I was talking to a friend last night and was explaining my BPD.
Here’s an easy way for me to explain it:
I have an intense fear of abandonment, whether real or imagined. In my mind, people who get too close too often leave. Currently, I’m in a healthy relationship. But when he gets upset with me, he’s going to leave me, because I messed up. Even though I know he’s not going anywhere, he’s going to leave me. He’s getting too close to me, so he’s going to leave me. I don’t have best friends, because they get too close and learn me, and then they leave me. It seems like, most of the time, I push people away. Why have people close to you, if they’re going to leave anyway?
It comes from a long history of emotionally abusive relationships, ranging from a motherly figure who would withhold love, affection, acceptance, and emotional justification; to boyfriends who just used me and raped me; and a cheating, alcoholic ex husband. It’s annoying and painful, because I have to decide what’s real, what’s not. And it’s not always easy.
That’s why I’m so messed up, and that’s why I’m so hard to love. I question everything. Every action, every word, and that bothers people.
My past has a lot to do with who I am today. Especially with this disorder, the past makes a huge play. So, let’s explore the past…
1. Motherly figure who would withhold love, affection, acceptance and emotional justification.
Donna, (often referred to as Bitch, in earlier posts) was/is legally my mother. I was raised with my mom and Donna. Donna legally adopted me when I was about 2 years old. Basically, I was a present, from my mom to her barren girlfriend. (I’m still not over that, but I don’t hold it against Mom, I love her with all my heart.) Anyhow, so when I was 2, this nut adopted me. I was raised knowing that she was my Mommy. (Not a comforting thought at this point.) She raised me to stand up for myself, and expect a lot of myself, be there for people, but don’t let people walk all over me (unless it was her doing the walking.) When I got older, of course, things changed. I was a slightly rebellious teen. But I wasn’t a bad girl. I didn’t do drugs or anything. But I got tired of taking crap all the time from Donna. I was tired of never being good enough, not being lovable, not being treated like a person. She could never say that she loved me, she couldn’t initiate a hug, she couldn’t do anything to show affection. She would invalidate my feelings. And when I didn’t do what she wanted, she would withhold love, she would shut down and not talk to me. My feelings didn’t matter. It was always about her.
I am glad that I’m out of that situation. But, because I got used to how she was treating me, I deal with everything like I used to. When people get mad at me I shut down. I want to hurt myself. I want to die. I want to run away. One mistake makes me feel like I can’t do anything right, that I’ll never be good enough. I know that’s not true, and that it’s an intense reaction, but that’s why I’m here talking about this. One of the symptoms of BPD is intense emotional reactions…
2. Boyfriends that just used me and raped me.
He was very stuck up. We dated for 2 years before we both finally had enough of each other. But after we broke up, he was always trying to get me back. One day, he wanted to “talk”. Talking led to kissing. Kissing led to him pealing my clothes off. Clothes off led to rape. But he’s still “sorry that [I] took it that way.”
Used me to get out of his parents’ house. He was in a physically abusive family environment. With me, he was free. We got engaged. I went to college, he cheated on me. We broke up. We got back together. We got engaged again. We got married. Things went to shit.
3. Cheating, alcoholic Ex-Husband:
Things went to shit, like I said. It wasn’t enough that he cheated on me when I went off to college. He had to look for people on craig’s list while he was away on business…But he swears “nothing happened”.
One time, he used weed every day, because he couldn’t deal with life. Then, when he turned 21, he started drinking hardcore. He was drunk almost every night, and then he took sleeping pills.
We worked different shifts. He had to have had people over. He met a new girl, and kicked me out. She’s pregnant now. Ok…
He would invalidate my feelings. I was “making things up” or “overreacting.”
I’m trying to be better, but conditioning is hard to unlearn. There are several therapies out there, I just haven’t found the one that works for me yet.
I guess I’m still working on me 🙂