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How I’m Defeating Borderline Personality Disorder

How I'm Defeating Borderline Personality Disorder, sloth speed recovery, www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com, sloth speed recovery

I’ve had a good run with Borderline Personality Disorder, ever since I was diagnosed at fourteen, after a serious suicide attempt. It’s been over four years, and my emotions have seen the full spectrum. I’ve fallen into some of the worst coping behaviours, almost lost my life over a dozen times, but I never fully gave up. I’ve been in and out of treatments; centers, hospitals, seeing psychiatrists, doctors, therapists, group therapy, etc. I’ve seen practically all treatment options, and nothing has worked as well as this…

My current recovery method does include therapy and sleeping medication, but it isn’t the reason I am doing so well.

No pill will cure Borderline (though they help regulate moods), and doctors have been clear with the majority of us that that is the case. We are responsible for our recovery; it’s about routine and combating our destructive behaviours.


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Admitting to a Problem and Deciding to Recover. You can’t recover without the initial decision to.

I made the decision in June 2016 that I wanted to recover. I was DONE with BPD. I was exhausted with self harm and trying to manipulate people to stay, even if they didn’t want to. I was tired of trying to control things I couldn’t control. I accepted my condition and wanted to change it. I didn’t want to suffer every single day anymore.

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Attending DBT. The main form of therapy provided in mental health institutions is usually Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), which challenges negative thoughts to alter behaviour, treating mood disorders. It is helpful but won’t cure BPD.

Dialectic Behavioural Therapy (DBT) was designed for people with Borderline by Marsha M. Linehan in the late 80s. This form teaches individuals to cope with emotion regulation and trauma, rather than reducing crises. Someone with BPD could be in crises daily, and it’s more beneficial to teach them healthy coping mechanisms to use during these crises.

I attended the Out Of Control Group near my town, using the Out Of Control DBT-CBT Workbook, which works wonders. It won’t help if you don’t dedicate yourself to it. Some weeks will be very hard because the book takes a blunt approach, and touches on sensitive topics, but you can’t quit. Stay persistent.

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Stop Self-Harming. No cutting. No pill popping. No alcohol. No burning. No disordered eating. Etc. You can’t recover while hurting yourself, even if your mind is in the right place.

I’m still working on this. I’ve gone over four years addicted to cutting, and I’ve greatly reduced it with a few slip ups. My blades have been taken away from me and it has improved my mental health, though I still crave it. My disordered eating hops in every once in a while but, I can distract my mind if I remind myself that being skinny and starving myself is only going to get in the way of my goals, not help reach them. I’ve used drugs and alcohol, and other techniques, but they don’t help. And I can get through a craving with that reminder.

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Hobbies and Meet Ups. A good portion of our lack of confidence is our inability to see what we are capable of. By starting a hobby, we use our natural talent and grow it into something more profound. If you incorporate local meet ups, other people can encourage you.

(Find out why it’s good to be involved in local groups/clubs here)

I attend a writer’s group every second week, and it encourages me to keep writing. They provide feedback and opinions, which will only further me in my writing career.

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Little Goals. Make goals for yourself every day. Take a walk, cook a meal, do a puzzle, etc. Little goals give you a sense of accomplishment, and can remind you of your capabilities. You suddenly notice that the person who wasn’t able to get out of bed can now go for a run, or go to social gatherings. It’s about reinforcing a routine and teaching yourself that you can function.

I ensure to keep hygiene regular, take in account my mood for every day, work on my writing, and work on myself individually.

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BIG GOALS. Eventually, your little goals can feed into a big goal. It will seem impossible to reach at first, but it is very likely, and attainable. every day, you make a little goal to work on it, and in no time, it will be done.

I recently completed my first draft to my first ever novel; a goal I never thought I would reach. With persistence, I finished that first draft in four months. My upcoming big goal is finishing the chapter edits and getting that out to my Beta Readers.

(If you’re interested in being a Beta Reader for this novel, read about it here and complete the application)


My quality of life has vastly improved. I’m attending weekly therapy, I’ve applied for disability, I’m in the midst of a job application, and I finished the first draft of my book. My almost dead relationship is currently blossoming healthily. I am gaining weight, and I understand that I am healthy and that it’s natural; cutting a meal because of a pound gained is illogical. The hair on my head is growing after my trichotillomania (hair pulling disorder) spiked in August. My hygiene is better, I’m taking sleep medication, I’m doing puzzles, I’m accepting time away from my boyfriend, I’m working on my book every day (even if it’s for five minutes) and I’m genuinely happy.

