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INFJs and borderline personality disorder

Discussion in 'Psychology and MBTI' started by Nat, May 7, 2009.

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  1. Nat

    Nat Newbie

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    Is there a link between INFJ traits and BPD?

    Anyone know?
     
  2. Bored Now

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    Gah, I hope not. Don't people with BPD require more attention than an INFJ would need?

    ::Looks up the dsm iv::

    Heh... you might have a point. Still, I've known a girl with BPD and she was a crazy pain in the ass. I can't imagine a INFJ being so outwardly and obviously needy. And so mean. You ever disapppoint someone with BPD? They flip the script on your ass in a heartbeat. You go from being their best friend to their bitterest enemy in the blink of an eye. Maybe an unhealthy INFJ could look like that...
     
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  3. acd

    acd Well-known member

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    What is BPD? I suppose I could look it up.. Blah..
     
  4. Bored Now

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    Borderline Personality Disorder. Its like a narcissist that threatens suicide/self harm alot, but needier. I've simplified it a great deal. Angelina Jolie in Girl interrupted. Good times!
     
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  5. Silently Honest

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    Well when you put it that way...
     
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  6. Julia

    Julia Community Member

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    BPD and Narcissism and other such disorders are often connected to attachment disorders that can occur during the infant - toddler stages of development. If the child is not nurtured appropriately, their sense of self and other can become distorted. The infant begins by only comprehending self. They become increasingly aware of their caretaker as "other". They go through several stages of distinguishing the difference. It is the process of separating into an individual whose actions impact and are impacted by another.

    This is not connected with a cognitive processing style. Some people may hold stereotyped views of the INFJ that would lead them to label people with BPD as INFJ, but I seriously doubt there is a connection of any more significance than that primarily because MBTI is a system for classifying healthy cognitive styles.

    BPD can also include reckless behaviors which IJs are the least likely to demonstrate. I have a friend who tested as an ISTP who shows enough of these traits that it prompted me to do research on BPD. I don't think there is a connection with that type either.
     
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  7. acd

    acd Well-known member

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    I thought Angelina Jolie in that movie was a Sociopath?
    And thank you both for answering.
     
  8. Julia

    Julia Community Member

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    I think you are right.

    Here is a good book for learning about BPD
    [​IMG]
     
  9. VH

    VH Variable Hybrid

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    I believe the original poster is taking this info from Socionics, in which INFj is actually INFP in the MBTI.

    The Ne and Fi functions combined with Te and Si are much more descriptive of BDP. ENFP, ISTJ, and ESTJs are also more commonly BDP.

    INFJ functions are more condusive to schizoaffective disorder, obsessive compulsive disorders, and delusional disorders. Ni, Fe, Ti, and Se lend these disorders to be common in ENFJ, ISTP, and ESTPs.
     
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  10. aeon

    aeon Ooh, a bunny!
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    As the MBTI types are normative, there is no link from them to any personality/mood/mental disorder.


    cheers,
    Ian
     
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    #10 aeon, May 7, 2009
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2011
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  11. Faye

    Faye ^_^
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    How do you learn this?
     
  12. Bored Now

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    Ha you're totally right. Because she was all proud of being a female sociopath. I know two myself and its not all that awesome. It was Noni's character who was Borderline. Or just Bored. I forget...

    Gosh Von Hase, I could read your posts all day. I don't understand them half the time, but not understanding stuff has never hampers my enjoyment of stuff.
     
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    #12 Bored Now, May 10, 2009
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  13. acd

    acd Well-known member

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    What are these female sociopaths like? I know not all sociopaths are sadistic murderers. Someone I once knew said many sociopaths go into sales (carsales was the example they gave.) I'm sort of gullible and I didn't know if they were joking or not.

    My professor last semester mentioned knowing a woman professor who raised her son on Skinner's behaviorist theory--but she didn't provide the child with any emotional reinforcement or affectionate rewards. He said the kid grew up to become a sociopath.
     
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  14. Bored Now

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    Cold, manipulative... seductive... charming. Innately sexual in a fucked up and brutal sort of way. I'll have to think more about it later.
     
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  15. Eniko

    Eniko May snark if provoked
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    As an INFJ and as someone who bought that book recently during the death throes of her relationship with someone who I'm almost certain has BPD I have to say no, I doubt there is any kind of link at all.

    From my own experiences people with BPD have a very fluid picture of the world, which is why they can go between two extremes so easily, pushing people away and reeling them in. On the other hand my world view as an INFJ is imminently stable, and it always takes extreme measures to convince me that my view of the world is wrong, and takes a great deal of effort to adapt it.
     
