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Forums / Staying well / Managing Borderline Personality Disorder

Topic: Managing Borderline Personality Disorder

  1. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    8 February 2016 in reply to xmin

    Hi xmin,

    that's great to hear that your psychologist is so supportive of recovery from BPD. There are a lot of strengths that come with the condition - sensitivity, empathy, creativity, deep thinkers... when put to good use can be real pluses! Like anything it depends on moderation and how its expressed.

    Yeah i hear you xmin about the fear of long term relationships - the hardest part of bpd for me has been instability in my friendships and relationships - and the extreme difficulty in feeling safe and opening up to people. I hope that having healthy kind people in my life today as well as trusting therapy relationships will help me keep healing in this area, but it sure is a slog. Groups can be really challenging - and yet I also love the feel of being involved in a group or community space... its just so beautiful.

    Anyways nice chatting, good to connect with other bpd'ers :)

    Christina 

  2. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    13 February 2016 in reply to Ladyhawke

    Hi lh and Christina,

    The diagnosis definitely helps explain why I deal with certain things a certain(mostly negative imo) way. Thanks for the book suggestion, I'll have a look into it. 

    I definitely get the strengths of bpd you mention Christina, I can relate to them somewhat. I'm a little blurry on how bpd affects my friendships though. Like, in my mind some things are justified, and I will explain them to another friend and they'll agree. Confusing. 

    Hmm.. it would be kinda nice if there was a Borderline section on its own. There are lots of issues to discuss with this disorder. I'll start with the emptiness/boredom feeling. How do you guys deal? I have in my head that I'm looking for an activity/sport/hobby that I will be interested in. Maybe not a full blown passion, but something that picks up mu interest and I'm excited about. I've dabbled in various things but nothing really excites me that much. 

    xmin

  3. Ladyhawke
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    14 February 2016 in reply to xmin

    Hi xmin,

    I understand that feeling of emptiness you mention. For me, it's a feeling that I have no defined personality or sense of self. 

    When I was younger, I would attempt to create a sense of identity by taking on the personality, mannerisms etc of fictional characters in films or books or plays I'd read. Sounds crazy I know, but my psychiatrist told me this was a very common coping mechanism for those with BPD.

    Fortunately, my psychiatrist knew I had a background in journalism and encouraged me to start writing fiction and plays. This is something I really enjoy and has been extremely therapeutic.

    I know how difficult it is to find and stick with an interest. I tried many hobbies/activities over the year's and always ran out of enthusiasm very quickly.

    Is there anything that you're drawn to that could extend into an activity e.g. if you love animals, you could offer to volunteer at an animal shelter etc.

    I know what it's like to feel at a loose end - just try to think of something you naturally have an interest in and see how far you can go with it. I found when I tried to force myself into activities I had no interest, I discontinued it very quickly.

    Best wishes and take care,

     lh.

  4. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    15 February 2016 in reply to Ladyhawke

    Hi xmin and lh,

    nice to chat with you guys, its good to have this thread to discuss bpd stuff. And thanks xmin by bringing up the emptiness thing, this has been on my mind lately. I've just started schema therapy with a psychologist and she suggested that the emptiness will dissipate over time as i learn to meet my needs more, and hence will instead become more fulfilled. In relationships (any sort) I normally ignore my wishes/ needs/ interests etc and can be left feeling pretty empty. I can also not pursue things of interest out of fear/ self limiting views etc.

    I guess for me this emptiness trait is about a yearning for something more, something more wholesome and nourishing, and sort of feeling dissatisfied with everything and everyone that is in my life. Of all the bpd criteria i find this one the most confusing and confronting... somehow i can't see it clearly. But i do always seem to be looking for something... i can relate to having tried many hobbies and groups and dropping out of them quickly, feeling dissatisfied.

    For me returning to uni last year to study visual art has been big, and has provided a sense of meaning and purpose in life. Its given me a reason to stop being suicidal and does make me feel more grounded and whole. But i've much work to do! My goal this year is to find more satisfaction (and less emptiness/ boredom/ loneliness) in my friendships/ relationships... I'm not sure how i'll get there yet, but i think schema therapy will help. And i've finally realised that i can't just go on meeting people and trying new things... i need to change how i approach them, so that i can get the feeling i'm hoping for. But at the same time i'd like to cultivate one hobby thats not a sport outside of art... but not sure on what yet! I'd like something that speaks to my inner nerd i think. Its hard though to connect to interests and passions when depression is around, it sort of dampens everything.

    Anyways, enough rambles for me. I think you're right lh that this emptiness is tied in with sense of self. I often seem to put everything into one area of my life (usually work or studies) and am lost when this area is on holidays or not working out. How long is it since you've been working on bpd stuff lh? Its great to hear about your writing. Have you found interest in other areas of your life?

