Identity disturbance

To the outside observer, young adults with Borderline Personality Disorder or BPD traits appear to be making drastic shifts in terms of what they like and/or are committed to in any given moment. This can manifest in repeatedly changing their major in school, shifting career goals, including difficulties sticking with jobs when they suddenly and completely lose interest in what they are doing at work, becoming very interested in a hobby and then suddenly wanting nothing do to with it, and even relationships where they were very close to someone one day and want nothing to do with them the next.  Being unstable in these areas can ultimately lead to a failure to launch to their next stage of development, namely being able to live independently and support themselves.

When one’s lover says, “You’re behaving like a four year old,” it is the intense sense of fear and rejection experienced by the young adult with BPD that stimulates this kind of unskillful reaction. It’s about survival. It’s about you not leaving. It’s about you realizing how much I need you. As a young adult who knows she is no longer four years old, if she is in a moment of emotional dysregulation and vulnerability, she may still behave as if she is. So, from an external point of view, we can begin to appreciate that these individuals are not malicious, are not insensitive, and that they must begin to adapt to a world of imperfections without unconsciously going back into a fantasy world that keeps them safe – they think – but that actually serves to make them more isolated and more detached from reality.

full article here: Identity disturbance in BPD


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