Unstable.

*Suicide theme*

 

 

It’s the instability aspect of “Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder” that troubles me the most at the moment. It’s not a rollercoaster. People enjoy those… supposedly. The build-up and then the rush when you come rocketing down…. you see…. with a rollercoaster you see it coming…. you feel the anticipation build as you wait to hurtle towards the ground. With EUPD/BPD you don’t see it coming. And it’s not a rush when it happens. To many who go on rides (which I don’t), the best part is the drop. With BPD it’s the worst part. It comes out of nowhere and threatens your life.

 

Just yesterday I was more or less okay. I don’t really remember how I was. I just know there was nothing particularly wrong. Next thing I know I’m sat writing suicide notes, crying my eyes out and having palpitations. I don’t know what triggered it. All I know is I was meant to be writing a list of things to take on holiday… not writing suicide notes.

 

I don’t know why I did it. Maybe it was a safety valve. Picturing me not being here anymore. Maybe it helped ease whatever I was feeling.

 

The other day I wrote something I wanted my former best friend to see. I felt so positive I was going to send it to her (somehow…. not sure how, as she moved house and didn’t tell me where to, and has me blocked online). The next day I decided against it. I now feel the next time she will hear from me will be after I’m gone. Unless she makes the move to sort things out with me in this lifetime, we won’t speak again until I’m dead. So I wrote her a letter for when the time comes. I don’t know if I honestly want that to happen or if going through the motions of it just allowed me to release what I felt towards her, in a more raw way, without all the BS.

 

I started writing other ones too. It was upsetting. It was very hard to wake up this morning and pretend this hadn’t been my reality last night. I thought I would have to take my emergency meds last night, but managed to get myself through without them. So it ended up being a success story anyway. But I am still unsettled by it all.

 

I wanted to reach out to people last night, and earlier. To tell the truth about how low I felt. Yesterday I typed out a status for Facebook. But I backspaced it all. I don’t ‘attention-seek’ anymore. Nobody cares what I have to say about my mental illness. I keep it all inside. I sort of feel if I write notes and then go straight online and talk about it then it’s just for ‘attention’. It’s not real. But this was real. Or the most real it’s ever been. I still feel incredibly low from what I wrote. Because what I wrote is my reality. I’ve spent so long talking about ending my life and not doing it, so I’ve stopped talking now. This being the exception.

 

Looking through my CMHT assessment letter I see “You described thoughts of not wanting to be around however there is no intent to act on these”…. “Fleeting suicidal thoughts with no intent and plan”. Of course that was in January. We’re in October now, and I lost my only remaining friend to suicide in May. These thoughts are not ‘fleeting’ anymore. I’m unsure of ‘intent’ now… I can’t guarantee anything. Same with a ‘plan’… no fixed plan, but ideas… it’s coming together. Planning ahead. I’m beginning to think about what I want people to know when the time comes. When… the time comes. Not if. That’s how things have changed since my assessment. It feels like a certainty now, that I will leave this world by my own hand. I just don’t know when. That’s how dark my mind has become. I see no other way. The death of my friend and the cold abandonment by the other friend, it’s all changed me forever. There’s no way back from that.

 

But like I was saying, it’s the instability that gets me. I can be plodding along just fine and then be swamped by painful emotions, or even numbness. It’s like a great looming suicidal cloud wafts in and takes over everything for the rest of the day. But then today, I was doing some tidying whilst people were out, and dancing like a maniac to some great music. Now I’m sat writing this blog… feeling the weight of depression and despair behind my eyes. Feeling paralysed by reality. Feeling detached from it all. Feeling I’m already dead.

 

Part of me sometimes feels hopeful, now I’ve finally taken the first step to getting some level of help. It’ll probably be at least a month to wait for an assessment, but at least it’s something to hope for… that they can help me want to live life again. I just don’t see how they could possibly fix someone this broken. I just hate how there are times I feel there’s a bit of hope. That I can do this. That I have to do this, because I have plans next year and want to be better by then…. and then there’s other times I’m certain I won’t be here for those plans. That none of it matters…. that it’s only a matter of time until I go.

