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What Suicide Has Taught Me

what suicide has taught me, sloth speed recovery, www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com, suicidal, bpd, borderline personality disorder

I’ve watched my mother deal through the grief of my grandpa’s and aunt’s suicide; the constant pain she felt and the way she teared up on their birthdays or suicide anniversaries. She hadn’t told me these were suicides; I would’ve been too young to understand.

I remember standing on the main floor, hearing my mom huddle into a pillow over the death of her father and I couldn’t comprehend it. I was only a toddler.

Why is it that, the day after my birthday, Matante killed herself and my mom had to leave with no explanation? I wanted to come with, but she couldn’t bare to tell me.

To this day, she is wounded by these suicides, and it has left a void that is way too visible.

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Suicide was a part of the family genes, but I was lucky enough to have been a child and have no understanding of taking ones own life. Until I was 15 years old, and my brother’s friend jumped in front of a train. I didn’t know him the way my brother did, but I knew him better than anyone else from school did, and he chose to end his life.

I, too, was struggling with suicidal thoughts at the time and connected on a deeper level with him. He did what I didn’t have the guts to do, I thought.

Over the months, I developed PTSD symptoms. I could see him; the terror in his eyes as the train approached and that force dragging him to be hit. I could feel his body flinging in the air and studied the direction his body would go depending on how he chose to jump. My mind was a gruesome minefield and he was the picture etched into my skull.

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His suicide ripped me to shreds; I lost a good portion of my hair and was no longer functional. I declined in school and in my extracurricular activities, and I was more suicidal than I had ever been.

Since then, I’ve learned a lot about suicide, about myself, and how I truly feel about suicide.


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Life Is Worth Living. People say this all the time without true emotion behind it, but I know how true this statement is.

Everyday, I get to see the sunshine, the smiling faces of the people around me and watch myself grow into a beautiful young woman with all the capabilities in the world. I get to watch my brother who was supposed to pass at the age of 16, grow into his twenties, and join my family for some of the most memorable holidays.

I started my writing career, which has been my dream since I was a child, and I couldn’t imagine deceiving myself in that way. Had I gone ahead and ended my life, I wouldn’t be able to see my abilities convey themselves onto pieces of paper. Sure, my work isn’t perfect but it never had to be. It just has to be the best I can do, which is a reward in itself.

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You don’t get rid of pain; you pass it on. It isn’t right for anyone to guilt trip you when you’re considering suicide because, that shouldn’t be the reason you choose to stay. You should choose to stay because you deserve life and you are able to be great.

But, there is truth in the statement “you don’t end the pain, you pass it on.” I’ve witnessed and experienced it. You don’t need to be family to have an impact on someone through a suicide; being an acquaintance is enough to affect someone in abundance.

Your pain is molded and transferred in a tragic way to nearly everyone who has come into contact with you, and it’s distressing to see.

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No; no one would be happier if you died. When we experience suicidal feelings, we often feel unwanted or unloved because someone may be experiencing feelings of frustration or anger towards us, but this does not mean they would be happier if we were gone. Even if they claim they want you to kill yourself, they don’t mean it. In reality, there would be great amounts of guilt on their part and they would be distraught with themselves for ever mistreating you; questioning themselves regarding their involvement.

I’m sure my grandfather thought the same way; maybe he felt he was a burden to his family. But, because of his death, I have a forever mourning mother, and I have been robbed of an important relationship with him. He promised to take me fishing with him; leaving me behind at such a young age to go with my siblings. He was supposed to be present in my life, teach me lessons and watch me grow, but he absented himself.

I am not happier that he died, nor is my mom or any of his relatives. There is no bad he could’ve done to make us feel happier without him.

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It’s a thought that can be changed. Suicidal thoughts stem from trauma or a mental illness; we are so desperate to end the pain and grief that we search for a way out. It is often said that people commit suicide because they want the pain to stop.

When you commit suicide, that pain never gets a chance to stop or evolve into something beautiful. It’s only a thought, a feeling, and it can be changed with persistence and a desire to change. You must convince yourself otherwise and move towards a healthy lifestyle that strays you from suicidal urges.

It is possible to live a happy life, and we want you to see it.

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Nothing will change if we don’t try. Since my brother’s friend passed, my life has gone full circle. It was worse before it got better. I was homeless twice, went to a treatment center, completed high school, was in a bad relationship and got out of it, have gotten my own place and got so far in recovery that I can’t believe how far I’ve come.

Had I gone along and committed suicide, nothing would’ve gotten better. I would’ve never been able to see all the beautiful things I have now. I would’ve left during the worst time of my life, without giving myself a chance to become an adult and understand the world around me.

