I took my 20-year-old daughter for a psychiatric evaluation today. I have somehow escaped this for the last two years, since she became an adult. I offered to pay for an eval outside the Medi-Cal system in order to get a legitimate diagnosis and medication that is not dependent on the amount of money one can pay. So, today was the day.
In a very short period of time, the psychiatrist leveled one of the diagnoses I knew would be given–Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). In that moment my heart cracked open and my mother blood leaked out onto the floor. If you are not a therapist, this diagnosis may mean nothing to you. However, the diagnosis is often considered the bane of a therapist’s existence when a person labeled with it walks across the threshold.
I am breaking the therapist code of silence right now, because, as a therapist, I am not supposed to say any of this out loud. As a matter of fact, I am pretty sure I will be stoned for daring to speak this. Most therapists (though not all) only take one or two people labeled “Borderline” into their practice at a time. Why is that, you might wonder? It is because they are so difficult to treat. BPD person’s are predominantly female and well known for love you/hate you outbursts. They often burst out of therapy the way attachment challenged children outburst over parenting.
My daughter had love you/hate you outbursts from the day I brought her home at three-years-old. And, she still does. Reactive Attachment Disorder grown-up without successful intervention is often called Borderline Personality Disorder in women and Narcissistic Personality Disorder in men.
I want you to know that early, effective intervention is possible. Healing is possible. You can change the trajectory of your sweet, attachment challenged child. How? With consistent, trust-based, brain-based, therapeutic parenting. That is how.
When my children were young, I wish I knew then what I know now. I desperately wish this. Right now, I am pleased my daughter lives with me and I have a chance to help her heal from the horrible wounds of attachment trauma in early childhood. It is never too late. Never. I know this in my bones.
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The next 8-hr. Trust-based Parent Training is scheduled for April 23rd and 30th from 12 noon to 4 pm. $200 per two person couple. Childcare available for $30 each day, second child $10 additional. To sign up, email Jen@attachplace.com and she will register you.