Family – Borderline Personality Disorder Facts and Statistics Part 6

My posting has been pretty erratic this week. I took a week off between the last job and the new job to give myself a break. When I’m not trying to avoid work and can actually do things that don’t make me want to strangle my boss I guess the lack of structure is, well, a lack of structure. Moving on…

– ERD (borderline personality disorder) can be extremely hard on families.  Families need support.

Mostly I just feel this needs reiterating. I’ll be doing fully separate posts on this. When I was younger and really just starting on this turbulent terror that is BPD I was really, really hard on my family. Fortunately they love me a lot, and never gave up on me. I know there were times I pushed them to the edge and I didn’t deserve their love, but they were always there.  They are the absolute strongest support system I have, even though I now live over 500 miles away from them. I don’t know what I’d do if I didn’t have their love and support. I can’t even begin to stress how important it is to have people willing to stick by you. Especially when it can be so difficult. Frankly I’m surprised I didn’t push them all into counseling. My entire family is very close and I’m thankful they had each other to rely on, to lean on.

– Patients reported significantly higher rates of psychiatric disorders in their families in general, especially 
anxiety disorders, depression, and suicidality.

Well, I can’t deny this from my family history. On my father’s side, my grandfather was an alcoholic, died of Alzheimer’s. My grandmother was bipolar. On my mom’s side of the family: don’t know about my grandfather, but he died of Alzheimer’s too. My grandmother was schizophrenic. My mom I’m sure has some kind of anxiety disorder. My brother is depressive. My sister is bipolar. My dad seems to have made it safely to sanity, though I’m sure I pushed that to the edge at times.

It’s important to know family history. It helps pin point what factors may influence your own mental health and provide a more accurate diagnosis. At the very least, it might help prepare you for signs to look out for. My family’s mental health never concerned me so much as their physical health, but in retrospect it would have helped me more had I paid attention. Knowing the whole medical history is good to keep in mind. My family also has a history of alcoholism (grandfather) which I need to watch out for. Heart attacks/heart disease/strokes… these are all things that I can act to prevent though diet and exercise and not smoking (yeah yeah I’m quitting, eventually, when my sanity can support it).  I’ve been strict vegetarian for 18 years, and I exercise at least 6 days a week = an hour of cardio + weight training. Generally speaking I live a very healthy lifestyle. I’ve always known these things were necessarily to live a functional and healthy life. Knowing family mental histories is no different.