Realizing that you're unhappy most of the time, but you don't want to be, is your first step at getting help.

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), approximately 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. or 43.8 million experiences mental illness in a given year. Do you or someone you know exhibit the following symptoms?

  1. Frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment by friends and family.
  2. Unstable personal relationships that alternate between idealizations of, "I love you!" and "I hate you!"
  3. Distorted and unstable self-image which affects moods, values, opinions, goals, and relationships.
  4. Impulsive behaviors that can have dangerous outcomes like excessive spending, unsafe sex, substance abuse, or reckless driving.
  5. Self-harming behavior including suicidal threats or attempts.
  6. Periods of intense depressed moods, irritability or anxiety lasting a few hours or a few days.
  7. Chronic feelings of boredom or emptiness.
  8. Inappropriate, intense, or uncontrollable anger often followed by shame or guilt.
  9. Disassociative feelings like disconnecting from your thoughts or sense of identity, or even 'out of body' type of feelings and stress-related paranoid thoughts.

The title of EJ's tune, "What Am I" is all about suffering from BPD:

My 33 son, Ethan (EJ), has exhibited all 9 of these symptoms, and was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder 14 years ago. If you ask him about it, he will tell you it's HELL ON EARTH until you get some help, and there is help available. It wasn't until 7 years after he was diagnosed with BPD that he finally came to me and said:

Dad, I need some help. Everyday I wake up and I'm in a horrible mood that lasts all day, everyday. What can I do? Where can I go to not feel this way anymore!?

If you need some help right now, click on the NAMI website. If you're in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 where a trained professional is available to help 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. To locate treatment services in your area, call 1-800-662-4357 which is the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Treatment Referral Hotline. If you're too freaked out, have an understanding family member or friend make the call for you. You can do this!