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It's More Painful To Remember Than To Forget...

I am currently a 25 year old Psychology major in college.
And it took me until recently to discover why my childhood was so painful and why I feel the need to punish myself even into adulthood.
My mother's emotional roller-coaster seems to revolve around the men in her life. She was loving when she was single, neglectful when she was dating someone, and over-controlling and cruel when married to someone. This even extended to during the marriage, in which she was loving when the husband was gone, and would switch to cruel when the husband was in the house or in the room.

I was parentified, invalidated, humiliated, abused, and everything that goes with living with a BPD mother. My mail was read, I was intruded on in the bathroom, forced to work hard labor when I was 13 and 14, and have had a full-time job since I was 15. I was kicked out at the age of 17, in the summer before my senior year of high school, and forced to move in with my alcoholic dad. I missed out on Prom, both senior and Junior year. I wasn't allowed to go, because I was "acting bitchy" the night before. I missed out on my Senior trip, which I had worked so hard for, for 3 years. My mother refused to come to my High School graduation because she didn't receive a formal invitation in the mail.

Throughout my childhood, I retreated into books- fairytale worlds where the women were beautiful and giving and the men were white knights on horses. I hid in my room, hid outside, enrolled in as many school events as possible just to stay away from home. I wasn't allowed to be in the events I signed up for, of course, because it took away from my time at home. She refused to come watch me in the ONE musical/play that I was able to be in at school.

I have blocked out most of my childhood. Other than a general story, my childhood is blank. I don't have any actual memories until the age of 19, which is when I moved out on my own. The "general story" is, I was emotionally abused and sometimes physically abused. I was always wrong- I had no rights- not to privacy, or personal space, or to have an opinion.

I'm still not really sure how to handle all this- Do I have BPD too? I'm terrified... :(
katriana katriana 22-25 8 Responses May 3, 2011

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Wow. I feel like you wrote my life down, except my experience was with my father.

From what you have described, I am almost sure you do not have BPD and I am not sure if your mother has BPD. I have a BPD daughter and her symptoms started when she was 13. I see you as a strong person who was able to withstand your mother and it has to have affected you in some way but comparing my daughter to you, I dont see you as a BPD. I strongly advise you seek counseling as there may me resentment or post traumatic trauma which is better to be treated. As to your mother, BPD is characterized by a strong sense of abandonment and it seems your mother was always better when she did not have a partner. In any case, you are now an adult and try to see towards the future, seek positive things in life and throw out whatever affects you negatively. Best wishes to you.

I apologize as this isn't completely related to your story, but your story did get me thinking. After researching what BPD was and what effects it has in the child, it accrued to me that it is very similar to the problems I have today. It would take me way to long to type out the family problems that did have. But I guess what iam trying to say is thank you for the post. Maybe if I ever he over the idea that psycologest are bad I may go and talk to one and maybe figure out why I am the way I am.

I was stuck in the house with mine, and I totally relate to entering the "book world". To this day, books have a strong power and I can't understand why some people don't get into them the way I can.

You are a resilient person. No one who hasn't had a parent with borderline disorder can understand the horrors that took place. It's our own Holocaust of sorts. I am empathetically sorry and upset that you had to deal with such a disgusting and cruel situation. Thanks so much for sharing your story, and I hope you don't feel as alone as before. One of the best things about this forum is learning how others experienced a similar state.

Wow, I can totally relate to not remembering your childhood... "Throughout my childhood, I retreated into books- fairytale worlds where the women were beautiful and giving and the men were white knights on horses. I hid in my room, hid outside, enrolled in as many school events as possible just to stay away from home." I relate to that too. I'm also a psych major :)... You seem so strong. I hope you're doing well. Great post btw!

Oh wow! That is my biggest fear too! I have a brother and two sisters and we always ask each other "Is that something Mom would do?". We have a pact that if any of us starts acting like her we will tell the person, just because we are all so afraid of becoming like her. It is crazy, on some things I can't trust my brain to be right because I don't know if it's a "mom behavior" or a normal behavior. <br />
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I also have huge blanks from my childhood. My friends talk about memories from childhood and I always find them so interesting because I don't remember. <br />
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Thanks for posting, it's really nice not to be alone in feeling this way. :)

wow! That is exactly my story! Did we grow up in the same house? I too have complete blanks in relation to remembering my childhood. BLANK!!!<br />
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I have started a blog for daughters of borderline moms so that we can get support from eachother and help us deal with the horrible lingering after effects! We may be grown up but you can't just forget!<br />
It's called <br />
Daughters of Moms with Borderline.wordpress.<br />
Love to hear from you!

I had a mother similar to yours. I understand. It is rarely heard of, this wicked mother. Staying out of the home was how I coped too. It saved my spirit from being completely broken. I walked for hours, walked everywhere, in the woods, around the town, down long roads. It made me a better person. It is quite painful, hard to shake. <br />
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You may need to find an expert if you can. Or keep talking about it here. It will be necessary for you to remember to heal and the longer you put it off, the harder it is. <br />
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Already you have made a monumental step forward by realizing it is her, not you. That is half the battle won. Congratulations for surviving intact and very obviously insightful and sensitive as well as intelligent. Trusting your instincts and not being attracted to what is familiar to you will be needed. It's the thing that is hardest for me.