Do I Have Borderline Personality Disorder? Test

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Welcome to the Sterling Institute of Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Medicine. As a leading provider of mental health services accessible via telehealth, we are dedicated to supporting individuals across the country and internationally as they grow toward understanding and managing their mental health. This page is specifically designed to help you determine if you might have symptoms indicative of borderline personality disorder (BPD). Here, you will find essential information about BPD, including its symptoms, diagnostic approaches, and available treatment options.

What is Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)?

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a complex and multifaceted mental health condition that affects approximately 1.6% of the adult population, although some estimates suggest that number could be even higher. It is characterized by intense emotional responses, highly unstable patterns of social relationships, and a distorted self-perception. Individuals with BPD experience vast mood swings and can often feel great in one moment and severely depressed in the next. Impulse control is also typically challenging, leading to chaotic relationships and actions that are often regretted later.

Learn more about Impulse Control Disorders.

Core Characteristics of BPD

  • Intense Emotional Responses: Individuals with BPD experience intense emotional responses to everyday events. Their emotional intensity represents a key symptom of the disorder, which manifests as rapidly fluctuating moods. These mood swings can be triggered by perceived rejection, isolation, or failure.
  • Fear of Abandonment: One of the most striking aspects of BPD is the deep fear of abandonment. This fear can lead to frantic efforts to avoid being left alone, regardless of whether the threat of abandonment is real or imagined.
  • Unstable Relationships: People with BPD often have relationships that are intense and highly volatile. Their relationships typically swing from extreme closeness and love (idealization) to intense dislike or anger (devaluation).
  • Unclear or Shifting Self-Image: Individuals with BPD frequently report having a significantly unstable self-image or sense of self. They may frequently change goals, values, and vocational aspirations and see themselves differently at different times.
  • Impulsive Behaviors: Impulsivity is common in those with BPD and might include harmful, risky, or self-damaging activities such as substance abuse, reckless driving, and binge eating. These actions are often ways of coping with emotional pain or temporary stressors.
  • Self-Harm and Suicidal Behavior: Acts of self-harm, such as cutting, burning, or other forms of self-injury, are common among those with BPD. These behaviors are often used as a coping mechanism to deal with overwhelming emotional pain or distress.
  • Chronic Feelings of Emptiness: People with BPD may describe feeling empty as if there is a void or hole within them. At times, this emptiness can be so severe that it leads to desperate and impulsive attempts to fill the void with drugs, food, or sex.
  • Intense Anger: Difficulty controlling anger and displaying inappropriate, intense, or uncontrollable anger is another symptom of BPD. This might involve temper outbursts, constant anger, or physical fights.
  • Dissociative Feelings: Under stress, individuals with BPD may experience paranoia or dissociation. Dissociation can include feeling cut off from oneself, observing oneself from outside the body, or losing touch with reality.

While the causes of borderline personality disorder are not fully understood, research suggests that genetic, neurological, and environmental factors contribute significantly to the onset of the disorder. BPD is also often associated with a history of trauma, abuse, or neglect during childhood.

Do I Have Borderline Personality Disorder? Self-Assessment

Are you wondering if you might have BPD? Our self-assessment tool is designed to help identify potential symptoms of BPD. It’s important to note that this test is not a diagnostic tool. Instead, it should be used as a preliminary step to understanding whether you should seek a professional evaluation. 

At the Sterling Institute, we view initial self-assessments as crucial stepping stones toward accessing professional mental health care. Many individuals may delay seeking help due to doubts about the severity of their symptoms or fears that their issues may not be significant enough for professional attention. This quiz is designed to help you identify potential symptoms of BPD and encourage you to take the next steps in obtaining professional evaluation and care.

Self-Assessment Test

Privacy Assurance

We value your privacy. All online assessment results are anonymous and designed to respect your confidentiality.

Expert Insights on BPD Testing

Our team of mental health professionals at Sterling Institute emphasizes the importance of mental health assessments as a first step toward diagnosis. While online tests are useful for identifying possible symptoms, they are not substitutes for professional diagnoses. 