 

It’s never been quite so extreme as it has been this year. In the past people may have noticed me seeming happy one minute and then being down the next…. feeling so lucky to have such great friends, to nobody caring about me….. but this is more dramatic than that. The highs aren’t high at all. But the lows would fool you into thinking there were great highs… I fall so hard and fast, and so far below where I used to fall. Having a day where I don’t contemplate ending my life – that is a ‘high’ point for me now. Though maybe I do feel happier than that sometimes, and just can’t see it right now, as I’m in one of my ‘lows’ again.

 

I have this difficulty that when things are bad I can’t ever remember them being good. I actually found the term emotional impermanence once – at least I think that’s what it was…. the idea that you can’t recall a previously felt emotion in its absence. I was looking at that from an aspect of relationship problems – that if someone isn’t showing caring towards me, I feel like they don’t care. They may be kind and say nice words at one point, but if they then go off the radar for a month or two and never check in…. that kindness, caring and those nice words no longer exist. They weren’t permanent. They were fleeting. I remember saying in a video journal I did sometime last year, about friends saying they care about me, and my thought was ‘How long for? A message? Then back to radio silence?’ – that’s one of the problems I have…. it’s why people like me need so much reassurance when we’re ill. We forget. We need reminding. It’s what I needed from people last year…. reminders that people cared. Rather than people assuming I know they care and are there for me, as they offered it once upon a time, I need them to remind me when I’m struggling. Because when I’m most ill I truly feel nobody cares. I need evidence that they do. Current evidence. So for the last year I probably seemed like I was ‘attention-seeking’ by saying nobody cared etc. – that was me asking people to reassure me that they did. So yes, I was seeking attention… but not to feed my ego or whatever, but because I honestly couldn’t remember the feeling of being cared for. I still don’t know how that feels. Kindness and positivity feel alien to me now. It’s like there’s a shield around me whenever anyone tries it. I can’t connect to either. I wish people would think of it like amnesia or something…. they wouldn’t blame me for not being able to remember something they said a few months back, if they offered support. But they expect me to remember it when I’m struggling with my mental health. I can’t. If something isn’t happening right here right now, I don’t know how it feels and find no comfort in sentiments that may no longer exist.

 

It’s like people saying to remember the good times with my granddad and how it felt. I can’t. I’m detached from my feelings. Apart from lacking actual memories with anyone, I can’t recreate feelings that are gone. Like looking at old photos – I can’t connect to them on any level. I have to trust that was me and I did those things. I sometimes do think I have some sort of amnesia. I look at photos and think I had a wonderful upbringing and was loved. But I’m basing that on photos and how much I love my family. I don’t recall how I felt growing up. I don’t know what sort of childhood I had. I have no memories of it. It’s like it wasn’t me. Sometimes I feel like an imposter in the body of this girl in the photos. I feel like a separate entity that has taken over her body but does not share her memories. It’s weird and slightly terrifying.

 

And my former friend… I miss her. I keep thinking about everything we’ve been through together and never will do again…. there isn’t a possibility in my mind that she ever really cared about me. A lot of the troubles towards the end came from me needing her reassurance and her not understanding this, so rather than reminding me she cared about me, she made me feel like a burden to her, and the distance kept widening between us… when all I wanted and needed was her to care about me, because I couldn’t remember a time when she did. The more silence there is, the more I split and forget how people once felt about me. She then effectively ghosted me and I’ve never been the same since. It was the final nail in the coffin of my sanity. I was left to fill in the blanks with my paranoid thoughts. I was left not only with an absence of her, but an absence of her care and supportive words, and worse than that, a feeling of being nothing to her but a nuisance. I see our whole history differently as a result. I don’t see any care in the highlights my mind offers me. I see detachment. I feel used. I feel tolerated. I feel pain and hatred. And all of this because about 12-14 months ago she couldn’t say ‘I care about you….. you matter to me’ and give me an hour of her time to show she still cared about me. None of this would’ve ever happened if she could’ve just reminded me of our friendship and who I was to her. That’s why I’m sad at the moment.

 

That and my recent loss. I remember Liv saying that the 4-8 month mark was bad for her mental health after her loss. It’s been almost five months now since she left. And I’d agree. I don’t know how I’m going to cope with this. I don’t know how to get through it. All I know is I can’t talk to anyone about any of it now. They’ve all made sure of that. I suffer in silence now.

