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1,042 of 1,089 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A SINGULAR, INDISPENSABLE, LIFE-SAVING CONTRIBUTION ON BPD
I don't know how Randi Kreger and Paul Mason did it, but they have made a singular contribution to the world with their web site and with the publication of this life-saving book. Please allow me to post this from the book for anyone looking for help in or out of a bad situation right now:
Predictable Stages: People who love someone with BPD seem to go through...
Published on August 24, 1998

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698 of 749 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Like a Stab in the Heart
This book does provide useful information identifying traits, symptoms and behaviour of the BPD person and this is useful in understanding why they are behaving the way they do. If you are close to a BPD person it is worthwhile discovering that you are not going crazy for finding the ridiculous dramas and scenarios with the BPD confusing and distressing...
Published on October 18, 2004 by Violetta


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1,042 of 1,089 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A SINGULAR, INDISPENSABLE, LIFE-SAVING CONTRIBUTION ON BPD, August 24, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
I don't know how Randi Kreger and Paul Mason did it, but they have made a singular contribution to the world with their web site and with the publication of this life-saving book. Please allow me to post this from the book for anyone looking for help in or out of a bad situation right now:
Predictable Stages: People who love someone with BPD seem to go through similar stages. The longer the relationship has lasted, the longer each stage seems to take. Although these are listed in the general order in which people go through them, most people move back and forth among different stages.
Confusion Stage. This generally occurs before a diagnosis of BPD is known. Non-BPs struggle to understand why borderlines sometimes behave in ways that seem to make no sense. They look for solutions that seem elusive, blame themselves, or resign themselves to living in chaos. Even after learning about BPD, it can take non-BPs weeks or months to really comprehend on an intellectual level how the BP is personally affected by this complex disorder. It can take even longer to absorb the information on an emotional level.
Outer-Directed Stage. In this stage, non-borderlines turn their attention toward the person with the disorder, urging them to seek professional help, attemping to get them to change, and trying their best not to trigger problematic behavior. People at this stage usually learn all they can about BPD in an effort to understand and empathize with the person they care about. It can take nopn-BPs a long time to acknowledge feelings of anger and grief--especially when the BP is a parent or child. Anger is an extremely common reaction, even though most non-BPs understand on an intellectual level that BPD is not the borderline's fault. Yet because anger seems to be an inappropriate response to a situation that may be beyond the borderline's control, non-BPs often suppress their anger and instead experience depression, hopelessness, and guilt. The chief tasks for non-BPs in this stage include acknowledging and dealing with their own emotions, letting BPs take responsibility for their own actions, and giving up the fantasy that the BP will behave as the non-BP would like them to.
Inner-Directed Stage. Eventually, non-BPs look inward and conduct an honest apparaisal of themselves. It takes two people to have a relationship, and the goal for non-BPs in this stage is to better understand their role in making the relationship what it now is. The objective here is not self-recrimination, but insight and self-discovery.
Decision-Making Stage. Armed with knowledge and insight, non-BPs struggle to make decisions about the relationship. This stage can often take months or years. Non-BPs in this stage need to clearly understand their own values, beliefs, expectations, and assumptions. For example, one man with a physically violent borderline wife came from a conservative family that strongly disapprove of divorce. His friends counseled him to separate from her, but he felt unable to do so because of his concern about how his family would react. You may find that your beliefs and values have served you well throughout your life. Or you may find that you inherited them from your family without determining whether or not they truly reflect who you are. Either way, it is important to be guided by your OWN values--not someone else's.
Resolution Phase. In this final stage, non-BPs implement their decisions and live with them. Depending upon the type of relationship, some non-BPs may, over time, change their minds many times and try different alternatives.
And:
....When it comes to chosen relationships, we found that the BP's willingness to admit they had a problem and seek help was by far the determining factor as to whether the couple stayed together or not....
If you are looking at this right now, know that you are not alone. There are countless others who understand all you have been through for nothing. Get on the non-BP mailing list at Randi Kreger's site and buy this book NOW. It can and will save your life, whatever you decide.
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415 of 438 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant analysis of a tragic disorder, August 12, 2001
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
