A neurobiologically informed approach to a very difficult-to-treat disorder.
This book addresses one of the fundamental, understudied issues of borderline personality disorder (BPD): dissociation and a lack of sense of self. Exploring dissociation from developmental, neurobiological, and behavioral perspectives, Russell Meares presents an original theory of BPD, offering new insights into this debilitating disorder and hope for recovery.
Russell Meares is a professor emeritus of psychiatry at Sydney University. He lives in Australia.
"This excellent book, the culmination of a distinguished career, is vital for anyone seeking to understand the extreme mental suffering of what we currently call BPD. Drawing from neuroscience, historical scholarship, psychological research, and clinical observation, Russell Meares offers an erudite, compassionate account of the 'painful incoherence' at the heart of this disorder. By synthesizing both left- and right-brain data into a useful narrative, which is also a pleasure to read, he demonstrates on a grand scale the integrative process that nourishes us all and agonizingly eludes individuals with borderline psychologies." -- Nancy Williams, PhD, Rutgers Graduate School of Applied & Professional Psychology "This highly readable, brilliant book is a true masterpiece in the contemporary study of psychopathology. Russell Meares's original and evidence-based account of the core of borderline personality disorder convincingly explicates its dissociative nature and its relationships with impulsivity, hindered mentalization, and traumatic memories. Meares offers clinicians a unique understanding of the borderline patient's affects and inner experience of self, thereby laying the foundation for highly effective therapeutic exchanges." -- Giovanni Liotti, M.D., APC School of Psychotherapy, Rome, Italy "With this fascinating book, Professor Russell Meares has created a magnificent piece of work, based on the premise that Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a 'failure of personal synthesis.' Understanding this integrative failure is essential in the treatment of patients suffering from this incapacitating biopsychosocial disorder. Starting with the pioneering studies of Hughlings Jackson, Pierre Janet, and William James, Meares thoroughly examines the theoretical, scientific, and clinical evidence for his model of BPD. The book's great value surpasses the domain of BPD proper and should attract a much wider readership than BPD specialists only." -- Onno van der Hard, PhD, Emeritus Professor of Psychopathology of Chronic Traumatization, Utrecht University, The Netherlands "From PTSD and borderline personality to distancing procedures and emotional responses to trauma, this is packed with insights any analyst can use." -- Midwest Book Review "[A] fascinating and easy-to-read book, by an author with broad clinical experience and scholarship, who has been working with patients with BPD for over 30 years and has conducted an amazing number of empirical studies in this field. . . . The history of dissociation . . . is presented in a fascinating way, intermingled with sketches of patients treated by the author. This blending of historical and clinical knowledge will make the book interesting for both researchers and clinicians. . . . I would recommend this volume to both psychiatrists and psychotherapists." -- Journal of Psychiatric Practice "These two companion volumes together make a remarkable and original contribution to the theoretical and clinical literature on borderline personality disorder (BPD). . . . [T]his is the most comprehensive, evidence-based, and theoretically integrated model of BPD that I have read." -- Journal of Analytical Psychology "This new book by Meares is a significant contribution to the BPD field, and reinforces the importance of narrative telling in the co-creation of self and other within psychotherapy." -- Psychotherapy in Australia "Meares does an excellent job of integrating the relevant brain/neuroscience research . . . There are compelling hypotheses drawn . . . very thought-provoking. . . . I would recommend these two books to anyone who works with borderline patients. . . . [O]utstanding for the researcher/theoretician and is thought-provoking for the clinician as well." -- The National Psychologist