What a joy life is; and I am damn grateful I never succeeded during my suicide attempts.


If you are suicidal or experiencing crisis, please contact your local crisis line. 

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Cured From BPD?

borderline personality disorder, cured from bpd, sloth speed recovery, www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com

I got diagnosed at the mere age of 14, after a serious suicide attempt that landed me in the hospital. I was so confused with the diagnosis because, my psychiatrist at the time wasn’t someone I particularly liked, and that’s due to her never giving me the feeling that she was actually listening.

After a few years, and having been in an inpatient treatment center, I began to understand where this disorder came from and which behaviours were inhibited by the disorder, and which were under my control.

I have moved away from home now, and haven’t been homeless in a year. Things are looking up for me, but I’ve lost such a fundamental part of my identity, I thought.

I didn’t realize it but, I identified with Borderline for so many years and, now that I’m no longer overly symptomatic, I don’t understand myself anymore. It’s as if a piece of me was robbed and my identity is dwindling in the air, waiting for someone to stick a new label onto it.

The loss of BPD means the loss of my extreme anger which fueled extreme motivation for this blog. It has ceased any sight of improvement and has left me quite empty.

When I identified with my diagnosis, I felt more complete. Everyday, I had a goal to overcome this fight, which has now just disappeared. It feels as though I have nothing to look forward to, and my creative spark has died due to this.

I’m not sure if my BPD has morphed into something entirely different; a lot more dangerous, or if it’s disintegrating along with any sense of self I had left. And I desperately don’t want the saying “You just grow out of it” to ring true to me and my situation. Was it my efforts and hard work that took me out of the self-destructive cycle, or did I grow out of it?

I can’t talk about Borderline recovery when I am not experiencing it, and I don’t know if I’m happy about feeling free from it yet…

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Borderlines & Love At First Sight

borderlines and love at first sight, idealization, borderline personality disorder, sloth speed recovery, www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com

Love at first sight is the concept of falling in love with someone when we first meet them – quite self-explanatory. Mixing Borderline Personality Disorder with this concept can be detrimental and disastrous, especially one has not begun recovery. This is not to say Borderlines cannot fall in love quickly, nor that a newfound relationship can’t last, but mainly that it can, and most always is unhealthy.

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A prodominant trait about BPD is black and white thinking. This is applied to everyday situations, where the individual will only see something as all good or all bad; there rarely is an in-between. Our relationships are not safe from this, and often crumble on our part because of it.

Love at first sight is accompanied with the honeymoon phase. Everything seems to be going well. This partner is providing for us, willing to take long car rides to visit us, loves our favourite movies, can have meaningful conversation and is great in bed. We believe that we’ve never been with someone this amazing or loving, and could be convinced this person is the one.

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Taking this stance is idealization, and overly common in BPD. We are looking through a positive lens, and any bad trait is not apparent to us yet. Somehow, we are capable to ignore the bad, or it just hasn’t been presented to us yet. We become enamored with their personality, their looks and their willingness to be there for us. Negativity seems impossible, and we have set high expectations that no person could ever meet, setting ourselves up for failure.

It is quite possible that, with such a short period of time, they’ve been in a good mood and have only been showing their positive traits, but as things settle down and they realize it is getting serious, that front comes down. Humanity comes through.

Maybe they are loud-mouthed, have disagreeable opinions, spend too much time away from home for your liking, participate in a lifestyle you do not approve of or have other traits you are not fond of. It is human to have these traits and is, for the most part, okay. But, not for someone with BPD.

For someone with Borderline, this person has changed. Their personality was faked, and they’ve been dishonest. We feel tricked. We fell in love mindlessly without taking into consideration the humanity of this person. We have fooled ourselves into a fantasy that can never become reality.

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We begin to realize that this person was never and will never be all good. They become all bad. They’ve rubbed us the wrong way. Next thing you know, we’ve cut them out, and moved on; ready for another black and white heart-break.


Breaking black and white thinking:

To change our habit of black and white thinking, we must break the habitual cycle.

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Challenge it. Try to view things from a different perspective. Observe a friend; notice how they have good qualities and bad qualities. Maybe you feel they don’t listen to people enough, but they have always been there for you. Anytime you catch yourself thinking  in extremes, remind yourself that this is not the full person and that they are not “all” anything.

Step back. Catch yourself when you start idealizing someone. Take a step back and consider why. Is it happening because of a recent tragic event, a vulnerable emotion, adrenaline or it being a newfound experience? Begin to understand your personal reasons for letting yourself idealize someone and let yourself down with unattainable expectations.