Paul T. Mason, M.S., C.P.C., is a program manager of Child/Adolescent Services at St. Luke's Hospital and a psychotherapist in private practice at Psychiatric Services in Racine, Wisconsin. His research on borderline personality disorder ("BPD") has appeared in the Journal of Clinical Psychology, and he teaches seminars for mental health professionals on the effects of BPD on partners and family members.
Randi Kreger is a professional writer and an executive in public relations and marketing. She has collected more than 1,000 stories detailing the devastating experiences of people in close relationship with persons suffering from BPD ("BP's"). Kreger moderates two e-mail discussion groups for friends and family of BP's on her comprehensive Web site about BPD: [....]
Mason and Kreger's carefully written, highly readable book provides a brilliant analysis of a disorder that wreaks enormous havoc. In addition to clarifying what BPD is, they provide crucial survival techniques for those who wish to stay in relationship with the BP's they love.
There are extensive references and a list of recommended resources in this 258-page book as well as appendices on the following subjects: coping suggestions for clinicians, tips for BP's who have other BP's in their lives, a summary of causes and treatment of BPD. The topics covered in the main body of the book include: (1) understanding BPD behavior; (2) keeping control of your life while in close association with a BP; (3) resolving special issues, including raising a BP child, distortion campaigns of the BP against you, making decisions about continuing your relationship with the adult BP in your life.
The authors state that the central irony of BPD is that "people who suffer from it desperately want closeness and intimacy, but the things they do to get it often drive people away from them." Their needs are extremely difficult to meet, because they are so turbulent and irrational.
In a profoundly important departure from the militant-environmentalism stance that has engulfed the mental-health establishment for decades, the authors freely admit the existence of children with BPD. In the Freudian tradition, most psychiatrists continue to believe that BPD is caused entirely by poor mothering, with the damage only showing up in adulthood after the destructive childhood has ended. The real truth is, however, that BPD can occur very early in life, and in the most nurturing of families, both of which indicate there is a strong genetic component to this disorder. This vital insight on childhood BPD will bring great comfort to besieged mothers of BP children who are unfairly shamed and stigmatized by mental-health and educational personnel as the "cause" of their child's condition.
I believe this book should be required reading for every psychological and psychiatric training program in the country. It will also bring enormous insight, comfort and encouragement to the friends and families of BP's everywhere.
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244 of 256 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When..., September 7, 2000
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
This book brings humane understanding to the often perjorative term Borderline Personality Disorder and brings the reader to deeper understanding of those who suffer from this disorder, letting the sufferers of this illness be known as persons with damaged internal vulnerability that often can't be articulated, just acted out or in by the individual. What sets this book far above many books on BPD is the research the authors did utilizing the non-local reaches of the internet to quiz a number of persons in BPD self-help groups and also the self-help group(s) of persons who love and cope with those who have BPD. The comprehensiveness of this book is wide, indeed, in scope and what is profoundly interesting are the specific insights BP persons and those who love and care for them give which take you deep into the personal experience, agonies and challenges of coping with behaviors of this often misunderstood mental illness. The book also includes techniques for those who must deal with the rages and unpredictability of the PB person. One key piece of advice is to stop being a sponge for the feeling states that those with BP project onto those nearest them. Easily understood directions are listed on how to mirror the BP, hold to limits in a respectful, yet firm way, and to support the BP getting the help they need for the book strongly addresses the concept that ultimately those with BPD are responsible for their behavior. The authors give the reader interesting and useable scripts, provocative personal comments that make the reader deeply reflect on the agony of the BP's mental states and clearly details step-by-step what to do if you are the spouse, child or parent of a loved one with BPD. Wonderful resources are also listed to obtain help or more knowledge about this mental disease of BPD that many feel is untreatable, abelief which the authors of this book definitely do not agree with. An excellent and informative read and a must-have for a clinician's library.
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698 of 749 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Like a Stab in the Heart, October 18, 2004
By 
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
This book does provide useful information identifying traits, symptoms and behaviour of the BPD person and this is useful in understanding why they are behaving the way they do. If you are close to a BPD person it is worthwhile discovering that you are not going crazy for finding the ridiculous dramas and scenarios with the BPD confusing and distressing.