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I never thought that I would get here; happy. I’m not living in the best place with the best conditions, but I make the most of every single day, and I’m thankful for what I have. Being happy and healthy is more important to me than wasting my life with Borderline. I will always have it; I will always struggle, but I will always fight. 

Thank you to those who supported me through this writing process, and who have supported my blog. I hope I bring you joy and inspire you to reach for recovery, just as I have. All together, we can overcome Borderline Personality Disorder, and embrace what it has made of us. 

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My Recovery Wake Up Call (Featuring S.K. Bosak from Borderline Mama)

sloth speed recovery borderline mama www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com www.borderlinemama.wordpress.com my recovery wake up call

With the challenges of everyday life, it is easy to dismiss and forget about our inner troubles. Sometimes a life altering event is the kick we need to wake up to the reality of our illness. Mustering our own inner strengths and all of our courage, we may all see an end to the torment. We must be resilient, and brave. Only then, do we truly start our journey to recover from BPD.

Sloth Speed Recovery has partnered with S.K. Bosak from Borderline Mama to bring you our two incredible stories of self-discovery and journey into recovery.


S.K. Bosak:

I was diagnosed with BPD during my stay in rehab. As a result of all the medicine I had to take, I couldn’t really concentrate on anything and I didn’t feel like myself. I never thought about my diagnosis, but my doctor never went into detail about BPD either. So I just viewed the illness as the cause of my emotional pain and left it at that.

When I was discharged from rehab, I was a fragile mess. I wasn’t ready to go out and live my life, so my parents encouraged me to study from home while I had monthly therapy sessions. It was a lonely ordeal and I hated it. Within a year, I completely forgot about having BPD. My medication made me feel numb, so my therapy sessions weren’t really much help. But I wanted to get back on my feet so I could escape my isolation.

Things started to change when I came off my medication. I began to feel my emotions again. I was able to think more clearly, and remembered my diagnosis. I did a little research on BPD, and finally understood that the illness was why I couldn’t control my emotions and why I behaved the way I did. But I wasn’t ready to recover yet. As a result, my BPD symptoms flared up as I fought to be free from my loneliness.

When I met my SO, I left the country to go and live with him. My BPD symptoms were badly out of control, but I finally wanted to recover. I didn’t like how it made me behave around him. But ended up focusing on our relationship instead on recovery. It was only after I became pregnant, I started focusing on recovery. I didn’t want to be a bad mother.

After our daughter was born, I made a promise to her. I promised to fight my illness so I could be a wonderful mother. My daughter is my motivation to recover.

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Sloth Speed Recovery:

My wake up call was my own self destruction. Nothing was particularly done to me, but I was messing my life up.20160320_14585256861027

I was first homeless a month after my 16th birthday, wanting to get away from home after being physically violent with my family and having the police called on me several times. I was out of control and would use violence to express my inner torment, which turned my family against me. I was partnered with a company that would help me leave home when I turned 16.

I met a boy in the homeless shelter who took my world by storm. I laid my eyes on him and he swept me off my feet. Every interaction we had was lovely, comedic and romantic, until he really hurt me. Within one week of us officially being a couple, he cheated on me. I wanted to die; I wanted the pain to stop. I remember laying on the beach, hoping the waves would drag me in and I could drown. But I was stupid and continued my relationship with him.

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A few months passed and I found out he cheated AGAIN with a girl who was 4 years younger than him and with another girl who woke up, terrorized, to find his hand in her pants.

8 months passed. I had been living with him for 5 months, we had been scrapping pennies, and we did everything together. We were sexually involved with other couples and had rules around that. The night of June 30th, 2015, I went to my friend’s house after a week of suicidal thoughts and pill popping. We went to her boyfriend’s house, and I just wasn’t in my right mind. There had been sexual tension between the 3 of us, with my boyfriend refusing to have sex with them. My boyfriend at the time was with his friends and wouldn’t answer my calls about me feeling aroused and having desire to play with them. Stupidly, I engaged in some sexual activities with them and told him what happened. He was displeased with me, with reason.

Upon my return the next morning, he was furious, and though we led a deviant lifestyle, he had no right to hit me. I was slapped across the face, bringing me to the ground, and received a kick in the lungs. I stopped breathing and ran to the bathroom. (To be clear, I had had physical altercations with him. I did try to attack him once when I was drunk, and smacked him when he had a bottle of pills I was going to OD with).

