Since this board is only for patients, call me Dunsten. I'm checking in. Hello again. I've been on the lam...laying low...hiding out...cheesing it. Actually, I've been living with my son for the past several weeks (almost month)waiting for him to get comfortable with the idea of me being alone. The first week wasn't happening after he, my BPD SO, threatened to kill my son. The second week I had Temporary Orders and a court date the following week. The third week I found out he'd hired a top gun, but he still had the nerve to show up at court pretending to be a cripple; in fact he did his best to imitate me. Is that anywhere in the PBD book? By the way, for the record it is possible to be BPD and be in relationship with a BPD, ergo I'm Dunsten.
I've checked into my solitary confinement luney bin for the BPD which has me bouncing off the walls. We aren't designed to be alone, are we? I just realized that I could do "alone" when my son was small because he was there. But I've never done alone alone. Not for an extended period. Any ideas on how to survive this will be most appreciated and welcomed.
Yes, imitation is in the BPD handbook.... anything that will garner attention...preferrably good attention....but not always....there are some recent newsworthy BPD's...Columbine, and Virginia Tech among them.
Sorry to hear of your confinement, but it may be best for your own safety. Being safe is of paramount importantce.
Thanks for the encouragement. It's good to hear from both of you. I hope you had a good Thanksgiving. I did; it was good to be with the kids again. I know they're too cramped in their little house to have me on a full-time basis, but I hope they don't mind me being around more.
Today was okay, too, with the mad holiday shopping frenzy, until I accidentally almost ran into my husband. I think I found a new gear on my car when I saw his car. I've gotta find a new place to shop.
You know I've been sitting here thinking about it since I hit the POST button, and I know I've been okay the past couple of days because I've been out with other people. But most days I don't have the health or energy to go out. I was forcing myself to do it for so long in spite of my health, that I dug myself into a hole.
Those are the days that, although my body says a difinitive "NO", my mind after while starts going wild with the need for contact. In my youth when this situation presented itself, I would simply fix myself up and go out with my gilrfriend(s) and find a new "relationship" to fill the void. That guy would be just fine for a while maybe, if we hit if off, but as soon as he did something wrong or I felt threatened in any way by his actions, he was dismissed.
My husband is the longest relationship I've ever had with another human being outside of related family and my best girlfriend. Sadly, I can't help but wonder now if we didn't feed off of each others' sickness. It wasn't all that obvious at first when I was out working all the time, at least to me then. I'm getting twenty-twenty hind-sight. I'll give him credit though, of the two of us, he was overwhelming the champion at rage and rejection.
Oh well, stick a fork in me; I'm done. Night ya'll.
Very nice self diagnosis...are you serious about it?
Thank goodness, he didn't see you.
You have come this far, you will work things out.....
Yes, I'm serious...as a heart attack. That's the thing about being physically handicapped, it's given me a whole new perspective and a lot of time to think about life. While I was trying to survive what I now know to be my husband's BPD episodes and wondering what what going on, I was really seeking understanding about him and his illness. Initially I didn't even know what to call it. It's only because of some books and this board that I learned what I believe he has.
But when I really got into studying the meat of the material I'd picked up at the bookstores, I started seeing me reflected on those pages, too. I had to go back and take stock of all that had happened between my husband and me to make sure I hadn't been projecting any or at least not too much. But as I did this, I went over some things I had made record of through the last few years of some particularly bad times. I couldn't the deny hard evidence or confuse it with projecting. I also paid particular attention to his building BPDisms and was extremely careful to stay focused in reality myself as the days passed.
I don't believe I went off half-cocked into BPD-land through any of this with him, but I'm finding myself very edgy since coming back to this empty house. I think I did pretty well all the way until now. The last time I had an empty house was 1972 and then I had a parade of boyfriends until I met my son's father.
I want you to know, Lil, if it hadn't been for you and some of the things you've said, I don't know if I would have had the courage to face it and say, "Me too." I tried really hard to deny it at first, because it's a hard thing to admit. I still have to tell my therapist the next time I see her. I'm telling you this so you can make me accountable for telling her. I haven't been seeing her very long so she doesn't really know me. But I just wanted to say, "Thank you," to you.
Perhaps as a senior citizen I will finally be able to find the peace of mind that has elluded me much of my life. They say knowledge is power and I also have every hope and much faith for the future. I don't believe I was brought this far to get dropped on my head. The best of my life is still in front of me.
Listen, if I come back here any time within the next year and tell you there is someone else in my life, just reach through your computer and slap me, will ya? or short-circuit my keyboard? something?