 

My circumstances are the hurdle to me recovering. Having one friend ditch me and another take her own life…. leaving me with nobody…. no support network…. no safety net…. no rock to keep me going…. no reason to live…. I’ve never had to pull myself out of a place this deep and dark, and I’ve never had to do it alone. I know that will be the point… this has happened so that I can prove my strength to pull myself out of this wreck… and if I can survive this I can survive anything. The trouble is I don’t think I will survive this. Not right now. And if I do, then what? What am I surviving for? What life am I trying to get back to? I have none. I have nothing. I have nothing to aim for. If I somehow manage to survive and get well, I will be starting my life all over again…. but at a time where I’m also likely to face more painful loss all alone, as nobody’s getting any younger… which will just knock me back down again. It feels like a hopeless uphill struggle right now. I can’t see the light. I can’t even tell which way I’m facing or where the ground is.

 

I’m taking blind steps at the moment in terms of seeking help. It took me ages to send off the forms because I couldn’t fill in the box about my goals, and what I hope to get out of using the service. So in the end I was totally honest… told it like it is. Said how bad things are, that I can’t see a future so can’t say goals… listed all the problems etc. Obviously this worried them so they want me to see my doctor while I wait to be assessed. I have a tendency to put things off. I’ve been seeing my doctor every month for the last year or so…. there’s nothing she can do to help me. She knows how bad I feel. What’s the point in going back to see her to tell her ‘yep, still feeling suicidal’…? All it does is make me feel like a burden. I don’t like worrying people. I can’t do it in the next two weeks anyway, so not much point. It’s nice that they cared though. It’s an odd feeling, that unsettled me. Brings back memories of therapy two years ago… a problem in itself. But yeah I’m just going to have to put blind faith in them to help me find my feet. I’m just worried I’ll be beyond the realms of support they can give…. and I know CMHT won’t see me until they help me… so I’m kind of stuck at the moment. Too ill for anyone, but CMHT don’t want to help at the moment, plus the grief stuff kind of effs it all up too. Who the hell do I see first, and what for?? I don’t know how to solve the chaos inside me at the moment. I’m hoping talking to them might clear that up for me. It’s good they want to know why the mental health team didn’t refer me themselves and left me to self-refer. Gives me hope that they’ll do the right thing by me and get me to the right place.

 

It’s a long way off though. Many suicidal days to survive first. It’s exhausting. Especially hiding it from everyone and pretending to be ‘normal’. But I can’t open up anymore in real life. It’s impossible. Have to just take it a day at a time and put up with the unstable emotions and raging thoughts. Don’t have another choice. If I could sleep for a long time and wake up when I’m healed and life is better, that would be great. But sadly that will never happen. I have to tolerate this existence or opt out. Although my mind is preparing for it, I’m not ready to quit yet. So I must battle on.

 

 

 

 

Stigma: All’s Fair In Love & War… And Politics Apparently.

“My self-worth is not linked to your cruel words and actions.My self-esteem is not affected by your deliberate attempts to destroy my character.You have no power over me.You will not s

 

 

*Bad language & self-harm*

 

 

To the woman (I assume) who attacked my personality the other night…

 

This was going to be a post about people like yourself, who have a habit of diagnosing those you don’t agree with, with mental illnesses. I had collected evidence from the last few months of just that, where people said President Trump has Borderline Personality Disorder. I wanted to tackle the stigma that people like you are spreading with your uneducated opinions. But after the way you spoke to me the other night, I’m addressing you as an individual.

 

I never challenge things online. For reasons such as you. It took a lot for me to pluck up the courage to speak up. But I couldn’t see such lies about BPD being spread. You were saying that BPD is a ‘personality defect’ and ‘not curable’. You are wrong on both counts. I felt I had a duty to say something. I naively thought you looked like a decent person, and might be welcoming of new ideas. I thought you might be a reasonable person…. boy was I wrong! I’ve encountered some nasty people in my life – it’s why I am the way I am…. but you are by far the worst of all the people I’ve had the displeasure of conversing with.