Despite this, I found sections of the book hurtful and demoralising. How much more do the loved ones have to be told they should adapt even more to the BPD's behaviour, and that "understanding" them is enough to make it OK, that learning and perfecting the art of "not taking it personally" is going to make life a lot easier. These things do cause a slight improvement but the emphasis placed on them is in denial of the seriousness of the effects of the BPD behaviour, and the intensity and energy and power the BPD person puts into pursuing his/her twisted agenda. What is worse is the tendency of some therapists and authors to focus on the Borderline being accepted (for extremely unacceptable behaviour) and placing unfair expectations on their significant others as a way of empowering them (the BPD).

The author of the review "Save Your Money & Your Mind put it so well - [...... Instead, it asked Borderlines what they thought non-BPD's should do in the face of the Borderlines inappropriate, inexplicable rages. Be good now and don't upset the Borderline, who can't help it. The Borderline's world is painful (as if everyone around the Borderline doesn't routinely pay the price for that), so try to understand. No, the Borderline doesn't need to understand, because Borderlines are like children and can't be expected to behave in any kind of responsible way. It's about their survival, so deal with it. If you suffer because of a Borderline's actions, you will suffer more from the underlying message of this book: a Borderline is in pain, so whatever he/she does must be understood and on some level (or all levels) excused. Borderline behavior (manipulation, lying, pitting people against one another, suicidal gestures, unpredictable, intense rages, etc.) is abusive and destructive to everyone around him/her. The fact that the people around him/her are expected to put up with it because it's motivated by fear or shame only speaks to the amazing ability of the Borderline to turn the tables and make a situation sound like something it's not. You do not ask someone with Anti-social Personality Disorder how you can avoid provoking his anger. It's understood that the problem is with him, not you. Why is this not clear with BPD? ....]

As if the loved ones of BPD's aren't already doing everything they can humanly think of to accomodate and please the BPD! Most people who are partnering a Borderline sufferer have already worked out, for survival purposes, every possible way of avoiding triggering their worst behaviour. Adapting, keeping quiet about serious problems, pretending to accept distorted views of reality to avoid arguments, letting things go of great concern and never being able to discuss them, the list goes on, you become an expert in not provoking to the point your own reality becomes distorted and "you" becomes buried, and then you find a book that tells you do to do more of this and asks the BPD person to prescribe your ideal behaviour, so they don't feel so bad! I spent years with my BPD partner trying to see his twisted side of everything, and take into account and keep up with feelings he had about certain things that changed daily or even hourly. This has to stop - as with any other dysfunctional behaviour that involves abuse (either psychological, emotional, verbal or physical) the perpetrator, no matter what the reason for his/her behaviour, has to start taking total responsibility for the behaviour. The therapists have to start working out how to achieve this with their patients, without others having to twist themselves into knots to adapt to the inappropriate behaviour of the BPD not changing. It's time therapists and authors stop believing and falling for the BPD's obsession with discrediting their partner. You can tie yourself in knots to ensure you don't upset a BPD, and they will still find something to twist onto you in order to justify an oncoming rage or tirade, or drawn out session of twisted ramblings and accusations. Even if you have behaved impeccably close to perfection in terms of what they have indicated they require, if the urge to rage or painful feelings overtake them they will just invent something in order to shift blame onto you. You can be accused of not giving any credence to the BPD's feelings, which are so important, even though they don't know what they are from one minute to the next. Where is the therapist/author who doesn't buy into this and focuses only on what the patient should do? The fact that it is so hard to treat the BPD should not mean that more and more onus is placed on those close to them - this approach has gone too far to the point where it has become a case of expecting the loved ones to behave dysfunctionally so that the BPD feels better and happier and their reality is more accepted.
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137 of 146 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource for those wanting to learn more about BPD, December 8, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
One of the scariest things to happen to someone is to be diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder... or to have one of your loved ones diagnosed with BPD. There are many resources that explain what BPD is but they offer little help when it comes to dealing with this disorder in everyday life. Stop Walking on Eggshells not only explains the disorder in clear and simple language but it also offers ways for non-Borderline people to deal with the BPs in their life. And yet, this book is not exclusively for non-Borderline people. As a BP, I found the book to be very educational and sometimes shocking. I learned how my behavior affects others around me. It made me more aware of what non-BPs are thinking and feeling and encouraged me in my desire to change my behaviors through cognitive efforts. The authors are both sensitive to the needs of the Borderline Personality and the non-BPs by using realistic and non-accusatory language. Their goal is to help people deal with this sometimes unexplainable psychological disorder. They do not try to offer solutions but rather focus on different techniques that can be of great aid to non-BPs and Borderline Personalities alike. I recommend this book to anyone who has been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, has a friend or family member with the disorder, or is planning on/works in a field where contact with people is a must.
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64 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book scared the h*ll out of me - you should read it too!, February 3, 2007
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
I bought this book after learning from a counsellor that a significant person in my life was more than likely suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder.

