August 26, 2012
Mickey D shares more of her story:
Thank you graciously SD for welcoming my input. The second I hit send I was worried about what the ‘fallout’ might be….I’m glad I could offer a glimpse of understanding into a borderline mind. Please bear in mind that I was diagnosed 20 some years ago, I am now in my early 40′s and have had to live a life of this, in and out of therapy for several years (although it seems I only ever ran to therapy when I was in crisis, exited the minute I felt better….sheesh).
But I will tell you, the younger the borderline, the worse the situation (or should I say undiagnosed). When I was in my late teens, and met the first guy that took me out of my abusive home, when he realized he could no longer deal with me and the mental problems I was displaying (and trust me, I had no idea I was displaying mental instability, that’s how naive we are to this problem). I thought cutting, screaming, threatening suicide, spitting venom if he leaves me, was just a mere overreaction to his mentioning he needs to move out of the relationship.
I spent the next 15 years dating abusive NPD men, getting crazier by the minute because their inability to care (about anyone but themselves) or stick around, was non existant and I could NOT wrap my head around that….still can’t. This is why I’ve spent…..years…..reading and responding on ‘survivors of narcissists’….
I know what you meant when you mentioned the BPD who come running through here screaming foul play. I’ve seen the NPD run through some of the sites I visit too….and it riles me up even more. All I can say, the longer you get hooked up on trying to understand the BPD (or NPD for that matter), the more work you have to do internally from something that went bad in childhood. We are all trying to fix a core wound from our upbringing…if we could just figure out the PD, we will have it ALL figured out is our reasoning.
Again, I feel for all those who are struggling to get out from under what the BPD put you through, I know because I’ve put men through it myself. I’m not proud of it…and I truly am writing this to help you understand….not forgive….just to try and understand. Peace.
Recently, a man, by the name of Mat, asked if he could salvage his BPD relationship. He saw that Mickey D had come out a better person and thought, if only his own ex would seek treatment, he might be able to make it work. But let me say Mickey D is an exception to the rule.
A borderline has to want to get better and then they must overcome great emotional hurdles to stick with it. You are talking at least 7 years of therapy. Many borderlines can not stomach this. My own ex gave up therapy after 3 sessions, because of her fears of therapy. She would rather live a lie. For her, this was the less painful option.
Mickey D has grown into a wiser more mature woman. But age alone does not do the trick. BPD only mellows with age when borderlines find proper and healthy ways to deal with it. Denial, distractions and delusions are common coping methods, but these are maladaptive tactics.
A borderline must confront her past and her disorder with brutal honesty. She must walk across the hot coals of self-awareness before she can make it to the other side. Many BPs are not up to the task. So in evaluating your BPD relationship, you must first evaluate the borderline and yourself.
You must be in tip top shape to handle the roller-coaster ride that is before you. But chances are if you have found yourself in a dysfunctional relationship, you are not in good shape. Birds of a feather flock together. Damaged people find each other in hopes that love will save them.
But this is not true love. This is a co-dependent addiction masquerading as love. Instead of one person hurting themselves. You now have two people hurting each other.
I think we can all learn from Mickey D’s example. As she said, we all have things to work on.
August 25, 2012
Do borderlines feel remorse? That is always a popular question around here. And the answer depends a lot on who we are talking about. Is that borderline willing to accept their disorder and acknowledge the harm they have caused others? Are they strong enough to deal with the pain that comes with this kind of shame? For many BPs, the answer is no.
Self-awareness and sympathy/empathy does not come easy with a disorder that protects itself from such things. Denial prevents many BPs from recognizing the harm they have caused others. And it also prevents the borderline from getting better. This blog has witnessed borderlines that span the spectrum from those in fierce denial to those who are more sympathetic to victims of BPD.
Meet Mickey D, she has placed herself in the latter camp. This is what she had to say:
Dear SD, I’ve spent quite some time now reading through many of these replies. I am a BPD female who has struggled for years with who I am. I’ve read a lot of anger and confusion in many of these posts.
