Petulant Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a subtype of BPD. It is a mental health disorder characterized by mood swings, irritability, defiance, inability to regulate emotions, and passive-aggressive behavior. People with this chronic mental health issue may have trouble with their self-esteem and maintaining healthy relationships because they have to deal with feelings of disappointment, and they also often feel like they are being wronged or mistreated. This may result in their feeling worthless or shameful, or they may respond with explosive anger. Approximately 1.6% of the American population is affected by borderline personality disorder.
Delving into the Causes
Petulant BPD is a very rare disorder that is caused by a combination of factors that are environmental, genetic, and biological in nature. Some common risk factors are:
- Having a history of mental illness in the family.
- Experiencing trauma at an early age.
- Being abandoned as a child or teenager.
- Experiencing conflict or abuse in the home as a child.
Although people with BPD may experience all these causes early in life, the condition is typically diagnosed after age 18.
What Causes Petulant BPD?
There is no singular thing that causes petulant BPD. It is the result of:
- A genetic combination that cannot be traced back to a singular gene results from several genes. If a close family member has BPD, the person may be more likely to develop the condition, but it is not guaranteed.
- Environmental factors, like whether the person lived through a traumatic event or experienced abuse as a child.
- Neurobiological factors, like brain structure, can determine whether a person will develop BPD.
Recognizing the Symptoms
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, the most common petulant BPD symptoms are:
- Displaying a pattern of intense, unstable relationships.
- Strong efforts to avoid abandonment by those they are close with.
- An unstable or distorted self-image.
- Impulsive behaviors that may be dangerous.
- Self-harming behaviors and/or suicidal threats and behaviors
- Intense mood swings.
- Chronic feelings of emptiness, anger, and/or dissociation.
Symptoms often decline with age, perhaps due to better symptom management or because the individuals begin to avoid intimate relationships as they age. Researchers need more data to understand this decline better.
Petulant BPD Symptoms
Petulant borderline personality disorder is like BPD in many ways. Still, the individual will display more angry mood swings, a defiant attitude, demanding behavior, and passive-aggressive behavior, with explosive anger and feeling mistreated by those in their life and those around them.
Addressing Petulant BPD
While BPD treatment can help greatly, it is important to recognize that petulant BPD is a life-long chronic disorder. Learning to manage symptoms and find ways to self-soothe and manage emotions is the best way to live a healthier and more fulfilling life. The most common ways to address petulant BPD are psychotherapy, psychiatric medications, and holistic treatment options with lifestyle changes.
Petulant BPD Treatment
Evidence-based treatments are imperative for any borderline personality disorder treatment. Psychotherapy, like dialectical behavior therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy, is the most effective treatment, teaching individuals to cope with symptoms, build healthier relationships, and deal with difficult emotions, among other useful skills.
Medication can help with petulant BPD treatment, especially when administered alongside therapy. Common pharmacological treatments include medication for anxiety and depression and help manage mood swings. No medication will treat BPD directly.
Holistic methods can greatly add to your overall well-being (but should not be used as a replacement for therapy and medication). Adding an exercise routine, sleep hygiene, and a healthy diet can only make you feel better about yourself, improving your self-esteem while making you feel better, inside and out.
Comparing BPD Subtypes
Petulant BPD can cause severe anger, and people with this disorder will feel much more negative towards relationships, friendships, and family than those with classic BPD. Both types cause issues with self-image, maintaining relationships, and problems with emotion regulation.
Classic BPD vs. Petulant BPD
Those with petulant BPD may feel jealousy and fear that their friends and intimate partners may pay more attention to others. At the same time, those with classic BPD may worry more generally about being abandoned by their partners or friends.
Those with petulant BPD often feel cynical or negative about relationships and may experience high paranoia, feeling like the world is out to get them. At the same time, classic borderline personality disorder does not cause this level of cynicism and paranoia but does feel significant distress over their relationship status.
Frequently Asked Questions About What is Petulant BPD
How common is petulant BPD compared to other BPD subtypes?
BPD is rare but still affects around 1.6% of the population, and around 20% of all inpatient psychiatric patients have some form of borderline personality disorder. Petulant BPD is even more rare, as it is one of four subtypes of BPD.
Are there any known risk factors that make one more susceptible to petulant BPD?
Yes, if a person has the genetic disposition, has the neurobiological structures in the brain, and has experienced trauma, issues with parents, abandonment, or abuse at an early age, they are much more likely to develop petulant BPD.
Can petulant BPD be effectively managed with medication alone?
No medication is FDA-approved to treat any form of borderline personality disorder. Medications can help manage symptoms like depression or mood swings, but behavioral therapy is the best treatment for BPD.
How do therapists typically approach treatment for petulant BPD?
The best approach for treating BDD is often dialectical behavior therapy. This type of therapy uses four approaches: emotion regulation, distress tolerance, mindfulness, and interpersonal effectiveness. It was developed to specifically help individuals with borderline personality disorder, helping them to cope during difficult times, manage their emotions, stay present, and maintain healthier relationships with others.
What are the most challenging symptoms associated with petulant BPD?
It can be very difficult for a person to experience so much self-doubt, severe mood fluctuations, and feel like the world is working against them. Getting treatment for BPD will help relieve symptoms and help you feel better about yourself and life.
Are individuals with petulant BPD more resistant to therapy than those with classic BPD?
They might be. People with petulant BPD may see their therapist as the cause of their life issues rather than a helpful entity. They may have resistance to change, they might argue with the therapist, and they may find other ways to be non-compliant with treatment.
How can loved ones support someone diagnosed with petulant BPD?
Learning all you can about the condition will help your loved one, as their behaviors will begin to make more sense to you from within the framework of a diagnosis. Some steps include helping them get into an evidence-based treatment program, ensuring they take their medications as prescribed, and remembering the three C’s rule (you didn’t CAUSE it, you can’t CURE it, and you can’t CONTROL it). Take care of yourself, seeking counseling if necessary.
If you want to know more about the causes and treatments for petulant BPD, contact Alter Behavioral Health today.