    And how are you going xmin? any ideas on things you used to love that might be worth reconnecting with? 

    Kind wishes, Christina 

  5. Ladyhawke
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    20 February 2016 in reply to hope4joy

    Hi hope4joy,

    ​I didn't want you to think i'd ignored your post; have been hit by intense bout of depression. Psychiatrist has changed dosage on meds etc. ; am riding it out till it passes. Will be in contact when I resurface.

  6. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    20 February 2016 in reply to Ladyhawke

    Hi ladyhawke

    I definitely get that feeling of not having a sense of self. Sometimes I have no idea what my personality is like- except it's annoying. 

    That's an interesting coping mechanism, I've never heard of it. I have wished before that I could have a completely different personality, but some days I feel I like who I am. It's great that you've found something you enjoy that helps channel your thoughts. 

    Nothing I can think of. I'd love to do volunteer work when I'm retired and have time on my hands. Although during my last psych session my psychologist pointed out that I have quite a bad work life balance. 

    I'm in the process of trying to purchase a bicycle. I know myself well enough by now to know that I'm getting really locked on and excited to be buying it, and thinking about riding it. But when I actually get it I won't use it as much as I should. Hahaha. But I guess that's maybe a common problem lots of people might have. I'm also looking into maybe doing some swimming after work, which is a challenge since I live far from work and I catch public transport in. 

    One of the biggest challenges I have is wanting a buddy to do things with. I get very bored doing things by myself. 

    hello again hope, 

    I can definitely relate to that. Self care is really important, and it's kind of easy to neglect all that when you have another person. I find myself making excuses or having reasons- which are valid to me- to not do things because I'm uncomfortable. 

    It's really great to hear that you're chasing your goals. I hope you find that thing despite all the distractions.

    I'm doing alright, thanks for asking. I ordered that book on borderline, hopefully it will reach me soon. I'm going out to watch a movie and have dinner today with friends- it's been a while since I've been in a social group situation. And I've decided tomorrow I'm going bike shopping. 

    I have other issues I want to talk about, but I'm not sure if I should be dumping them all here in a borderline thread. 

  7. white knight
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    white knight avatar
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    20 February 2016 in reply to Ladyhawke

    Hi all,

    Unfortunately AGrace, the original poster of this thread left this forum some time ago.

    This thread is a very important thread for those with BPD.

    Can I say as a person with a mother with chronic BPD that resulted in many of my issues today, and is in total denial, if you seek treatment and stick with it, then you get all the accolades from me for your effort.

    It is known that those with BPD often never get treatment and then when they do they don't stick with it. This is the worst thing one can do for not only themselves but their loved ones. I know this first hand.

    So well done getting the help you need.

    Tony WK

    1 person found this helpful
  8. hope4joy
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    525 posts
    20 February 2016 in reply to xmin

    Hi xmin,

    i'm sorry you've been hit by depression. I hope the change in meds works. Its such a horrible feeling. I am still trying to get fully out of a depression I got over xmas and the ruddy thing wont go away. I guess for me my depression in part is also telling me my life is out of balance and that i need to focus more on building growing sustaining relationships with my self and others and less time on 'doing stuff'... but i find the latter so much easier!

    You mentioned you have lots you want to chat about but not sure where to post it? You're welcome to post whatever wherever... I guess my experience is that the bpd traffic on this forum is pretty light - there are normally only a few replies. So if the issue is something that many people might face - which is most of bpd through maybe people use different words - than maybe the depression or anxiety sections - might get more responses. A few years ago I was on a forum that was mostly for bpd - it was really wonderful and helpful and i even meet some friends in person from it. But sadly its withered away and is not much in use anymore - i checked it out a few months ago and hence am on here. There is something special in connecting with people with bpd who have so many similar experiences in life. At the same time i've found this forum really safe and friendly and mostly people relate to what i share. Sometimes i feel i'm going 'too deep' than others... but then is part of my personality, so could happen anywhere. 

    Anyways xmin, how has your bicycle shopping gone? 

    And it sounds like you have a long commute to work. How do you pass the time?

    I love swimming... love the feeling of having my head under water, but hardly go anymore. My skin has started reacting to the chlorine so i get stinging on my face :( but occasional visits to the beach and pool are bliss. I grew up near the ocean and spent much of my childhood swimming.

    And yeah I hear you about wanting a buddy to do things with. I wonder if you have any acquaintances you could invite along for a bike ride? Have you tried meetup before?

    Sending kind wishes your way,

    Christina 

     

     

  9. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    20 February 2016 in reply to white knight

    Hi Tony,

    I'm not quite sure how to start off, i guess to say that I feel uncomfortable about how you have written about bpd.

