As many of you know, I had been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD). But I have investigated complex PTSD – a disorder that describes my condition much better but is not yet listed in the diagnostic manual used in North America. It is listed in the ID11 used in Europe, recognized by the World Health Organization.

If I lived in Europe, there would be no problem. I would readily be diagnosed with complex PTSD if my symptoms warranted it. And the BPD diagnosis could be used correctly.

Here in Canada, I was diagnosed with BPD because my psychiatrist had to have some kind of label to give it and knew of nothing else.

Reasons my condition could not be BPD:

  • BPD is a lifelong illness, starting in adolescence or early adulthood. I was first diagnosed at age 69, when I was undergoing year-long emotional abuse. The emotionality I went through (and still do at times) started after the abuse.
  •  A person needs to have five of the nine symptoms to be considered BPD. I was told that I had only three. (three that also happen to be symptoms of complex PTSD)
  • The flashbacks and traumatic memories that haunted me for years after, causing suicidal depression were the worst part. Such memories are not symptoms of BPD but are chief features of CPTSD.

I have written to the BC Psychiatric Association asking for help.