January 21, 2011
I was looking for more insight into why some borderlines cling onto denial. I found it in a forum thread named “Mourning for the days of ignorance“, written by a poster who goes by the name Masquerade:
Does anyone else feel this way? l am in the middle of a long and arduous therapy and it has been helpful in teaching me self awareness. l have HPD and cyclothmia and l am certain l have borderline traits too.
Before my therapy, when l lived in ignorance of my condition, life was sometimes difficult but l did not have the knowledge or the stigma of my disorders and lived in blissfull ignorance and life seemed to be so much simpler then. Now that l know l have the disorder/s and have it re inforced by reading about others here who think and behave in similar ways to myself l have actually become more depressed, even though l am now more self aware and can see the patterns in my behaviour and am learning ways to unthink them. lt is as if l am no longer in denial about myself, but not being in denial any longer is PAINFULL !!!!! My therapist has said that this is a necessary part of my recovery because l am facing up to all the pain in my past and not repressing it by acting in personality disordered ways or shifting the blame onto others etc etc, but l wonder if it is all worth it because of the level of pain l am now experiencing?
l feel as if l am mourning for the me l was before l started my therapy, who had learnt to deny, repress the pain by shifting it onto behaviour that was maladaptive. l am also mourning for the blissfull ignorance of the disorder/s and now that l know for sure that l have them l am no longer in denial but it HURTS LIKE CRAZY to be confronted with the stark reality of life. l am no longer in denial about other things, like my poor relationships with certain people or the fact that my husband’s job is insecure and to worry about the realities of daily life is a new one for me but l suppose it is the first step towards taking steps to confronting them head on, something l never did before, when l remained in that childlike state of blissfull ignorance and dependency. l am having to stand on my own two feet for the first time in my life and the enormity of it all is pretty scarey.lf this is what “recovery” is, is it such a good thing? l lived in a safety net before my therapy and l am under no illusions that the journey ahead is going to be a rocky one. lt’s as if l have reached a point of no return now and can’t go back to my former self, even if l want to. l accept that l have a disorder and l know that is the first step to recovery, but the world of adults an normality seems to be a very scarey place to be.
Does anyone understand where l am coming from?
It sort of reminds me of the movie The Matrix, where the general population lives in ignorant bliss, an imaginary world created by artificial intelligence. In stark contrast, the real world is a harsh post-apocalyptic landscape, where people can bleed and feel pain. There is one scene where the Judas-like character is eating a steak. And even though he knows the steak isn’t real, he savors the bite. He agrees to betray his friends, just so he can return to a state of ignorant bliss.
A borderline too will betray his/her lover to return to a state of ignorant bliss. There was a time when I thought my borderline ex had crossed over into self-awareness with me. I was looking forward to her recovery and willing to stand by her in the process. I truly believed that she would keep her promise to work on herself. But in the end, the reality of borderline personality disorder was too much to bear.
So she detached herself from the emotional bond we had worked so hard to establish. She demonized me to justify her betrayal. I went from being the Chosen One to being Satan himself. A borderline in denial can actually be very self-righteous about stabbing someone in the back. My only crime- I had lead her into reality, and it was too much for her. So she betrayed me and ran back into her imaginary world. In an instant, she turned from trusted lover to a ruthless Judas.
She has now found someone who she can live with in ignorant bliss, someone who lives in the Matrix. Someone who is willing to play along with the charade. Someone who won’t insist that she get help or examine herself. You see, she grew up in a family that lives in denial. This is her comfort zone.
Like the Judas character in the Matrix, she couldn’t care less if the world is real or not. Ignorance is bliss. But while the citizens of the Matrix are living in bliss, the evil forces of BPD are still at work. While you live in bliss, the real you is slowly decaying and the world around you is being destroyed. In reality, a borderline in denial is dying from the inside-out.
November 8, 2010
The other day I saw an interview with Tom Sizemore. If ever Mr. Sizemore acted like a drunk asshole, he redeemed himself in the interview when he made an impassioned plea for, friend and fellow actor, Charlie Sheen to check himself into rehab. Joining the plea was Robert Downey Jr. and Martin Sheen (all three are recovered alcoholics). Whether Charlie knows it or not, he’s a lucky man to have loved ones intervene like this.
It made me think about people who suffer from borderline personality disorder. Especially those who live in denial of their disorder. Like addicts, BPs in denial are resistant to change and avoid therapy. Like addicts, their lives are filled with never-ending drama and tragedy, directly or indirectly related to their disorder. But somehow they never make the connection. I say Charlie is lucky, because many addicts and BPs do not have this kind of support.
