What causes borderline personality disorder?
Today’s mental health care professionals and scientists generally agree that there is no one cause for any major psychiatric disorder. All are caused by a combination of genetic, social, and psychological factors. Borderline personality disorder is no different. The following risk factors include:
When looking at how their children develop, parents often say, “She’s been like this since birth.” It’s no accident that we notice persistent behavior that manifests itself even in infants. That’s why certain temperaments associated with borderline personality disorder can be seen from birth and have been linked to abnormal brain activities, and it’s why similar disorders tend to run in families.
Environment and social factors
Around 70% of people with borderline personality disorder report that they were physically and/or sexually abused. Many talk about feeling neglected. And 30% report that they lost or had a prolonged separation from their parents in childhood. While these findings point to the importance of a healthy attachment to a caregiver during the first years of life, it does not mean that a person with borderline personality disorder didn’t have a healthy family background. It is also important to recognize that most people who were physically or sexually abused, neglected, or separated from parents in childhood do not develop borderline personality disorder. This means that while childhood trauma and instability play a large role in this disorder, genetic factors also play a key role in predisposing a person to this mental illness.