• Sonia Neale

'Flipping the Script: Changing the Narrative on BPD'

BPD Awareness week is from 1 – 7th October, 2020. This year's campaign, 'Flipping the Script: Changing the Narrative on BPD' aims to change the way we think and talk about Borderline Personality Disorder.


Mental Illness Foundation of Western Australia is celebrating BPD Awareness Week with a Picnic in the Park. https://www.mifwa.org.au/event/bbq-picnic-in-the-park-for-bpd-awareness-week-2020/ As well, Embracing BPD has an event planned. If you are interested please go to this facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/embracingbpd/


As a counsellor and psychotherapist and someone with a lived experience with BPD, this is how I “flipped my script.”


BPD is a disorder of unleashed, untethered energy directed into activities which are not terribly helpful for the person experiencing them. This energy directed into the right activity can give wings to creating exciting new prospects of personal power rather than leaving a wake of devastation and wreckage and wondering what on earth happened.


One of my clients said that her father told her that “BPD was her superpower.” Wait a minute?? Isn’t BPD a rage/anger out of control phenomenon that causes people to abandon sufferers in droves? Aren’t people with BPD destructive of others, carnage makers with thoughts of only their own victimhood? Actually no (NO, NO, NO – a thousand times). My experience as a counsellor with lived experience of BPD is not that. My understanding is that people with BPD do not really understand their own energy levels and who are underneath quite frightened of being abandoned or rejected, of being without solid identity and a longing to fill up that chronic emptiness with something other than feelings of intense inappropriate rage and paranoia.


There is much excess energy with no-where to go with a broken spirit and can end up as chronic pain, auto-immune diseases, eating disorders, substance abuse, violence, road-rage and essentially a miserable purposeless life. No-one wants that.


The super-power of BPD means energising and empowering yourself. Yes, these sound like contemporary buzz-words, but wait! Dancing, writing, painting, acting (especially acting) is radically liberating your excess feelings and emotions into something you care deeply about. Rage and passion can create opportunities, but only if they are directed into something that is not self-destructive. There are plenty of energetic actors releasing that artistic giftedness into the entertainment industry.

The SuperPowers of creativity are flexibility, there is more than one answer to a problem. There needs to be a sense of intense curiosity about:

What makes me tick?

How do I think?

What am I passionate about?

How can I draw on that passion to provide a life worth living?


I use my SuperPowers for writing, I use words to express my emotions, to identify who I am. When I do this, I feel enough. I am enough.


What is your BPD SuperPower?


Image: https://www.aruma.com.au/about-us/blog/christopher-reeve-the-life-of-the-man-of-steel/

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