BPD Symptoms – Unclear or unstable self-image

Unclear or unstable self-image.

When you have BPD, your sense of self is typically unstable. Sometimes you may feel good about yourself, but other times you hate yourself, or even view yourself as evil. You probably don’t have a clear idea of who you are or what you want in life. As a result, you may frequently change jobs, friends, lovers, religion, values, goals, and even sexual identity.

I’ve never known who I am or what I want. I know there are a lot of people who don’t know what they want in life, what they want as a career. But, I just don’t know who I am. I don’t know what my likes and dislikes are. I don’t know what my hobbies are. I don’t even know what type of music I like. It all depends on who my friends are at the time. I will like what they like. I will listen to the music they listen to. I will do the things they like. I’m not manipulative. I’m not pretending. I just want them to like me. I don’t know what I like, so I think they can introduce me to new things and I might like them. I can be easily persuaded to change my mind on a subject. I’m not gullible. It’s not even a conscious decision. But, I know I do it because I want them to like me. I want to have something in common with them. I want to be what they want me to be. Through doing this, I have discovered things that I like (I think) and don’t look for approval from others about it. But I’m never 100% committed to anything. I’ll like something. I’ll really like something. I’ll love something. Then I’ll just stop. Sometimes for a long time, sometimes for a short time, sometimes forever. Or I’ll like something, but not know much about it. But don’t have the energy, inclination or attention-span to find out more about it. The only thing I’ve been interested in is the television show Xena. I love that show. Have done for nearly 20 years. I don’t watch it that much anymore. But I still love anything and everything to do with it. I went to Comic Con in November and managed to buy a Xena mug. I was so happy. Maybe it is because I use to use it as an escape when I was younger and my affection for it has stayed. I don’t know. But I am trying to be more aware of my feelings towards things and try to figure out if I really like it or if it is because someone I know likes it. It can be hard. It can be tiring. At the end of last year I got obsessed about learning to ride a motorbike. I booked my CBT (never tried to ride one before and can’t even start a car) and obviously failed it. I then bought books about it, bought motorbike magazines, took a one-on-one training lesson. Then the feeling faded. But it is still there. It is something I want to do and I am planning on going for my CBT again. So, I believe that to be a genuine want for it. I use to play a lot of video games when I was younger and still like to play them. Over Christmas I wanted to buy a new TV and a PS4. I kept thinking it was just my impulsiveness, so ignored it. I then bought them, both. Love the TV. I’ve played on the PS4 about 3 or 4 times. I think that was an impulse. It is so hard to distinguish.

I get easily bored at jobs. When I first start, I always see it as the best opportunity and am really excited about it. But, it doesn’t take me long to become bored. To start thinking about getting a different job in a different sector. I resent the job. I hate it. I hate the managers. I hate the customers/clients/public. I hate it all. I then start to resent it. I hate myself for not being qualified to get another job. A better paid job. A more exciting job. Then usually my work starts to suffer. I cut corners. Get easily distracted. Start under-performing. Get in trouble. Get stressed. Have time off sick. Then finally quit. It’s a vicious cycle that has been happening all my life. I am bored at my current job which I have only been doing for a year. But I can feel all these feelings creeping in. I work hard to stop them. But it feels like a losing battle when you are fighting your own mind.

But I am fighting them. I will keep analysing them, in the hope that one day I will know instantly if they are my thoughts or if it is the BPD talking.

Nat xx

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BPD Symptoms – Unstable relationships

Unstable relationships.

People with BPD tend to have relationships that are intense and short-lived. You may fall in love quickly, believing each new person is the one who will make you feel whole, only to be quickly disappointed. Your relationships either seem perfect or horrible, with nothing in between. Your lovers, friends, or family members may feel like they have emotional whiplash from your rapid swings between idealization and devaluation, anger, and hate.

This applies to all relationships in my life and not just romantic ones. Although, my romantic relationships have been affected as well. I’ve always been looking for someone to complete me. To make me a whole person. To make me a better person. To give my life meaning and happiness. Deep down, I know this has to come from me and if I’m expecting someone else to be able to do this, I am always going to be disappointed. Doesn’t stop me wanting it though. It doesn’t stop the thoughts. It doesn’t stop the pain and the emptiness.

I’ve always liked Xena. If you don’t know what that is, it was a fantasy television show in the 90’s. It was cheesy and sometimes tacky, but I loved it. Still do. There is subtext between the two main female characters and I love that. I didn’t realise I was gay at the time and I think that show helped me, to come out. I’ve always thought that was the main reason I liked the show, but I think it was also the intensity of their relationship. They died for each other. Risked everything for each other. They were soulmates. It was really intense. Here’s a quote from one of the episodes “That’s what we all dream about, isn’t it? Someone who looks so deeply into our soul that they’d find something worth dying for.” This really strikes a chord with me. That is what I want. Not only is it what I want, it is what I expect a romantic relationship to be like. That is how I feel when I’m with someone and expect the other person to feel the same. Obviously, this is not real life. Relationships are not that intense and the one’s that are, never last. Doesn’t stop me craving it though.

