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Therapy as the Spouse, Parent, or Child Who Is A Very Difficult Person To Live With (Has A Borderline Personality Disorder)

Therapy as the Spouse, Parent, or Child of Someone Who is a Very Difficult Person To Live With (Has a Borderline Personality Disorder)

I have developed 25 criteria to determine if someone has a Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)

Does your spouse, parent, or child fit the criteria below?

  • Out of control mood swings
  • Unstable relationships
  • Self destructive behavior
  • Fears of abandonment
  • Impulsive behavior

To view the other 18 criteria for BPD click here.

The biggest mistake a spouse, parent, child of a difficult person or someone who has Borderline Personality can make is that they wait for their partner to be ready before they engage in counseling.

Husband & Wife (Borderline Spouse)

Marsha comes into my office telling me horror stories about how her husband was verbally abusive. She tells me: “I have no idea about our finances. He is always criticizing me, and I can’t do anything right. He yells at me for no reason at all. He doesn’t tell me when he’s coming home for dinner and wonders why I get so upset. Doctor you have to do something. I can’t live like this.” Marsha wants me to change her husband, what she has to realize that she has the power to make things different and therapy can teach her how to do that.

Adult Child & BPD Parent

I was working with a woman I’ll call Mary. She contacted me because every time she talked to her mother their conversation ended up in a fight. Mary went on to say that her mother was very self-centered, dramatic, controlling and extremely judgmental.

Whether it was a phone call or in person, they always seemed to be arguing. I asked Mary to notice what they fought about and write it down on a list. What Mary quickly discovered was that they fought about everything.

When Mary and I sat down during one of our meetings, she was quick to point out that most of their conflicts really didn’t make a difference. What was happening was that Mary wanted to prove to her mother that she was right at least once in awhile.

What came out during our discussion that Mary had to learn to live with the reality that her mother was rarely, if ever was going to acknowledge her daughter’s point of view. Mary had to learn to get validation from a source other than her mother. Mary consciously changed her goal for their interaction from getting her mother to see her point of view to getting through their contacts without compromising herself as well as not making a “big deal” out of issues as they come up.

What will happen during therapy for BPD

During therapy as the spouse, parent, or child of someone who is difficult to live with, or who has BPD, you will learn strategies that will help with your interactions and to develop a more positive relationship.

Some of the things you will learn are:

  • How to deal with anger – both yours and the other person’s.
  • Exactly what to say to the BPD to lessen conflict.
  • How connect with the BPD person to have the best possible relationship.

In addition to our work in therapy I have written an e-book that folks get for free, as part of counseling.



My Spouse, Parent, or Child is a Very Difficult Person to Live With (Has a Borderline Personality) What Do I Do Now?


Dr. Marty Tashman - Your Marriage Counselor - Marriage Counseling in NJ

To learn about Dr. Marty’s background click here.

Dr. Marty can be reached at 888-281-5850

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