The Outside Does Not Match The Inside: Recovered Life, Troubled Mind.

I have bpd and usually rely on my family and (dwindling) friends i trust to talk about it when i need to. i also have explained it to my boyfriend, npr podcast and all, and he is wonderfully accepting. this doesn't stop me from feeling rejected neglected paranoid and most of all bitter seething resentment toward him. it's always directed at him. we break up and make up in my mind at least 20x a day. sure there are environmental factors, but i know that it's my bpd that gets in my way. i can't speak for him, he's stoic (read: not so expressive) so i'm often not sure what he thinks about it. he is supportive but that support is upstaged by my feelings. i blame myself. i try to protect him from the rollercoaster...when he is upset i think he's mad at me. when he tells me he loves me i am disgusted. i have been relatively unstable on and off for a week this time around. i am suppressing urges to pick a fight, to talk to him about how i feel, not to mention the urges to self-medicate, act out sexually, self-harm. it's impossible for me- in this state-to accept support from him. i am terrified that he will leave me (i guess, not certain of anything right now) so i want him to leave now. i want him to be with someone else. someone younger prettier more perfect and someone who isn't in turmoil. and i want to scream at him to do it. i only hear the negative things he says. these 5 or 6 statements echo in my mind and drown out all the i love you's. i hate him. and i am trying to protect him and this relationship my not expressing anything. this is exactly why my last relationship ended, I tried to protect the other person from my pain. but the pain is so visceral.

i mentioned recovering? i've been off heroin for over 6 yrs, traded my call girl job for a director position in an office, stopped cutting ages ago, and have been in dbt and individual therapy for many moons. it does get better. i no longer have panic attacks, no longer calling my therapist from my kitchen floor bc i can't get up, no more hyperventilating, the bouts of agony are fewer, farther between, and less strong. it sure doesn't feel that way right now but i'm typing so obviously i'm not convulsing and pouring out tears- literally my eyes just run like faucets. i cry so easily, and i feel sooo intensely. a good shrink once told me that all of the emotion inside me could be converted to 'artistic capital,' as he put it (i am an artist)...and my art has benefited from this rawness. i am actually making art, which comes with recovery. i learn skills in dbt and some stick, some i work on till they stick, the rest i ignore. but when you're low, real low, it's impossible to use these skills, or so it seems. i do want to live, but not as the current version of myself. i've never been suicidal, but when i'm depressed (diagnosed w/ major depression, anxiety too) i hate myself even more for being so weak that i can't move at the thought of ending my life. i should be glad, relieved, something other than disappointed in myself for being a self-pitying complaining drama queen who doesn't have what it takes. i can find an extreme negative interpretation for everything when i feel this low.

you need to fit 5 out of 9 dsm criteria to be diagnosed with bpd. i fit all 9. my psyche took 3 years to tell me he had diagnosed me, for fear of my reaction given the stigma or something. it was a relief to put a name to it, to know that other people had this, that there is a spectrum and I am on the lower end, and most importantly, that it can be cured. now i feel helpless all over again. i have no faith that this will pass, even though i have proof and everyone who has seen me break thru it reminds me constantly. but i only feel pain. i have no idea who i am- even when i feel great there is still a shaky sense of identity for me- let alone how to interact with others. i'm a grown-up now. i am expected to act like one. that means no self harm no numbing (unless it's dissociating) no seeking pain or thrill to have something to focus on other than my feelings and thoughts.

i feel horribly selfish for resisting the the things that helped me to feel better but i am stuck in a holding pattern of shame for being so "difficult." "Never boring" is no longer a euphemism. I could go on and on, and maybe I'll write more when I feel better, give others hope, but for now i am in my own private hell. i never felt anger until about 5 years ago. never. it's not an exaggeration. now that i am in touch with it, i find the rage inside me to be shocking. and i bite my tongue bc i still have that much self control. now i know why i supressed it: who the hell wants to feel like if they open their mouth and yell they will scorch every tree on earth? that's how i feel about my anger.

i have so much more to say, but i think this is enough for now. i'm curious to read it since i'm so out of it that i have no idea what i just wrote. thank you for reading this, whoever you are...
-L.
exitall exitall
31-35
2 Responses Aug 10, 2010

"who the hell wants to feel like if they open their mouth and yell they will scorch every tree on earth? that's how i feel about my anger." I did too.When people who have tolerated my worst before I knew I had bpd,still for some reason talk to me I am grateful to them.

That certainly sounds like recovery to me! For all the progress, on a bad day or when I'm triggered it's just as bad as it ever was. That includes my addictions and my bipolar and personality disorder (which may be borderline... jury's still out). I'm nearly 6 years clean, sober abstinent myself and in some ways I feel just as crazy as when I was using. But more knowledge, more tools and a little more self-esteem simply because I choose not to use today. Congratulations on your recovery... and commiserations on the way our mental illnesses undermine the joy of it :-)