Thanks, Lil. Will do. I'll let you slap me around right now a little to get me out of this funk. I feel like the weather here--cold and rainy.
I've been so depressed and so out of energy since I got back from shopping Friday, I haven't even showered. It's been all I can do to get out of bed and feed the dog in the mornings. I sit on the computer all day trying to sort out my life or run away from it, I'm not sure. Even before I moved back home, I spent too much bidding on some antiques. And I know I probably spent too much on the kids for Christmas. I've got it all spread out in the living room looking at me and I'm trying to decide what if anything, I should return before the holidays.
Then there's my nightly pig-out on sweets...ice cream and candy of late. I either forget to eat or over-eat the wrong things these days. When I was a kid from 13 to 16 years old, I was anorexic and bullemic before anyone knew what they were, so I'm very aware of these two things and my tendencies. I'm skating on thin ice right now, but I'm not in the drink yet.
My attorney is expecting me to complete another 50-page report and get that back to him this week and I feel overwhelmed by it. I don't even want to look at it.
On top of everything else, I've got a sweet little man in India who's counting on me to help raise funds to buy blankets, rice and medicines for the poor in Orissa and Andrha Pradesh for Christmas, but I couldn't even get my butt out of the house today to work on this and this would have been a prime day to do so. The people at my church are usually very generous toward the poor.
My husband used to tell me that I was useless and a looser all the time and right now, I have to agree with him. I feel about as useful as a milk bucket under a bull. My mother used to tell me when I got in these "funks" to just snap out of it and put my chin up and pull myself up by my bootstraps. I wish it were that easy.
The last time I went through a relationship break-up, I quit my job, went back to my mother's for a while to care for her (she was ill), then I started collecting vintage Barbie dolls and traveling the country doing the trade shows. It was a wonderful and exciting experience, but I was so far in debt after six months that I had no choice but to return to work and dig myself out of the hole I got myself into financially.
Now I'm in a huge hole because of this house and my health and I've only dug a bit further in rather than being more cautious. I hope and pray that I make it through this without having to declare bankruptcy and/or loosing the house.
Well, that's a lot to chew. I think I'll leave it there for now then.
My mother used to tell me when I got in these "funks" to just snap out of it and put my chin up and pull myself up by my bootstraps. I wish it were that easy.
Our families must know each other.....if I had a dollar for every time this has been said to me, I'd be rich.
The reason you're "useless", is because you've had the breakup of a relationship, and the realization that you have a mental disorder. Quite a bit to deal with, all at once don't you think?
My Mother had another saying...."be kind to yourself." You are going through a huge ordeal. Expect a bit of fall out. That's how we end up like this...we don't allow for fall out.
I would deal with the most important things first...the lawyers report maybe?
If I were going through what you're going through, I would be in what I call "Survival Mode." This mode is where I do what has to be done to get through the day....nothing more. Food, shelter, and whatever else I deem to be the most important tasks to accomplish.
Everyone else is told that I am sick, and cannot do whatever it is that they want done.....I'm very sorry. End of story. No guilt.
Believe it or not, you are Superwoman right now, just keeping your head above water.
You need all your energy to help yourself right now.....I am very apologetic, but firm, when in "Survival Mode."
I got slapped pretty hard after I posted yesterday. I checked on my friend and neighbor who's been fighting a metatastic skin cancer for over a year only find out that she had died at 9:00 P.M. the night before. But she'd been doing better the last I'd heard a few days ago. Her blood count was better and they were encouraged because the doctors were continuing the chemo. It's so awful. Her youngest two won't even remember her in a few months and her oldest will have a hard time remembering after a while. They are so young.
I hear what you are saying. Yes, of course, I need to concentrate on one thing at a time and prioritize right now. That 50-page monster would be priority one. I'm going to dedicate myself to it today and however many days it takes to get it done.
Yes, you're right, of course. I don't cut myself much (any) slack. That's something my husband either understood and didn't care or didn't understand...it doesn't matter at this point anyway, but mother was the same. The times they were hyper-critical of me and I was down on me, they only reinforced my negative feelings toward myself and drove me to inaction. If I was feeling good about myself, they reinforced my negative feelings about them and drove me to action, i.e. running away, getting a job, moving to my own apartment, up the corporate ladder, late hours and weekends at the office, anything to keep me away from him and give me respite.
So, Survival Mode, it is. Food and shelter, for the dog and me, and complete the report this week...those are my objectives...and the funereal. And tell my therapist. My list is growing. But I have to get through this because court is next week and the lawyer says he needs to produce the document before we go to court.
