid alcohol and street drugs.
  • Accept the responsibility for managing your illness.
  • Make a written schedule every day so your time is structured.
  • Make every effort to follow your schedule.
  • Find a satisfying job.
  • Make and keep at least one good friend.
  • Work hard at being honest in therapy.
  • Take medication if prescribed.
  • Learn to express your feelings directly and appropriately.
  • Remember you can't always change the way you feel, but you can always change what you do about it.
  • Find a balance between work and fun.
  • Choose healthy role models.

Certain life events are especially stressful for people with this illness and increase the risk of relapse: therapist's or other vacations; change in job, housing or finances; change in significant relationships; birthdays, anniversary dates, and holidays; increased job pressure or promotion; discharge from a hospital or program; changes in physical health, including pregnancy, abortion, trauma or illness. Patients can plan ahead for these events by carefully following self-management measures and watching for increasing symptoms. If signs of relapse appear, there should be a specific plan decided in advance for actions that can be taken (e.g. brief hospitalization, medications, increased structure, etc).

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.