It was not a pleasant read for me: The descriptions of the symptoms and issues others like me had to deal-with simply hit too close to home. I had a hard time sleeping if I read this book before going to bed.

Even so, it was something that I, and others facing persons in their life with this disorder, should read. I wish I had known a long time ago how to cope with the behaviors that those with BPD exhibit. Doing so would have saved alot of grief and pain for myself and those I love. In retrospect, I wish I had been able to apply the advice of Paul Mason and Randi Kreger to my own situation.

If you are living with someone who feels they must control every aspect of the world around them, who sees the world only in terms of "black" and "white" with no grey areas, and/or who uses rage and anger to dominate those around them, then you must read this book. Enough said?

I would also suggest searching the internet for sites devoted to this disease - there are several very good organizations devoted to helping people, like you and me, who are (or were) trapped in relationships with a BPD partner: they can help you overcome many or most of the issues you face.
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85 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From a recovering borderline, December 24, 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
Quite honestly I haven't read the book, yet. I just ordered it. But I read enough comments about the book from people grasping for an answer that I felt compelled to write a nonreview and tell my story.
I was recently told by my therapist that I am a recovering BPD. I would fall in the category of high functioning. I'm not a wrist slasher and I've never faked an illness. But I was plagued by uncontrollable emotions. I have been in different forms of therapy for about 10 years. And I've also spent the same amount of time researching emotions and psychology. While none of the therapists told me I was BPD, I knew something was wrong. It seems they hide the diagnosis from you until you are in the recovery stage because the psyche of the borderline is so fragile the diagnosis of BPD would be more than they can handle.
There are many ways to fall into the borderline spiral but in my opinion there is only one door out -- developing control over one's emotions. Borderlines are essentially people whose emotions are out of control. It's like someone turned the volume up, left the room and took the controls with them. For me it was like living in an emotional hell.
I worked with two very talented therapists simultaneously. One was a neurofeedback therapist. The other was a regular talk therapist who specialized in EMDR and neurolinguistic programming. Neurofeedback is a new therapy that involves monitoring brainwaves and teaching people how to control their emotions by controlling their brainwaves. The EEG signal is read through the scalp into a computer which uses a fast fourier transform to decompose the signal into it's components of slow brain waves, focused brain waves and fast brain waves. See Jim Robbins book, Symphony in the Brain, for a complete history of neurofeedback.
For the emotionally out of control the temporal lobes are out of control. The right temporal lobe is where negative emotions originate. In my case my right temporal lobe was grossly overactivated. Through neurofeedback I learned to calm the temporal lobes and this calmed my emotions. After the first month of neurofeedback I felt noticeably calmer and more focused. I also noticed that the world around me seemed calmer. Things that would set me off crying or set me in a rage barely registered in my emotional circuits. And when I did get angry I was able to brush it off whereas before the feeling would run like a freight train out of control. After 20 sessions I was sleeping well and dreaming for the first time in years.
I also noticed that my anxiety and impulsive behaviours decreased. I felt like I had a few seconds to think about what I was going to say whereas before I would just blurt out what was on my mind ... and often offending people with my frankness.
I continue to do a few sessions of neurofeedback a month. I find that's it's a cumulative effect. And I like the way it feels. I like living in a calmer world.