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  16. Honey

    Honey Regular Poster

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    Your Ni does not appear to have been damaged. I think that INFJs might be especially prone to a certain subtype of borderline personality disorder (not the histrionic kind). INFJs and ENFJs are very sensitive people but not very common, probably not easily accepted/identified with personality types and with the wrong kinds of parents they can be subject to the very rejecting/invalidating responses which are the foundations upon which BPD is established.

    If the INFJ's theories, emotions and sensitivity is not well understood, liked or encouraged by their parents and the parents in turn respond with consistent invalidation of the feelings, character and motive of the INFJ, then this can lead to the Ni or basic internal self of the INFJ not being trusted and truly appreciated by the INFJ overtime. In a way, they were taught to devalue it by their parents and even by their general environment what with the low statistical chances of meeting another INFJ in real life morever a "healthy" happy one.

    Over reliance then develops on Fe which is a more volatile emotion/ethics based function because it is very linked to what is happening externally. The Ni which is the more internal stable/anchoring/filtering function does not die but its input is consistently doubted just as when the person was a child so the individual lives in a angry, confused, depressed, conflicted internal state not really knowing who they are and what they believe and further, not being truly separate/independent emotionally from the external and others because the Fe is in an unhealthy unbalanced unfiltered form without the "firmness" that normal Ni provides.

    I think that from looking around this forum and from real life I think a lot of INFJs are quite self destructive and they probably are like that because they were not accepted or nurtured in the correct way for their type as children and did not come into a true acceptance of themselves and rather than wanting to preserve and nurtue such a self, they almost unconsciously seek to destroy it. Again, not unlike people with BPD and APD which is the other personality disorder that INFJs are prone to.

    It can get even worst for the INFJ if their parents are the kind of Fi type that despises the emotional expressions and harmonious type release that XNFJs need via Fe, so even the Fe might become suppressed. IMO, most ESXP type parents are unlikely to understand the motives of Ni/Fe because in all honesty, I think they use those functions for negative manipulation purposes more often than not and imagine that others use them that way as well.
     
  17. Ethereal

    Ethereal Regular Poster

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    I'm an INFJ, an extreme introvert and I have BPD. I also have Avoidant Personality Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder and occasional flare-ups of OCD. I am an enneagram 4w5. Any personality type can have any psychiatric disorder.

    Honey is the only person on this thread so far to speak any truth, the rest of you know NOTHING about it, you can't begin to comprehend the pain unless you are this way yourself.

    http://articles.latimes.com/2009/sep/07/health/he-borderline7

    Borderline personality disorder grows as healthcare concern
    HEALTHSufferers display mood instability, fear of abandonment, impulsive behavior, anger and suicidal or self-injurious acts. People with the disorder also may misperceive the actions of others.
    September 07, 2009|Shari Roan
    They have the thinnest skin, the shortest fuses and take the hardest knocks. In psychiatrists' offices, they have long been viewed as among the most challenging patients to treat.

    They are the kind of people who drive a friend away for interfering and subsequently berate that friend for abandonment.

    But almost 20 years after the designation of borderline personality disorder as a recognized mental health condition, some understanding and hope have surfaced for people with the condition and their families.

    Borderline personality disorder was center stage in May at the annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Assn. -- with multiple sessions and speakers devoted to the topic. And the message from the meeting was clear: After years during which they threw up their hands, leaders in psychiatry now want to convey a more positive message about the condition and what can be done to help those who have it.

    "Borderline personality disorder is considered a pejorative term," says Dr. Richard G. Hersh, a psychiatrist at Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons. "But there are new treatments and new data that give reason for optimism."

    That is especially significant given results of a survey of more than 24,000 adults, conducted by the federal government and released last year, that found a lifetime prevalence of borderline personality disorder to be almost 6% -- more than double previous estimates.

    "The public and patients want to learn more about this condition, and more doctors want to treat it," says Valerie Porr, founder of a national advocacy group called TARA, Association for Personality Disorders.

    Messy relationships

    "You look back now and see things," says Patricia Green, the mother of a 25-year-old woman diagnosed with borderline personality disorder.

    As a child, Sooki (a pseudonym) was sensitive and easily rattled.In high school, she had such difficulty making friends that she opted for home schooling.

    After high school, the real trouble began. She had a series of turbulent relationships; was fired from jobs and racked up serious credit card debt. She began cutting herself and was diagnosed with depression.