    Bpd is a mental health condition that nobody asks for, nobody chooses, but unfortunately a large number of people end up suffering from. There is a ridiculous amount of stigma against bpd. Much of the literature makes out that people with bpd are manipulative vindictive people who deliberately act in ways to harm themselves and others. The literature is so stigmatised that I chose to stop reading it - instead I read literature on 'complex trauma' - because this is another name that often fits the bpd diagnosis. I found the trauma literature much more compassionate and kind towards suffers and also fitted my situation accurately.

    You say that your mother having bpd caused many of your difficulties. For me it was having a mother with depression that caused much of my early trauma. My mother has never recognised or accepted her depression - which she still suffers from - and has never sought treatment for it. Yet i just see her as part of a continuum, she had a pretty emotionally devoid and challenging childhood - which contributed to her problems. My grandparents dies before I was born but I guess they also had difficulties in their upbringing - that they passed on to my mum. I strongly believe in not blaming others for my difficulties - yes it has led to years of pain and mental illness for me but mum did the best she could with the resources she had, and I'm an adult now and it is my responsibility to change. It is not for me to judge others on their journey or lack of journey.

    I guess what you wrote about many people with bpd not seeking or sticking with treatment - the same can be said for depression and anxiety and perhaps every mental illness. Society still has much stigma about seeking treatment and it is only in recent years that compassionate treatments are becoming available - compared to the barbaric asylums of the past. But to imply people with bpd wilfully deny treatment does not sit well with me. I can only speak for myself but a lifetime fear of people and huge issues with disassociating under stress have been major barriers to my self awareness and getting help. Nobody in their right mind would choose to suffer bpd if they new that treatment could help.

    I hope it is okay to be this frank Tony. I am tired of discrimination against bpd. Like everyone else, we simply need kindness + acceptance.

    Kind wishes, Christina 

  10. Ladyhawke
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    21 February 2016 in reply to hope4joy

    Hi Christina, 

    ​Yes, no one would choose to have BPD and.I think most people would want to seek professional help rather than deal with this hellish disorder alone.

    The problem I had was being given a diagnosis only last year when I now realise I have had  the disorder for decades.

    I originally sought treatment for major depression/anxiety disorder 20 years ago, then a diagnosis of ADD was made three years ago. My psychiatrist did mention a few times that I displayed a few traits of BPD but didn't seem to think it was sufficiently serious to warrant treatment.

    It only when I had a psychotic break last year that I had a full evaluation and was diagnosed with BPD. Had I been diagnosed sooner, I would have recognised that my behaviours were symptoms of the disorder.

    Basically, what I'm saying is, perhaps some of the symptoms mimic other disorders and therefore a diagnosis may be difficult or quite late in coming.

    I am actually agreeing with what you said; I just wanted to give a perspective of someone who was clinically diagnosed at a relatively mature age, unfortunately.

    lh

     

    1 person found this helpful
  11. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    21 February 2016 in reply to hope4joy
    Hello again, 

    Well, I'll try to be brief. It's kinda hard to know where issues start and end and overlap, but I guess it does link to my bpd a little. I recently came out of a relationship that ended because my partner had issues with someone who was one of my best friends at the time. With no choice other than to end the relationship, I chose to end my friendship. Being out of the relationship now gives me perspective to see exactly how unhealthy the whole thing was, and I realise that I sacrificed my mental health to be with someone who wasn't willing to compromise. I also lost a friend who was a huge part of my social life and support and all that. My psych said that part of bpd is difficulty dealing with loss and separation, so that might be why I had so much trouble letting my friend go. 

    Bicycle shopping is....frustrating! I can't believe how hard it is to find the type of bike I want in Sydney. I vaguely entertained the thought of cajoling someone into coming with me on a road trip to Melbourne in hopes of finding something there. And even then it wouldn't be a sure thing. I checked out a store today and it wasn't what I want. I have one more store lined up for the next Saturday I'm free. After that, I might have to wait three months for my original choice to restock. Gah! 

    It's about an hour fifteen from door to door. I usually just go on my phone to pass the time. I'll read my borderline book on the train once it arrives- but I've decided I probably want to wrap it in brown paper or something as I'll be a little embarrassed to read it in public. I know I probably shouldn't worry and no one will be looking at me but that's how i feel. 

    I used to do squads when I was younger, haven't gone regularly since then. I'm supposed to stay away from chlorine as well for my skin, so I poked around and found a saltwater pool in the city I'm going to try and force myself to go to soon. 

