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Old 11-25-2007, 07:59 PM   #1
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weasel HB User
Cool Help me help her (SUPER long, but i need advice)

Here is the deal. My sister has always been an extremely difficult person to deal with. Since birth. I'm not even sure how to shorten this so its readable, but I will do my best. From when she was young she would through these temper tantrums that would last whole days. I am not exaggerating. Entire days worth of screaming, breaking things threatening to run away, screaming, screaming, and more screaming. She has threatened every one in my family with knives, threw plates of food at my dad, torn sheet rock off walls, hit the ceiling with her head (when she had bunk beds).

so from the time she could talk until about 13 (thats when I went away to college--I am 5 years older than her) This went on. Escalating as she got older, and it wasn't until she was in 4th grade that my parents finally admitted something was wrong and took her to therapists. I also know a lot went on while I was in college, but I tried my best to not go home, and not to get involved. I had shared a room with her until she was 8, then had the room next to hers. We could never figure out why she didn't get laryngitis. Anyway, she has gotten a lot better, but she is still an extremely difficult person. I just started reading about BPD and it sounds like they wrote all that stuff about her. In the past year or so apparently I have become the "go-to" person. She has been in college the last 3 years and barely graduated this past spring. Once in college, she started drinking and having sex. Sex was never talked about in my family, and so I KNOW I am not getting her whole stories. SHe is "raped" every few months. I'm 99.9% postive its not rape because she only says that when she thinks shes pregnant, and when she got some stds. its mostly this stuff she calls me about because my mom is a devout catholic and wont tell her what she wants to hear.

This brings me to her latest episode. Yesterday, after a few days at my parents house with my husband for thanksgiving, we left a day early so we could do some work around our house. I get home and not an hour later she calls crying. (usually its at some ungodly hour, so i was at least thankful i was awake) she says my mom kicked her out. this did not suprise me. I have always wondered why they havent sooner, but the more i talk to her, i find out she left the house saying she would never come back. She kept talking about driving her car into a tree and that would show mom, and no one cared about her anyway blah blah blah. (we hear this all the time, then we hear ow great we are until we say something she doesnt like) she was hysterical, and i know she didnt get any sleep the night before because she went to meet some guy on the internet who supposedly raped her, which is how the argument between her and my mom started. So she was calling me from a parking lot somewhere, still talking about how shes going to just drive off a bridge or into a tree. I tried calming her down, gave her a few suggestions, such as finding a place to just sleep to gather her thoughts, etc. she wont calm down and starts shutting me out. I tell her to go do SOMETHING to take her mind off things, and call me in 2 hours. SHe barely replied, and I really thought she was going to hurt herself. I then called my mom, who rushed out the door to go find her, and I tried calling my sister back a few times with no answer, and finally called my brother to call the police. I am not sure how it went down, I know she lied to my mom and the police, and I am hoping I did the right thing. SHe is now fine and back at home.


My question to whoever the wonderful person is who got to the end of my story is how do I deal with these hysterical phone calls? I know she just wants attention. Her life revolves around getting attention, be it positive or negative, mostly negative. I have no problem not giving it to her, but when she starts talking about khurting herself, especially while she is behind the wheel and could potentially hurt others, I don't know how to handle it. She has cut herself since she was 7 or so, stopped in her mid teens, and I really just dont know what to do, and I feel angry with her for pulling this crap. THe only time i really talk to her is when she has these crisis. I have tried my whole life to have a relationship with her, but she is impossible. Every single conversation goes back to her. It's all about her. AAHHHHHH i dont know what else to say.......THank you so much for reading this.

The End

 
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Old 11-25-2007, 10:42 PM   #2
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Re: Help me help her (SUPER long, but i need advice)

Hi:

Only a doctor can diagnose someone with BPD but in my opinion she is definately showing from what you described as BPD

How to deal with a person with BPD? There are a lot of good books out there the most popular seems to be "I hate you, don't leave me". People with borderline understand firm concrete boundaries and thats what you have to set. your sister threatens to harm herself or worse say you are calling the police as she is a danger to herselves and others then do it every single time. For every action there needs to be a firm concrete consequence that needs to be followed by everyone in her immediate circle, if she finds someone who does not have the same hard line thats the person she will continue to go to and get what she is looking for. There is no point in argueing with her because you will never win.

The attention seeking. to me it sounds like a long time ago she realizes the more she acts up the more attention she receives so why change something that is working. People with BPD have a very unsteady self image and the more people who give her attention the better she feels about herself as she probably constantly fights with herself whether or not she is a good person. Any attention from anyone whether positive or negative says that someone cares so it boosts her up.

The only way for true help with a person with BPD is the person who has it has to realize the way they are thinking is faulty and recognize the whole picture and not just the immediate, BPD has a lot to do with getting what you want or require right now. A good majority of people with BPD will not admit and not seek treatment for the disorder as they don't believe anything is wrong with the way they think. Over time I have been able to build a buffer between someone elses action and my reaction which has been hard as hell. My reaction is to take whatever the person says and make it fit into my head and if it does not sit well I use to react in a negative manner. Now with the buffer it gives me time to see what the person says from all angles then respond but it has taken a long time to reach this stage and I can still be set off quite quickly in some areas.