 

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Your responses to me were full of sarcasm, attitude, anger and false accusations. You are a spiteful bully and a narcissist. You talked to me of ‘projection’ – projecting your own projection onto me … which is ironic, as that’s a part of being a narcissist – the same thing you actually mean when you talk about Trump. The thing you’re confusing with BPD. I was trying to educate you on the difference. It’s not my fault you’re a closed-minded bigot. You actually were trying to ‘gas-light’ me as well, by saying ‘you WERE absolutely asking me to have compassion for Trump supporters’ – that’s another narcissistic tactic, to try and create doubt in my mind about what I said and what I meant… to change the narrative to make yourself look better…. it’s either gas-lighting or you’re just dumb and didn’t read what I said at all. Maybe your understanding of the English language is below par.

 

I most certainly was NOT asking you to have compassion for Trump supporters, I was saying people should have more compassion for those with a mental illness, and since Trump supporters do not have this mental illness of BPD, I was NOT asking you to feel compassionate towards THEM. I was asking you to have more respect for those with the mental illness. They don’t have it. Trump doesn’t have it. You just hate him. I could easily claim that YOU and your lot have a mental illness…. I’d probably be closer to the truth with that too, as you seem totally deranged in your fanatical hatred of Republicans. But the truth is your lot also don’t have a mental illness…. you just have different opinions to Republicans… and those of you who seem crazy and show all your bad qualities are not mentally ill, you are just unpleasant people!!! You see? People have different opinions. Just because they don’t fit with yours, and you can’t accept that Trump is the President, it doesn’t mean that he and those who put him in power, have a mental illness… but I would seriously consider whether you have one….

 

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The way you went on the attack, and were so unreasonable causes me concern. It’s not normal to behave that way. Yes I was challenging something you said, but I did so respectfully, with goodwill. I was not rude to you, I didn’t swear, I wasn’t provocative, so I don’t know what your problem is. I think you are so livid with the result of your election, and hate Republicans and Trump that much that you swipe at anyone who isn’t as livid about it as you. You’d probably take a swipe at a Democrat who has even one ounce of reason or acceptance of things. You need something to control your rage. You are behaving worse than you are accusing others of being! You try and give off this sense that Democrats (just like Remain voters) are better people than those who won the vote…. but you show from the way you speak of them, and your violent, aggressive, hateful and divisive nature that you are in fact MUCH worse as people.

 

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I wasn’t trying to ‘shame’ you by saying ‘the likes of you’ – that’s a wild interpretation of a set of words…. those words simply meant ‘people like yourself’ i.e. you and others who feel the same as you…. but Twitter has a character limit, so ‘the likes of you’ fitted in better! Deary me if you’re offended by that… ! It was actually a way of not singling you out – not being so confrontational as saying ‘something that YOU are fortunate to not understand’ – for fuck’s sake, if my trying to not be confrontational made you angry then you need help! I honestly don’t see the offence in my words. However calling me an ‘arrogant know-it-all’ IS bloody offensive and I reported you for it and all your subsequent tweets.

 

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You also said that you’ll rush out and get a psych degree so you don’t insult ‘people who have no compassion or interest in other humans’….. First of all it doesn’t take having a psych degree to know how to be kind to people. I don’t have one, and I manage just fine. Most people I know don’t have such a degree yet know how to be a decent person. It’s not hard… though you obviously think otherwise!  Second of all you talk about these people who have no compassion or interest in other humans, yet you prove that you have no interest in how other people feel, no interest in changing your behaviour and wording so as not to hurt other people, and you have no compassion for mentally ill human beings…. I think this sentence tells everyone all they need to know about you.

 

You said to ‘whine at someone who cares’… you made it perfectly clear you are not a caring sort of person. You made yourself sound like a teenager having a strop. I’m shocked to discover you’re actually in your late sixties! Your behaviour does not reflect this in the slightest. I’d have thought you would know better how to be respectful of others. Clearly not. You said I was just ‘pretending to be on the high road’, simply because you recognised I was on the high road, and you wanted to drag me down from it.

 

You are a little bit delusional and dramatic if you think your country is crumbling around you… your own little world where you get your own way may be crumbling around you, but I don’t think things are all that bad. They’d be a damn slight better if you started accepting things the way they are. You’d find more peace. But you clearly enjoy conflict above all else. The ‘assholes causing it’ are probably those unwilling to accept the result two years on, as it is here. I respect you don’t like Trump, you don’t agree with the result, but calling his supporters ‘assholes’ won’t change anything. It won’t get you anywhere, and will only breed anger and division. You should calm down.

