Category Archives: borderline

upswinging

It’s funny, people asking me if I’m okay now that I finally feel okay.

One of my very best friends has found the love of his life. Or so he thinks. He also found Jesus. A few months ago, he found Jesus. After wanting to be a Youth Pastor when he was in college, to going to seminary, to realizing God is fucked up and church is fucked up and people in church are fucked up. Then a staunch atheist for a long long time. Then a quiet atheist. Then, Jesus.

But I haven’t seen Jesus in awhile, only his new girlfriend. Almost fiance. After a few weeks, he has bought the ring.

You’re an addict, dude. You’re addicted to something, always. To drugs, or alcohol, or me, or work, or Jesus, or her. I guess it’s not okay to say that, at least not before I’ve met her and not before he asks and not over text message.

I spend too much time thinking about loss. So many friends gone this year, but the choosing kind of gone. I know I’ve said it before. It’s just always there, the holes, and more added every day it seems like. It’s okay. I have new friends, or old friends who have stuck around, and I try to focus on them. I try to remember the holes I’ve left in other people’s lives. Try to convince myself I mattered to someone as much as these people matter to me.

I don’t even know her last name. Did she keep hers? Add his? Take his only?

She said Happy Birthday and some other kind and thoughtful things. I didn’t respond. What would I even say? What could I even want from her? And do I risk responding only to find that her message was just…a thing, and not an attempt to get me back.

I feel okay. It’s pretty cool. Of course I anticipate the upswing to keep going straight on to mania, but for now it’s awesome, and welcome.

Thanks, beach time last week! You put me on the right track.

 

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God will never.

I remember when this blog was halfway professional, but now it seems to just be a place I can scream without judgment. Which is a good thing, but it also makes me feel like a failure.

“God will never send you another woman’s husband.”

I saw that quote a few weeks ago and it really struck me. I’m glad it’s stuck in my head. I said it out loud to a couple of people and they just looked at me like I was crazy. Like, duh. And of course it sounds logical and Captain Obvious and all that – it always does, until you’re in the situation. Then we try to backtrack and justify and say, “We’re meant to be, we’re perfect, he/she married the wrong person the first time, it was always supposed to be us.”

But that’s just not true. Even with all of the people I know who are still married to the men/women with whom they had the affair. I can’t believe that it’s right.

I do believe that if you knew yourself and trusted yourself that maybe you would have been single when you met your “true” love, but I also know that if you’d been single you probably wouldn’t have felt that euphoric sense of belonging/appreciation/relief that you felt with the new person. Kudos to you for making it last, though.

To the married man that went too far on Saturday:

I’m so, so sorry. I’m sorry for not trying harder to stop you. You will regret it forever, and I knew that. I told you that. I’m so sorry. I am broken, and now you are, too. You are good. You are STILL good. Do not let this corrode you from the inside; you are still a loving husband and father and teacher and person. Please, please, please be okay.

You didn’t have to walk me home.

I am fine on my own.

Always.

I am not stunning. You would have decided I’m not worth it, just like everyone does. So shiny, until I’m not.

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Back to Borderline.

“The urge was addictive, and I couldn’t think of anything else but ending my life. The ability to see how my death would hurt others was lost to me, and I still don’t quite know why I went back home after two hours. I stopped being angry, I think.

I have never considered suicide when depressed; even thinking about it would be too much effort in that situation. However, anger and panic are what drive me to think such thoughts, to harm myself, to chain-smoke and take more pills than I should. Any type of fear sends me into a blind panic; I just don’t know how to deal with the emotions. Or any emotion, really.”

From Halfway Between the Gutter.

While my therapist/psychiatrist and I established that I do not, clinically, have Borderline Personality Disorder (a constant nagging fear of which haunts me with surprising regularity), I definitely DO exhibit some serious BPD traits.  The above quote from HBG was like a lightbulb for me: it’s not depression that makes me think life is worthless, it’s anger and fear!  I’ve discussed my inability to name my emotions before, and with this new insight I feel like I have one more glimpse into the dysregulated organ that is my brain. Now to determine if I’m actually angry in these situations, or if it’s all a manifestation of fear. Specifically, the fear of being betrayed. Well, of being betrayed and not knowing about it. But still.

New goal: let’s separate the three emotions and figure out a better way to respond.  Like, now.  Actually like, two weeks ago would be nice. But you can’t undo the past, right? Dang it. #dbt.

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I know I’m borderline because…

I can pick a fight about anything.  No literally, anything.  I turn it into some huge hurtful action against meNo matter what.

Everyone loved your painting? That’s nice. I just…I don’t understand why you never paint a picture of me. Everyone knows I’m not important to you, just look at your work – I don’t inspire you. I wish I was an inspiring person, that I made you just have to take a photo or post a Facebook status or draw a picture. I’m sad you don’t feel that way; you deserve someone who makes you feel that way.

or

Everyone loved your painting? I bet that girl was there, wasn’t she? I’m sure she just loved it, like how she loved watching you paint it. What? I’m not there, it’s not fair. She gets to be there for all of your big moments and I’m not. Oh she wasn’t there? Still.  Art makes me think of her and what you did. I’m just hurt and sad.

or

Everyone loved your painting? I told you it was good but you don’t care what I think, you only care what other people think.  I’m not good enough for you, I never will be. I don’t understand art. You want someone who understands art, understands your weird brain. I’ll never be like that, and you’ll resent me, and you’ll meet someone who adores your work and gets it and wants it hanging in her bedroom, and you’ll be with her and not me.  Which is fine, but just break up with me now, okay? We shouldn’t be together.

I can ruin any moment.  Especially the happiest, goofiest, greatest ones. I’ll ruin those every time these days. It’s going on my resume under “Special Skills: absolutely sucks the life out of you just when you’re feeling good.” I’m like the Dementor of relationships.

That’s what those things are called, right?

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How can I help myself if I have borderline personality disorder?

“Taking that first step to help yourself may be hard. It is important to realize that, although it may take some time, you can get better with treatment.”

To help yourself:

  • Talk to your doctor about treatment options and stick with treatment
  • Try to maintain a stable schedule of meals and sleep times
  • Engage in mild activity or exercise to help reduce stress
  • Set realistic goals for yourself
  • Break up large tasks into small ones, set some priorities, and do what you can, as you can
  • Try to spend time with other people and confide in a trusted friend or family member
  • Tell others about events or situations that may trigger symptoms
  • Expect your symptoms to improve gradually, not immediately
  • Identify and seek out comforting situations, places, and people
  • Continue to educate yourself about this disorder.”

From the NIMH.

Looks like I have some work to do! Even if I’m not full-blown BPD, I have enough borderline traits that, as a good friend said today, something needs to happen.  Something has to change, because without getting myself together I’m changing my whole life for the worse.  By doing nothing I’m doing everything.  Time to take an active role in getting my life back to where I love it.

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