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It was mid October. Our relationship was falling apart and I was utterly depressed, practically never leaving our bedroom and skipping at least one day a week of school. I was terrified about the result of breaking up with him, and in response, chose to down alcohol with sleeping pills during a Halloween party my roommates were hosting. I was ill with one of my roommates asking me what I did and he put me to bed. Upon my boyfriend’s arrival, my roommates harassed him about what I had done. I was unconscious. He came into the room, kissed me, and LEFT to go party. May I repeat that he LEFT his suicidal girlfriend in bed after an overdose mixed with alcohol. I was asleep for 14 hours that night, and though I’m lucky I woke up, it wasn’t for sure that I was going to.

He left me there, without care that our bed could’ve been my death bed.

About a week passed, and I told my school social worker about the time he hit me and she urged I leave him. That night, I came home and insisted we go one break. We discussed rules and he said he would remain faithful, but that I could see other people. Well, he ended up cheating on me again. I packed my things and left the day it happened.

I enrolled in the Out of Control program in my hospital for DBT and CBT, and was broken. I tried so hard to recover but I was destroyed.

Barely two months passed, placing us in December. I had just celebrated Christmas with my family, and an argument broke out. Well, apparently I shoved my mother and next thing I knew, I was homeless again.

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I moved to Toronto with the help of my current boyfriend into a youth shelter. I was in a city I didn’t know, with people I didn’t know, trying to get on my feet. I enrolled in a new school, started seeing a youth worker, had a school social worker, and worked at a restaurant. I was getting on my feet, but I was miserable and terrified.

I lived there for practically 4 months, witnessing fights with knives and fists, theft, had schizophrenic roommates, sexual harassment and STDs. I decided to patch things up with my mother, begging her to pick me up and take me back home. I needed my family back and I couldn’t live like that anymore.

My mom forced me to re-enroll in the Out Of Control Program, I chose to start working on my recovery and managing my emotions, I graduated high school, joined an employment program, started this blog and I’ve started my own secret project (coming soon!). I have not displayed violent behaviours since December, my self harm is farther and fewer in between, and I am in control of myself and my emotions.

I still have a ways to go with my recovery, but I’m almost there. Everyday is a battle and my BPD really gets to me sometimes, but I understand now how much talent and what capabilities I possess. Recovery is a lifetime lifestyle, and I’m going to get there. So can you.


What was or will be your wake up call?

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9 Things You Need to Understand About Borderline Personality Disorder

9 things you need to understand about borderline personality disorder bpd www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com sloth speed recovery

It is necessary to state that not all diagnosed BPD patients are the same. Most statements will resonate with the majority of diagnosed individuals, but not all. Every experience differs, and all of our pasts and paths are diverse. These are very common and basic statements about the disorder.

What is Borderline Personality Disorder?

Borderline Personality Disorder, otherwise known as BPD, is a serious mental illness characterized by the inability to regulate emotions. Some common traits or symptoms borderline-personality-disorderinclude:

  • Fear of abandonment
  • Unstable interpersonal relationships (with idealization and devaluation)
  • Identity disturbance and low perception of self-worth
  • Impulsive behaviours (risky sex, drugs, overspending, etc)
  • Self harm and suicidal tendencies
  • Reactive and difficulty controlling emotions, especially anger
  • Emptiness
  • Paranoia and disassociation

Borderline Personality Disorder has acquired plenty of negative connotations over the years, with some mental health professionals reluctant to treat it based on the intensity of the patient’s threats, reactions and, sometimes, lack of desire to get better. Some people who have associated with individuals diagnosed with BPD may not understand and, within discussions regarding the topic, furthering the stigma.

As diagnosed BPD individuals, we are not perceived positively. People tend to avoid us because of our intense emotions and emotional episodes. As much as we may try to explain ourselves, we are often misunderstood  or not taken seriously. We may desperately try to express our distress to you, without knowing how to go about it. Some of us don’t quite understand our disorder yet and may not know that our explosive or sensitive reactions are distinguished in this disorder, thus having no capabilities to explain ourselves to you.

Explaining our behaviours by stating we have Borderline Personality Disorder is an explanation, not an excuse.