Most BPs surround themselves with other troubled souls. Just as an alcoholic surrounds him/herself with drinking buddies, BPs surround themselves with people from broken families and people who struggle with intimacy/infidelity. Birds of a feather flock together and enable each other to continue dysfunctional behaviors. Parents of BPs in denial sometimes act as accomplices by covering up their loved one’s disorder. When a BP acts out, BP enablers look the other way or dismiss it. It’s incredibly frustrating to see friends and family of BPs sit on the sidelines and do nothing. You want to shake them and ask them how much more crap needs to happen to their loved one before they decide they need to intervene.
November 1, 2010
As I said in the comment section two posts ago, the difference between treated borderlines and untreated borderlines is remarkable. I’m not even talking about someone who’s been cured after years and years of therapy. I’m talking about someone who is still going through the eye of the storm, but has taken full responsibility for her condition. Someone who has done research on her condition and sought to make amends for past misdeeds:
I had so much guilt for the shit I put one of my ex boyfriends through, it haunted me. It was on my mind from the moment I woke up. Finally, I got the courage to apologize. I don’t know if he took it sincerely or even took a moment to think about it, but it felt better.
An untreated BP would find it difficult, if not impossible, to apologize for hurting someone. They might not even realize they have done something wrong. But the woman above made a choice. A commitment to make life better for herself and her loved ones. It’s this choice that makes all the difference. If you read her blog, you’ll see she is still going through the ups and downs of BPD. But she’s aware of her thoughts and the consequence of her actions. More importantly she’s talking about it. She’s not in denial. She’s not blaming someone else. She’s holding herself accountable:
I now understand the reasoning behind my constant infidelity with all my previous relationships. I could never stay. I wanted something new and even now, it’s a hard thing to keep control of. I can totally understand the reason for the suicide outcomes being so high. It’s a constant battle in your mind and you so desperately want people near, but in return get scared. Then your behaviors are so outrageous or unpredictable, over time people cannot tolerate them.
Running away isn’t going to solve anything. Jumping from one broken relationship to another won’t make things better. You have to make things better. No one said it would be easy. But things do get better. It takes a lot of courage to change but there’s no other way.
October 28, 2010
In a recent interview, his holiness was asked what the key to happiness was. (What else are you going to ask him?) According to the DL, it isn’t educational success or financial success. The key to happiness is compassion, empathy for other human beings. I guess this isn’t a real shocker. He is the Dalai Lama after all. He’s not going to say that it’s all about the Benjamins. Even though most of his buddies are rich Hollywood types. Is the DL over-simplifying life? Probably, but maybe simplifying life is the key to happiness too.
But he makes a good point. If you’re the type of person who treats people badly, you’re probably not a very happy person. If, in your pursuit of success, you leave people in your wake then you are creating an aura of misery. And misery always finds a way of coming back to you. Your conscience always finds a way of haunting you. Karma is a bitch. That’s my quote, not the Dalai Lama’s.
October 22, 2010
I just read an article, where a film director/friend said Lindsay was not happy about being ordered to rehab. Awww. Dear Lindsay, just be glad you weren’t sentenced to prison time. Instead you get to spend time in lovely Rancho Mirage. But Lindsay wanted everybody to know how rough she has it and that she is “not at a spa”. You’re not suppose to be happy my dear LiLo, you’re suppose to be sober. You should thank the judge for saving your life. But Lindsay is complaining that this stint in rehab will cause her financial hardship. She has money for a limitless supply of Blow, but she doesn’t have money to clean up her life.
I’m sure emotionally distraught individuals will accuse me of amateur speculation, but it’s pretty obvious that LiLo is a classic Borderline/Histrionic Personality. The common signs are all there: cutting of wrists, substance/alcohol abuse, cheating parent, wild behavior, hyper/confused sexuality, mood swings, attention-seeking, weak moral boundaries, and clearly self-victimization.
Lohan is outperforming her BPD idol Marilyn Monroe as far as behind-the-scenes drama is concerned. (Above pic- Lohan doing her best Marilyn impersonation). Sadly, the media is content to portray LiLo as a Hollywood girl gone wild, but makes no attempt to get to the root of her behavioral problems.
So what’s the moral of this story? No amount of beauty and glamor can cover up a personality disorder. The more wealthy and successful a BP is, the more excuses they have for why they avoid rehab/therapy. Though advocacy groups like to say that people with BPD know what’s best for themselves. They are flat out wrong.
Left to their own devices, a BP always chooses to repeat destructive patterns. BPs are notorious for ignoring the mountain of evidence suggesting they are not well. Even Lohan’s dysfunctional father has pleaded for LiLo to get help. It is usually not until a BP faces death, the prospect of losing a loved one, or a court order, that they finally get some help. But even that is not a guarantee.