If you are suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), you may experience a lessening of symptoms associated with the disorder as you get older. But don’t let this fool you into thinking that you can merely “grow out of” BPD.
Although there is sometimes a reduction of Borderline Personality Disorder symptoms as a person ages, it is dangerous to assume that you can just wait out the disorder and hope to get better.
Generally, the symptoms of BPD are worse in one’s early years and tend to decrease during the 30s and 40s. About half of people diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder — who attain greater levels of stability in relationships while developing improved vocational functioning — stand a good chance of no longer meeting the full criteria that defines BPD by middle age.
A primary aspect of BPD is poor impulse control. Because people generally become less impulsive as they age, it may appear as if your Borderline Personality Disorder symptoms are improving. Additionally, older people with BPD may have learned how to control the manifestation of their symptoms through therapy.
Stability of Relationships
Another possible reason why people with Borderline Personality Disorder appear to get better as they age is because they have developed a pattern of avoiding situations, relationships, or circumstances that trigger their most intense reactions and symptoms of BPD. Since another defining aspect of BPD is a series of unstable relationships, the avoidance of interpersonal relationships as they get older would appear to indicate that the disorder has mitigated.
Of course, the best way to ensure that your BPD symptoms do lessen is to get proper BPD treatment. A course of treatment that includes Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) or Mentalization-based Therapy offers the best prognosis if you have been diagnosed with BPD.
By developing the tools to manage and regulate your emotions and impulses, the disorder can be remediated well before middle age and you can obtain many years of balanced mental health and relief from your BPD symptoms.