    Patricia, a school nurse in San Diego, attended a workshop on borderline personality disorder six years ago and left suspecting her daughter had it. The description seemed to fit Sooki to a T.

    "Suddenly, all the things about Sooki that didn't seem to be related were all under one umbrella," Patricia says.

    As in the case of Sooki, people with the disorder make a mess of their relationships -- and no wonder, given the hallmark symptoms: mood instability, fear of abandonment, impulsive behavior, anger and suicidal or self-injurious acts. People with the disorder may misperceive the actions -- even the facial expressions -- of others.

    "You can't regulate your emotions despite your best efforts," says Marsha Linehan, a University of Washington psychologist and leading expert on the disorder.

    Borderline personality disorder occurs equally as often in men and women and sufferers often also have other mental illnesses or substance abuse problems. The composite of an angry, unstable, clingy, substance abuser is not a pretty one, and people with the disorder suffer greatly because they drive away even the people who love them most, experts say.

    "Having a relative with BPD can be hell," says Perry D. Hoffman, president of the National Education Alliance for BPD. "But our message to families is to please stay the course with your relative because it's crucial to their well being."

    One of the most significant developments for those affected by the disorder has been the emergence of a strong family and patient advocacy movement pressing for more research and establishing support networks and treatment referral services. Porr started TARA in 1995; Hoffman launched her organization in 2001. In 2007, the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, a patient advocacy group, put borderline personality disorder on its list of "priority populations" for public policy efforts.

    The National Institute of Mental Health, along with the nonprofit advocacy groups and major medical institutions such as UCLA and the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York have convened national and regional conferences on the disorder.

    Roots in childhood

    The flurry of research on borderline personality disorder is casting the condition in a new light. Originally, the behavior was blamed on abuse, trauma or neglect in childhood. But newer research suggests that people with the disorder are born with the predisposition to be emotionally sensitive. Abuse puts a person at higher risk for borderline personality disorder but not everyone who develops it is abused or neglected.

    "Parents commonly say, my kid has not been normal since he or she was born," says Dr. Marianne Goodman, a psychiatrist at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York.

    In a study presented at the American Psychiatric Assn. meeting, Goodman found signs of emotional sensitivity in young children who were later diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. Via a Web questionnaire, Goodman collected data from parents on 234 people with the disorder and 87 unaffected siblings.

    She found that as infants, the children who were later diagnosed with borderline personality disorder tended to be self-soothing -- they sucked their thumbs or had attachments to objects, such as a blanket -- compared to unaffected siblings. They were also more sensitive, had excessive separation anxiety and were moodier. They had social delays in preschool and many more interpersonal issues in grade school, such as few friends and more conflicts with peers and authorities.

    As teenagers they were more promiscuous, aggressive and impulsive, and more likely to use drugs and alcohol. Cutting and suicide became common.

    "Children are really starting to look so different at that point," Goodman says.

    Other research shows that, by their 20s, people with the disorder are almost five times more likely to be hospitalized for suicidal behavior compared to people with major depression.

    Research on the brains of people with the disorder suggest there is a biological predisposition to the core symptoms of emotional sensitivity and misperceiving the actions and feelings of others.

    For example, a study published in 2008 in Science showed different patterns of brain activity in people with the disorder: The scans showed abnormal responses in a brain region called the bilateral anterior insula when borderline personality patients played a game with other people that tested their sense of fairness and social norms.

    Through such studies, experts say, it is becoming clearer that the condition may simply be a type of personality that some people enter the world with. Some describe that mind state as a "pervasive emotional dysregulation" -- a brain that is primed to overreact.

    "I don't think you can learn to be borderline," Linehan says. "They are intensely emotional people. The sensitivity to emotion is probably there at the beginning."

    By emphasizing a biological tendency to the behavior, therapists and family members say they hope to soften the perception of the borderline patient as willfully manipulative and argumentative.

    "BPD is very popular in terms of literature, the media and movies," says Dr. Josepha A. Cheong, the 2009 chairwoman of the American Psychiatric Assn.'s scientific program committee. But it often gets bad -- and inaccurate -- press in such media, she adds.

    One of the most prominent portrayals is the maniacal stalker played by actress Glenn Close in the movie "Fatal Attraction." A more accurate portrayal, Cheong suggests, would be the character of Jenny in the movie "Forrest Gump," who was a somewhat sympathetic but self-destructive, dysfunctional woman who wanted a normal life but couldn't achieve it.

    "It's a far more compassionate portrait," Cheong says. "It hints at the suffering of the patient."