    I have tried! I'm surprised at how many of them don't know how or aren't interested in bike riding. What happened in their childhood?!? I have taken a look at meet up.... but I'm a little scared of going by myself to a new social group. Obviously if I had a friend who would go with me I wouldn't need to go to the group so much. So there's the catch. I am going to try and meet up with that friend that I lost contact with, and if things don't work out I'll force myself to go to a meet up. Or something. 

    Kind wishes to everyone =)
  12. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    23 February 2016 in reply to Ladyhawke

    Hi Lady Hawke,

    thanks for your post. I'm so sorry you had to wait so long for a diagnosis. You've done incredibly well to persist in seeking answers.

    I agree with you, it is often a difficult condition to diagnose. I think too that because there is so much negative stigma around bpd many doctors are reluctant to diagnose it, which in my opinion doesn't really help the situation.

    I was diagnosed at 33 but had difficulties much sooner. It was only at 29 I learnt how to express myself truthfully, and started therapy and being open about my internal world and difficulties. I have recovered from bulimia and sought treatment for anxiety, depression and all sorts of interpersonal issues. The bpd diagnosis made a lot of things make sense. These days I don't cling to the label bpd too strongly - maybe see myself more just with mental illness in general.

    How are you doing at the moment Lady Hawke? Are you in some sort of treatment?

    and great profile name by the way, where does it come from? I adore birds including eagles - I guess they represent freedom to me - so I see your name as being a female hawk flying high. But maybe it was something to do with Bob Hawke? I hope it's ok to ask.

    Kind wishes to you,

    Christina

     

  13. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    23 February 2016 in reply to xmin

    Hi xmin,

    thanks for your post. I'm really sorry to hear about your relationship ending - and it being a double loss with your friendship too. I think anyone, bpd or not would find that very  painful and hard. I'm glad you made the choice for your own health.

    Wow, your bicycle shopping seems like quite an adventure! Have you checked gumtree and eBay for the bike you like? I met a friend's friend a while back who puts together bicycles in his spare time, was about $50 I think, people order the bike disassembled to save money. So maybe that's an option.

    Salt water pool sounds great. Will have to look around for one in Brissie, I miss swimming. I'm very slow but just love water. Sounds like you were pretty good in the past.

    Good luck with reconnecting with that friend. I find friendships and socialising hard work at times, but really thrive off company sometimes. New groups are daunting. I want to try to grow some more friendships at uni this year - to the point where we catch up outside of uni.

    Running out of words so might stop here for now, nice chatting, Christina :)

    1 person found this helpful
  14. white knight
    Community Champion
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    white knight avatar
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    23 February 2016 in reply to hope4joy

    Hi hope4joy

    You might need to read my posts closer. I said "It is known that those with BPD often never get treatment and then when they do they don't stick with it". The key word is often. And Chronic BPD which I believe my mother has (or NPD) is different as all illnesses are. I've also done a lot of reading on this topic and this fact arises a lot.

    If you google the words- "children of BPD mothers" you will read articles that point towards the many illnesses children can be left with if they have a parent that has chronic narcissistic characteristics.

     I also said "if you seek treatment and stick with it, then you get all the accolades from me for your effort." This because in my case my mother destroyed our family because she didn't and wont get treatment. You can read more by googling "Topic: BPD mothers and their sons- beyondblue"

    Also if you google "helping someone with borderline personality disorder" you'll read about the difficulties family members face with such a complex illness if untreated. Hence my accolade comment. If these don't refer to you then, you have little to be concerned.

    You are right there is a lot of literature that refers to BPD behaviour in a destructive sense (with human interactions) and that often some never get treatment and when they do they don't stick to it, we shouldn't ignore that, these are facts for some- not all, or many not every case. I was not intending to hurt you in any way and if fact praise anyone that gets treatment for this and any illness but the symptoms for this one is clear for many ...but perhaps not for yourself.

    In fact one of the most well known doctors that has investigated BPD is Dr Christine Lawson. I covered this inside my thread (google) "Topic: emotional blackmail- likely extreme BPD- beyondblue" This thread was intended if one has been subjected to abuse by means of emotional blackmail.

    Remember hope4joy, if someone with chronic BPD did read this thread and has never sought treatment, I'd rather state the known facts and hope they do get treatment. Nothing personal at all.

    Tony WK

  15. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    24 February 2016 in reply to white knight

    Hi Tonk WK,

    I feel that we are talking on two different wavelengths, it seems you didn't hear anything I said and to be honest I find your comment that I might need to read your post more closely, as rude.

    It seems we have a difference of opinion. I believe that everyone with mental illness, including chronic bpd, and no matter what offence they have committed, deserves empathy. If it were simple to get better I imagine that this forum would not even exist, as everyone would have good mental health. But there are often many obstacles to receiving treatment, and sometimes people do not have the resources or support they need in order to change. We are the blessed ones having self awareness and supports and many other 'goodies' that help us try to improve and change and grow.

