Hi, I'm still new to these forums, but I want to post on this. I'll admit I'm a little nervous, since I've never written about it before and it seems some people have very harsh views of people with BPD...Anyway, last year I went to get some counselling for severe depression/anxiety issues. Normally I would never have gone, but it was affecting my relationship and I was more afraid of losing my DH than being stubborn or prideful.
First of all, I'm one of the small percentages of people who have extremely empathetic BPD. That means I feel people's pain far too strongly. I'm terrified of annoying people, or bothering people in any way. I hurt myself internally if I feel I'm doing that, and it makes me feel completely worthless...While I'm not suicidal, in extreme emotional conflict, I do have urges to cut myself. It's about releasing some of the pain I feel inside. (thankfully I've gone so many monthes without feeling this need, I can't remember when was the last time!
In addition, I feel strong guilt over social issues. When I think about how wasteful and shallow we are in developed countries, I get so depressed...and even though I try to live ethically, I can't always. I don't know where my shampoo came from, or if someone was taken advantage of to make it. I don't know what big, immoral corporations I'm supporting indirectly by making use of their products. While these don't really sound like big issues, thinking about them can actually put me in a sense of crisis that I can't deal with.
Then comes the Splitting, Black and White thinking, the All or Nothing approach that really categorizes us Borderlines! While I generally think people are basically good, when I hear of horrible crimes, etc...I start to lose hope in people and just think that humans are selfish, arrogant creatures. It's hard for me to recognize the middle ground. It's only recently that I've realized just how much Splitting has affected my life...for example, I rarely write email to friends...not because I don't want to, but because I feel I have to say *everything* So I start writing and can't stop for hours, and my emails become like novels, lol. However, if I don't write, I start to feel like a bad friend and feel guilty...it's a vicious cycle...
I don't have many close relationships...mostly because they're too stressful for me. When I love someone, I love them completely. As such, I get hurt very easily if I feel they don't care about me. Now, I realize that this is just something in me, and I don't expect too much emotionally out of other people. However, I do feel rejection strongly...just another silly example, if I post a message online like this, and nobody responds to it...I get overly sad.
I have a hard time when I disagree with someone I'm in a relationship with. I feel like they just don't understand me and then I get very frustrated. However, I don't generally take it out on the other person, I'll isolate myself internally and feel desperate, alone and terrified. It's a horrible feeling...thinking back on things that happened before DH and I were married, I must have seemed completely crazy...naked in the bathroom screaming and crying "You don't listen to me! You don't understand me!" While my poor guy desperatly tried to tell me that he was there and he was listening...there's just a point where I would *snap* and feel like everything I was believing wasn't real. I would panic, and either try to run away (girl in underwear running through the street...woohoo!) or hurt myself (DH has had to tackle me to the floor a couple times to keep me from the knives...)
The only people I've had such strong cases with have mostly been close family, or boyfriends. In general, I'm rather shy, unassuming, open and friendly. I guess I'd say I'm sweet and likeable, hehe...
I just see things through a different filter. Since starting counselling last year, I've learned soooo much about myself!! I usually know when to trust what I'm thinking, and when to know that I'm being illogical. I know when to push myself, and when to pull back. I try to set small, realistic goals for myself to avoid becoming overwhelmed. (if I clean, I need to clean *everything*, which takes a long time and is hard, so instead I do *nothing*! I'm working on being able to say, today is vacuuming. I don't really need to scrub the walls/ceiling/everything else, too!)
Therapy is really important for people like me...it helps clarify my thought processes. I get very confused otherwise and I doubt myself constantly. I get to the point where I'm basically disabled and feel disgusted with myself. I once spent 3 hours at the video store trying to decide which movie to rent...because I couldn't just pick one. I had to pick the best one, or what was the point? Finally I ended up just leaving feeling frustrated and angry with myself!
For the past 5 months I've been taking Zoloft. I was initially very opposed to medication, since I wanted to be natural. But I started it because I'm pregnant and I didn't want my anxiety to negatively affect my baby. I'm working hard to be peaceful and keep my balance. When I get upset, it often results in very physical side effects. I get terrible pains in my body, my joints get stiff, I get blisters on my tongue and my gums start bleeding! (weird, I know!) Anyway, I do eventually plan on switching to natural remedies to help with my struggles, but for now the zoloft has been working very well. I haven't had any major "freak-outs" and it's help me control my emotional vulnerability so that I don't get bone-crushingly depressed because I have to fill out a form, my friend didn't reply to my email and my DH gave me an annoyed look (when I spilled something all over the floor...)
My DH has been so terrific with supporting me! I know he loves me more than anything in the world. Sometimes we still struggle, trying to keep the balance between me feeling my opinions are right, and feeling like my opinions are completely worthless, but we're getting there! Life is about learning and growing together!
So yeah...does that give some kind of image of someone with Borderline Personality Disorder? I know I don't write things clearly...I read a funny thing once that said someone with BPD could describe themselves for hours, and you'd still have no real clue what they were like! Of course there are lots of different stories I could tell, and it's hard to stop...but if you want to talk more, just msg me
I'm really open-minded and I think we all see the world differently. BPD doesn't define me, it's just another lense colour, same as cultural lenses, gender lenses, etc! We all have challenges. I have a friend who gets very cranky when she's hungry, I know that if she seems terse, it's nothing personal and it's kinda funny. We just get her some food ASAP! My friends know me, and love me. They understand if once in awhile I withdraw from everyone, and I know that they'll be supporting me from afar, even if I don't go to them. And when I get better, they're there waiting to give me a big hug and remind me how much they love me!!
So there it is, the most personal thing I've ever written!
It's an accomplishment of sorts!