Yesterday, I scored a major win against #BPD. After a long, anxiety-filled night, I was left in a disordered mental state full of paranoia and fear. In this BPD episode, my mind misinterpreted queues and twisted them into signs that I was about to be rejected and abandoned when, in fact, no such thing was about to happen. This is exactly what BPD does!
In the past, I would have gotten extremely depressed. I would have either begged and pleaded for another chance to do everything just right, or I would have pushed the other away in order to prevent the perceived abandonment coming on the horizon. Either way, I would have been miserable, AND I would have badly hurt someone whom I care about very much. I probably would have resorted to self-harm to help cope with the emotional pain that train wreck would have caused. I could have even become a danger to myself.But, that was the OLD me, before I learned DBT.
Today, when the disordered thoughts started rolling around in my head, I noticed them. I used Mindfulness to observe and describe the emotions I was experiencing as if peering in from outside of myself. I looked at the emotions objectively, without judgement. I Radically Accepted the emotions and allowed the experience to happen. I observed and described the effects those emotions had on my thoughts. I used the skills, STOP and THINK, to fully grasp that I was potentially in a crisis moment but could still take control. I used Check the Facts and determined that, indeed, my thoughts had no facts supporting them and were totally out of line with reality. I Radically Accepted that my thoughts were disordered, without judgement. Then, I used Opposite Action to actively change the thoughts from negative to positive. I reminded myself of the facts and that those facts easily supported the positive things I was telling myself. Suddenly, like turning on a light, the paranoia and fear was gone. I was once again grounded in reality, and it was GOOD! I WON that battle against BPD!
I can never stop fighting the war on BPD, and it will be a lifelong fight. I’m committed to winning one battle at a time. Some days will be better than others. Today was a GREAT day. Tomorrow is anyone’s guess. But, my victory today turned what could have been days or, possibly, years of misery into an inner battle that lasted only a few minutes and had no negative side effects. DBT WORKS! I am living proof.
If you’ve read this far, thank you for caring enough to share in my success. It really IS a big deal to me, even though to most it likely seems trivial. This is the biggest, clearest example I’ve ever had of being able to stop a full-on BPD episode in its tracks. It’s proof to myself that I am recovering, and it’s proof that I am fully capable of recovery.
I am worthwhile. I have value. I LIKE the person I’ve become.