WIN against BPD

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.

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Posted in Borderline Personality Disorder | 4 Comments

Moving hurts

This is more about FMS than BPD, but they do relate to each other. 

I’m in serious pain today. I knew doing all of the lifting during my move to my apartment would be bad for me, but I had no choice. Now, I’m suffering one of the worst fibromyalgia flares I’ve had in months. How did I once live with this level of pain day in and day out? Seriously, it’s amazing I didn’t end my life just to be rid of the pain. I’m NOT in any danger of doing that now – I have too much to live for now, but I can see how easy it would be to hop back up onto that path. 

I really want to be held and told that everything will be okay. It’s times like this when being on my own (notice, I did not say “alone”) is especially difficult. I feel lacking in physical and emotional strength and want to borrow from someone else. I think FMS flares are a time of particular vulnerability for me. 

Posted in Borderline Personality Disorder | 1 Comment

Perfection required

I feel as if I’m expected to perfectly apply all DBT skills every single day, even though I have not yet been taught anything other than Mindfulness and a tiny bit of Emotional Regulation.  If I allow myself to have a single “BP moment,” then shouting erupts in the household, and I am called all kinds of very negative, hurtful names.  I’m so far from perfect, yet perfection is required, and I CANNOT DO IT.

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One step forward…

Any time I seem to make any forward progress against BPD, I feel as if I fall two steps behind immediately after.  I’m probably too much in Emotional Mind to make an accurate assessment of my progress, though.

I feel unsupported at home, and that has a major effect on me.  My BP-induced behaviors have eroded my partner’s trust so much that he no longer believes me when I say I’m working on beating BPD.  If I slip and fail at fighting it, all hell breaks loose.  He says I only have to “try” to defeat BPD, even if I fail, but I must not fail at “trying.”  Sometimes, I’m not even sure what that means, but I can assure you that I’ve never done anything perfectly 100% of the time.  The pressure to “try” 100% of the time is enough all by itself to trigger me, much less any other potential triggers that come along throughout the day.

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BPD SUCKS!

I’m a 42-year-old woman, living in the midwestern USA, who was finally diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) just about two months ago.  Looking back, I know the signs have been there since at least adolescence, if not earlier, but no one recognized it.  My previous therapists under-diagnosed me as simply Major Depressive Disorder and anxiety.  It turns out, I’ve also got ADHD and PTSD, neither of which were being treated.

I have a wake of terrible failures and broken hearts to show for the undiagnosed BPD and ADHD!  I failed out of college my sophomore year, because I wouldn’t go to class.  I was addicted to this new thing (in 1994) called “the Internet.”  Relationships have always been disasters, too.  I’ve always done the leaving.  Better to get out under my own terms than be rejected by the other.  My 17-year marriage was a study in stubbornness.  Neither of us wanted to be the one to “quit,” but I finally did after a few affairs and my kids’ begging for a divorce from their dad.

The only relationship I can’t seem to screw up, lately, is with my dog.  He loves me unconditionally, but he’s not smart enough to know any better.

Posted in Borderline Personality Disorder, Mental Health | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments