Session 3 Activities
What are the symptoms of BPD?
“The term Borderline Personality Disorder was originally used in 1938 by Adolf Stern, a
psychoanalyst who described his patients as being ‘on the borderline between neurosis and
1. What have you heard about the term ‘neurosis’?
I really haven’t bothered to learn what this term means.
The dictionary defines neurosis as ‘a mental disorder which is characterised by exaggerated
anxiety and tension’ (Bailliere, 1997).
2. Do you know of any other abnormal fears that someone might experience if they suffered from neurosis?
3. What have you heard about the term ‘psychosis’?
I have heard that it’s dangerous. You are not really yourself. I don’t know much though.
4. Do you know of any symptoms that someone might experience if they suffered from psychosis?
Voices, intrusive thoughts, seeing things that are not there?
(Thought: why don’t they give me a definition of psychosis like they did for neurosis?)
One way of attempting to describe the symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder is by
mnemonically I DESPAIR:
I Identity disturbance
D Dysregulated emotion
S Suicidal behaviour
P Paranoid ideation
5. Which of the mnemonic I DESPAIR would describe your symptoms?
D, S, A, R (what a cheesy mnemonic)
Next: Session 3 Activities Part 2