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Formerly St. Louis Center for Family Development
What is Borderline Personality Disorder

What is Borderline Personality Disorder?

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a condition that affects a person’s ability to regulate emotions, maintain relationships and achieve a sense of self.

Common Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder:

  • Feeling empty or sense of worthlessness
  • Struggling to control emotions
  • Strong and intense feelings of shame
  • Difficulty getting or keeping strong and meaningful relationships
  • Persistent thoughts, feelings, urges, or history of suicide
  • Presence or history of non-suicidal self-injury
  • Impulsivity or behaviors that are emotionally driven

The exact cause of BPD is unknown, but one prevailing theory is the BioSocial Theory, developed by Marsha Linehan, PhD. The theory states that individuals with BPD are biologically born with a predisposition towards having emotional vulnerability. This, combined with invalidating environments that are not equipped to respond to their emotionality, puts individuals at significant risk for developing BPD over time. What we do know is that BPD is highly associated with exposure to traumatic experiences; approximately 80% of individuals diagnosed with BPD have had at least one trauma exposure.

In this six-part video series, Sparlin Mental Health (formerly St. Louis Center for Family Development) licensed therapists and mental health professionals discuss various topics surrounding BPD, including the diagnosis, supporting a friend or family member, dialectical behavior therapy as treatment, co-occurring disorders, tips to help manage one’s emotions, and much more.

1. Diagnosing Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)


2. Understanding Your Loved One with BPD


3. Causes of Borderline Personality Disorder


4. Treating BPD with Dialectical Behavior Therapy


5. BPD and Other Disorders


6. Living with Borderline Personality Disorder

If you believe you have borderline personality disorder, Sparlin Mental Health can help. Our licensed therapists and mental health professionals are trained experts in personality disorders who can conduct comprehensive psychiatric evaluations. We also offer Dialectical Behavior Therapy, one of the most effective treatments for BPD to-date. Contact Sparlin today to schedule a consultation.