    I find your comments inappropriate for a thread where people with BPD are seeking support. By comparison, I don't think it would be in any way helpful for me to go posting on all the depression threads "my mum's untreated depression ruined my life, so hurry up and get better or you will ruin your own family, although chances are you wont stick to the treatment".

    I'm sorry that you had a difficult upbringing Tony. And I appreciate that you blame your mum for your difficulties. I also accept that bpd, like all mental illness, has a profound effect on those people nearby, especially partners and family members. Please just don't fuel the stigma that already exists around bpd, its hard enough as it is.

    Kind wishes,

    Christina 

    1 person found this helpful
  16. white knight
    Community Champion
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    24 February 2016 in reply to hope4joy

    Hi Christina,

    I'm sorry you feel that way. I wasn't meaning to be rude at all, that wasn't my intent. My clarification eg using the word often, means my comments does not refer to everyone.

    I think that the victims of those with chronic BPD or NPD that have ended up with illnesses springing off that are just as important as the sufferer. We should include these people of whom most have illnesses, in our discussions.

    I'm sorry I think there is no reason I cant be truthful. As for "no matter what offense they have committed they deserve empathy", yes, if they seek treatment. I've proved in my case that no treatment means no future harmony, but again, that doesn't mean in every case.

    I hope this helps

    Tony WK

  17. Chris B
    Community Manager
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    24 February 2016 in reply to hope4joy

    Hi Christina and Tony (and others reading), there's some really good points being made here. 

    I think it's important we acknowledge the profound impact that any form of mental illness (not just BPD) has on the person experiencing it, and those close to them. It's a tough road, as the many threads here will attest.  It's especially difficult when someone who is unwell won't seek the help on offer, and that's where peer support forums like this can play a part in helping someone to move forward.

    That said, our own experiences will shape the way we see things. It's also important that we don't generalise, or confuse BPD with other forms of mental illness.

    BPD can be a challenging condition to live with, but we have many members here who are navigating those hurdles daily and sharing some great insights about what's worked along the way. Your post at the top of the page was just one great example, Christina.  I hope you'll keep posting encouragement for newer members who come through to discuss BPD, it comes up reasonably often here on the forums.

    5 people found this helpful
  18. hope4joy
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    525 posts
    25 February 2016 in reply to Chris B

    Hi Chris B,

    thanks for posting here and for eloquently finding some middle ground and similarities in what Tony and I were both discussing. I also appreciate you highlighting the positives that some people achieve in living with the symptoms of bpd. In the past it was considered a condition with little chance for recovery, but much has changed since that time, and bpd is now a condition that people can have yet still live a meaningful positive life in line with their values.

    I think it is important that people have a bpd thread to tap into. Many people with bpd have co-occuring depression and anxiety and it was my depression that drew me to this forum. And at the same time there can be something empowering in connecting to others with the same diagnosis - for both help but also to overcome the isolation and stigma that can surround bpd. 

    Kind wishes, Christina 

    2 people found this helpful
  19. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    25 February 2016 in reply to hope4joy
    Hi again Christina, 

    I have looked into gumtree, but the idea of shopping around and having to visit a bunch of strangers to get the right fit is too much of a hassle for me. If it were something easier to purchase I might consider. I also don't trust myself to put it together properly, my experience with bicycles is limited strictly to riding them =).

    I'm having a little trouble interacting socially at the moment. I find myself highly irritable and easily annoyed these days, but I manage to bite my tongue and push through. 

    I received a reply from that ex-friend the other day saying she wasn't able to meet up and I did have a little breakdown at work. It's settled down now though. Sounds like a good plan! Have you managed to connect with many people so far? Are there any clubs or societies you'd want to join? Uni can be a great place to socialise and work together. 

    So I've gotten my borderline book and am diving into reading it. At first I was getting really enthusiastic, but when I hit the part where it discusses more severe cases of bpd I was a little overwhelmed. I am lucky that my case is not too extreme, but it saddened me to read of others who weren't as fortunate. 

    xmin
    1 person found this helpful
  20. Ladyhawke
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    28 February 2016 in reply to xmin

    Hi xmin and Christina,

    ​Many thanks for your interest and concern. I'm slowly starting to resurface from latest bout of depression; out of bed and able to move about. I should be back on track by the end of the week and will respond to you both then.  

    I really hope you are both doing OK.

    Some of the posters on this site have mentioned a dedicated section for those with BPD. That may take a while to get going, however, I have found a dedicated site in which those with BPD can connect with others.

    I registered to use the site and from what I've seen it appears to be OK and seems to be quite popular with many user.

