Borderline Subtypes

Yesterday I was watching a few video’s about borderline personality disorder. As for now it is my primary diagnosis. There’s one video I want to comment on and it’s also the one that I watched together with my Daddy last night.

As the title of this blogpost says; the video is about borderline subtypes. And this is so interesting because mainly what people see as borderline is that outgoing, impulsive, enraged classical borderline type that you see in movies. Leaving other types of borderline misunderstood.

Those subtypes are: the Discouraged/”Quiet” borderline, the Petulant borderline, Impulsive borderline and Self-Destructive borderline. As described by Dr. Fox in the video below:

Personally I think that these subtypes are just different styles of expressing what’s going on inside and the different ways of coping with the disorder. Personally I experience these subtypes as different mindsets that I can switch between when coping with life. At times I can even feel the switch happen. The mindsets can feel so different from each other that it can even feel like there are different identities inside of me. Because when I feel so different with each subtype it’s almost like a multiple identity situation. Which is why it’s difficult for me to have a sense of who I am. As well as for others who could try to label me as having a dissociative identiy disorder. On top of that.. in borderline you also see dissociation, which usually happens under stress is that I can dissociated into different identities as a coping mechanism. Though DID and BPD are different because in DID there isn’t that much of the emotional dysregulation which is one of the big cores in BPD.

The thing is though.. with the Quiet borderline type it isn’t always clear to others what is going on inside. And this probably one of the types of borderline that I am in mostly. Which means that I turn inward instead of being that classic outgoing borderline that you see in movies. That’s why a lot of people have said to me: you can’t be borderline because… and then I am being typically quiet and thinking.. you have no idea what you are talking about, you don’t know me and it also makes me wonder if you act like you know everything in general..

When I look at the summer period I’ve thought about being hypomanic, possibly forced by a bipolar disorder but when looking at this video it could also be that I’m in the Impulsive borderline mindset, which means that it’s forced by BPD instead. And that’s also why borderline and bipolar disorder can look the same but here the difference is that the mood in bipolar disorder stays consistent over at least a few days. While in borderline the mood can switch within an hour or even in minutes and definitely within a day.

If the summer was me being in that Impulsive borderline mindset then we could say that Quiet as well as Impulsive are the two styles I’m using mainly and it can feel like having a split personality because they are so different from each other. And then there are also episodes of the Petulant and even the Self-Destructive styles.

Breaking borderline behavior into subtypes really makes it so much easier for me to get a little bit of clearity because if you put all those mindsets and behaviors on one big pile it’s just complete chaos and it can feel like I don’t know where to begin with managing those unhelpfull behaviors.

In my next blogpost I will write about how I personally experience those subtypes 😉

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