After my first relationship with a confirmed Borderline Personality Disordered woman, I began to see her characteristics in many people. It seemed that so many people around me were potentially disordered… I suppose that’s one of the factors that makes diagnosing a Borderline so difficult.
So really, how many people have Borderline Personality Disorder (or BPD)?
The fact is, not even professionals know the answer for sure. BPD is often misdiagnosed and/or confused with Bipolar depression or other personality disorders. Many people with Borderline Personality Disorder never seek treatment and do not even recognize that they have a problem (even though, in many cases, people close to them can clearly see there is a problem). Some Borderlines have an uncanny ability to hide their disorder from the vast majority of those around them. They are able to carry on with what, from the outside, appears to be a normal life. These folks are often referred to as High-Functioning Borderlines.
It is estimated that nearly 1 in 50 people or 5.4 million in the USA (2% of the population) have BPD. Many psychologists, counselors, and doctors believe this number is on the conservative side due to the reasons listed earlier in this article. 5.4 million people in the USA alone!
So why is it that I feel I have come in contact with so many people with this disorder?
There could be few reasons… One reason, I believe, is that I have become ultra-sensitive to my ex girlfriend’s BPD characteristics and that troubled me greatly. I am on the lookout for these types of behaviors and red flags now. Once you’ve experienced the craziness a Borderline brings into your life, you become vigilant in your avoidance of such behaviors.
Another reason is that something in my behavior and personality is drawing-in, or attracting disordered individuals to my life. It is said that narcissists are the perfect match for a BPD. Though I would agree that I may have some narcissistic-tendencies, I do not believe I am a text-book narcissist. However, another type of personality is known to draw-in BPD’s… People who have codependent personalities are often prone to getting involved with Borderlines. I am a recovering codependent without a doubt.
How do you stop attracting disordered individuals?
We have to take a good, hard look at who we are and what it is in us that is allowing these repeated encounters with disordered individuals. We need to evaluate and learn from our past mistakes or we will continue to repeat them. Be objective about it. Look at yourself objectively and question your behaviors. It is okay to accept some blame for getting involved with these people. We can learn and grow from the insight and introspection.
Borderline Personality Disorder is out there in at least 2% of the US population. It is important that we know what to look for in them, and in ourselves. If we do not take the time to learn from our past BPD relationships, we very well may attract another… and another.