I Keep Hurting Myself — Does That Mean I Have BPD?

If you are intentionally harming yourself through such behaviors as cutting, burning, or hitting, you are likely attempting to deal with overwhelming and difficult emotions. It is quite possible that you may not understand exactly why you are harming yourself, but may feel a strong compulsion to continue.

You may be engaging in self-injurious behaviors as a way to deal with trauma, gain control over your body, or as a symptom of a personality disorder such as Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). However, just because you are harming yourself it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have BPD. Much more is involved in accurately diagnosing the disorder.

Diagnosing BPD

Clinicians and therapists diagnose the disorder based on nine criteria. Even if some of the symptoms of BPD are met, many of them are associated with other disorders, such as Bipolar Disorder, Histrionic Personality Disorder, and Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

Because of that, self-injury on its own is by no means an indication of Borderline Personality Disorder. The ultimate diagnosis of any suspected personality disorder should be left in the hands of a mental health professional.

If you are engaging in self-injurious behaviors, stopping can be difficult, especially if it is a symptom of BPD. If you are continuing to harm yourself, it is a good idea to make an appointment with a professional who can tell you if you do have BPD or another personality disorder. With treatment, you will be able to stop hurting yourself and find healthier ways to cope with the emotions that caused you to harm yourself in the first place.

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