Borderline Personality Disorder Dilectical Behavior Therapy

Borderline Personality Disorder
Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Know Thyself | Personality Development

What is Dialectic Behavior Therapy?

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) is a method of treatment that was devised by Marsha Linehan, faculty at the University of Washington, for the treatment of borderline personality disorder (BPD). Typically clients with BPD, as defined in DSM-V, are notoriously difficult to treat (Linehan 1993). They often do not attend regularly, frequently fail to respond to therapeutic efforts and make considerable demands on the emotional resources of the therapist (particularly when suicidal and parasuicidal behaviors are prominent). The effectiveness of DBT has been demonstrated in many controlled studies across different research groups. Because of this success and due to similar behavior patterns, DBT is now being used in many settings as a viable therapy for the treatment of bipolar disorder (Abdullatif & Bekman, 2007).

Woman with blinders

There are Four Modules in Skills Training Counseling Groups:

  1. Core Mindfulness Skills are derived from meditation techniques, enable the client to become aware of various aspects of experience, and help develop the ability to stay in contact, psychologically, with that experience in the present moment.
  2. Interpersonal Effectiveness Skills focus on effective ways of achieving one’s objectives with other people: to ask for what one wants effectively, to say no and be taken seriously, to maintain relationships and to maintain self-esteem in interactions with other people. It is comparable to assertiveness training.
  3. Emotion Modulation Skills are ways of coping with intense emotional experiences and their causes. They also allow for an adaptive experience and expression of intense emotions.
  4. Distress Tolerance Skills include techniques for putting up with, finding meaning for, and accepting distressing situations if the client can predict no foreseeable solution at present

Clinical Assessment

I am willing and able to help you assess your personal “stages of change” and help you get a sense of your true readiness for help. While I am not credentialed as a Dialectical Behavior Therapist, I will help you prepare yourself to successfully enter training groups for work with this type of therapist.

Call 206-547-HELP to explore your options.

Maple Leaf: Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Group

Dialectical Behavior Therapy Center of Seattle
“Developed at the University of Washington by Marsha Linehan, Ph.D., DBT was originally developed to treat interpersonal chaos, intense emotional swings, impulsiveness, confusion about the self, and suicidal tendencies. It is based on a bio-social theory that states that problems develop from the interaction of biological factors (physiological makeup) and environmental factors (learning history), which together create difficulty managing emotions. It is therefore appropriate for a range of problems relating to emotion disregulation, including substance use problems, eating disorders, and anger-related problems. A great deal of research has been conducted on the effectiveness of DBT and, in general, DBT appears as effective or more effective than other psychotherapies for the problems mentioned above”(Stacy Shaw Welch, 2007).

Diagnosis and Treatment Recommendations

Dr. Hart: Evaluation & Recommendations

Typology & Diagnostic Differences

Narcissism: Malignant Self Love

How to Recognize a Narcissist

Schizoid Personality: Internet Mental Health

Informal Online Checklist

Borderline Personality Disorder Central

Avoidant Personality

To reach the ultimate goal – creating a life worth living – treatment balances empathy and warm acceptance (validation) with an unwavering focus on changing problem behavior (problem-solving). Through this balance, we aim to help change the behavioral, emotional, and thinking patterns associated with problems in living, while promoting the development of and reliance on inner wisdom (wise mind).


The foundation of this therapy is the idea that opposites can coexist and be synthesized. This means weighing out various points of view in any situation and constantly working on balancing an effort to change with accepting situations as they are.

It is based on the study of how our conduct is learned, and focuses on helping people change ineffective ways of coping by learning new, skillful ways of coping. It focuses on specific goals that can realistically be attained. For the most part, it is a “doing” rather than a “talking” treatment. (Stacy Shaw Welch)

Dr. Patrick J. Hart
Evaluation, Treatment, and Referrals

My counseling practice offers you personal and direct clinical guidance to assist you with behavioral issues and also to help individuals and couples with addiction, chemical dependency, or drug abuse and referrals to other sources of support.