I Hate You, Don’t Leave Me

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We find it very complicated to be in a stable relationship, seeing as our life patterns demonstrate someone loving us, remaining for a while and then abandoning us. We push and shove in response to our overwhelming emotions, trying to abandon you before you are able to abandon us. We constantly fear being left by the ones we love and we find it more beneficial to our emotional stability if we do it first. We convince ourselves that the blame cannot be put on us, even though we recall our behaviour later on and blame ourselves for causing you to leave.

We cannot live with you or without you, and it is a constant battle in our minds. We try to deduct whether it’s more beneficial to have you in our lives or not. At times, we think we have our mind made up, until we realize we want the opposite minutes later.

Think of the old concept introduced to kindergartners; “boys bully you because they like you.” (Extremely sexist, but wait for it.) BPD can sometimes make us act like those little boys. We do not have the means to express our affection to you, nor do we comprehend it, thus we violently lash out. We get the most violent with the ones we love and appreciate the most. It’s awful to say, but if we are treating you like this, we probably love you very, very much. We blame you for the potency of our emotions, and being loved is out ultimate fear. In response, subconsciously, we will cuss and push you away until you leave.

 

 

Emotional Instability, Intensities and Outbursts

A main symptom of the disorder is emotional instability and mood swings. As much as we may try to control our emotions, they always seem just past arms’ length. We go from ecstatic to depressed in moments, and it can leave us utterly exhausted. We struggle with the maintenance of any particular long term emotion; contentment can last a few hours and it can be followed by exaggerated anger.

In response to the ferocious mental storm, we violently react with outbursts and painful statements. We can become physically abusive as well as emotional and mental, trying to spike you with similar pain that we feel. Our outbursts can be brief or elongated, lasting up to a few hours. The extreme emotional implications can even lead us to self harm or a suicide attempt.

 

Sensitivity and Overreacting

It is no secret that we are on the more sensitive side of the spectrum of people. A comment you make that someone else could  disregard or be caught off guard can drive us into a frenzy. Our sensitivity is heightened along with our emotions and, though what we are hurt by may seem silly to you, it is very real and traumatizing to us. There are events and situations that we will not forget because of their extreme sensitivity content and the overload we felt.

An empty comment can be spun out of context with our skewed perception of reality, assuming you’ve observed a trait in us you don’t like, or we aren’t attractive enough, etc. and even if what we heard is not what you had said or what you intended, we create our own reality to make it true.

In retort, we may lash out or bawl, taking an extreme stance, and though it may seem like overreacting, it is valid to us and comprehensible. We felt so hurt by something and our only ability to cope is to lose it in one way or another.You may perceive it as unnecessary but it is our process for coping and we require love and support. In these times, we are in need of an apology and comfort from you.

 

Boredom and Emptiness

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Borderline is often unstable, with periods of highs and lows, and some switching quickly between the two. It keeps us very busy, I’m sure you can imagine. We are so encompassed in this constant whirlwind that, when it calms down, suddenly we are hit with boredom.

Boredom often gets misinterpreted in our minds as depression or sadness, and can evidently lead to self harm and suicidal behaviours. The stillness leads our thoughts in a negative direction, and the self-deprecating notions become repeated in our minds, woven one over the other. (“You’re useless.”, “You’re lazy”, “You never stop wasting your time.”) When nothing is going on and we are chaos free, we are unsure as to what we should do with ourselves, and we can sense a great deal of emptiness and dissatisfaction. Without being kept busy with a hobby, we misinterpret the boredom and the intensity escalates until we lose control and have an episode. We want to have that time and those feelings filled with activities that work our minds and keep our thought process busy. Without occupying the thought process, we can quickly become consumed by our own self hatred and low self esteem.

 

Relationship Struggles

The inability to maintain a stable relationship is very common. These relationships can be family oriented, friendships and romantic or sexual relationships.

A thing to remember is the sensitivities and intensities felt by an individual diagnosed with BPD; any comment made gets held to heart, whether it’s kind or mean. Your opinion is held at high standard and can make or break the individual’s day/week/month/year.

Being in a relationship, we often assume we will be left, being a common pattern we have been exposed to. We assume it is a life pattern that will always follow us, and instead of riding the waves, small or large with you, we subconsciously push you away and leave you before you can leave us. In our mind, it is a way to break the pattern; “you can’t leave me if I’ve already left you”. Any stillness in the relationship is perceived as boring and can somehow be misinterpreted by you not meeting our needs or not understanding us, or even not loving us enough. We have not been exposed to much relax and thus, do not have much experience with coping with it, but we do know chaos and roller coasters. In our inability to cope, we will take you for that ride down the slope.

