Not Just a Borderline
So the client who so challenges our own emotional regulation skills is not “just a borderline,” but rather someone whose symptoms of borderline personality disorder are not yet under their own control, because there are many other “borderlines” right around you who do not behave, well, “borderline.”
Similarly as the writer of this commentary, I am choosing to ask to remain anonymous. Why would I want to self-disclose at risk of being, myself, then disregarded and looked at with the same stigma-colored glasses?
“Normal people,” healthy people, non-diagnosed people disagree, have bad days, stand up for what they believe in, assert themselves, get tired, have a range of emotions and so on.
But for those whose diagnoses and pasts are known, the perception of that normal range changes: if I come in tired with “a bad hair day,” the question will be, “did she relapse?”
If I have a difference of opinion with the treatment team and assert my advocacy for the patient appropriately, will I be seen as being “too emotional?”
If I get irritated at work, will peers be afraid I will, “go off” and “walk on eggshells,” around me and disregard my knowledge base in favor of seeing me only as acting on emotion? How dismissed will my efforts and capacities be if I self-disclose?
Food for thought. Thanks for listening.
Choosing to publish under the pseudonym Stella Gray, the author is a LCSW and LCAS-A who has 8+ years professional experience serving the high acuity dual-diagnosis population particularly in the inpatient setting.
Team meeting photo available from Shutterstock