The first really intense relationship I had was when I was at College. I’m still not sure how to define that relationship and I’m not entirely sure I want to. Whatever it was, it was ours. We had some really great times and we also had some really shitty times. It ended badly. But we are now back in touch, which I am really happy about. I don’t want that relationship back, but I think when you’ve shared that kind of intense relationship with someone, you’ll always care about them. They’ll always have a place in your heart. Which she does. Not in a romantic way. But, she is a part of me and always will be.

Since then, I’ve  had a few intense friendships, but nothing that really stands out. Then when I had a pretty bad episode a couple of years ago, I got really obsessed with someone I worked with. It was not healthy. It was not fun. It caused me a lot of trouble with my partner. I kinda tossed her to the side and just focused on this person. They consumed my life. If I wasn’t with them, I was contacting them or talking about them. They were my life. I didn’t even realise at the time. I was in my own little bubble and except for this person, nothing else mattered. Actually, there were two people I did this with. Around the same time and at the same place. Looking back, I just can’t believe I behaved like that or even thought like that.

My relationship with my partner, has been up and down. This is mainly due to me. One minute I’m obsessed with her, the next I couldn’t give a shit about her and everything she does angers me. She doesn’t know if she is coming or going with me. I don’t actually know how she puts up with me sometimes!

Nat xx

 

BPD Symptoms – Fear of abandonment

There are 9 categories used in diagnosing Borderline Personality Disorder and you must show signs of at least five of them. I am going to do a post on each one and how it relates to me. I might have only had an unofficial diagnosis, but it is the only thing that has ‘fit’ me. I have taken the definitions from HelpGuide.org

Fear of abandonment. 

People with BPD are often terrified of being abandoned or left alone. Even something as innocuous as a loved one getting home late from work or going away for the weekend can trigger intense fear. This leads to frantic efforts to keep the other person close. You may beg, cling, start fights, jealously track your loved one’s movements, or even physically block the other person from leaving. Unfortunately, this behavior tends to have the opposite effect—driving others away.

I do have a fear of abandonment, but I don’t really show it. I guess it is not so much a fear, as an expectation. I always expect people to leave me. Maybe it is a self-fulfilling prophecy. I expect it to happen and somehow will make it happen. I push people away, but I actually want them in my life. I guess it could be seen as testing them. If I keep pushing them and they stay, then maybe they do like/love me and want me in their life.

I have been known to stalk people on social media, well Facebook. If I’ve messaged them and they haven’t replied, I’ll check to see when they were last on there, when they last posted or replied to someone. If they haven’t been on there, then I feel better. If they have, then I think they don’t want to talk to me. They’ve had enough of me. They no longer want me in their life. I won’t message them again, but I will constantly check. Most of the time, it has all been in my head and they have replied to me. On the rare occasion, they haven’t replied and they don’t want to. I guess that doesn’t help my fears. They’ve actually validated them. But it has been because I have done something or been a bit too intense.

This still happens to me, but I’m trying to learn to not listen to my thoughts, as I know they are deceiving me. But it is hard. I can’t always contain myself and will check. But I am doing it less and hopefully will stop it, one day.

Nat xx

A Chance

So it seems that work is consuming my life. I hate it, yet bring it on myself. I guess it gives me something to focus on. If I didn’t have work, then I would think too much. I would worry too much. I would over-analyse, everything. I would find something else to obsess about. So, I guess obsessing/focusing on work isn’t the worse thing I could do.

Apart from work, not a lot has happened with me. Oh, except someone I have known for about 10 years has decided to cut me out of their life. I guess I wasn’t the best at keeping in touch. But I thought they would have understood, considering they also suffer from mental health issues. And yes, I do mean suffer. There’s nothing fun or glamorous about depression. They didn’t even have the decency or maybe guts to tell me. I found out from their blog. I must say, I’ve been called a lot of things in my life, dead wood is not one of them. It’s just another name to add to the list. The list I am learning to let go of. I have a lot of regrets in my life. Some from 15 years ago, some from last year. But I’m starting to realise it’s not healthy to hang on to them. More importantly, it’s not right. I deserve to be happy. I deserve to have a chance. At life. A happy life. Yes, I’ve made mistakes. Yes, I’ve treated people badly. Yes, I’ve not been a very nice person. Yes, I’ve pushed people away. Yes, I’ve been terrible at keeping in contact with people. Yes, I’ve caused pain. But do I have to keep punishing myself for this? No. I know now, a lot of this was due to me not being very well. I have to learn to accept that. I have to learn to like, no, love myself. I can’t let the demons of my past dictate my future. I have to get to know myself. I have to allow myself to enjoy myself. I have to allow myself a chance.

Everybody deserves a chance.

Nat xx