Also known as ‘affective dysregulation’ emotional instability, it is the main symptom of EUPD which stands for Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder, but it is also one Symptom of many of BPD. I will break down that emotional instability is, some of its causes and even some suggestions on how to live with it.
What is the BPD Symptom of Emotional Instability?
For many of us with BPD this is the worst part of our conditions. It means you have unpredictable emotions. You can be sad one minute, happy the next, manic the next minute and then super depressed the next, its what someone I know once called “The Bipolar Express” which means it is just like the basic signs of Bipolar, only much faster in change. But it’s not just yourself making these fast changes, just about anything triggering can do it. A text from a loved one with the wrong emoji can send you into severe depression, or finding £5 on the floor will make you manic and spend all the money you have. In short, its a quick change of mood that can go from one extreme to the other in the drop of a hat.
What Can Cause Emotional Instability?
Just about anything can cause it and nothing at all. It could be a flashback, a memory, a smell, a text or just seemingly nothing at all, which makes it a very hard part to live with when it comes to BPD. There is no real way of finding out what triggers you other than taking notes and looking out for signs/changes in mood and why it might have happened, but also being aware that there might be no trigger at all.
How Bad Can Emotional Instability be?
You might think being happy one minute and sad this next is not that bad, but Emotional Instability is all about the extremes and that means you can become suicidal at any given moment and it will often feel it was the exact wrong moment. But even the happy side of things can be troublesome as it can often result in self-damaging behaviour, like spending all your money, sleeping with someone you don’t know or even resulting in self-harm / physical damage.
Does Everyone With BPD Suffer From Emotional Instability?
As with any symptom of BPD you might not suffer from this at all. While many of us will describe this as one of the main symptoms of BPD, others don’t get it at all but get much worse symptoms of something else. Sadly not having Emotional Instability doesn’t mean you don’t have BPD and it doesn’t mean you definitely have BPD if you do. As always with any mental health condition, you should seek professional help and advice if you are unsure about your diagnoses or indeed getting a diagnosis in the first place.
How Can I Stop Emotional Instability?
There are a number of ways you can learn to live with this BPD symptom like medication, using various coping strategies like dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) or cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) or even trauma therapy, it all depends on getting the right diagnosis for the level of help you need. Don’t ever suffer in silence with it, let people know how you are feeling and if things start to get too bad seek more professional help like telling your local GP (doctor) or therapist.
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