Soldiers and Borderline Personality Disorder

Soldiers and Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a mental health issue that can severely impact the ability of soldiers to serve in the military. In most cases, symptoms of BPD are first noticed in the teen years. However, one of the primary characteristics of BPD is that patients are unaware of this condition, so it remains untreated for years. Sometimes this issue causes people to choose the military, because it offers job security and constant adventure. However, as the condition develops, it may render a soldier incapable to serve safely, both for herself and others.

Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder

BPD is a personality disorder that, if left untreated, can lead to self-harm, depression, dangerous behaviors, substance abuse or suicide. However, you can recognize this disorder through any of the following symptoms:

  • A desperate fear of abandonment
  • Establishing emotionally intense relationships that do not last
  • An inability to trust others and being frequently paranoid
  • Seeing other people and situations as all good or all bad
  • Poor self-esteem that may be masked by bravado or arrogance
  • Impulsive and reckless
  • An inability to control emotions or anger

If left untreated, this condition creates serious risks for soldiers. Impulse control problems can lead to severe injury or death for heavily armed soldiers. For example, the stress of combat is difficult for any soldier to tolerate, but one suffering from BPD is unlikely to manage it at all. When a soldier with BPD experiences posttraumatic stress disorder, then the results can be catastrophic.

Treating Borderline Personality Disorder

BPD is often treated with a combination of medication and therapy. Specialized counseling techniques, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, can help people who suffer from this disorder to develop healthy coping skills and the ability to manage their thoughts and emotions. This kind of treatment is best accomplished in a residential treatment facility. It can take some time before soldiers learn to manage their symptoms effectively, but many people with BPD are eventually able to live peacefully, productively and happily.

Borderline Personality Helpline

If you are concerned about your own mental health, or if a friend or fellow soldier exhibits symptoms of BPD and you are unsure how to help, then please call our toll-free helpline right away. Our admissions coordinators are ready to answer your questions and to connect you to the best recovery resources for your unique needs. BPD is a serious problem, but we can help, so call us now.