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Accept reality. Understand humanity. People are good and bad. They may be a good listener, but make selfish decisions. They may believe racism is wrong, but still act in homophobic ways. They may give you a gift, but talk behind your back. It doesn’t mean any of these things are right or wrong, but it’s important to accept that everyone has their quirks and edges, that no person is perfect or will ever be perfect. Accept that other people make mistakes, too; whether they are sick or not. Even in the happiest relationships, the couple makes sacrifices regarding the things they don’t like about one another. It is not your responsibility to love or hate everything about anyone.

Practice. Attempt to look at things in a gray perspective. Observe others, locations, systems, political views, art pieces and yourself. Practicing to view yourself in an objective manner may actually build self-acceptance and understanding. When you accept that you are human; that you have qualities and faults, you may begin to love yourself, and accept others for their imperfections. Disappointment and let-downs will be lesser.

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As you gain experience with these techniques, a spectrum of shades will be apparent to you; you will be able to be more critical and objective in relationships, understanding the difference between your behaviours and develop a positive outlook on relationships. You will become more tolerable of people and their faults, making your love life go smoother as partners will feel accepted and understood by you.

You must remember that this takes time. You cannot possibly expect yourself to be great at this skill overnight. Allow yourself to grow slowly, at your own pace, with no pressure.

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The Big Move

I had no choice but to move.

I had a good job, was attending regular therapy and had a group of writer friends I met up with twice a month. It didn’t matter how many good things I had going on because, I couldn’t live at home anymore.

The atmosphere, the environment, my family… None of it was healthy, and I couldn’t go forward with those types of barriers. And thus, I had to make the decision for my safety and mental health. I packed my belongings and made my way to the city.

It’s only been a few days and I can already feel myself thrive off this independency and the people I am living with. I feel more understood, I am receiving more respect and feel an equality in the home.

My room is set up with my pet rabbit, fairy lights, a media centre for leisure, collectibles on a shelf and a beautifully coloured mint wall that makes everything feel fresh and safe.

I’ve been able to be productive without that heavy weight of depression sitting on my shoulders. I can walk, remember things, feel motivation and have that want to be productive.

Things feel like they’re finally coming into place.

Though, I must remind myself that nothing will ever be perfect. There will be bumps in the road, and I would be letting myself down if I expected things to be perfect.

My goals include:

  • Keeping things under control, including emotions and reactions
  • Making daily schedules
  • Putting out consistent blog posts
  • Getting involved in social groups and fighting my social anxiety
  • Continuously evolving as a person

This move is a positive change, as hard as it was to make it here and as hard as it will be to get used to.

I never want to be homeless or dependent on my mother again.

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Bell Let’s Talk – What Is It? Why Is It Important?

what is bell let's talk? Why is it important? #bellletstalk www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com, sloth speed recovery

Bell Let’s Talk is an annual event and campaign that began in September, 2010, that Bell started to try to raise awareness about mental illness, reduce stigma and encourage people to talk about mental illness. For every use of their hashtag on specific social media platforms, making phone calls and texting, or other interactions, they will donate 5¢  to fund mental illness research and services in the country of Canada. Bell is the largest company to step in, speak out about mental illness and create a movement for the community.

In 2015, they increased their campaign to 2020, where they commit to donating up to 10 million dollars in regards to mental illness. On January 27, 2016, Bell donated over 6 million dollars based on the near 126 million long distance and mobile phone calls, texts, tweets and Facebook shares. Currently, Bell’s total donations stand at 79,919,178.55$ as of 2016.

Hopefully, this year, we can exponentially increase the funding, have open discussions about mental illness, and end the stigma.


How can you help this year?

All day, Bell will donate 5¢ to mental health initiatives for every:
• Text message sent by Bell and Bell Aliant customers
• Mobile and long distance call made by Bell and Bell Aliant customers
• Tweet and Instagram post using #BellLetsTalk
• View of the official Bell Let’s Talk Day video on Facebook
• Snap using the official Bell Let’s Talk Snapchat filter

(Join the event on Facebook: Bell Let’s Talk Day Event)


Why is this such a phenomenal movement?

Mental illness has always had a stigma cloud that followed it, where people aren’t entirely understanding or compassionate towards others because of their illnesses. It is often a topic for jokes and put downs, where the joke is at someone’s emotional expense. Though the stigma has reduced over the years, thanks to Bell Let’s Talk and other mental health movements, it isn’t gone. People with mental illness are still being degraded, disrespected, turned away by doctors, deemed unworthy of medical attention and completely ignored by the public.

When the conversation is closed, people bottle up their emotions and feel that their feelings are not valid. The further this happens, the more individuals isolate themselves and feel embarrassed to open up, the more suicides continue to happen. No one truly wants to die; they are hoping their pain will stop.