I’m not sure this will help anybody, I can only speak for myself but…..please understand, all of you who have suffered at the hands of a BPD….it is NOT your fault. If we have split you black, it’s because we feel you have rejected us somehow, or are about to, or you might abandon us (it could be something as simple as you have lost some weight, you’re styling your hair differently…we read; he’s having an affair…twisted, I know). It is our defense mechanism.
We don’t wish to cut you off, it hurts us tremendously, it’s just that we are trying to protect ourselves from the pain of getting left behind (the same way we had to cut off our abusive parent when we were young…we had to stop loving him).
If we are angry, we hate lashing out and feel great remorse and shame for acting the way we did. We come on kind again because we want your forgiveness (at the same time hoping and praying we never act in that fashion again).
If we reject your love it’s only because we truly don’t believe people can love….we don’t even really know what it is, we go through the motions (we feel like sex is showing our love, making you breakfast, cleaning the house….is ‘love’), it’s our way of giving what we think love is.
The only true, heartfelt, unconditional love I’ve ever been able to give is for my child….it’s different….they don’t hurt us, although sometimes I feel I shut my child out of my life too….and I have to get that door opened up again. But, adults (men in particular), in my mind, have the potential to wreck our lives.
Although most of the men I’ve dated in my life have been NPD….I set myself up for abandonment, these men are not capable of giving love and they run from true intimacy….it literally drives us crazy, we desperately want the ONE person who is not capable of giving us love. And suddenly, if he did, we wouldn’t want him anymore anyway because we don’t truly believe anyone can ‘love’….it’s such a viscious circle.
Am I happy with who I am??? I think so….I try to live my life accordingly, try not to abuse people with rages and verbal attacks, everyday I have to look in the mirror and remind myself to be all I am capable of being….a good mother, a good wife, don’t isolate, stay connected (if hubby gives me a hug, don’t run, hug him back for crying out loud).
It’s not easy being BPD, and again, I’m sorry for those of you who have been abused….so many women (and I speak from the female standpoint), truly have no idea what their personality disorder is, how to control it, or contain it….so we hurt everyone around us, make you go away, then feel lonely and like hell for running everyone who ‘could have loved us’ away.
I am so sorry for the pain in each of you….I know what it feels like just from loving (er, what I perceive as love) NPD men…..it’s a pain and longing for someone to be something different than what they are…we want them to be what we feel they ‘should’ be….and somehow we feel that WE are the ones (and the only ones) who can do that for them.
It’s a hard habit to break…I almost believe it’s in our DNA….but we must continue on learning about ourselves and learning to love to the best of our abilities…whatever that means to us as an individual.
Trying to let someone go who professed their love for us and acted like they truly meant it….then they push/pull us around when they feel like it…is true hell. Find your peace, if that means going for a walk and connecting with the beauty of nature and not letting the disordered individual into your mind for 20 minutes or so…do it…now. Peace.
And this was my response:
Thank you for your insight and words of wisdom. But most of all, thank you for showing us that (with a lot of work) Borderlines and Nons can be more compassionate towards each other.
Everything you said rings true. And yes, in some ways, we are very similar. That is what draws the likes of me to the likes of you. We are both easily pulled into “love” and we are both easily hurt. Maybe I will never know or understand the pain only a borderline can feel, but I get where it comes from. I know what it feels like to be abandoned/hurt by someone you loved and trusted.
I only wish more BPs were like you. I wish the words you sent me were sent to me by all the borderlines I have known. Sadly, you have something they do not. You have turned a corner and they are still hiding in shame and addicted to blame. So thank you for acknowledging our confusion and our anger. You are right, we all have some self-exploration to do.
