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Psychol Bull. 2009 May;135(3):495-510. doi: 10.1037/a0015616.

A biosocial developmental model of borderline personality: Elaborating and extending Linehan's theory.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, University of Washington, USA. crowell@u.washington.edu

Abstract

Over the past several decades, research has focused increasingly on developmental precursors to psychological disorders that were previously assumed to emerge only in adulthood. This change in focus follows from the recognition that complex transactions between biological vulnerabilities and psychosocial risk factors shape emotional and behavioral development beginning at conception. To date, however, empirical research on the development of borderline personality is extremely limited. Indeed, in the decade since M. M. Linehan initially proposed a biosocial model of the development of borderline personality disorder, there have been few attempts to test the model among at-risk youth. In this review, diverse literatures are reviewed that can inform understanding of the ontogenesis of borderline pathology, and testable hypotheses are proposed to guide future research with at-risk children and adolescents. One probable pathway is identified that leads to borderline personality disorder; it begins with early vulnerability, expressed initially as impulsivity and followed by heightened emotional sensitivity. These vulnerabilities are potentiated across development by environmental risk factors that give rise to more extreme emotional, behavioral, and cognitive dysregulation. (PsycINFO Database Record

PMID:
19379027
PMCID:
PMC2696274
DOI:
10.1037/a0015616
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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