Does Howl from ‘Howl’s Moving Castle’ have BPD? (+3 Signs of issues)

This article will be answering if Howl has BPD. Additionally, we will be checking out some of the signs and symptoms of mental health issues that Howl depicts in the film, Howl’s Moving Castle.

Does Howl from ‘Howl’s Moving Castle’ have BPD?

No, Howl does not have BPD. Howl, one of the main characters in the film, Howl’s Moving Castle, is not confirmed to have Borderline Personality Disorder in the story. He is also not confirmed to have this personality disorder by the creators of the film.

Howl is a young wizard who lives in a moving castle, along with Markl his apprentice, and Calcifer who is a fire-demon. Sophie, a milliner, happens to meet Howl and then goes to his moving castle to break a curse that the Witch of the Waste puts on her.

The story essentially talks about the detrimental effects of war and also about the metamorphosis of Howl from an adolescent into a mature-thinking wizard. While he does have his problematic attitudes and actions, Howl does not seem to have a diagnosable mental health disorder.

Signs of Howl’s mental health issues

In the film, Howl’s Moving Castle, Howl the wizard is one of the main characters. Sophie, the other main character in the film, goes searching for Howl in his moving castle, which is powered by Calcifer, a fire demon.

Howl is a very interesting character, but shows many signs of struggling with mental health issues and emotional conflicts throughout the film. Some signs of Howl’s struggles with his mental health have been discussed in the following section.

He is obsessed with youth

The main sign that Howl is definitely struggling in his mental health is that he is completely obsessed with youth. Howl does not want to grow old, even if it is inevitable. When his hair changes color, he can be seen going through a major emotional upheaval in the film.

This obsession with youth not only follows Howl, but even the Witch of the Waste who is revealed to be Howl’s ex-lover. Just like Howl, the Witch of the Waste is also obsessed with youth and even curses young Sophie when she is jealous of her.

Everyone wants to look young, but Howl takes this to another level by changing his hair color often and putting a lot of effort into his makeup and his clothing to look younger. Such an obsession with youth can be truly problematic and is a sign of some emotional conflict.

He is not ready for responsibilities

Howl definitely has his heart and mind set on the right things and aims to put an end to the war. But, he also seems to stay away from responsibilities and always struggles with minimal burdens placed on his shoulders. This could be a sign of emotional immaturity in Howl.

He gives his heart up for Calcifer

Right from the start of the film, it is understood that Howl and Calcifer indeed share a very close bond. Later, it is revealed that Howl actually gives his heart for Calcifer, who emerges as a fallen star.

While this is certainly a beautiful thing to appreciate, it is also clear that Howl may have a savior-like complex. This not only extends to Calcifer, but even in his aim of ending the war. Fortunately for Howl, giving his heart for Calcifer turns out to be the best thing he has done.


This article has answered if Howl has BPD. Additionally, we have checked out some of the signs and symptoms of mental health issues that Howl depicts in the film, Howl’s Moving Castle.

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