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Borderline parent - borderline children?

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Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby Erato » Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:04 am

I have a son that is 11 months old and I am doing my best to be a good mother. I have frequent talks with my therapist about him and I read a lot about raising children, I make sure to meet his needs and set boundaries, I am very affectionate, I kiss and hug and hold him often. He isn't and he won't be exposed to any kind of domestic violence and abuse, but I am worried sick about hereditary factor of BPD. I am pretty sure it runs in my family (my mother and grandmother aren't diagnosed, but they show strong traits, especially my grandma).
I've seen here that some of you have children.

I'd really like to hear your opinion: is it possible to raise a BPD-free child if you are a caring and loving parent? Do you think that a child would have BPD despite our parenting style? Nature or nurture?

Thank you all for reading, I appreciate your time.
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby triplemoon18 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:13 pm

I think they are realizing there is a ton of heredity when it comes to BPD now. I have 3 children - one is diagnosed ADHD and BPD (now 16 years old), but this isn't surprising at all as we found recently that I was diagnosed BPD at 17. I also know that my daughter's father was diagnosed BPD too. So I have forgiven myself for any parenting mistakes I have made and just figure she got it because both of her parents got it.

As for my other two children, one is my daughter's twin and she had no BPD, but we are trying to get her diagnosed as ADD because she fits the profile for girls with the messiness and being unorganized and lacking focus at school.

And my son has a different father and was my first child and he seems perfectly fine and is doing well in life at 22 - good relationship, holding down a job and in college.

I believe that my mother, her sisters and grandmother are all BPD and I think the fact that I have tried so hard to be a good mom, reading a ton of parenting books/magazines and going to play groups and parks and putting them in activities and preschool and of course loving them and being super affectionate all help.

My daughter was in the hospital last spring for drinking ammonia and she told the doctor that she had no reason to do it, that she has a great family and friends. She knows she is impossible and does these things when her emotions are out of control.

I worried a lot about my kids too - my son's father's family has a lot of alcoholism, but my son experimented a bit when he first moved out, but really doesn't drink much/often.

And of course I worried about my daughters because their father is bipolar, as well as BPD and I wondered if they would turn out like me who went to college, runs a law office or be like their father who sits on disability playing guitar and feeling sorry for himself.

But really all you can do is be the best parent you can be - you can't control all of the variables. For instance, my BPD daughter was also sexually abused by two boyfriends when she was in grade 9 - so could that have given her the BPD? Of course it could.

-- Wed Dec 28, 2016 12:15 pm --

Oops I meant to say my daughter is impulsive, not impossible lol.
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby octopuslol » Thu Dec 29, 2016 11:24 pm

Your children would need a lot of genetic load to develop BPD themselves with 'normal' (whatever that is) parenting. Most pwBPD I would imagine had adverse circumstances that triggered the development of the PD.

Sounds like you're doing a fine job. Just keep nurturing your child and model good behavior yourself, but remember no one is perfect and every parent messes up from time to time. Validation is also key as far as I know. And even after all of this if you do notice signs as your child gets older, no harm in getting them therapy before it fully develops in adulthood.
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby Erato » Fri Dec 30, 2016 7:47 am

Thank you so much for answering my questions, guys. I feel better now. Relieved, reassured. It was exactly what I needed.
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby octopuslol » Fri Dec 30, 2016 1:37 pm

Erato wrote:Thank you so much for answering my questions, guys. I feel better now. Relieved, reassured. It was exactly what I needed.


I'm glad you're feeling better! You're doing a great job, keep it up.
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby Casper » Sun Jan 01, 2017 2:04 am

I think there is heredity, but not in the way that there usually is. In the normal manner of things, if a parent has inheritable disease X, then there's a chance that the child will get it, no matter what.

With us, though, BPD depends on a multitude of factors, many of which are the product of our environments. We tend to start off with a genetic disposition towards being highly emotional, but as children, we also learn things from our parents. If a parent has BPD and is responding to certain stimuli in a given way, then the child is more likely to learn to respond to it in the same manner.

So while it's still not considered a genetically inheritable disorder, the groundwork CAN be inherited from the parents and the rest of it learned during the formative years, almost making it inherited. The truth is, BPD or no, children learn a lot from their parents, good and bad, so unless they happened to be raised by Ward & June freakin' Cleaver, they're bound to pick up some less than perfect habit. Heck, even the Beav wasn't perfect!

Now before anyone starts a flame war, no, I'm not blaming my BPD on mommy and daddy. Funny enough, it was my maternal grandmother who showed all the symptoms, although she was diagnosed with Bipolar (though back in the 70's, when nobody was diagnosed BPD). Even before I knew my diagnosis, I knew everyone else was afraid of her temper except for me. She and I got along famously, for some strange reason. I guess, now I know why!
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby DT1095 » Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:29 pm

a firm believer that most PDs have a genetic factor. If you look at studies that show differences in the brain of those suffering from BPD then you have to wonder if these differences have been encoded into the DNA. If male pattern boldness or eye colour can be passed down then why not physical differences in the brain?

That said it doesn't mean that it will always pass down to your children. There have been twin studies where one developed BPD but the other hasn't. There are plenty of children who do not have BPD but one of their parents does.

One thing that upsets me is the outdated belief that early childhood trauma is the root cause. Yes there are people who suffered early trauma and have BPD but there are far more loving and caring parents who nurtured their children and still the child ended up with BPD.

As casper says there are many factors that go into our personality and learnt behaviour has a massive influence. That said though BPD is on a spectrum so if someone is at the higher end of the spectrum then no matter how kind and caring the parents are or how great an environment they where raised in was they will still end up with strong BPD traits. Inversely if someone on the milder end is raised in an awful environment then they may increase the level of BPD they suffer from.

Just my opinion and I hope it doesn't cause offence.
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby Erato » Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:00 pm

Thanks to all the posters. I'll just keep trying to be a good mom and I'll keep my fingers crossed hoping he hasn't got it. What am I going to do if he shows some BPD traits? I wouldn't wish this to my worst enemy, let alone my own own kid! The thing is I believe I can't handle it. You know, the guilt. I am the one who gave him BPD.
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby DT1095 » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:38 pm

Hi Erato

If there is a genetic link then you cannot blame yourself. You may as well blame your parents, grand parents, great grand parents, great great grandparents etc etc.

It wasn't something you chose to have and certainly not something you would choose to pass on to your children. You cannot blame yourself if this happens.
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Re: Borderline parent - borderline children?

Postby Erato » Wed Jan 04, 2017 8:26 pm

I know. I know, thank you, it's irrational, most of my guilt is out of proportion. I'll just have to wait and see.
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