We desperately want to have a happy relationship but we are not always in control, and to be loved. We face episodes where our mouthes and emotions completely disconnect from our morality and usual conversations. We do not want to hurt you, but we are terrified of being loved. It’s a foreign concept in our minds. We try to keep ourselves together but we loosen at the seams and become explosive. And at times, in our angry episodes, we want you angry too, because then we aren’t alone and you, too, are taking the roller coaster ride with us.

Despite the chaos and rides we will take you on, and as silly as it may sound, we do it because we love you.

 

Skewed Perception of Reality

Though reality is altered from one person to the next, most people are still living within the facts or slight exaggeration of them. With BPD, our reality is concentrated on emotions and fears. For example, if we are scared you will abandon us, we will act as if it is current and live in that chaos. Or, let’s say we feel ugly, we may assume that our loved ones believe it and torment ourselves to not feel this way. And if our fears aren’t real enough, we create them and make them reality.

Our perception of reality is often skewed and can confuse our surroundings. Though we may not be psychotics, we may have delusions and paranoia. They may not be the commonly known heard voices as seen in schizophrenics and patients with psychosis, but they alter our sense of reality and fog the facts.

Our assumptions can go from being just that and escalate to being “reality” as we associate clues and events to our prejudged conclusion. All of our clues, though inaccurate or unrelated, soon become the full reason or description for a situation.

A misheard sentence from your mouth can make us frantic; you may claim you said one thing but we heard another, and it wasn’t a good thing. Suddenly, we believe it; we have proof and evidence that it is all true and you meant what we thought we heard.

 

Identity Crises

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We lose touch with who we are in the process of understanding our disorder, mental illness and wanting to be someone entirely different. We may label ourselves as BEING the disorder or change from one type of person to the next. We act like chameleons and study our peers to be accepted and wanted by them. We perceive fitting in as a sense of validation and self worth. Some individuals will be entirely different when they are at home, compared to work, compared to with a romantic partner. We study and dictate what we want to put on show for specific people, trying to find a way to integrate and not be left.

We discern our being as unlovable, dictated by the demonstrations in our past, and we cannot imagine anybody loving us for our true selves, not to mention the chaos that is this disorder. We will hide behind as many masks and in as many costumes so that you may not break that barrier and unleash us out of our comfort zone. We would prefer putting our best traits on display.

 

Self Harm, Suicide and Threats

A common lead to diagnosis is self harm and suicidal tendencies. Many adolescents get diagnosed before they are deemed able to be diagnosed because of this, mixed with unstable teenage emotions that worsen in stages of puberty.

Self harm is our expression of the overwhelming emotions that overtake our bodies and minds. It is our way of physically creating our pain; painting it out, if you will. Self mutilation is not just the act of cutting, it also includes:

  • Burning
  • Starvation/Bingeing/Purging (Disordered Eating behaviours)
  • Scratching
  • Suicide attempts
  • Overdoses
  • Illegal and recreational drugs
  • Alcohol
  • Trichotillomania/Dermatillomania (and other Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviours)
  • Etc.

Some of us do it to feel alive, others for control, on impulse, or to scare. (Whether a person is doing it to scare or for any other reason, it is still valid and still dictates a problem, just a different type of problem. In the end, it is still self mutilation, which is unleashing physical pain onto ourselves to cope with emotions.)

It is important to not judge the individual for this expression. It is a maladpative coping strategy and eventually grows to be addictive, as the acts release endorphins, tricking our brains. For the time being, it does work. It isn’t healthy, nor is it worth it, but the individual may have not come to that realization yet. Without desire to recover, it is still recognized as functional by the one self mutilating. Prying and trying to stop the behaviour can worsen the outcome, leading them into intense emotions where they feel they may have to do it again to find release.

Trying to be understanding and supportive, offering positive coping strategies,  hobbiesroutine and helping to create a coping kit with them can guide them on the right path. It will take a lot of time, but the diagnosed BPD patient must eventually learn to self regulate and should be granted years for this process.

Though we may not be trying to kill ourselves by using these negative coping strategies, they can have negative repercussions. The beahviours can become quite severe and may require medical attention, which is important to seek out when needed. The emotions we feel can escalate drastically, requiring us to get stitches or getting our stomach’s pumped, and should be supervised. It is important to ensure all wounds are kept clean and are covered to avoid STDs and other blood transmitted diseases.