The majority of society acts as if mental illness isn’t a part of their everyday life, when 1 in 5 Canadians struggles with some form of mental illness. These people are in your life, in your schools, at your work, on the streets, in hospitals, in your home, in your family, in your social groups… They are your parents, your grandparents, your siblings, your aunts, your uncles, your friends, your enemies, your acquaintances, strangers… They are everywhere, living normal lives, with not so normal symptoms. Mental illness is THAT common.

A large majority assumes that the mentally ill can only be categorized by schizophrenics, psychotics, and those with bipolar. Those conditions are very hard to live with, accompanied by delusions, voices and uncontrollable emotional levels (and should not be stigmatized), but are not the only ones. Mental illness is much more. It’s depression, anxiety, personality disorders, variations of eating disorders, variations of body-focused repetitive behaviours, and many other, rather uncommon categorizations. It is possible that you may have a mental illness without being aware of it. Mental illness does not make you “crazy” or “psycho”.

It’s time that we, as a society, open up the conversation for mental health, learn about the different conditions and how they affect people, and urge to reduce the stigma in our everyday lives.

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Overwhelmed

There are many changes going on in my life right now. So many that I can barely keep track. They’re positive changes, but they’re happening so fast and out of nowhere that I can’t handle it. It’s just another bag of stress I have to open, deal with and send on its way.

The worst part is, my attempt to recover is mixing with this difficult time. The stress is making it so I can’t control the Borderline, or I willingly let myself be controlled by it. I have no other outlet to explore my anger, and sadly, I’ve been taking it out on one of the only people that loves me.

I got very vicious over something silly the other night, and tried to pick up a serious fight with him. I said some awful things that he made clear I couldn’t take back and, at the time, that didn’t seem like a big deal, but I think I made irrefutable damage on the relationship. I think I wanted to feel something, and blame him for my overwhelming feelings. I needed a punching bag, and he’s the only person who is actively a part of my life.

One of the awful things I told him tonight was that I sometimes can’t stand the relationship, and went as far as to tell him I’d rather slit my wrists than being in the relationship. I think this symbolizes my fear in my decision making, and that I’m unsure where I’m headed. I’m in a cloud, fog everywhere, and I can’t see ahead. Things seem meaningless and I don’t know how to cope. I’m terrified of wasting time on another broken relationship that’ll end with another broken heart and a need to recover from something else.

I don’t know if this relationship will last, and I’m unsure of how serious he is about me. He could tell me over and over like a broken record all his goals that involve me, but it’s all meaningless. I’ve heard men blab on about a dedicated future that they dropped over a stupid fight. I often wonder if he is who I think he is.

The truth is, the more we fight, the more my Borderline becomes prevalent and addicted. The rage I feel when he hangs up feels strangely good, and I call him back to hear his voice and have it all over again. His anger is arousing and stimulating to sickest parts of me.

I realized the other night that I don’t have to call him, but I choose to, no matter the circumstance. My mind knows that I’m strong enough to do without it, but I can’t fight the BPD as hard as I usually can, and I just let it topple me over and take control.

I can’t wait for this period to be over, and I hope I’ll find the sweet, gentle person I know I am.

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My Borderline; The Phone Call that Changed my Life

my borderline; the phone call that changed my life, bpd, borderline personality disorder, www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com, sloth speed recovery

Maybe I called him because I was lonely, or maybe it was because of habit. I don’t remember why, but I was angry. Another Borderline episode, I thought (and chose not to fight). Horrendously tearing him apart limb from limb, I was somehow still surprised when he said he wanted to leave. The aggressive beast calmed down and regressed to a sweet and gentle voice with innocent intentions.

I softly begged him to stay.

“Please stay… I love you. I need you. I’m sorry.”

Anything I could say to make him stay; empty apologies and promises I probably couldn’t keep.

We discussed a life together and what that would look like. Pure dedication and devotion to one another in different ways. A possible promise to be together forever. But, how could I trust him when no else could be trusted in the past? I told him I loved him endlessly and that I was willing to sacrifice anything to be with him, which are serious, outrageous statements.

He could tell something was wrong, because he questioned the authenticity of my claims and feelings. He wasn’t sure if they were honest and genuine from a loving standpoint, or blurted to keep him around. I was just saying this to make him stay. To avoid another period of abandonment.

I retracted my statement and crumbled apart hysterically.

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My Borderline is a puppet mastermind with forceful grips around the reins. It lives inside of my head and I am but its puppet. It controls my movement and thoughts, creating a volatile beast I never thought I’d be. It has the control I will never obtain. I can fight as hard as I want, but my Borderline is always there, fighting harder than I ever could. It’s angry, ferocious and lets loose on the closest ones to me. And sometimes, I don’t want to fight it. It feels good to feed it.