    Google: Borderline Personality Support Groups               

  21. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    28 February 2016 in reply to Ladyhawke

    Hi xmin and ladyhawke,

    its nice to hear from both of you. I've had a really hectic few days and am feeling pretty tired, so just wanted to pop by quickly to say hi.

    xmin i'm sorry to hear you were let down by your friend, its horrible when your social circles shrinks right down and we end up spending so much time alone. are there any other people you can try to reconnect with? and sorry to ask so many questions, but do you know what your irritability is about? I think it can be a symptom of depression. i also know sometimes anger can kind of cover up other feelings like sadness. i think part of bpd can be feeling lots of anger when one's needs aren't met, cause it parallels when needs weren't met as a child. it certainly happens to me at times.

    and hey lh, i'm glad to hear that you're resurfacing from your bout of depression. it sounds like it was a tough one? what do you think has helped you get on the upswing? and thank you for the bpd forum info.

    kind wishes, now to zzzzzz,

    Christina :)

  22. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    29 February 2016 in reply to hope4joy
    Hi Ladyhawke and Christina, 

    Sounds good, I look forward to hearing from you then, and I hope you're keeping well. Thanks for the tip! 

    I hope you're managing to get properly rested Christina! My social circle really is shrinking down incredibly. I do have some friends I can meet up with now and again. No problem at all, I really do love answering questions so throw them my way. I have no idea why I'm so irritable. I think that the problems surrounding the ex-friend placed a huge deal of problems in my head, and affected me badly. And it's hard to be ok about other things without this problem fixed/addressed. I've been reading in the bpd book about anger issues, so maybe that's part of it. I definitely have some of that childhood problem stuff. 

    xmin =)
  23. hope4joy
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    525 posts
    6 March 2016 in reply to xmin

    Hi xmin,

    sorry to be so slow to pop back in here, its been a crazy week! Moved house this weekend, plus have been unwell, and injured myself in moving stuff... and the reason I moved was to get away from bullying by housemates... so yeah, one of those weeks you're like 'gee, i'm glad i survived that one!'. Feeling really tired but not sleepy, will wind down soon to rest. A plus is that now I live closer to uni and can walk. I also live with guys which in the past I've found much easier than all female share-houses, and there is a cat! (which I adore).

    I hear you about your comment about shrinking social circles... mine is a bit depleted right now, I often feel like I mostly catch up with the same two friends and can be at a loss when they're not available. I have been going to meet up groups to try to connect to new people, although that got a bit derailed this last week. I feel that I've got some problems in how I choose friends and the role I take - often its all about me trying to meet their needs and not vice versa - so I'm hoping schema therapy can help me try to correct that.

    What have you learnt in the book so far? Anything jump out at you? Is it nicely wrapped in paper? (I would do this too!!).

    Yeah I think a big part of bpd is that our sense of wellness and stability comes from the state of our relationships - such that when one relationship is out then it can throw us all out. So it makes sense that the issues with your friend have impacted you so much. It sounds like it was a really awful situation that happened.

    Sending kind thoughts your way,

    Christina 

  24. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    7 March 2016 in reply to hope4joy
    Hi Christina, 

    Welcome back! It feels like it's been a while =). Sound like you've had a bit on your plate, I'm happy to hear of the positive changes you've made. Haven't injured yourself too bad, have you? Aww, lovely to hear. 

    I think this kinda ties in with my emptiness feeling, but sometimes my happiness relies unhealthily on other people. I definitely feel at a loss when they aren't available/ things aren't going well, and I can't self soothe very well. I'd never really heard of the term before until my psych mentioned it, which made me wonder how 'healthy minded' (or however I should say) people know how to self soothe themselves. Sometimes I get really locked on and destructive, and it's always to do with social things not working out. Good to hear, I hope the therapy helps you have fulfilling relationships and all that. 

    Hmm, nothing comes to mind, it was mostly just confirming some things, and putting others into words- feelings, mostly. I'm going to read it again and pencil in some notes when I feel like getting around to it. It is nicely wrapped in paper =). 

    It was especially bad because of how big a part the friend was of my life. They were probably 80% or more of my social interaction. Not sure if that is healthy, but I was definitely happy at the time. 

    So, I met up with them on Friday to talk things through. It didn't go very well or very badly, and there wasn't really a conclusion. One thing they did say was that I was too sensitive, and it frustrated me. I know I'm very sensitive, but I also get how being around someone like that is difficult. And it frustrated me that it bothered them that much that they would bring it up. It does make me want to bring it up during my next session, and see if I can both work on it/make peace/not let it affect my relationships. 

    Good news is that after having months of on and off depressive states I am actually feeling happy at times these days. 

