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Borderline Personality Disorder - The Therapist's Bookshelf

Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder

Clients who have been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder or Emotional Instability Disorder may benefit from treatment using a DBT, schema therapy, or cognitive analytic therapy approach.  Therapists who specialize in working with these clients recommended the following books for clinicians, clients and family members.

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I Hate You–Don’t Leave Me: Understanding the Borderline Personalityby Jerold J. Kreisman and Hal Straus.

After more than two decades as the essential guide to Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), this new edition now reflects the most up- to-date research that has opened doors to the neurobiological, genetic, and developmental roots of the disorder as well as connections between BPD and substance abuse, sexual abuse, Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome, ADHD, and eating disorders.

Both pharmacological and psychotherapeutic advancements point to real hope for success in the treatment and understanding of BPD. This expanded and revised edition remains as accessible and useful as its predecessor and will reestablish this book as the go-to source for those diagnosed with BPD, their family, friends, and colleagues, as well as professionals and students in the field.

 

Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder by Paul Mason MS and Randi Kreger

Do you feel manipulated, controlled, or lied to? Are you the focus of intense, violent, and irrational rages? Do you feel you are ‘walking on eggshells’ to avoid the next confrontation?

If the answer is ‘yes,’ someone you care about may have borderline personality disorder (BPD). Stop Walking on Eggshells has already helped nearly half a million people with friends and family members suffering from BPD understand this destructive disorder, set boundaries, and help their loved ones stop relying on dangerous BPD behaviors. This fully revised edition has been updated with the very latest BPD research and includes coping and communication skills you can use to stabilize your relationship with the BPD sufferer in your life.

 

borderline personality disorder

Doing Dialectical Behavior Therapy: A Practical Guide by Kelly Koerner  and Marsha M. Linehan 

Filled with vivid clinical vignettes and step-by-step descriptions, this book demonstrates the nuts and bolts of dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). DBT is expressly designed for–and shown to be effective with–clients with serious, multiple problems and a history of treatment failure. The book provides an accessible introduction to DBT while enabling therapists of any orientation to integrate elements of this evidence-based approach into their work with emotionally dysregulated clients. Experienced DBT clinician and trainer Kelly Koerner clearly explains how to formulate individual cases; prioritize treatment goals; and implement a skillfully orchestrated blend of behavioral change strategies, validation strategies, and dialectical strategies.

 

schema therapy

Schema Therapy: A Practitioner’s Guide by Jeffrey E. Young Janet S. KloskoMarjorie E. Weishaar  

Designed to meet the formidable challenges of treating personality disorders and other complex difficulties, schema therapy combines proven cognitive-behavioral techniques with elements of other widely practiced therapies. This book–written by the model’s developer and two of its leading practitioners–is the first major text for clinicians wishing to learn and use this popular approach. Described are innovative ways to rapidly conceptualize challenging cases, explore the client’s childhood history, identify and modify self-defeating patterns, use imagery and other experiential techniques in treatment, and maximize the power of the therapeutic relationship. Including detailed protocols for treating borderline personality disorder and narcissistic personality disorder, the book is illustrated with numerous clinical examples.

 

borderline personality disorder emotional instability disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder patients are impulsive, unstable and destructive, hurting themselves and those around them, including those who seek to help them. This has resulted in a widespread reluctance to treat them and a pessimism about treatment. In the experience of the authors this pessimism is unjustified, because for many patients a relatively brief intervention can be effective in cost-benefit terms as well as human terms. The interventions illustrated here have been used to treat outpatients for 15 years. The results indicate that treatments can achieve clinically significant changes in the course of 16 24 sessions, in a substantial proportion of patients. While CAT shares some ideas and methods with other approaches, it introduces many new features and is uniquely integrated at both the theoretical and practical level. The early joint reformulation of patients problems serves to contain destructiveness and to create a working alliance. Also, the use of reformulation to teach self-reflection and avoid collusive responses from the therapist, throughout the therapy, represents a powerful new technique. The book offers a critical appraisal of current ideas and practices, contrasting with these the ways in which CAT mobilizes the patient s own resources. The authors argue that CAT should have a place in any service seeking to help these difficult patients.

borderline personality disorder emotional instability disorder

Character Styles by Stephen M. Johnson

Johnson shows how basic life issues underlie the severe pathology of personality disorder, the nagging symptoms of neurosis, and the more functional coping and adaptation of the character styles. Johnson’s dimensional model captures the complexity of the human personality, while allowing for variability not seen in categorical systems such as DSM-IV. His descriptive names of the character styles not only link childhood experiences to later personality and psychopathology but also put flesh and bones on psychiatric diagnosis.

 

 

 

Therapists who see clients with Borderline Personality Disorder or Emotional Instability Disorder recommend some of the following books.

emotional instability disorderReinventing Your Life: The Breakthrough Program to End Negative Behavior and Feel Great Again by Jeffrey E. Young and Janet S. Klosko 

Two of America’s leading psychologists, Jeffrey E. Young, Ph.D., and Janet S. Klosko, Ph.D., show readers how to free themselves from negative life patterns. Written with compassion as well as clinical insight, this thought-provoking book guides readers through the process of identifying “life traps.” For example, “Do you put the needs of others before your own? Are you drawn into relationships with people who are self-centered, cold to you, misunderstand you, or use you? Do you feel inadequate compared to people around you?” Followed by an engaging discussion that makes use of case studies, this book can help people change their lives by stopping the cycle of self-destruction.

