How to Stop Sabotaging Yourself with Borderline PD

August 12, 2021 Kate Beveridge

People with borderline personality disorder (BPD) may struggle with self-destructive behavior and self-hatred. I spent many years believing that I didn't deserve happiness and getting in my own way because of it. However, there are methods you can use to stop sabotaging yourself when you live with BPD. 

I Didn't Try to Stop Sabotaging Myself for a Long Time

For many years, I did not believe that I was worthy of a good life. I felt like a bad person, so I didn't feel like I deserved good things to happen to me. Additionally, I struggled with out-of-control emotional swings that often made me feel like I was losing touch with myself. 

Consequently, I engaged in a lot of sabotaging behaviors and didn't see why I should stop them. Some of these actions, like binge drinking and using drugs, were designed to help me escape from my difficult emotions. Other behaviors, like skipping university classes or showing up consistently late, happened because I didn't feel like I had the mental energy to carry on with daily tasks.

I also did a lot of things to try to sabotage my relationships. I would push my partners away emotionally to test if they would still love me. This played into my abandonment complex and would give me a rush whenever they came back. Sometimes I would pick verbal fights for the same reason, repeatedly testing their willingness to put up with my behavior.

Overall, I never felt like I had a real future. I would make short or mid-term plans, but I struggled to imagine a life several years down the track. As such, I never felt like I would have to deal with the long-term consequences of my sabotaging behaviors. 

Tips to Stop Sabotaging Behaviors with BPD

These are a few of the strategies that I use to minimize and prevent my sabotaging behaviors:

  • I practice forgiveness toward others and myself. When I can treat myself and other people with more kindness, I don't feel like I need to punish myself or cut off relationships. This is not an easy process, but I try to actively work on it whenever triggers arise. 
  • I keep my headspace as clean as possible. I've been sober from alcohol and drugs for more than 18 months now. Staying away from substances enables me to stay more grounded, and I don't feel like my mood swings are out of control. 
  • I keep an eye on mid and long-term goals. If I feel like I have things to work toward, I am less likely to be tempted by sabotaging behaviors. For example, I can focus on saving for a house with my husband or improving at my job to further my career goals. 
  • I pay attention to self-destructive patterns. If I notice my brain returning to familiar self-destructive patterns, I try not to give in to them. For example, I might notice my self-talk turning toward abandonment and being unloveable. By noticing these thoughts, I am in a better place to resist the sabotaging behaviors. 
  • I reflect on my journey. I try to take time to reflect on how far I have come. By doing so, I can feel proud of myself and look forward to further improvements in the future. 

What strategies do you use to minimize BPD's sabotaging behaviors? Let me know in the comments section below.

APA Reference
Beveridge, K. (2021, August 12). How to Stop Sabotaging Yourself with Borderline PD, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, July 15 from

Author: Kate Beveridge

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