    Take care of your injuries! Kind thoughts to you, 

    xmin
  25. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    7 March 2016 in reply to xmin

    Hi xmin,

    how nice it is to find your message here! Thank you, my leg is healing up well, I even went for a morning walk today. I really miss not being able to swim and do yoga as they're my primary ways to unwind and destress - and walking too. I'm not very good when I have to be still indoors for too long!! Hey have you checked out that salt water pool? I'm curious how you skin finds it? I went back to my old pool and they've added something to the water so the chlorine didn't affect my skin, which is a real plus. So hope to swim more over semester, as the pool is right on my uni campus.

    Yeah, I agree that self soothing is really important. I know for me too that often I simply don't have enough social contact in my life - so self soothing is good for the short term but long term i need to make changes - which i find harder. Sometimes i find i'm too good at coping and self soothing so i ignore the problems at hand! (i'm not sure if that makes sense?). I've organised to meet some other people my age at uni this friday and have two things on this weekend... so that is a good effort in a week for me. I really want a few more close friends, i hate being lonely, people really nourish me, as much as i love my time alone. 

    Without any guilt or pressure or any of that, have you got any ideas xmin on how you can go about slowly growing your social circle? 

    And that sounds like a huge change with loosing that friend and your ex - it makes perfect sense that it impacted you that much. It was good that you were able to meet them. Do you think it is a friendship you can repair? Or it is one to let go of? What feels right to you? 

    And being told was is too sensitive - ahhhh - I hate that so much!!! I am also a sensitive person. It is also part of what makes me creative, kind, caring, empathetic, a great listener, playful.... but yes, i can get very hurt and upset by certain things. and i often need to ask questions to understand things, and ask people to explain things so i can get what they mean. but i hate being criticised for it because its part of who i am. part of so many of my emo difficulties are because my dad and sis (who i grew up with) always invalidated me and told me i was too sensistive - exactly what a sensitive child doesn't need!!! So yes, please tell me anything you learn or find that can help find peace around this. 

    Best get dashing soon, kindness to you! Christina :)

  26. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    8 March 2016 in reply to hope4joy
    Hi Christina, 

    Oh wow, nicely done. I get what you mean, that need to move itch is very real! I haven't had a chance, but I've packed my swimmers and will try to go tomorrow night after work. I'm hoping my skin will agree with saltwater, as I'm not supposed to go into chlorine if I can help it. Oh wow, that's pretty cool. Frequent swimming was great for my lungs, heart and general fitness. Not so much for my skin and hair. Sounds good. 

    That definitely makes sense- although you should lend me some of your self soothing abilities ;). Good to hear you have stuff lined up, keep me updated on how that goes. 

    I have no idea how to grow my social circle in a way I am comfortable with. I am planning on meeting up with an old friend on Monday, and we might discuss more future activity plans, so that's something.

    It did impact me an incredible amount, I think an average person wouldn't have found it easy either. I'm not really certain. The ball is in their court, but I'm going to try and do whatever I can to try and fix it, as long as they are willing. I will have to let go if that's what they want, but it's definitely a friendship I would fight very hard to keep. 

    That's very similar to what I've been reading about bpd. They have all these great qualities like you mentioned, but yes- they can be sensitive as well. It's all part of it. Well at first, I was ticked off at hearing it. I discussed it with another friend who told me that I shouldn't feel bad about being sensitive, and it's nothing to apologise for. Although on the other hand, I do remember leaving a friendship because the other person would take something which I thought was simple/light/non-offensive and turn it back on me, and I didn't want to be around that. So I get how it can be frustrating to have to watch what you say too much. 

    Keep well =) xmim
  27. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    13 March 2016 in reply to xmin

    Hi xmin,

    morning! Its quite early here, well just past 5am, and because I had an early night my brain is like - lets go! enough sleep for us. Its nice to have time to hope back on here and write. I've had quite a few challenges these last two weeks. My old house is nearly all sorted, I just need to submit my bond form, and I'm thinking to submit some sort of complaint for bullying. My new place is nearly sorted - just need one more shelf thing for my art stuff and I'll be settled. I find anger really tiring and so intense. I've been an internalising anger sort of person - have done passive aggressive things and been sharp with my tongue, but haven't had the outward rage associated with bpd. But its like i'm just learning to express my anger in healthy ways and it is mighty hard work! Sometimes I muck up and end up swearing or getting personal, but more and more I'm being a healthy adult about it. These whole dramas with my house have given me the chance to stand up for myself - something i'd normally not do - and while its hard work to communicate anger in helpful ways - it is also quite empowering and affirming. To know i've got rights and deserve respect and that being treated in certain ways is not okay.

