Borderline personality disorder if often a misunderstood diagnosis wherein people do not fall neatly into the criteria for diagnosis. Nonetheless, BPD can have significant impact on the ones ability to function in daily life and especially in relationships. BPD is characterological disorder than tends to manifest due to past traumas, i.e. abuse, extreme invalidating environments. Some common symptoms include but are not limited to: self-harm (cutting, burning), feeling empty, fears of abandonment, rollercoaster of emotions, impulsive behaviors (drugs, spending sprees, unsafe sex), constant insecurity in relationships, unstable self-image, sometimes feeling out of touch with reality or dissociation (foggy, spaced out, or as if you are outside of your body). Some people feel all of these symptoms while others feel just a few, the important thing to consider is how much dysfunction they can cause.
Getting the right kind of help is important because BPD often gets diagnosed improperly because other disorders such as depression and anxiety are often a part of the constellation of disorders. The consensus treatment for BPD is Dialectical Behavioral Treatment or DBT. This is a stricter and more training retraining focused form of cognitive-behavioral therapy. DBT therapists are trained in a specific way to treat BPD and they use a step by step approach to improve and build clients skills in order to manage symptoms and causes of BPD.
In the past BPD has been thought of as a disorder difficult to treat but with appropriate training and continued research the outcomes and prognosis for recovery has been improving steadily. There are local skills training groups and more and more therapist have a working knowledge of DBT.