Dr. Satinover, MD, PhD at Sterling Institute, advises anyone with significant results to seek a full evaluation. Help is available, and Sterling Institute is committed to walking you through each phase of your journey. 

Call: 475-329-2686

Understanding BPD Splitting

Splitting is a psychological phenomenon commonly associated with BPD. It involves seeing things in extremes—either all good or all bad. This black-and-white thinking affects how individuals with BPD perceive themselves, others, and the world around them. Splitting can lead to significant relationship challenges because it causes rapid shifts in feelings towards others—from idealization to devaluation—often without a clear or rational cause. This defensive mechanism helps manage overwhelming emotions or contradictory thoughts but can result in unstable and tumultuous relationships. Treatments like DBT are often used to help those with BPD recognize and manage these extreme thought patterns, fostering a more nuanced and stable view of the world.

What Are the Four Types of BPD?

While the DSM-5 does not officially recognize subtypes of BPD, several researchers and clinicians, like Theodore Millon, have identified patterns of behavior that suggest the existence of four distinct phenotypic types. These types help in understanding the diverse manifestations of BPD and are described as follows:

  • Discouraged Borderline (Dependent): Often feeling inadequate and dependent on others, individuals with this type may appear clingy and exhibit passive-aggressive behaviors. They frequently experience feelings of sadness and are prone to depression, mirroring the avoidant or dependent personality disorder.
  • Impulsive Borderline (Hedonistic): Characterized by thrill-seeking and risk-taking behaviors, those with this subtype are often energetic, charismatic, and engaging. However, their actions can also be reckless and may include substance abuse, gambling, or promiscuity, reflecting traits similar to histrionic or antisocial personality disorders.
  • Petulant Borderline (Unpredictable): Unpredictable, irritable, and prone to outbursts of anger and frustration, individuals with this subtype can be stubborn and pessimistic. They often struggle with feelings of unworthiness and fear of failure, which can result in passive-aggressiveness or defiance.
  • Self-destructive Borderline (Angry): This subtype is marked by self-harm and suicidal behavior as expressions of self-hatred and unworthiness. Individuals may engage in self-destructive behavior as a form of punishment or to express their pain and distress.

Diagnosis & Treatment Approaches

Obtaining a formal diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) requires a comprehensive evaluation conducted by a psychiatrist or a licensed psychologist. At the Sterling Institute of Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, our experts employ a multidimensional approach that includes:

  • Clinical Interviews: These in-depth conversations help to uncover the behavioral patterns and emotional issues characteristic of BPD.
  • Psychological Assessments: A range of psychological tests and screenings help assess personality traits and emotional functioning, providing insights that support a BPD diagnosis. 
  • Review of Medical, Psychological, and Social History: An extensive review of the patient’s medical records, psychological evaluations, and social interactions helps identify factors contributing to the disorder.

Our diagnostic process aligns with the criteria outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), ensuring an accurate and reliable diagnosis.

Psychotherapy as a Primary Treatment for BPD

Psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy, is the cornerstone of treatment for borderline personality disorder It involves regular sessions between the therapist and the patient, which aim to reduce symptom severity and improve quality of life. The primary goals are to help individuals understand their emotions, improve their interpersonal skills, and better manage their responses to stressful situations. Effective psychotherapeutic approaches include:

  • Telehealth Services: Our nationwide Telehealth services allow for remote access to therapy and consultations, offering convenience and flexibility to fit your schedule. This option is particularly beneficial for those seeking continuous support or who may have difficulty accessing traditional in-person care.
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT): DBT is one of the most successful treatments specifically formulated for BPD. According to recent research, approximately 77% of patients with BPD stop meeting the criteria for diagnosis after a year of DBT treatment. DBT combines cognitive-behavioral techniques with mindfulness practices from Buddhist traditions. The therapy focuses on teaching patients skills to manage painful emotions and reduce conflicts in relationships through both individual and group sessions.
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT is effective in helping patients identify and change dysfunctional thoughts and behaviors. For BPD, CBT focuses on modifying the distorted thinking and behaviors that negatively impact the individual’s self-image and relationships. It assists in improving emotional regulation and developing better coping strategies for dealing with stress and interpersonal issues.