    Its true what you say xmin about how tiring it can be to have a friend who reacts so much to lots of things one says. What i'm trying to learn with my sensitivity is to seek clarification in low-key non aggressive one sort of ways, and to do this before i feel a strong emotion. Hmm, not quite sure how to explain it. But like asking people what they mean by something in the moment, because often it is just a misunderstanding that offends. I don't always succeed, but i am getting better at it. Cause you're right, we want to be someone who is enjoyable to be around, and to encourage people to relax and be themself, not watching each word or something.

    Have you hit the salt water yet? It must make it a long day for you, to swim after work, given you've got the commute. How is your job by the way? Do you enjoy it? Are there some possible people there you can get to know better? Like maybe chat more at lunch? Or get a coffee or something?

    I find that there are only a few people I want to grow my social circle with, and its important to put energy into those connections. I've made one new friend at uni recently because we were both in this same activity over summer, and its a really fun and supportive friendship - we're both sort of nerdy!

    ...

  28. hope4joy
    hope4joy avatar
    525 posts
    13 March 2016 in reply to xmin

    I've also got two other people at uni i'd like to get to know more - and will contact them in the next couple of weeks to meet up. The thing i've been noticing xmin is how long it takes to grow a friendship - what with everyone leading busy lives it really takes months and even years to get to the close friend stage. So for me patience is so important. I find the best way for me to meet people is through some sort of regular activity i do, because then i can see them each week or so and get to know them. Are you part of any groups? Or have any inklings or the sort of thing you'd like to join?

    I actually did something very exciting yesterday - went on a date! It has been a long while since I did that. Its a guy I met online. I kinda hate dating websites but find I'm just not meeting guys my age through uni or the things i do - so it is a way to met people. Anyway it went really well - he's kind and smart and attractive and into lots of things similar to me. So at the least I think i've got a new interesting friend. Was a bit outside my comfort zone but i came away feeling relaxed and happy. So lets see how it grows, I need to take things slowly! I think my problem in the past with both relationships and friendships has been to develop them in fast forward - was too quickly - and then when there is a problem it all falls apart because i haven't built up that trust and knowledge and depth. 

    Whats been going on for you lately xmin? 

    Do you have supports, like a therapist? And have you ever done DBT? You mentioned self soothing skills and there was a real emphasis on that throughout DBT.

    Kind wishes to you! Christina :)

     

  29. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    15 March 2016 in reply to hope4joy
    Hi Christina, 

    I wish I could feel like that, I feel like I am perpetually sleep deprived. I'm supposed to be asleep right now but I'm too upset and dad is making a racket. ARGH. You've seemed quite busy, it's nice to see you pop in. Oh wow eh. I'm experiencing some moderate levels of anger right now. I am also more of an internal anger person, and it too feels very intense and hard to push away. That's all really good stuff to hear. My psych has been telling me about how these types of emotions are thought of as bad, but they're justified like any other and they have a purpose. Good on you for standing up for yourself. 

    I understand what you mean by delaying the reaction by asking for clarification. It's a good idea, I should definitely try it. I always have a snap fast reaction to things, and I get fired up or upset very quickly by something simple. 

    I did manage to go to the pool last week and it was lovely. Took me a half hour walk through the botanical gardens which was a bonus. I'd definitely like to go again. My job is alright, but I supposed I'm going through a not so great period at the moment. I'm actually thinking of having a word to the owner sometime soon about the person who is managing me. There's a few things to discuss that I'm unhappy with, and also some inappropriateness. I do have a few co-workers at work that I can chat and grab lunch with, and that's quite nice. But it just doesn't get rid of the fact that there's a d*ckhead in charge. 

    I definitely connect with you in being selective with friends. Good thinking. And that's really good to hear about the new friend!

    I hear what you're saying about building friendships and I appreciate that a lot goes into making a good one. Nothing really. I really should find a regular group but I can't think of anything that would suit my fancy. 

    Wonderful news about the date, are you planning on meeting up again anytime soon? It's always good advice to take things slow hey, I hope it goes well for you. 

    Not much has been going on for me. Mostly I'm stressed out because of work and that higher up. One of my coworkers has offered to be a witness for when I talk to the owner about what's been happening, so it was really nice to have his support. Tonight has not been such a good night- I messaged that ex-friend a couple of days ago and they aren't responding. So I have spiralled a bit. Having suicidal and depressing thoughts. 
  30. xmin
    xmin avatar
    36 posts
    15 March 2016 in reply to hope4joy

    I have a psychologist I see every few weeks, that's about it. I think I might have tried it and didn't take to it? Can't remember very well. 

    Something positive, I did meet up with a friend I haven't seen for a while, went rock climbing. 

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