I'll let you know how it goes with the therapist and all this week. Thanks for being here, my friend.
Did you ever feel ignored or invisible or like the words you were saying must have been in a foreign language? I tried to tell my therapist today, but I don't think she believed me. She seems to feel that I'm just really depressed.
But from everything I've read, I'm pretty much a classic case. I'd consider changing therapists, but I can't afford to just now. Perhaps in time she will see as she comes to know me better.
I'll grant you, I've matured a lot over the years and don't act out or behave as impulsively as I did as a youngster, but it's not for lack of desire. I'm still quite capable of getting myself in trouble. I so very much want to find me, the well and whole me, the one who isn't dependent on a man or any other person or job for her self-worth. I don't want to have to second-guess myself everytime I have a thought or emotion or feel like I'm in another world. Do you know what I mean?
My friend's funereal is day after tomorrow. Tomorrow I'm going out to the attorney's office to dig through my file and try to finish filling out this 50-page document as best I can. It's daunting. I don't even understand some of what it's asking...legalese. What, they can't speak English to the client?
Aw, gees, look at that. It's almost 8 o'clock and I forgot to eat again today. Guess I'll go and rustle up some grub.
Thanks for the pep talk. The one thing I figured out about attorneys is that they write this drivel in language only they can understand (hopefully) in order to charge us all big bucks to decifer it and make everything sound official (and officious dependent on where and who you are in the situation). They could be more helpful by bringing it down a notch when dealing with their client, but that's not what gets them paid.
Now as for your speculation/observation about therapists acknowledging patients' self-diagnosis, I can certainly understand that having gone through similar experiences with physicians concerning my health problems. So I guess this should come as no surprise. After all they spent years and put a lot of effort into going to school so they could be the one to diagnose patients, not have the patients diagnose themselves.
I'm in a much better place...it's morning. I'm still daunted by the task at hand, but I will get through it because I have to. I wish I could tell you everything I'm thinking, but it would take too long. I just believe that there is a plan for my life and I'm going to get through all of this. The therapist did tell me about a book that she wants me to read along these lines, so we'll see if it sheds some light on my path. I ordered it yesterday and hopefully will have it in a few weeks.
Must now go do paperwork nose to the grindstone and all that. By the way, you always seem to be in a good place when you're here on the Board. I hope that's true of your life and that you've found a good place.
Actually, my problems have just done a switch from mental to physical. I was diagnosed with latent TB, just a few weeks ago....(I was going to school to be a Personal Support Worker, and had to have a TB test...it was positive....who knew?) I went on INH therapy for 4 days, O/D'd on it, and it looks like I now may have heart/stroke issues. Never a dull moment.
Mentally, I am in a good place...I have done a lot of work to get here. Most of it revolved around other people's expectations, which impacts directly on self worth.
I more or less don't care what anyone thinks of me, or what I do, and I'm a much happier person for it.
This of course is a big issue for BPD's.
It didn't happen overnight, of course.
This is where there's a big advantage to living alone. You aren't listening to anyone else's critique of you, constantly. Gives you time to figure out who you really are, and not who you SHOULD be.
Anyway, it's 1:00 and I should go to bed.
I hope you read this, and are ok...please let me know
I'm so sorry to hear about your health problems. Gees, what does your doctor say about your heart/stroke issue? and the TB? It's awful when your health goes south on you. I'll keep you in my prayers.
Well, I did the best I could with that 50-page monster for the attorney and he called me in to see him yesterday to prepare for the hearing this morning. He also discussed what I might agree to in order to attempt a settlement of sorts to get maintenance out of my husband while we wait to go to court on the divorce. So I was all primed for today again and then he called me at 4:00 P.M. and said the hearing had been continued again until next Monday because my husband's $500/hour mouthpiece was in trial in another matter, but they would go ahead with the negotiations on the settlement and continue the TRO and Protective Orders.
I'm not sleeping anymore. I manage a couple of hours in the recliner in front of the tv and then I'm up the rest of the night. I did better for awhile, but now I'm back eating things I shouldn't, even things I'm allergic to, so I'm not breathing well and my face and chest are bumpy with a rash. But what can I say? I'm craving this stuff!
My attorney wants to allow my husband to come in here and take what is listed on the inventory from his prior divorce and his personal items. This is probably one reason I'm not sleeping. I so do not want him here and I just so want this initial hearing to be over and some support money to start coming in. Or just have the whole thing over with so I can get on with life and sell or rent both houses while I go move into a cheep apartment or condo...something I don't have to maintain.
