Difficulty in Maintaining Relationships
Associated with a Self Destructive Life Style
Individuals caught up in this pattern experience great suffering often punctuated by periods of sometimes-euphoric joy. They long for intimacy with another person but experience great anxiety when they get to close to others. These individuals may jump in and out of stormy relationships with little insight as to the cause of their relational difficulties.
They struggle with anxiety, depression and anger and have difficulty tolerating their own emotional experiences. Their emotions can be so intense that the person seeks to relieve themselves of the pressure by engaging in behavior that is often impulsive and self defeating. These behaviors include bouts of heavy drinking and drug use, indiscriminate, high risk sexual behavior, reckless behavior such as participation in dangerous sports or reckless driving, excessive spending, angry confrontations with employers or co-workers, binge eating, self-cutting or other forms of self harm, to name a few.
They tend to have an unclear view of their own identity and often experience a sense of inner emptiness and boredom. Such individuals tend to see themselves and others as either all good or all bad and react very strongly to abandonment. They are often intelligent and can be socially engaging, loving and generous, but when under stress become volatile and unreasonable. These individuals long for stability but have a limited capacity to modulate powerful emotions. Childhood, emotional, physical and sexual abuse are often a part of the picture but not always.
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