    Toward treatment

    Future progress in helping people with borderline personality disorder, however, may rest on the willingness of therapists to recognize it and apply therapies that are specific to the condition. One study of 70 patients presented at the American Psychiatric Assn. meeting found that 34% had been given a wrong diagnosis before finally being identified with borderline personality disorder.

    The study also found that 74% of people who met the criteria for the disorder had never been diagnosed with the condition despite an average of more than 10 years since their first encounter with a psychiatrist.

    The correct diagnosis is key because specific behavior-change therapies seem to work best (see related story.)

    There are several helpful therapies, experts say, notably dialectical behavioral therapy, and all share common elements. The bond between the patient and therapist is strong -- important for a long-term, therapeutic relationship. And the therapy focuses on the present rather than the past, on changing one's behavior patterns now regardless of how patients feel about the past or if they see themselves as victims.

    After Sooki's diagnosis, her mother Patricia began to change the way she communicated with her daughter by remembering that Sooki is ultra-sensitive and easily misperceives others' feelings.

    Sooki began seeing a therapist who specialized in borderline personality disorder. She attended group support meetings, took medication for depression and began to exercise to battle her depression in a positive way. She is now in a healthy relationship with an understanding, supportive boyfriend, her mother says, and is taking college classes.

    She doesn't yet tell people she has borderline personality disorder because, she says, few people understand what it is.

    But, recently, she has started telling the truth about the scars on her arms. "The scars from my cutting are a reminder of how bad things were," she says.

    "For so long I felt like an outsider looking in. I hated myself, she adds. "I've really improved and I think each year will get better."
     
  18. Ethereal

    Ethereal Regular Poster

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    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borderline_personality_disorder

    Having BPD is HELL. I have very little sense of self, my personality is highly fluid, I soak up other's peoples emotions like a sponge, I FEEL their pain as if it were my own. I am very very empathic, yet I have odd social skills and misread people often.

    Jerold Kriesman and Hal Straus, authors of "I Hate You - Don't Leave Me" refer to BPD as "emotional hemophelia; "a (borderline) person lacks the clotting mechanism needed to moderate his spurts of feeling. Stimulate a passion, and the borderline emotionally bleeds to death".
    Quite frequently people with BPD have a very hard time controlling their emotions. They may feel ruled by them.
    One researcher, (Marsha Linehan) said "People with BPD are like people with third degree burns over 90% of their bodies. Lacking emotional skin, they feel agony at the slightest touch or movement."
     
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  19. NiennaLadyOfTears

    NiennaLadyOfTears Goth Hobbit Lass
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    My INFP husband was diagnosed with BPD yesterday. :/
     
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  20. j e s s i e

    j e s s i e Buried Myself Alive
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    I would be inclined to say that the more emotional and sensitive types would have a higher likelihood of developing BPD. I am an INFP diagnosed with it alongside recurrent major depression and generalized anxiety, and as [MENTION=2083]Ethereal[/MENTION] has touched upon, hell does not even begin to describe it.

    My emotions and moods are extremely unstable in that the slightest ill word or criticism, perceived rejection (so slight as someone glancing away from me in conversation) send me spiraling into either rage or deep depression. I need constant reassurance in friendships because I constantly question whether or not the people in my life care about me, and if I don't get that reassurance, I end up convincing myself they never cared about me, therefore I don't care about them, and end up cutting people completely out of my life because they so much as didn't invite me somewhere. I am an introvert by nature, but almost every human interaction nowadays becomes upsetting in some way due to my B&W thinking and distorted thought process, so I isolate myself further.

    I am constantly uncertain about who I am as a person, as it seems to change every day. I feel like I'm missing that "core" of my being and I have no consistent personality traits other than being emotional and sensitive. I'm extremely self-destructive and have been cutting and overdosing since I was 14. I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least passively suicidal. Currently I'm struggling with an eating disorder that has had a tremendous impact on my life and family.

    Medication does nothing to curb the depression or borderline psychotic thought processes, but I take lorazepam to quiet me down. Therapy proves difficult because of the lack of motivation, but I'm starting a DBT group in a week.

    Looking back on my childhood especially, I was always a sensitive kid that needed some extra coddling. But I grew up in an extremely emotionally invalidating environment that I think in part led to disorder.

    This article is so interesting to me, haha, especially this part. I thought I was weird for still needing my ratty old baby blanket to sleep, but now I know why! :tongue1: I'm really soothed by scents, soft things, stuffed animals and physical touches. I wonder if it's somehow related?
     
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