You have restored my faith in women afflicted with BPD. I still believe in change. If you can do it, certainly any one of them can. But it takes the will to do it. Peace comes to those who are willing to seek it. It comes to those who are honest enough to own up to their past misdeeds. That takes true strength and true confidence. Not the comical bravado we have seen from the TigerBeatown clowns.
There have been so many BPs and BP enablers who have accused this blog of stigmatizing BPD when we only sought to tell the truth and share our stories. There have been so many raging borderlines who came here, looking to belittle survivors and diminish our pain in a futile attempt to discredit the truth.
So to have someone who has experienced BPD (firsthand) come here offering acknowledgment of that truth and words of solace is quite refreshing. Thank you. Again, I wish all BPs were like you.
(To those of you from TigerBeatdown- I know you’re reading this – Garland Grey, Sady Doyle, Stephanie Hallett and Mina Jade. Read the words of Mickey D and take notes. This is how you conduct yourself like a human being. She is a class act. If there were more borderines like Micky D there would be less stigma surrounding BPD. Consider this a teachable moment.)
August 23, 2012
A commenter by the name of Stanly had this to say:
I do like your style of writing, this blog is written fantastically but what you say much of the time about borderlines is quite stigmatizing as you group all borderlines together saying “they do this” and “they do that”. It’s really not fair or wise.
Well, I thank you for the initial compliment but you seem to forget that BPD is a DISORDER- meaning a condition that has negative implications. Those negative implications existed long before I started this blog. If you accuse me of stigmatizing BPD, then you should also include the entire medical community and every borderline who has ever screwed someone over.
The posts on this blog are based on my own experiences and the experiences of many more out there. These are true accounts. And in my research and conversations with other survivors, I have discovered that the info here is pretty consistent with what most partners experience. It is actually surprising how similar are experiences can be. If you have a different experience, you are more than welcome to share. Perhaps you need to spend more time thinking about the other people who are negatively effected by BPD.
I suggest it is unfair and unwise to ask people who have been emotionally harmed by borderlines to remain silent. You are punishing those who have already been punished, punishing them for speaking the truth and sharing that which is still painful. You might want to show more compassion to these victims of emotional abuse.
That being said, I often say that not all borderlines are created equal. I have encountered some BPs that have been very compassionate towards Nons. But I have also been visited by others who have been raging assholes. I admit that I am biased by my own experiences. But I have yet to meet someone who has had a good experience with BPD. So maybe you should place the blame on those borderlines who give the disorder a bad name. THEY are the ones who stigmatize the disorder. Not me.
Whilst there is an element of truth in some of the things you mention and describe you do not explain what really goes on in the mind of a borderline or WHY ‘they’ do the things ‘they’ do.
Oh? Just an “element of truth”? Those sound like the words of BPD apologist. I do explain what really goes on in the mind of the borderline. If you have read this entire blog, you would know that. The first thing I did, when my ex split me black and abandoned our relationship, was to research what goes on in the mind of a BP. I also provide links so people can do their own research.
Borderlines are not bad people, usually it’s quite the opposite as they are very empathetic people, they feel deeply and can relate to others who feel pain. They battle everyday with emotions, it is not their fault that there is no activity in some parts of their brain, and over activity in others.
I judge a person by their actions. If someone continuously and habitually commits harmful acts, they are (in my eyes) a bad person. To say borderlines are not bad people is an incredibly broad and defensive statement. Could it be you are defending yourself? And your actions?
Do I really think BPs are evil? No. But BPD is a disorder. It is recognized as a disorder that has serious consequences for those who choose to become intimate with BPs. BPs cause harm to loved ones. That is a fact. If you can provide evidence of the contrary. Please do.
As biased as I may be, I think I’m pretty fair. As you can see, I even post the opinions of those who question my ways. I have even posted the rants of rabid borderlines (minus the abusive language but sometimes including it to show abusive borderlines can be). This blog is telling the truth about BPD. Whenever a borderline abuses a loved one, they are the ones who stigmatize the disease.