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Blog For Mental Health 2015
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Amy Wright Glenn discusses how meditation can lead to transforming painful memories or emotions from the past and using them positively in the future.
*** TRIGGER WARNING! *** Talk of self-harm.
Very in-depth article. Includes poems and accounts from BPD sufferers. Trigger warning on page.
A woman with Borderline Personality Disorder describes what it’s like to struggle with the difficulties of black and white thinking and how she deals with it every day. Her husband’s view, The Black and White Thinking of Borderline Personality Disorder, follows.
Having BPD is like having a tape recorder (yes, I’m dating myself) playing in your head 24/7, 365 days a year, every year of your life. It’s like a bunch of “voices” all at the same time constantly telling you that you’re not good enough. You can never pause it or stop it or turn the volume down on it. If you’re lucky, you can find a way to drown it out. Those ways are usually self-destructive.
If you get the proper diagnosis, you can learn DBT skills, and learn healthier ways to deal with these voices in your head. They can become a little quieter, but they may never be silenced.
The voices in my head get very overwhelming a lot of the time. I need to distract myself from them by putting on my headphones and blasting my music, until I can feel better. How soon I can feel better depends on many factors. My environment, people I’m with (family usually), how long the emotions have been building up.
My mother-in-law accused me of not thinking about supper until its time to eat. If only she knew what it’s like. You get so overwhelmed by your thoughts, you’re literally paralyzed by them, and can’t even think straight. I have a million thoughts in my head, all at the same time, from the moment I wake up, before I’m even out of bed, until bedtime.
If you’d like to read more about what a typical day is like for me, click here: https://makebpdstigmafree.wordpress.com/2013/05/03/a-typical-day-for-me/
I have been trying to explain my BPD to my mother-in-law for months. At first, she had no idea what I was talking about. But she gets a little bit more out of every conversation we have. It’s such a complex disorder to try to explain to someone who doesn’t have it. I believe they can only understand it to a point. They don’t have to live with it every day of their lives. They can only try to imagine what it must be like. At least with depression or Bipolar, you can feel better, with either time or medication or therapy or a combination of them, and the symptoms go away. With BPD, it never goes away. You can learn how to manage the symptoms, your emotions and behaviour, but it’s always going to be there, for the rest of your life. It’s absolutely exhausting! People expect too much of you. They think that, if only you’d try a little harder. They’re seeing things through their own eyes, not ours. They don’t have our brains. They think that, if you were trying as hard as you possibly can, you’d be handling things just like them, and you’d be doing so much better. They don’t realize that, you’re doing the best that you can. You’re never going to be like them. That doesn’t mean that you’re any worse than them. It just means that since your brain works differently, and they have to realize that.
When people expect too much of you, its extremely invalidating. What they need to do is validate us by saying “I don’t understand exactly how you feel, but I know that you’re doing the best you can.” This will make us feel validated and then we can get better, at our own pace. When they push us to do things that we are not capable of, that just makes us feel worse instead of better. With me, I feel very overwhelmed and paralyzed and I can’t think straight or do anything. Then they get upset with me for not doing anything, which makes me feel even worse. I feel so many things so intensely, all at the same time – anger, guilt, etc. “I’m not good enough.” I just goes into a vicious circle of negative emotions. Every time I try to explain it to my mother-in-law, she says “Oh, that must be awful!” And it is. Sure, sometimes it can be a good thing, but it’s also extremely difficult to live with.
What are your experiences with trying to explain your BPD to others? Have you had any success or not? If so, what do you find helpful? I’ve included some helpful links at the end of this post.
From BPD Central. This article describes the hallmarks of Borderline Personality Disorder, with some great examples to illustrate.
By Vickie Harley of Inside the borderline:
People like me struggle with regulating emotions, it is like being on a roller coaster you can not stop. People around you get wip lash from the swing and they often complain … but then fail to fully comprehend the internal chaos that I am going through.
For me, emotion is/was either neutral – not being happy or sad, to overpowering crazy anger that was unstoppable. My internal chaos meant that I would bottle things up and get angry at something some one did or said, until I would explode at my husband sometimes without warning.
From normal me, to super bitch me in 5 seconds is not that easy to keep up with.
Once you are stuck in emotion mind, the intense anger would spiral. I would use that as a way to make myself feel guilty, and worthless and so I would get even more angry. I would…
View original post 140 more words
Some people will never get it, no matter how many times you try to explain it to them. They are just incapable of understanding your disorder. I don’t know what to do about that, other than just try to accept it the best you can. I need to distract myself from angry feelings when that happens, which is an awful lot. It feels like they just don’t care, or else they would make more of an effort to remember that I am not like them. My brain does not work like theirs does. My favourite ways to distract myself are: going for a walk and blasting music on the headphones while playing a game on the computer or looking stuff up to keep my mind busy.
Here is an excellent video clip.
I wish people could try to understand how hard it is for those of us with BPD, and cut us some slack!
What are your experiences with this? How do you feel when it happens? How do you cope? Do you have any suggestions? Please let us know in the Comments section below. I’d love to hear from you! (Please? I’m lonely!) 😦 😆
When someone with Borderline Personality Disorder experiences guilt, it’s like a chain of thoughts, each negative thought leading to the next. What looks like a minor thing to an onlooker from the outside makes perfect sense when viewed from the perspective of the BPD sufferer. These thoughts become so ingrained in the Borderline’s brain, that it’s extremely difficult to break these chains. One of the best ways to do this is through Dialectical Behaviour Therapy or DBT.
Many times, these guilty thoughts lead to other negative thoughts and emotions, such as anger or depression. A Quiet Borderline will usually take their negativity out on themselves, whereas other Borderlines will “act out”, raging over seemingly nothing. They can feel very defensive, like they’re being attacked, even with just minor constructive criticism, because they already have all of these guilty thoughts in their head all the time. When you make that comment, it’s like the “straw that broke the camel’s back”. I know for me, all these thoughts lead to the core belief of “I’m not good enough. I’ve never been good enough. I’ll never be good enough. Why do I even bother? What’s the point of even trying? It’s never gonna work out anyway. Nothing ever does. Nothing I ever do is good enough. I don’t look good enough. Everybody hates me. Nobody cares. Life sucks!”
In an upcoming post, I will explore the thought processes and emotions related to guilt in Borderlines through my own experiences. I hope this gives you an idea of where these “outbursts” come from, when they seem to come out of nowhere, so you can better understand us.