I have written and rewritten this blog post about five times. There are so many things to talk about, and so much amazing support so far. Thank you so much for reading. I’m warning you, this wont always be easy to read. It will become more painful at times, it will be sad, it will be raw, it will be brutally honest. Keep reading these posts at your own risk lol. But seriously, its going to be sad. But I hope that it opens a few eyes to living with mental illness, how to live with it, or at the very least, that if you are dealing with it, you’re aren’t in it alone.
I still have more to tell you about the abandonment fears, but I’m going to save that for another day.
When I was first told I had borderline, I read everything I could find, asked everyone I knew. I either ended up empty handed, or read horrible judgmental things about those of us with BPD. I think humans in general are super quick to judge, we see someone’s actions, and assume personality traits from them. With BPD these traits people apparently conclude sometimes, is that we are manipulative, selfish, unempathetic, just overall terrible people. And on TV? Omg, its always a fucking serial killer. I watched a show a while ago and someone accidently killed a whole town (some super power thing), and they said “Sounds like shes got borderline”. Hold up, I’m sorry EXCUSE ME? How on earth will we ever be able to openly talk about mental illness if this kind of crap is in our face all the time? And if youre reading this thinking “oh god I have no idea what borderline even is”. That’s okay. We’ll get there, you’re taking the right steps to knowing. Just be careful what you read. One of the biggest parts of someone with someone with borderline recovering (I should put in here, there is no cure, no medication, it doesn’t go away. It stays, but we can learn to live with it, and we can get to a point where we might have “traits of” rather than be in the depths of it) is community support. Love. Acceptance. Being able to talk about it. People taking the time to see you, listen and ask. I garuntee you if you talk to anyone with Borderline and trace back to their history, it all makes sense. (Or maybe it doesn’t. But it does for me). I’m getting sick of people assuming the worst in me, because out of fear, I got anxious and asked them not to leave me. There are quite a few gems who have stuck it out, known that its not me. Who take the time to see me. Once I was diagnosed, I went through every single damn friendship or relationship that went wrong and questioned whether it was my fault. All of a sudden I felt like my feelings of not belonging, of being broken, of being alone, isolated were proven to be true. It was my fault I lost all those people. I am a bad person. I am manipulative. It took me a while to get back and be able to see that no, these stigmas aren’t true. Yes, I’ve messed up, but its always a two way street. (I had a lot of help from good friends here-who will to this day remind me if I need it)
Okay, sass aside. Sometimes I dissociate. You might be thinking, wait babe (heh), what does that even mean? Oh, hold on, I’ll get there. Its probably different with everyone, but for me I have varying degrees of dissociating. It depends on the cause, and the kind of state I was in previously. Smaller degrees, I have a horrible memory, sometimes I’ll zone out like you’re average jo. Joe? Why is that even a thing? Anyway, oh, also changing the subject like that, getting distracted easily. Thats just me sometimes, I get easily excited. Sometimes its like….there’s a choice between a panic attack or dissociating, and its a flip of a coin. The worst time it happened I totally blacked out, my grandmother told me I’d gone into shock. But most of the time it feels like….slipping off a cliff. I fall for a little while, then I just sort of hover, watching myself go throughout my day. I’m not really there, I probably wont engage that much, no more than I need to to seem like I’m fine on the outside. Eventually though, I tend to snap, if triggered. It kind of feels like I’m under water, like my blood sugar is really low. Like….my body is weighed down by cement, and i’m being held under water. I hurt, I am so tired, I want to explode but cant. On the outside it sometimes is hard to tell, unless you know me. I will be really unengaging. I’ll tend to look down, not say much. I might be fidgety,or not move at all. It generally only happens in situations where a bunch of little things have piled up, and I’m not in a place I feel safe, in a large group, somewhere where I cant escape for a little bit. (Mostly in jobs I hate, when I’m at bars, meeting a lot of new people). For example…. hmm..okay. So say….I’m working my day job, (not the one Im in love with obviously). Its at a cafe, I’m constantly feeling the emotions of everyone around me. I have a running list in my head of things I need to do. I am paying attention to what I’m doing, what my coworker is doing. If theyre okay, how they feel. Plus any amount of worrying thoughts (i’m not perfect at always being mindful.), I get physical pain as I’m waiting for a surgery, if I’m overtired, hungry, have to pee, maybe I just had a really triggering text convo where my friend says “jesus, why do you have to be so sensitive”. Thats a lot, sometimes when i’m at this stage its like a kettle whistling, so much damn pressure, the slightest thing could make me so frustrated. Sometimes I just shut down. Once I’m there there is not much I can do if i’m out. If i’m home I can watch funny videos, eat, go for a walk. I can use all the coping skills. It doesn’t necessarily feel bad once I’ve sort of….slipped off or whatever clever way you want to say this. I just dont feel connected, I dont feel here, I dont feel me, I dont feel at all.
Thanks for this. Keep checking back, I’ll keep posting.
Over and out,