Positives of BPD
(Borderline personality disorder/emotional regulation disorder).
I made a post like this a while ago when I first started to use tumblr. It was pretty brief and choppily written (in my opinion) so as I’ve said, I decided to remake this with more explanation/research included for more understanding and since lots found it and really liked it. Might as well start 2015 off focusing on these positives.
This is important for awareness/understanding and for those of you who have it as it really helped me overcome feelings of guilt towards having BPD/ERD and the horrible stigma. It helped me gain self-acceptance. That is why I decided to share it here.
Emotional Regulation Disorder (BPD) is a chronic mental disorder of emotional hypersensitivity and dysregulation- meaning reactions are hypersensitive/fire off erratically (seizure-like) and do not regulate or process well and the same as others. This causes people with the condition to easily react to other stimuli that other people don’t, become easily triggered and lack the ability to regulate the extremities. It affects thought processes/patterns, emotions, behavior, beliefs, and other forms of functioning. The limbic system plays a crucial role in these reactions, as it affects memory, emotional reactions, learning and developmental ability, thought pattern, behavior, and the way the body perceives external stimuli. Clearly, it then causes a wide range of symptoms (depressive, dissociative, hallucinations, delusions, anger, suicidal ideations, etc) as there are hundreds of ways to recognize ERD/BPD reactions, symptoms, and traits/characteristics. ERD/BPD reactions are “full systematic responses.” As the condition influences ‘all’ emotional reactions and other functioning, and there is such a wide range of symptoms, it is often described as a version of multiple mental disorders combined. (borderline of multiple conditions)
However, these reactions mean the hypersensitivity and dysregulation can affect positive reactions as well. Specifically, with research, analysis, and observations, some hallmark traits/characteristics may be:
-Passionate: As the level of psychological reactions highly differ in those with BPD compared to those without, individuals with the condition experience the ‘extremity’ of emotions/responses. The research on the psychological reactions on those without the condition compared to those with it, for instance, includes: Sadness-depression/grief, embarrassment-humiliation, nervousness-panic, anger-rage, and happiness-euphoria/passion, to name a few. Individuals with BPD have been observed to be especially very passionate and reactive as they often react and express this passion and euphoria.
-Insightful: Studies on BPD indicated that because of their own hypersensitivity and pain, people with BPD may easily connect to what is around them. For instance, they were able to easily read facial expressions, behavior, and emotions of those around them in an expression test. People with BPD may take experiences like these and emotions and turn it into insight and understanding, for one example, and have been shown to have an unusually high level of insight.
-Curious: Observations and studies show unusually high curiosity is common in some people with BPD from this high connection with their senses and surroundings, “sort of like a child. People with BPD are often described as having ‘childlike’ traits and characteristics referring to the interests, energy, innocence, and confusion from the unregulated emotions and reactions.”
-Compassionate/sympathetic: Again, as a result of their own hypersensitivity and pain, many with BPD may portray a high level of sympathy and understanding to others and the things around them.
-Loving/appreciative: Idealization is a main characteristic of BPD. People with BPD may idealize and glorify another individual in their life because of such strong emotions and needs, and they may be very appreciative because of hypersensitivity and painful experiences.
-Dependent: Dependency is often a hallmark symptom of BPD. One main reason for this is the extremity of the hypersensitive emotions often generating a huge fear of being alone and abandonment far more than most can imagine. Identity symptoms, such as a lack of sense of self, may also result in dependency. Dependency can be a good thing with the proper balance, like support, closeness, affection, and interconnectivity.
-Protective: Research indicates this trait is more pronounced in ‘male’ individuals with bpd, or people with (higher testosterone levels), although not restricted. This reaction may be common as a result of the intensity someone with BPD feels towards a situation or person and have been shown it may relate to the high aggression noted in BPD symptoms.
-Loyal/caring: Related to the last few, the strong reactions may often relate and connect to loyalty and care.
-Creative: An unusually high amount of writers have BPD. High levels of creativity were linked to some individuals with BPD in research cases- new ideas, artistic or musical ability, writing, or multiple other areas of creativity. Fantasizing is a common characteristic in BPD as well as daydreaming- a low, normal level of dissociation.
-High nociception (pain tolerance): Studies indicate alterations between pain processing in over half of those with BPD as opposed to individuals without. Studies show alterations in acute pain processing- they have a higher tolerance for such. Individuals with BPD were far more likely to tolerate it, despite being hypersensitive psychologically. The result of this comes from different systematic responses and antinociception and may be a result of long-term self harm behavior in some cases.
-High awareness/connection: Again, as a result of being easily connected to surroundings and outside stimuli, people with BPD have been observed have high awareness. Marsha Linehan also states they may have more levels of spiritual experiences more often. Furthermore, people with BPD have been observed to have a high level of comfort, security, and connection to nature and animals, such as pets, as stated by the DSM.
-Discipline: Obsessive compulsive features are quite common in BPD- intrusive thoughts in the thought pattern/processes, repetitive behavior as a result of self harm, paranoia, distress, etc, and repetitive speech, to name a few. Research observes people with BPD to also display high levels of self-discipline, work orientation, and drive connected to the repetitive processing.
-Alluring/Interesting: Because of the intensity, many people note in observation the interesting and/or alluring behavior or energy of someone with BPD. Furthermore, people with BPD are sometimes referred to as a “siren” in psychology as a result. Other studies have stated foundings of “physical attractiveness” patterns-however, realistically, it’s not “possible” for a neurological disorder to be related to any sort of physical attractiveness unless they were simply just attractive people or if portrayal plays a part.
-Individualistic/engaging: Many in observations and studies claimed to notice the extreme individualism and/or depth and mysterious/engaging behavior/feelings given off from BPD individuals as a result of the connection, hypersensitivity, and reactions.
-Sarcastic/funny: The DSM and multiple other sources /observations state some people with BPD may often express sarcasm and humor.
-Bold: One of the main symptoms of BPD is impulsiveness; however, research states this may be tied to a positive trait in some individuals with BPD- boldness, bravery, and ability to speak their mind.
-Strong: On a psychological level, people with BPD are often described as feeling the most intense, agonizing reactions, and one needs to be quite strong to handle them.
-Lively: Intense reactions may result in high euphoria and engaging/active behavior and energy.
-Intense- Many state in observations and research the intensity of the reactions and energy from someone with BPD from all these ^ reactions.
Marsha Linehan states, “Although it is likely that emotion dysregulation is most pronounced in negative emotions, borderline individuals also seem to have difficulty regulating positive emotions and their sequelae.”