I haven't felt this bad since I found out that my husband in 1989, had committed suicide. I'd kicked him out because I discovered he was using drugs. Then his first wife came and got his two boys and took them away from him. A few days later I found out he'd also been messing around and confronted him on that. A few weeks later, he lost his job and a few days after that I got a call that he was dead. That really sucked, ya know? I blamed myself for a long time, but I didn't know what to do at the time. He was giving my kid drugs! I was just trying to protect my son.
That's one for you. I put him on a pedistal when I first met him. So did everyone else who met him. He was very charming...just like this one, in that regard. That's where I put all of my guys, right up on top of the pedistal and I keep pushing them back up there in spite of themselves until they break my heart so badly by abusing me, running around on me, hurting my son, or walking out on me so that I can't push them back up there any more.
Now here's the question for the BPD part: was any of it imagined? Maybe sometimes, but ultimately, NO. Because here's another part of my personality problem: Thanks to my father's abandonment when I was six and continued rejection throughout my life, I have been trying to prove that I am lovable by finding men who have one or more of his bad qualities, and are thus his surrogates in this sick attempt to prove myself, but who all ultimately reject me. I hit the jackpot with this husband because he's more BPD than I. There isn't anything he hasn't done in rejecting me and making me feel totally unlovable in spite of all of my attempts to the contrary. Have I imagined some of the rejection? Probably. All of it? No way. Over the past two years, the only times he hasn't rejected me or been a total a.. have been when others are present. Even then on occassion he's been hard pressed to restrain himself.
So what pushes my buttons and causes my rage? Rejection and fear of abandonment. What's the one thing that he's threatened me with the most? Exactly that. And does he realize what he's doing? You bet your backside. I found his copy of a Dr. Phil relationship book and he answered the question, What's your partner's greatest fear? with "Abandonment and rejection." So in that regard, he's been very calculating and manipulative because every time he's wanted something from me, he's played the abandonment/rejection card if I wasn't forthcoming with whatever it was. And if I wanted or needed something from him, he avoided giving it to me by playing the same card.
When one doesn't sleep, it's possible to do a lot of introspection between bad television shows that I pay little attention to and multiple glasses of wine to try to get some sleep. Since that doesn't seem to work, I'm cutting back to one glass for my heart and upping my sleeping medication tonight to see if I do any better. I usually only take half a tablet of the sleeping med because it makes me feel hung-over the next day, but I'm pretty useless without sleep, so I'm going to take a whole one tonight.
Time to get something else done today. I'd appreciate your feedback on my self-dx/introspection or anyone else's who's been there, done that from BPD-land. I'm doing my best to stay on the level without much consistent help from my psychologist as she only sees me once or twice a month and it's almost like starting over again when I do see her because her mind's not fresh with me or my situation, but the price is right (free) so I can't complain too much. Thank God for this Board.
I will be fine....just a pain in the butt right now.
Funny...(it's not, really)....my Dad left when I was six...committed suicide when I was 18....and I blamed myself for it.
I don't blame you at all for not wanting him there.
You're walking a fine line with the food, and liquor....but you can handle yourself...you know where to draw the line. I know this.
Your self dx/introspection is wonderful. I doubt that many people have as much insight into themselves as you do.
Much of what you said, could describe me as well.
I think you already know that you don't need a man to validate your worth. The more you do on your own, the more you will realize that rejection/abandonment by others is a ploy by others to control you.
Don't give them the satisfaction, living alone is lonely, and hard, but in my case, the way I feel about my self, outweighs the loneliness by far. I am extremely proud of myself.
Look what you've accomplished already. This is the tough part, Houston....after this is over, you can get on with your life. And it will be a good life....finally.
I did two things yesterday that were positive: I stayed away from the all foods that I'm allergic to and I had one glass of red wine (per my cardiologist) with a lovely roasted chicken Ceaser salad that I also threw a little fresh spinich into for dinner. I was very heart-health conscience. I got some good motivation. When I finally turned on the TV yesterday, I heard a report about increased incidents of heart attacks during the holiday season-Thanksgiving through New Years-due to over-eating, over-indulgence in drinking, stress and lack of exercise. Throw into the mix a divorce and sudden realization of a mental health issue and my already nervous cardiologist because of the prior angina and current arythmia, and I figured I was one step away from trouble. So anyway, that was enough to scare me "straight" so to speak. On the up side, I have gained 5 of the 14 pounds that I'd lost. I actually had to wear my size 4 jeans yesterday rather than the 2's or the 0's because I've got a little tummy.