Begin Your Journey To Recovery

At the Sterling Institute of Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, we are committed to providing the necessary support to help you navigate the complexities of BPD and other mental health conditions. Our team of mental health professionals is dedicated to delivering personalized care tailored to your unique needs and life circumstances. Utilizing evidence-based therapies such as DBT and CBT, we focus on helping you achieve emotional stability and improve your overall quality of life.

We encourage anyone who suspects they might be dealing with BPD to reach out for professional help. Early intervention is crucial for effectively managing symptoms and enhancing well-being. If you have questions or need to schedule an appointment, please contact us today. We are here to support you in taking the first step towards recovery.

Call: 475-329-2686


How accurate are online BPD tests?

Please note that this quiz, along with other online BPD tests and screening tools, is not a diagnostic tool. Only a licensed mental health professional or doctor can officially diagnose mental health disorders.

At the Sterling Institute, we recognize the importance of early assessment in the path to mental health care. It is common for individuals to hesitate in seeking help due to concerns that their symptoms may not be serious enough to require professional intervention. We encourage using this quiz as a preliminary step towards understanding your mental health needs and consider it a proactive approach to seeking necessary treatment.

What should I do after taking a BPD test?

If the results suggest the presence of BPD symptoms, it is advisable to consult with a healthcare provider for a comprehensive psychological evaluation. This assessment can confirm the diagnosis and initiate appropriate treatment. 

If you or a loved one is experiencing potential symptoms of BPD, Sterling Institute can help. Contact us today to learn more about our online telehealth options for mental health treatment and psychiatry, regardless of your location. 

Who should take a BPD test?

Anyone experiencing symptoms such as emotional instability, fears of abandonment, intense interpersonal relationships, or impulsive behavior who is concerned about their mental health might benefit from taking this preliminary assessment.

How can I tell if I have BPD?

The only way to confirm a diagnosis of BPD is through a detailed assessment by a qualified mental health professional. This typically includes a clinical interview, psychological testing, and a review of your psychological history.

What does untreated BPD look like?

Untreated BPD can lead to severe emotional distress, relationship problems, and impaired social functioning. Individuals may experience persistent mood swings, feelings of emptiness, difficulties in managing anger, and fear of abandonment.

What triggers BPD splitting?

Splitting, a phenomenon where a person oscillates between idealizing and devaluing others, can be triggered by perceived rejection, intimacy issues, or significant stressors. It often stems from the individual’s difficulty in integrating positive and negative aspects of both self and others.

How long does it take to diagnose BPD?

The duration of the diagnostic process can vary, but it typically takes several sessions with a mental health professional to accurately diagnose BPD. This allows sufficient time for a detailed assessment of the individual’s symptoms and behaviors.

What does it feel like to have BPD?

Individuals with BPD often experience intense emotional pain, instability in relationships, and fears of abandonment. There is frequently a persistent feeling of emptiness and a distorted sense of self-identity, which can lead to impulsive actions and self-harm.

Is BPD curable?

While BPD is considered a chronic condition, it is treatable. Many people with BPD experience significant improvement and no longer meet diagnostic criteria for BPD with therapies such as DBT and CBT. Treatment focuses on managing symptoms and improving quality of life, and over time, many individuals see a reduction in symptoms and lead fulfilling lives.

How is BPD diagnosed?

BPD is diagnosed based on criteria outlined in the DSM-5, which includes persistent patterns of instability in interpersonal relationships, self-image, and emotions, as well as marked impulsivity. A comprehensive assessment by a mental health professional, which includes interviews and psychological testing, is necessary to confirm the diagnosis. 

Transform your mental health journey with personalized care and innovative treatments at the Sterling Institute

Start your path to healing today!

Call: (475) 329 2686

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