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I remembered how I had read that Borderline is caused by the lack of emotional maturity. The emotional coping factors didn’t grow with time or puberty. Trauma and distress caused it to slow down, if not halt. I compared myself to a little girl, who keeps falling and scraping her knees and cries. It’s the same situation every time, but she still cries; it hurts all the same. That knee scrape is agonizing because it is all she knows. I experience angsty periods of instability like a teenager beginning puberty. I can be healthy and respond in adult ways, but the majority of the time, I don’t. I may embody a 18 year old girl on the surface, working a job and finding her independence, but my emotional range is between toddler and pre-teen.

I’ve been on autopilot for so many years to keep me away from trauma and stay in a safe environment. So much so that I haven’t realized all the time that’s passed. I am not awake. Not alive. Not whole. Everything I do is mindless, out of focus and done without knowledge. Things that take extra thought aren’t rationally thought through, and I barely realize when they’re over. Days go by without notice, and I try to escape to a better place I can barely recall. My emotions haven’t gotten to mature because they haven’t been in control. It’s on a reaction basis of a child.

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That instability can be incredibly addictive with an intense high. I can thrive on drama and out of the ordinary situations, and come out satisfied. I may not be entirely happy, but my Borderline is in euphoria. When I cry, my Borderline is ecstatic. When I’m having a fit and my lungs are rapidly  expanding, it’s on the edge of its seat, with roaring cheers. My Borderline lives within me, and it’s my drug.

My Borderline can’t get enough of the chaos, the crying, the tantrums and scars. “More!”, it cries out, despite my body being on the brink of exhaustion. It wants fire, water and earth; it wants the multiplications of forces. There is no gentle, there is only vulnerability. There is no sadness, there is only detrimental depression. There is no anger, there are only countless grudges and violent urges. There is no balance in my Borderline.

Fighting it isn’t satisfying. It never congratulates me, and I need its approval. It owns me, and controls everything about me. It has ruined who I once was, and I don’t know who I am anymore…

Crying out “Don’t leave me!” leaves a burning flame inside my chest. It stings; it hurts. But, for some reason, it holds comfort. I’ve been repeatedly exposed to abandonment that, crying that out feels like a warm blanket. It feels so good to moan that out, despite the burning and the tears streaming from my eyes. My Borderline is watching attentively and making it worse.

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Borderline stole the fundamental things that made me MJ, the most vital aspects of my personality. The real me loves dancing, music and writing. She is vocal, popular and loved. She is innocent, brave and confident. My Borderline has left me untrustworthy, despicable, pathetic and sad, turning to a blade at the first negative thought.

Anytime I’ve turned to suicide, I always thought that, even after death, I’d still be alive somehow. It was clear to me.

I realized that I never wanted to kill MJ… I was trying to kill the Borderline for killing who I was. MJ was perfectly fine, functional and was facing success; a bright future ahead of her. Somehow, she came in contact with Borderline, and maybe they fell in love. Borderline murdered her, and I don’t think I’ll ever find her again. Out for revenge, I tried to kill the Borderline, which happened to live inside of me…

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My Borderline is to me what a murderer is to a victim’s family. It is the ultimate portrayal of the devil; no good can come from it. Though, a murderer is a physical being that can be locked away in a prison; my Borderline is a rampant mental illness that cannot be seen, caged or taken down easily.

I wonder if my Borderline ever thought that it was strong enough to take me down. Maybe the countless suicide attempts was a war between the rest of me against the disorder. Brawling viciously, we tried to kill each other, all in one entity and body. I was the only victim.

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My Borderline is a control freak with skewed perceptions that it tries to implant into me. It swings puppet strings violently and thinks it can control me; a mastermind of instability. It feels unstoppable and invincible. It has no care in the world for repercussions or consequences, because they don’t negatively affect it. I can’t function in the simplest of situations. It’s erratic and frantic, always on the edge of panic attacks. It raises a hand at the ones I love, and swallows bottles of pills when it wants me gone.

I hate it. I hate how I’ve lost years of my life to this autopilot lifestyle. I didn’t realize the countless losses caused by this disorder and the force it had in my life. I knew it was awful, and made me sick, but not to that extent. I didn’t know it had killed me internally.

I cried like a baby, clinging to blankets and teddy bears. A vulnerable presentation of my life left me restless and exhausted, but I knew my disorder much better. I found its breaking point, the target to strike and where it hurts the most. With the raise of a closed fist, I will destroy my Borderline Personality Disorder.

I will recover.