 

 

emotional instability disorder

Breaking Negative Thinking Patterns: A Schema Therapy Self-Help and Support Book by Gitta JacobHannie van Genderen and Laura Seebauer

Breaking Negative Thinking Patterns is the first schema-mode focused resource guide aimed at schema therapy patients and self-help readers seeking to understand and overcome negative patterns of thinking and behaviour.

  • Represents the first resource for general readers on the mode approach to schema therapy
  • Features a wealth of case studies that serve to clarify schemas and modes and illustrate techniques for overcoming dysfunctional modes and behavior patterns
  • Offers a series of exercises that readers can immediately apply to real-world challenges and emotional problems as well as the complex difficulties typically tackled with schema therapy
  • Includes original illustrations that demonstrate the modes and approaches in action, along with 20 self-help mode materials which are also available online
  • Written by authors closely associated with the development of schema therapy and the schema mode approach

The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Workbook: Practical DBT Exercises for Learning Mindfulness, Interpersonal Effectiveness, Emotion Regulation & Distress Tolerance by Matthew McKayJeffrey C. Wood, and Jeffrey Brantley 

First developed for treating borderline personality disorder, dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) has proven effective as treatment for a range of other mental health problems, especially for those characterized by overwhelming emotions. Research shows that DBT can improve your ability to handle distress without losing control and acting destructively. In order to make use of these techniques, you need to build skills in four key areas-distress tolerance, mindfulness, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness.

 

 

Families of Clients with Borderline Personality Disorder

 

Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder by Paul Mason MS and Randi Kreger

Do you feel manipulated, controlled, or lied to? Are you the focus of intense, violent, and irrational rages? Do you feel you are ‘walking on eggshells’ to avoid the next confrontation?

If the answer is ‘yes,’ someone you care about may have borderline personality disorder (BPD). Stop Walking on Eggshells has already helped nearly half a million people with friends and family members suffering from BPD understand this destructive disorder, set boundaries, and help their loved ones stop relying on dangerous BPD behaviors. This fully revised edition has been updated with the very latest BPD research and includes coping and communication skills you can use to stabilize your relationship with the BPD sufferer in your life.

 

Here, Margalis Fjelstad describes how people get into a Caretaker role with a Borderline or Narcissist, and how they can get out. Caretakers give up their sense of self to become who and what the Borderline or Narcissist needs them to be. This compromises the Caretaker’s self-esteem, distorts their thinking processes, and locks them into a Victim-Persecutor-Rescuer pattern with the Borderline or Narcissist. The book looks at the underlying rules and expectations in these relationships and shows Caretaker’s how to move themselves out of these rigid interactions and into a healthier, more productive, and positive lifestyle—with or without the Borderline/Narcissistic partner or family member. It describes how to get out of destructive interactions with the Borderline or Narcissist and how to take new, more effective actions to focus on personal wants, needs, and life goals while allowing the Borderline or Narcissist to take care of themselves. It presents a realistic, yet compassionate, attitude toward the self-destructive nature of these relationships, and gives real life examples of how individuals have let go of their Caretaker behaviors with creative and effective solutions.

The first love in our lives is our mother. Recognizing her face, her voice, the meaning of her moods, and her facial expressions is crucial to survival. Dr. Christine Ann Lawson vividly describes how mothers who suffer from borderline personality disorder produce children who may flounder in life even as adults, futilely struggling to reach the safety of a parental harbor, unable to recognize that their borderline parent lacks a pier, or even a discernible shore.

Four character profiles describe different symptom clusters that include the waif mother, the hermit mother, the queen mother, and the witch. Children of borderlines are at risk for developing this complex and devastating personality disorder themselves. Dr. Lawson’s recommendations for prevention include empathic understanding of the borderline mother and early intervention with her children to ground them in reality and counteract the often dangerous effects of living with a “make-believe” mother.  Some readers may recognize their mothers as well as themselves in this book. They will also find specific suggestions for creating healthier relationships. Addressing the adult children of borderlines and the therapists who work with them, Dr. Lawson shows how to care for the waif without rescuing her, to attend to the hermit without feeding her fear, to love the queen without becoming her subject, and to live with the witch without becoming her victim.

 

If you know of another book that belongs on this list let us know here or tell us about it in the comments. Make sure you’re also following The Therapist’s Bookshelf on Facebook and Instagram.

 

Many therapists enjoy recommending books to their clients to supplement the work they are doing together. We also use books to help ourselves grow as people and practitioners. Remember though that books are never a replacement for real human connection or for therapy when it’s needed. If you find yourself needing a therapist, a great place to start is Psychology Today. If you are having thoughts of hurting yourself or someone else, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.

 

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