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30 Questions You Should Ask Your Doctor After a New Borderline Personality Disorder Diagnosis

Editor's Note

Please see a doctor before starting or stopping a medication.

Navigating any sort of new mental health diagnosis can feel overwhelming. It usually comes with new prescription medications, therapy sessions, and other recommendations from a doctor. In many cases, people feel so shocked that they don’t even know what questions to ask at first.

Unfortunately, borderline personality disorder (BPD) is an especially difficult pill to swallow because of the stigma attached to it and the inaccuracies we see in mainstream media. Despite what people may assume, though, recovery from borderline personality disorder is possible once you receive a diagnosis and get a treatment plan in place.

If you’ve recently received a borderline personality disorder diagnosis, you can try asking the doctor who diagnosed you these 30 questions:

Questions About Diagnosis

1. What does borderline personality disorder look like for me?

2. What symptoms of BPD do I display?

3. How long do you think I’ve lived with BPD?

4. What risk factors may have contributed to my diagnosis?

5. What assessments did you use to make this diagnosis?

6. How did you rule out other possible diagnoses that share symptoms with BPD?

7. Do I have any comorbidities?

8. Does this diagnosis qualify for any workplace accommodations? If so, how should I discuss this with my employer?

Questions Related to Learning

9. Should I be concerned about anything specific with this new diagnosis?

10. Will receiving this diagnosis impact my life in any immediate way?

11. What can I do to educate myself about my diagnosis?

12. Do you recommend any books or websites that may help me learn more about BPD?

13. Are there any additional lifestyle changes I should make now that I have this diagnosis?

14. Are there any routines or habits I can develop that will help me manage my symptoms?

15. Is there anything I should avoid doing with this diagnosis?

16. How can I explain BPD to my friends and family?

17. What can my loved ones do to best support me in recovery?

Questions About Treatment

18. What type(s) of therapy is most effective for people like me?

19. Does therapy come with any possible side effects? If so, what are they?

20. What should I do if I experience a sudden increase in symptoms?

21. What should I do if I experience self-harm or suicidal thoughts?

22. How long will it take for me to see a decrease in my symptoms or other measurable improvements?

23. Is a full recovery possible? If so, how long does that typically take?

24. What other providers do you recommend I see? Should my treatment team include a therapist?

25. Are there any support groups for BPD that you recommend I join?

26. Are there any medications that may help decrease my symptoms? If so, what types of medications do you recommend?

27. What are the possible side effects of the medications you may prescribe to me?

Questions for the Clinician

28. What experience do you have with helping people with this diagnosis?

29. How do you feel about working with me?

30. Are you available if I am experiencing a crisis? If not, who should I call during a crisis?

Receiving a BPD diagnosis can feel very overwhelming at first, especially if you don’t know what to ask your doctor. Hopefully, these questions can provide a guiding light to help you start your recovery journey off on the right foot.

Getty Images photo via macniak

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