Suicide attempts and threats should be taken very seriously, but it is very crucial to note that mental health professionals prefer to avoid hospitalizations for us and so, we can be left on our own. Many of us do not properly use hospital stays properly, often getting involved in other people’s problems or becoming aggressive with staff, feeling the assistance is unhelpful, and disrupting other people’s stays. It is a very sad truth, and we may be turned away when requesting to be hospitalized for these reasons. (It is also very important to recognize that being turned away can spiral emotions downwards, and skewing their perception of reality. They may think “Well, if they don’t think I’m suicidal enough, I’ll prove it.”, and this can be a very dangerous thought process. Ultimately, it is preferred to avoid trying to get hospitalized, which will lessen the trauma.)

The threats can be made to express great deal of distress and serious desire to take one’s life, and it can also be to scare and receive sympathy from loved ones and medical attention. The emotions are intense, and we may threat when they have escalated passed our capacity of withholding them. To us, it is very real. We truly believe we are ready to take our own lives, and though it may be a threat and we may not fully act upon it, our feelings are serious and can lead to the act if overwhelmed.

They will need extra support and will require professional attention from a counselor or therapist who is knowledgeable in  Borderline. Offer support, do not fall into stigma and try to be understanding of the chaos.

 

It is a Disorder but we are NOT Hopeless

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Though this is a long lasting disorder, we CAN recover. The recovery path consists of self regulation and understanding. We must practice mindfulness and positive coping strategies to keep ourselves in line. We are not entirely in control of the behaviours; they are just learned patterns. The treatment of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy will offer us the tools to acquire that content and stable life.

A popular choice for those who cannot afford, nor find a professional or service that specializes in DBT can look into the Out of Control; DBT CBT Workbook, which offers diagrams, activities and simple explanations to many, if not all, common Borderline Personality Disorder behaviours. The tools must be continuously practiced, or relapse is inevitable to occur.

Many will give up on us, but I can assure you that if you stick around to watch us get better, you will not regret it. One day, we will know peace, stability and even happiness, as long as we work hard at it.

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Burn Out

burn out, sloth speed recovery. bpd, corderline personality disorder www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com

Those familiar with Borderline Personality Disorder will know this term all too well. It’s one of the largest fears we have, to be abandoned, but an occurrence most of us have become most acquainted with. It’s like a waiting game; when will we be left finally? When will they be sick of us, just like the rest? We are constantly on egg shells with the ones we love but we can’t seem to get off of them. Any interaction has an attribute that feels like another crack, breaking these shells into smaller pieces, until they evidently become dust that blows away in the wind.

The burn out is the state in which, someone is becoming overly exhausted by the behaviours and their surroundings that their functionality is decreasing and they are no longer capable to keep it together. Burn out to someone suffering with BPD is the threat to be abandoned. To hear those words out of the mouth of someone we want to keep with us is terrifying and it feels as though the world is coming to an end. Everything is crashing and soon, the only thing we had will come to an end.


I’m  burnt out; Advice for loved ones

We can only imagine how hard it is for you to watch us suffer in this way, and we understand that you try to keep it together for us and our mental illnesses, but we are imploding. Our biggest fear would be losing you and we never want you to burn out. We comprehend the complications we cause and how our experience with excruciating pain could bring you down, not to mention, being involved with us gives you an unwanted helping.

We desperately want to keep it together and keep the relationship healthy but it’s not a simple switch we can turn on or off. I can’t speak for all people diagnosed with BPD, but personally, I can climb from 0 to 100 and back down to 0 in seconds, and as much as it is hell for a partner or family member or friend, it’s a million times worse for us suffering from it. We act mean and create chaos, trying to cease it to no avail. My brain is a storm, a cesspool of destructive thoughts and corruptive behaviours. I feel so absorbed with the emotions I feel, though positive, they quickly transfer to negative when I am even slightly let down. I so desperately want someone to stay, but do not know how to keep them. I intensely sense myself being destroyed with this constant desire to not be left, to be loved and to be understood.

A “burnout” is inevitable at some point when we lose sight of recovery or maintenance, but we beg dearly that you do not leave. We have burnt out long ago in this disorder, but we are still alive and fighting daily. We have entrusted you with the most horrible parts of ourselves and are desperate for you to stay.

We will try as hard as we can, but we ask that our counterparts try their hardest to remain by our sides, as long as it is abuse free, and understand us. We are quite complicated with very distinct behaviours and reactions, but your support is required. We love those close to us very deeply and despite us being aggressive to them, we need them to stay and to love us.