The other thing that helped was seeing the traditional "talk" therapist during the process. My therapist taught me some "tricks" from a branch of psychology known as neurolinguistic programming. One trick was visualizing my favorite color as a circle on the ground ... and placing in the circle all the characteristics I wanted for myself ... emotional calmness, compassion, happiness .... stepping in the circle and drawing this color around myself as a protective bubble. It's a trick you play on your mind. It sounds goofy but it worked and helped me maintain the calm emotional demeanor in the face of all kinds of stresses.
Borderline personality disorder is a horrible, horrible mental illness. My heart goes out to anyone who has this disease.
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99 of 107 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I wish I had had this book years ago, May 11, 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
I was in the midst of a divorce from a man our marriage counselor had said had bipolar disorder when I discovered this book. I literally had a physical reaction of relief flooding through me as I read page after page describing elements of my husband's behavior that had concerned me for years: the need to live in chaos; the deification or demonization of the people in his life; the unpredicability of what would set off his anger next; and all the anger and criticism directed at me, even as he told me several times a day that he loved me. More important, it contains very useful information about what I can do to make our relationship less hellish. We have small children, so divorced or not, we in each other's lives for a long time. This book helped me to understand my now-ex better; it reminded me that his anger and threats cover a lot of pain. At the same time, it gave me clear guidelines about what I needed to do to protect myself. I had to acknowledge my own failure to set boundaries, which is crucial with dealing with this kind of problem.
The description of how a person with BPD deals with divorce was so dead-on, I joked that they had stolen it from my life.
I had come to hate and fear my ex-husband. I feared that, even after our divorce, he would continue to bully and threaten me. This book is helping me to establish a workable relationship with him.
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53 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For those facing the challenge of loving someone with BPD, March 6, 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
This is a must read. I am Anthony Walker, author of The Siren's Dance : My Marriage to a Borderline: A Case Study, a personal memoir of living with someone with BPD. Throughout my relationship I fumbled in a psychological darkness looking for answers in dealing with the difficult behaviors and situations. All the texts available at the time were heavy duty clinical texts and dealt with the condition itself. The book to help the loved ones and partners of the BPD person had not been written. This book is it. It sets out specific easy to understand guidelines, and is particularly strong with regard setting boundaries. Treatment requires not only treatment for the BPD but help for those who love them as well.
Well done Mason et al.
A. Walker, MD
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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Something to help us- Those who only cared too much", September 20, 2000
By 
Joyce Russell (Orange Co. California) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder (Paperback)
I was in a 30yr. marriage with a man who turned out to have Borderline Personality Disorder, for most of those years I had no idea just what I was dealing with. I ended the relationship last year. Even many therapists today don't understand what those of us close to people with BPD go through. I've searched for a way of healing so I can finally have a life of my own. Today, your book arrived at my home and after reading only the cover and one paragraph--I was in tears-- Now, I can start to really heal. God Bless you for writing something to help us-- those who only cared too much, and tried to love unconditionally. I first read "I hate you-- Don't leave me" which helped me understand about BPD, and I would recommend it to others searching for information. Don't go another day feeling confused and overwhelmed-- get this book, and "get your life back!" Thanks Again, Joyce Russell :):)
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