 

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You say I jumped into what was an obvious political discussion – yes, I did, because you were incorporating MENTAL ILLNESS in that political discussion, and my whole point was that was uncalled for. If it was solely political that’s different – when you bring mental illness into a political discussion it suddenly changes from a political discussion, to a political and mental health discussion. You don’t dictate what is allowed to be discussed henceforth. It’s indecent of you to label someone as ‘borderline’ simply because you don’t like them. Only I was saying it in a nicer way. But I’ll be straight now, and say – it’s a bitchy thing to do, and makes you a very nasty and uneducated person. You are adding to stigma and should be ashamed of yourself. There. Said it. I’ll speak your language, rather than trying to be polite about things… being polite and thinking through my responses still ended up with me being spat at anyway. At one point in our discussion I actually typed in the words ‘To use language you understand – fuck you!’… but deleted it, because I’m not that person. But actually after what you were like, and what it did to me… yeah… fuck you.

 

I wasn’t ‘lecturing you’, I was hoping it might guide you, inform you, enlighten you, and I was making sure people newly diagnosed with BPD know there is hope and that it doesn’t mean their personality is flawed. But you’re a closed-minded moron, so nothing will get through your thick skull. As for ‘think what you like’ – I realised I was talking to the thickest of walls, so your opinion is your opinion, feel free to think it…. but it doesn’t mean you’re right. Still makes you a bitch. Still makes you nasty and a bit of a sociopath to be honest, but keep doing it, whatever works for you….. Again, character limit.

 

But do you know what I noticed? I noticed that you picked apart every innocent word I said, and turned it into either an ‘insult’ or me being ‘above you’ i.e. ‘arrogant’. You read into words that mean nothing. You are either highly paranoid and need help with it. Or you recognised that actually I was right, and you felt bad, so had to attack me to feel better about yourself…. but since I was not offensive to you, you had to try and find some fault in the wording I used, to make it look like an attack on YOU – that is fucked up mate.

 

bitch 8 (3)

 

I’ll tell you how you were being offensive – calling me an arrogant know-it-all. You called me arrogant twice. You don’t fucking know me mate. Anyone who knows me would tell you how polar opposite I am to that. You’re the arrogant one. There’s some projection going on with you I think ‘deary’. Patronising bitch. Fuck you. You only WISH you were on a high horse. You were on the ground, and losing ground, so you were wildly, viciously clawing at me, to make sure I was no better than you. You were trying to get a rise out of me. I managed to stay calm through most of it. My heart was all over the place. But I waited for it to calm down before responding. I wish I hadn’t given you as much as I did, because you will use that as ‘evidence about people with BPD being a certain way’. You’re wrong. Anyone would have reacted how I did when provoked. Of course your side of the story would be that I provoked YOU. That I baited you and then played the victim. But if you can’t take a little questioning of your spreading of misinformation on something quite important actually, and your ego is too big to be ‘challenged’, then I’m glad I did it. Because people like you need taking down a peg or two. You think too much of yourself. You think you’re right, and anything else is wrong. That much is evident from things you said to me, but also on your timeline. I simply made a comment in defence of those with BPD – that was not baiting you. It may be what you read into it, but it didn’t require a response, especially in the manner you responded. And you continued it even after I explained and tried to defuse your aggression.

 

The fact is you knew I had BPD, and yet continued to lash out at me and hurt me. This either shows the FACT that you don’t know anything about BPD, and that therefore you should not cause such hurt to someone… though given your opinions about Republicans I’m wondering why you would think anything other than ‘I shouldn’t cause hurt to anyone whoever they are’ – as you think you’re so noble and morally superior….. Or it shows that you’re a psychopath and a narcissist and you take joy in making people like me cut themselves. Because that’s what I did. Repeatedly. Violently.

 

You were fucking offensive and aggressive, and you tried to excuse that by insisting that I don’t know you and called you ‘the likes of you’…. in what world is that even offensive? If you want offensive then read this bloody letter. I’d agree it’s offensive. I’d also say it’s true though from what I’ve witnessed with you and how you made me feel. I’m rightly angry about your bullying nature – this is the reaction to that. Your response was totally uncalled for, and out of proportion with what I was even saying. That’s because you’re so caught up in your hate-filled bubble about Trump, that you perceive everything as an ‘attack’…. you see everyone as ‘the enemy’ unless they agree with you 100%. What I said was not in the slightest bit offensive. And you people wonder why you get called ‘snowflakes’! Seriously. I don’t call people that, but being offended by a general term of ‘the likes of you’ – meaning ‘you and others similar to yourself’ is very snowflake-ish. How anything can be inferred about your character from those words I don’t know. But calling me arrogant is an offence against my character. There’s no mistaking what you meant by your words. So that’s how you were offensive. I notice you deleted that tweet soon after… did it reflect badly on you?