Express to us your feelings of burning out, of exhaustion, but try to stay, and remember to tell us you want to stay. Attempt to remain strong and survive the hardships to one day settle into our stability. Understand that this is not always our choice and our emotions can control us entirely. Comprehend our efforts and work as hard as possible to remain by our side.Communicate with us; tell us how we can benefit you despite our chaos, and let us tell you how we feel and how you can help.


I’m burning them out!; Advice for the diagnosed BPD

Hearing those words can be an awful experience but, we must remember that a burn out is caused through love. Someone is trying their ultimate best to remain at our side but is feeling the negative aftermath of our behaviours and intense emotions, and they love us dearly. If you ever doubt they don’t, ask yourself what could be another reason for them having stayed through our highs, lows, anger and trauma but love. They desperately want to be by us, and they want us better but it is true that it an get to anyone. It’s agony for us and a helping to an outsider can seem just as overwhelming, despite them not be burdened with it as their own disorder.

They voice this to exclaim the jeopardy to their mental health, not as a threat of abandonment or act of hatred. They have taken note of their mental health issues and are sharing it with us, and we must try to respect that. Everyone’s mental health and well being is valid, even those who burn out from our BPD, and we must respect space and their need to be healthy, as hard as a temporary separation can be.

To find our own way to manage and depend on ourselves is crucial to remaining in control and being able to keep relationships going. It is exhausting to do, and it is painful to realize that we are (our behaviours are) the “cause” of someone’s lack of desire to be with us. The only way to keep two parties mentally well with one ill with BPD is for the one diagnosed with BPD to find some form of self-control and life satisfaction apart from the relationship.

Try picking up a hobby and practicing it when you start feeling down, practice daily self-care and maintenance, put together a coping kit or purchase the Out Of Control DBT CBT Workbook which will provide ways to assist yourself with BPD. With these strategies, you will become more able to understand and control yourself, and eventually find peace, even if it’s for a short period of time.


A burnout is not the end for anyone. It could be the beginning to understanding the parties involved, what they are seeking and ways to work on a relationship together. It does not have to be the ending and we should not treat it as such.

 

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My Loved One Is Parasuicidal (Parasuicide and BPD)

parasuicide and bpd borderline personality disorder www.slothspeedrecovery.wordpress.com sloth speed recovery

There are times when our lives get out of order and our decently stable environment unravels. We may have an intense life occurrence or we reminiscence on some horrible experiences, but either way, we are left trying to make sense of it and to cope with the chaos around us. A mentally healthy individual may have minimal difficulty, but for those with the Borderline Personality Disorder diagnosis, this can be hell.

In times of fear of lack of control, parasuicidal behaviours could be exercised by one in major turmoil. Parasuicidal being defined by the act of self harm or suicide attempt with no end goal of killing oneself. The individual participating in these may not care if they die in the process, but they do not exactly wish to harm themselves to that extremity.

A good portion of those with a borderline personality disorder diagnosis may take this to the ultimate extreme, losing entire control of their behaviour, or choosing to let their emotions take over. The intensity in which they feel natural emotions can bring to the brim of what they believe they are capable of enduring. The idealistics of someone with this diagnosis, especially those with a strong form of it, may be using this unhealthy coping mechanism because of the following:

Lack of control. A lack of control to one struggling with this diagnosis may lead them to practicing parasuicidal behaviours, sometimes just self harm which can have no relation to parasuicide, to gain what they feel is missing. The behaviour may give them a sense of satisfaction or gratification, giving them the feeling of power. For that moment, they have all the control in the world. Whatever they do, they made that decision and they can be responsible for the intensity of their actions. The concept of making a decision, living it through and seeing the consequences can feed that fear of lacking control. They may lead themselves to fear if they hurt themselves passed what they had originally intended, or be upset with themselves if they didn’t attain their “goal”, and in this fright, they may seek control by scaring those around them.

Negative Life Events. An upsetting life event is natural, unpredictable and out of the hands of the “victim”. A relative being diagnosed with cancer or a suicide close to us isn’t our responsibility, though one may blame themselves, and to justify this, they may practice violent acts towards their bodies. Their goal may be to numb the pain or bring forth the pain on themselves, and at times, to gain sympathy from those around them.