Your sister did not choose this way of thinking or was born with it at least not likely. BPD normally comes from a childhood where the person was unable to express their emotions in a healthy way, there are exceptions to this but not many, so they adapt in order to survive and protect themselves and the brain rewires itself to adapt to the new way the person is now thinking. In some cases the brain never relearn the proper way of processing so we carry it with us.

Right now the best thing is to show her that every negative reaction will be met by a solid consequence..

Sorry for the rambling my brain is all over the place at the moment

take care
trg247
__________________
Major Depressive Disorder With Psychotic Features
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Borderline Personality Disorder
Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Current Meds
Pristiq
Cymbalta
Seroquel
Temazapam

 
Old 11-29-2007, 06:21 PM   #3
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weasel HB User
Re: Help me help her (SUPER long, but i need advice)

Thanks for your reply. Do you think there is anyway I can convince her to get help? She hasn't been diagnosed with it, I just am sure she has it. She had a therapist for years, and she just moved, and my sister will not go to another one (She hasn't talked to her old therapist in over a year anyway because she stormed out calling her names and such) I talked to my older brother about it tonight. He witnessed this last episode. He was ready to just deck her. (he didn't ) We are all tired of her ruining everything for everyone. And there is no way to not let her ruin things because she is so loud. I just feel so bad for my parents.....


***BIG LONG SIGH****

 
Old 11-30-2007, 10:16 AM   #4
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Pri Lily HB User
Re: Help me help her (SUPER long, but i need advice)

Hi weasel.....

What trg247 says is gospel, for BPD. Sounds to me like your sister has BPD.

Desperate times, call for desperate measures.

You may have to give her the option, of getting help, or cutting her loose, from the family. This can also be done "individually" where you and your family detach from her, and let your brother, and parents decide for themselves.

My family did this to me....I learned quickly that tantrums don't work. I had not yet been diagnosed. They are not yet convinced that I 'get it', and are very apprehensive to deal with me, even though they haven't spoken to me in two years, or so.....

The cutting her loose option, could have repercussions.....it's possible.

The alternative is to carry on the way you have been.

This is a sad situation, I really feel for you.

Lil

 
Old 11-30-2007, 12:51 PM   #5
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Re: Help me help her (SUPER long, but i need advice)

Hi:

This is a BPD perspective from an untreated person. If you come at me and tell me that the way I think is wrong and that I need help your going to be met with rage and its not pretty. I would bet every day your sister deals internaly with a thousand doubts that question the way she thinks to her self image to the people around her and she has learned how to answer and deal with these doubts so she can continue. She has done this for so long that it is normal to her and can't get the concept that the "normal" person thought process is like this to her she is the normal one. For a person to get the help, they need to realize the way they are thinking is wrong but they need to hit this conclusion on their own as if any one else points it out it is an attack which requires action. Just like an alcoholic needs to hit rock bottom to wake up and realize what is going on in a lot of ways the BPD works the same way but this is tricky as the consequences can be brutal as in life ending if the person is in a bad place.

I figured out I was BPD when one day it clicked that everything that I was doing to help myself was doing a lot more harm then good so I went to work on my head and came to realize the way I think, I am no where near a 100% but now I realize why I do it and I try to change it, I have placed a buffer between thought and action for the most part but even still if I feel threatened in any way whether at the moment or in the near future BPD kicks in very quickly and I go back to what I know best and end up dealing with the ramifications later on.

Like I said before a person with BPD understands logic. If they do this then this happens, if your whole family wants to help then everyone needs to be on the same page and act as one. She does this then we answer by doing this and hopefully with enough time she will realize there is something wrong with her though process and gets the help she deserves. She starts yelling and screaming try to walk away "I will not accept this kind of behavior from you. When you want to talk rationaly you know where to find me". Right now it sounds like she has to much power when she rages so take the power away and hopefully she will clue in quick. She threatens suicide or to hurt herself you call 911 everytime "I am sorry but your actions/words are scaring me and I do not want to see you get hurt so I have to call the police". On a personal note my mother said she was going to try "tough love" on my sister(who is also BPD) and I but then she realized if she did this we would turn our back and walk away and she is right. So instead I have been trying to teach her how BPD works, or the way I see it, and she for the most part has changed her approach which in a lot of ways is working. tough love does not work, concrete consequences do work - no threats and no guilt just very simply she does this then we will do this and everyone has to do it everytime.

Not sure if this will help or clarify but hopefully something I wrote will work for you in some way. If you want to ask about specific areas feel free to ask and we will help to show it from our view.

take care
trg247
__________________
Major Depressive Disorder With Psychotic Features
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Borderline Personality Disorder
Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Current Meds
Pristiq
Cymbalta
Seroquel
Temazapam

 
Old 11-30-2007, 07:28 PM   #6
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Pri Lily HB User
Re: Help me help her (SUPER long, but i need advice)

Hi

trg is right....logical works...don't threaten.


Lil

 
Old 12-01-2007, 09:45 AM   #7
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weasel HB User
Re: Help me help her (SUPER long, but i need advice)

You guys have given me a lot of tips, thanks! I am trying to ge tmy family together to be on the same page, but we are all so stuck in our own ways of "dealing" with her, that it is difficult to get everyone to come together.

 
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