(Handing my blog over to the lovely Fiona today to share with you a little of what it’s like to live with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). May is BPD Awareness Month. Help eliminate the stigma and raise awareness of this serious condition by educating yourself and others.)
It’s harder if you care.
It causes me to drive you away. Please. I’m not worth it. Not worth your affection. All I’m going to do it hurt you and frankly fuck up your life, so get out now while you still can.
Fatal Attraction. Mad Love. Girl, Interrupted. Prozac Nation.
Choose your film.
Girls with BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder) are messed up, and are going to screw up your life.
At least that’s the media’s angle.
We’re way more likely to screw up our own.
What did this mean for me?
30 years old. My partner is my high school sweetheart. I’m a Speech Pathologist. I just got my masters in Inclusive education. I work with kids with disabilities in a specialist autism school.
And yet, I’m suicidal.
Regularly self harming. Cutting and drinking.
Sleeping around. Lies.
Trying to get my partner to break it off. Desperately.
And yet he won’t. He still loves me. Sees the good in me. Wants to help me.
We set boundaries. Well, he sets them , I agree.
And then break them.
He doesn’t know I’ve resumed my Bulimic behaviours. Enough to get a dual diagnosis.
That there’s more than he ever knew.
I ran away.
It was all I knew how to do.
I needed an out.
He broke it off. And he took me to hospital.
And got me help.
They diagnose Borderline Personality Disorder.
- Frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment. Note: Do not include suicidal or self-mutilating behaviour covered in (5).
- A pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships characterized by alternating between extremes of idealization and devaluation. This is called “splitting.”
- Identity disturbance: markedly and persistently unstable self-image or sense of self.
- Impulsivity in at least two areas that are potentially self-damaging (e.g., spending, sex, substance abuse, reckless driving, binge eating). Note: Do not include suicidal or self-mutilating behaviour covered in (5).
- Recurrent suicidal behaviour, gestures, or threats, or self-mutilating behaviour.
- Affective instability due to a marked reactivity of mood (e.g., intense episodic dysphoria, irritability, or anxiety usually lasting a few hours and only rarely more than a few days).
- Chronic feelings of emptiness.
- Inappropriate, intense anger or difficulty controlling anger (e.g., frequent displays of temper, constant anger, recurrent physical fights).
- Transient, stress-related paranoid ideation or severe dissociative symptoms.
I fit this well.
Impulsive. Suicidal. Self harming. Bulimia. Not knowing who I am.
I have a long history of needing to be perfect. To not upset others. To be what someone else wants me to be. No matter what that is.
I play to the role. I can be whoever you want me to be, I just wish I knew who I wanted to be.
Not sustainable in the long run.
Today I am in twice weekly therapy through the centre for psychotherapy in Newcastle. Not all health systems have such a service, but you should look.
We’re working on me accepting me as a valid person. As having feelings, and THAT IS OKAY. Knowing where they come from. And knowing how I respond. In an aim to respond less extremely next time.
Accepting. And growing.
Technically I’m a functional adult.
I work. I study. I date. I’m a great friend and family member.
I just still melt down occasionally. All too much…
Borderline Personality Disorder can be managed. We can learn to accept and love ourselves.
It just takes time
Read more about BPD