 

bitch 8 (4)

 

I don’t think I’ve ever had a conversation with anyone so vile as you. There was one who I used to know who was offensive and resorted to personal insults, when they couldn’t bring me down any other way. But actually even she pales into insignificance next to you. You do your side of the political debate no favours. I don’t actually give a fuck about American politics. I don’t give a fuck whether I SHOULD give a fuck about American politics. I believe in democracy, acceptance and just bloody well getting on with it. But you have shown Democrats to be vile, deranged bullies. I’m quite upset that I also at the moment think badly of Americans. I know I will get over that, because there are lots of lovely American people, but you do them no favours by behaving in the way that you have.

 

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I’ve seen too much evidence of Americans attacking Trump and sometimes his supporters, saying they all have BPD. This is unacceptable. Nobody can diagnose someone from their armchair. Even medical professionals who say they think he’s got it, cannot and should not do that. You cannot diagnose someone unless you are qualified to do so, and have met them in person and evaluated their mental health. You cannot decide who has what mental illness. If you want to call him a narcissist that’s different, because you’re not referring to the illness of NPD, you’re just talking about his nature, if that’s how you perceive it. People can be narcissistic without having the personality disorder. But I don’t get why you can’t just state the fact you hate the guy, hate everything he says, everything he does, everything he stands for, and will never accept him as President, full-stop. Why bring mental illness into it?

 

Does it make you feel powerful or something? That would be my guess from reading such posts. It gives off an air of ‘I’m better than you – I’m more sane than you…. you’re a crazy person…. you have a mental illness…. your “crazy” is showing’. It seems like you’re all doing it to make you feel better about yourselves. Can you not see what is wrong with that mentality? To put people with mental illness down, to make you feel better…. to use a mental illness as a way of insulting someone you don’t like….. to imply that someone is incapable of doing a job because of a supposed mental illness…. you are stigmatising and discriminating against those with mental health problems. And when you attack one, you attack all. Even though in your mind you’re possibly thinking ‘Depression and anxiety are “good” mental illnesses…. BPD is one of the “bad” ones’. You are still discriminating against those with mental illness. Would you do the same with those physically disabled? Would you use their personal circumstances to make you feel better?

 

“No one would ever say that someone with a broken arm or a broken leg is less than a whole person, but people say that or imply that all the time about people with mental illness.”

 

——–

I would hope that most of those throwing ‘BPD’ at Trump would in reality have compassion for those with such a mental illness. I’d like to believe that people still have their humanity. That if faced with a loved one with such an illness, they would be caring, compassionate and understanding, and defend their loved ones against harmful words like this. Either I’m wrong, and they honestly think those with BPD or mental illnesses are the scum of the Earth, in which case may they live long enough to experience such a mental illness themselves and face such stigma. OR I’m right and they do care about people with mental illness, and are just being foolish in posting such shit online. Maybe they don’t comprehend the damage they’re doing….

 

Trump is a controversial character. People love him or hate him. The hate is toxic. WRONGLY diagnosing him with BPD, and listing incorrect symptoms of BPD to back-up that false diagnosis, will cause trouble for those of us with BPD. When people hear about our BPD they will think of Trump, if these opinions are allowed to circulate unchallenged. Trump does not have BPD… not the recognisable diagnosable version of it. I realise I am equally unqualified to say he doesn’t have it, as I’m not his therapist – but the point is he would have to be assessed by a professional to be given a diagnosis, and I feel I know a fair bit about my own illness, to know what the symptoms are, and what they are not. People say he meets all the criteria. This cannot be assumed. How does anyone know how he feels about himself? About abandonment? Does he self-harm? Is he suicidal? Does he feel empty? How would anyone but a personal psychiatrist / therapist know any of that?