Besides, I've seen the results of open heart and by-pass surgery. It really destroys one's ability to wear anything with a scooped or v-neck or bathing suits, shorts or even capri's with a by-pass because you're left with a long scar down your leg from the vein removal to create the by-pass material. It's wicked ugly.
I'll give that to my shrink; she did help me discover that "control" that was being exercised over me and pretty much why it was happening. It was through prayer and talking to her and another psychologist friend, introspection and talking with people here on this Board that I was finally able to break free from my husband's control. I know that I never want to be in that kind of situation again and, although I'm lonely right now, I am using this time to get through the divorce and find healing and me.
I had to peel through a lot of layers to get me closer to the surface before I could say "no more" and stop the violence. I already recognized that I was half of the problem by allowing him to behave the way he did. I was on a journey to find out all the why's of our relationship and also the if's--like if it was fixable--when I came across BPD. The definition was my husband, plus maybe Narcissistic Personality Disorder. I was so busy learning about BPD for him that I kept pushing back the little voice inside that was saying, "Pay attention. This is for you, too." But it's only fixable if both parties acknowledge they are responsible and work together to fix their problems by fixing communication and their individual issues in the case of violence, anger management, co-dependence and BPD or whatever the issues are.
When he finally was gone and I was safely back in my home alone, I couldn't deny it anymore. It had been eating at me for weeks and simmering under the surface, but when I was finally alone, I couldn't push it away any longer. I knew that if I wanted to get better, the first thing I had to do, was admit what I was openly. That's when I came back here and made my "confession" of my realization. Once you speak something out, you can never pull it back in. So now I can never deny the truth again.
My poor mother. When I think of what I put her through, I just cry--the rages, drinking, drugs, promiscuity, eating disorders, running away, dropping out of school, etc. I think she must have prayed for years that God would just keep me from being killed by my stupidity and wild behavior. I'm so very glad that we were able to be in close relationship with each other after I grew up and left home. But I know even then I worried her with my failed relationships and the effects they had on my son. I did go back to school, by the way, and managed to still graduate with my class. Thank God, I wasn't a total idiot. I even went on to college and did rather well, graduating with honors and 3.84 GPA.
I'm sorry about your Dad. That had to have been hard. Kids always internalize the problems between their parents. That's just how kids are. I blamed myself for my father's leaving. My mother used to talk about how happy they'd been early on in their marriage and how idyllic it had been until they bought the house and we kids came along. She said he changed after that. Now if your the kid, what would you think? I don't think she meant anything by it; it was more likely just time frame reference, but I took it to heart. By then, being the oldest, I was also held responsible for anything and everything that happened. Regardless of who had done what, I was going to get a spanking. I resented the heck out of that and my sibling.
A few years after my father left, I experienced sexual molestation at the hands of a relative. This went on for years. I was terrified of him and I was afraid to tell anyone for fear they wouldn't believe me or that I would be punished like I always was for whatever went wrong. So I kept my mouth shut. During this time another relative began molesting me, too, and then he tried to rape me. I managed to get away from him though. It was like I had a sign on my head. These two relatives were close, so I now wonder if they hadn't talked. In any case, as I got old enough to be alone, I began refusing to go to family gatherings when I knew they'd be there. Then I pushed the memories of what they'd done so far down that I didn't remember them ever again until I was almost 40 years old.
I thought then that was why I had acted out when I was a teenager, end of story. But I failed to recognize the continuing impact and repeated behavior problems throughout my adult life that I now recognize as BPD. I think I can see now that my father's leaving, my mother holding me overly accountable, and the sexual molestations, were most likely working together as catalysts to my becoming BPD as a young teenager.
What do you think, Lil? Have I hit this nail on the head?
PS: You have every right to feel proud of yourself. You're doing a great job of taking care of yourself and others, too. Frankly, I don't know where I'd be without you. Love ya. H
Hit the nail on the head? You drove it in with a nail gun! Wow!
You have done some very hard work, my friend. Some people would be too frightened to go where you've gone.
Try not to feel guilty....traumas that you are not responsible for, led you to become BPD. You have taken responsibility for your part in the events that occurred, that is what is important.
How is your son with this? Has he noticed his "New and Improved" Mom?
It is possible, that as you move toward peace in your life (yes, it can happen) that your physical ailments could improve....even a little.
Healthier mind sometimes=healthier body.
I know that you are going through hell right now, but reading your posts almost makes me cry. You are on your way.....it won't be an easy life, but it will be gratifying....because you are making you happy.
I hope you're proud of youself....if not, I'll smack you