Reminiscing. Reminiscing on past traumatic events leads the individual into a dramatic thought process. They will ponder on experiences, evaluate what they could’ve done better, where they went wrong and may sugar coat or diminish an individual party entirely based on their thoughts. This may lead them to reevaluate their decisions around that individual and seek some type of truth, even if they’ve already found it. They will want immediate responses and will create a castle of terror for themselves. This could even bring them to reinvite abusive partners into their lives, further harming themselves, and they will do everything in their power to make it work to not be alone and to align their perception of events and their hopes of that individual.

Triggering comments. “This will show them!” Sound/seem familiar? That’s because a triggering comment can hurt them, throw them into an intense emotion, and they may seek vengeance and revenge. Sometimes, they take the remark too personally and create a whole new world of horror. Maybe if they self harm or take dozens of pills, the “culprit” may be held liable for their actions. They use this to blame and target that individual and cause them the same, if not more pain for their actions. It’s almost like having the last word. If practiced around family, members may feel like they are walking on eggshells, trying to avoid offending them so they don’t end up self harming or landing themselves in the hospital.

Loneliness and Boredom. Boredom is like a traumatic event for people with borderline. Suddenly, things are stable or relaxed, their hands aren’t busy, things and thoughts aren’t racing and they may consider themselves lazy. In response, to get things going, they convince themselves that a parasuicidal act may be the answer to these feelings. They may even mistake boredom and loneliness for sadness and react as if it were true. Loneliness is perceived as abandonment and they shake things up to make people “come back.” They must keep busy, attend recovery groups and try to avoid these behaviours, knowing they won’t benefit them in any way.

Scare loved ones. This concept is mainly to be in control. By doing such violent things to themselves, they may feel they have control over you and your emotions. They can predict how you’ll react and they want to tell you because your fear could mean love and care in their eyes. It’s almost a test. How far can they push it? And if they don’t get the reaction they want, they make themselves worse. They will freak out and feel invalidated; making accusations that their loved ones just don’t care about them. That fear they can implant is such a strong form of power and they will abuse it until it runs out.

“They’ll love me when…” The main borderline trait is a fear of abandonment; seeking love is the result of that. They have noticed that when they are in a specific state, “everybody comes back.” They will take their already deteriorated and ill state and bring it to the extreme. If they are suffering from an eating disorder, that may be dropping 10 more pounds really quick. It could be a suicide attempt, believing that death will bring them love, or even just being hospitalized. The impulse thought tricks them into believing a total lie. They want the world to stop because things are too chaotic. They can’t possibly understand how “everyone” is so okay with the world, that they can cope with all these unbelievable experiences and come out okay. “They’ll love me when…” is a self-fulfilling prophecy that is very complicated to escape. Once it’s implanted, even through a good period, they may turn to that. It gives them a sense of validation and dominance when they notice that it “worked”. Suddenly, they are sick enough for treatment and they will have the support of family members that had been distant for a period.

Though being parasuicidal often leads someone to seek love and attention, it shouldn’t be seen in a negative way. That individual is trying to gain control of themselves and cope with their turmoil. At times, they lose complete control and may even feel a disconnect from their speech. They  will speak from the heart and try to feel less alone, as the chaos isolates them. They ultimately seek someone to love them and reassure them everything will be okay. Participating in this with your loved one may not be the healthiest thing you can do for them, as you could be feeding a rollercoaster that will persistently worsen.

It is not their fault, most of the time. Even when they forcefully try to worsen themselves, it still isn’t their fault. They must take responsibility for their actions and understand they were taught or demonstrated this behaviour and that control will come if they work on it and break it.

What to do now? As for advice, do not join them in the chaos. That is the worst thing that you can do for them. Be objective. Teach them they can handle being alone and that stability is not the enemy. Be there to support them, but do not be their dance partner. Remind them that things will be okay. Remind them that you will not abandon them, that you love them and that they need help. Encourage them to go to group sessions and get themselves out there. It cannot be stressed enough that they should be using the The Out-Of-Control (DBT-CBT Workbook) and need to complete it.

There is hope and they will gain control. They need to work at it. Recovery is possible.

On a personal note, I am guilty of all of these, and even in my recovery, I still participate in these. The outbursts are a lot further in between and I’m learning to keep some things to myself in order not to use someone’s fear as my control. I am learning that healthy relationships just don’t work that way.

Not everyone with borderline personality disorder or with a mental illness will display these actions as every mental illness affects people in different ways. And not fitting into these categories doesn’t diminish your mental illness in any way.