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Anyone have any advice on telling someone they most likely have BDP and encouraging them to get treatment

Community Member

Hello, I was wondering if anyone has had any experiences of revealing to someone that they have had BPD and how it went.

Any advice about wanting to tell someone that they really could benefit by getting some treatment for BPD such as DBT would be most welcome.

This person actually made me aware of the personality disorder and they stated to me that they could have it. They are trying to give advice to a friend of theirs who has a daughter who has BPD (I cant remember if they were diagnosed officially sorry) They have some Narcissistic personality disorder traits which apparently is common. So I think there might be a good start maybe. Not counting on anything though as they go up and down.

14 Replies 14

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member


I would not advise anyone to diagnose another person with bpd

Re revealing to someone they have bpd, that's a fairly subjective opinion, and psychiatrists ideally should meet and know someone well before diagnosing them

Bpd is a highly stigmatised diagnosis.

Sometimes it can feel very hard and even devastating for someone to tell you they think you have a pd.

I think it's best that we each focus on our own mh..,before trying to tell others what we perceive is their illness.

Ok, I understand. That's a shame because they might be able to get help but wasn't sure how it might be taken.

I don't think telling someone Ur view of their mental illness will lead to them getting help.

It feels oppressive. I also want to gently say that you may be wrong, and they don't have bpd.

If it was you, and someone told u they are certain u have bpd, and u should take dbt classes, how would u feel

DBT is also criticised in the peer community, some ppl don't like it, don't find it helpful, and find it made their trauma feel worse. Ppl with and without Dbt.

Learn to Fly
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi No one on earth,

I agree with Sleepy21 and would also not advise on telling your friend about your personal suspicion and treatment that might help them. You sound like you wish them well and I have no doubts your opinion is coming from the right place and having only the best intentions for this person. However, unless you are a specialist in the field, this is still only your suspicion/opinion. I don't mean to disrespect your suspicion/opinion but it might happen that you will do more harm than good, if you are wrong or if they are not ready to hear this news.

How about you think about how to gently encourage them to talk to their GP or to even give Beyond Blue a call and talk to one of our counsellors (1300 224 636)? When you see that they feel low, you can encourage them to go and see a specialist. Don't tell them about any diagnosis. Just encourage them to simply have a chat with a specialist and see what the specialist would have on offer.

What do you think?

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi I agree with learn to fly

If someone told u a book was amazing and u should Read it, but they never read it themselves would u follow their advice?

Unless u urself have done dbt classes and have bpd, or are very open about Ur own struggles with mh, it might be hard for someone to follow Ur advice about dbt.

I don't have bpd but personally have been suggested bpd classes and I don't like dbt or connect to it.

I think bpd is misunderstood, it has a connection to being terrorised and having trauma , and yet ppl talk anout it as tjpuhh it's just a mysterious illness, mostly affecting women, that ppl attach to anyone who is difficult, changes Jobs often, or gets emotional.

After experiencing trauma, instability, irritability, and emotional behaviour are normal....

Maybe we can try and understand why ppl feel and act the way they do, I think that's more important than a Dx.

What has Ur friend gone through in their lives, and how does this affect how they behave now?

I think that's more important than wether they have bpd.

I would not say it like that. I would say that they might have it and explain where I have seen them struggle. Then maybe after the reaction, I would say that I had heard DBT is good but this is all theoretical as I don't know know how anyone would take it hence why I put it on here first to see what others have experienced.

Oh ok I dont know too much about DBT. Good to know thanks for sharing