Those of you who have tried to reach out to a borderline personality that has split you black, may have encountered a good deal of hostility. That is to be expected with BPs. When someone is in fierce denial of his/her disorder, the last thing he/she wants is a dose of reality. It doesn’t matter how close you think you are or were… It doesn’t matter how good your intentions are… A borderline in denial can only handle so much of the truth. Don’t be surprised if you are met with irrational, inappropriate and disproportionate rage.
Prepare to be bashed. You will see a side of your loved one that you never thought you would see- vicious, callous, and manipulative. Remember: a borderline splits you black because they perceive rejection. They will lash out at you like a wounded animal, without thought or concern. You will be tempted to think that this is just a mood that will pass like before. But once a borderline splits you black, that’s it- game over. When you confront a borderline at this phase of the relationship, they interpret it as a threat. Their intense fear of abandonment mandates that they reject you before you have a chance to reject them. Expect the borderline to block you out/cut you out without mercy.
During this post break-up period, you might wait by your phone, hoping they’ll call. And they might call you when they are feeling lonely. But be wary of any peace offerings after they have split you black. This is not the borderline snapping out of his/her splitting phase. They are using you to temporarily ease feelings of loneliness. Borderlines are always looking for some attention, especially after an upsetting break up. Even if they invite you back, you will notice that they are more prickly than usual. It will feel like you are walking on thin ice. They know you are needy and they will take full advantage of this. They may even bring you back just to kick you while you’re down. This is not a make-up. This is an extremely manipulative person using you until they can find a replacement. This is an extremely messed-up person squeezing every last ounce of blood out of you before they dump you into the trash. If it sounds harsh, it’s because it is.
Get rid of any romantic notion that true love can conquer all. You may be genuinely in love with the borderline. But a borderline’s love is shallow. You will not realize this until the borderline stabs you in the back with little or no regret. And even then, you may be in denial. Most borderline personalities are trauma survivors. That means they have the unique ability to detach themselves from you in an instant. This means the gloves will come off and you will be treated like their worst enemy.
Be very very very careful. Especially, if your loved one has a history of sexual assault. Your attempts to confront a borderline on the run may trigger those memories. And you may be seen as a potential predator. Forget whatever trust and tenderness you may have shared before. Once a borderline splits you black, you are a total stranger to him/her. This is not the same person you knew days before. That was a facade. What you are seeing at this point is the BP stripped down to his/her true nature. This is a seriously disturbed individual. Do not make the mistake of thinking otherwise, it will be to your own detriment.
Not only will splitting BPs engage in unbelievably abusive behavior, they will deny it. Or they will demonize you to justify it. And to add abuse on top of abuse, they will accuse you of the very crimes they are committing or accuse you of being the one with issues (aka projection). They will even recruit proxies to help do their dirty work for them. I have been harassed by family members, friends and people she barely even knows. There really is nothing that will prepare you for this level betrayal. But you should know what you’re getting into anyways.
Don’t try to appeal to friends or family of the borderline. You will only add fuel to the fire. Birds of a feather flock together. Borderlines are a product of their environment. So don’t be surprised if their friends and family actually approve of their disordered behavior. Don’t be surprised if they try to cover up the borderline’s tracks. Most likely, they have been doing this for much of the borderline’s life.
Some will tell you not to take a borderline’s attacks personally. I say, “nonsense!” The borderline has betrayed you. This was a person you trusted and loved. Of course, you’ll take it personally. As well you should. The borderline relationship is an addictive co-dependent relationship, you will feel the pain of withdrawal. You won’t be able to eat or sleep for days. You’ll have to force yourself to breathe. You will suffer from deep depression for months. You will have trust issues for years. You have every right to be angry at him or her. You will probably say or do things that you never thought you’d say or do. Borderlines have a talent for dragging people down to their level.
Others will say “separate the person from the disorder”. If any other person engaged in this type of abusive activity, they would be written off as a scumbag. But for some reason, our society has a soft spot for troubled people as if to say they can’t help the way they behave. Let’s assume that anyone who engages in abusive behavior is messed up. Rapists, murderers, and abusers all have some sort of personality disorder. They were all abused in one way or another. A personality disorder is an explanation, not an excuse. It is not a “get out of jail” free card.
Part of the problem is people with PDs have poor boundaries. Borderlines can sometimes be like children who do whatever they want, while ignoring the consequences. This is the result of arrested emotional development. This is the result of a chaotic and abusive environment. When you grow up watching mom and dad abuse each other, the behavior becomes hardwired into your brain. So much so, a borderline may not even realize they are abusing a partner until the partner points it out. It is up to loved ones to set boundaries. Unfortunately, borderlines are notorious for surrounding themselves with people who look the other way.
If you are a loved one, it is your obligation to intervene. If you are just sitting on the sidelines watching the borderline abuse his/her partners then you are an enabler. You are an accomplice. The addiction cliche “if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem” applies here.
The fact is borderlines do have free will. They have the ability to decide enough is enough. They can decide to get help and stop the abuse. They can stop living in denial. And those who choose to continue their abusive ways, deserve the stigma and condemnation that comes their way.