 

People seem to be basing this apparent ‘diagnosis’ on possible anger outbursts – which EVERYONE is capable of… doesn’t mean they all have a personality disorder; on ‘impulsive’ decisions he’s made; on ‘narcissism’ which they believe is a symptom of BPD; apparently ‘pathological lying’ which they claim is a symptom of BPD too – news to me! They talk about his BPD and how he’s self-absorbed, thinks he’s always right. They claim projection and triangulation (playing people off against each other), and gas-lighting are symptoms of BPD… these are all symptoms of NPD, and the two should not be confused! I feel convinced that knowledge of the different personality disorders varies in America from in the UK. I’ve often witnessed people lumping all ‘Cluster B’ personality disorders in together, as though they’re all the same. They’re not. There may be a little overlap between the disorders, but they are different. People have claimed that those with BPD lack empathy, therefore Trump has BPD. What bullshit is this?! Anyone who’s reading this and has BPD knows what a lie this is – we have an abundance of empathy… so much that it actually hurts when others are hurting… we are able to read the emotions of others. We wouldn’t hurt or reject other people because we know too well how it feels, to be hurt and rejected by others.

 

“With ignorance comes fear- from fear comes bigotry. Education is the key to acceptance.”

 

 

Everything they say about BPD is wrong. Some even refer to it as a ‘narcissistic borderline personality disorder‘ – there’s no such thing… it’s one or the other. I shouldn’t be too bothered, as they’re only showing their ignorance… but it’s sad that so many speak of something they know nothing about, and those words they speak are damaging and dangerous for people who already suffer a great deal. These people all paint a picture of people with BPD being ‘monsters’. If they only knew the reality they’d feel ashamed of vilifying us. People with BPD are some of the loveliest, kindest, most caring, loyal, funny, creative, generous, loving, understanding people – a damn slight nicer than those who insult them! Whilst people are painting the image of us as people who abuse others, we are in fact more likely to be the VICTIMS of abuse ourselves.

 

This woman who attacked me said that BPD is a ‘sad personality defect’. She is so wrong. Ignorance and the unwillingness to learn from your mistakes, and attack people instead is a ‘sad personality defect’. A stubbornness and arrogance. That’s what I would refer to as a ‘defect’. BPD is not a flawed personality, as we all know. We know about the movement to change the name, as it doesn’t reflect the meaning. It’s not about our personality at all. It is about our emotions, our difficulty regulating them, and how we relate to the world. It’s about how we cope with our emotions. People labelling Trump and followers with it are implying it’s who we are, there’s no cure, we don’t even accept there’s a problem (NPD), and that negative character traits = personality disorder. It doesn’t. Everyone has less than desirable traits – it doesn’t mean they all have a personality disorder. People like this woman for instance… she demonstrated many undesirable qualities in just a few short tweets…. do I therefore diagnose her with a personality disorder? Whilst the temptation may be ‘yes!’ because I’m angry with her, and appalled at her behaviour, there is no reason for me to diagnose her with any mental illness, including a personality disorder. She’s just an arsehole.

 

People can hate Trump. I have no issue with that. I don’t think people should be so offensive towards those who support him and voted for him…. I think these people need to become familiar with ‘live and let live‘… accept a difference of opinion and move on. But let’s just say for a moment that I don’t even care if people hate Trump voters too….. People can say what they like about Trump, the situation, the voters…. they can say they hate him, he’s a prick, his supporters are idiots, they detest their country now, their lives are ruined forever… whatever…. but mental illness? Come on! They’re ‘free’ to say what they like about that too, as we have freedom of speech still, for now, but I want those people to realise it makes them look like not very decent people. A lot of people in the world are trying to be more open about their mental health struggles, and battle the stigma, and such ignorance and hatred – trying to get people to hate those they deem to have a mental illness, is just so backward-thinking. So they can’t use mental illness as an insult, and then claim they have the moral high-ground politically.

 

Insults are the last resort of insecure people with a crumbling position trying to appear confident in their dumb decisions.

 

 

My question to those people would be – Would you speak about BPD in this manner if you weren’t associating it with Trump? Forget Trump is President… rewind a few years…. would you spread such vile opinions about a mental illness like BPD? Or are you just doing it to have a go at Trump and make yourselves feel better because you lost? If you would still do it then shame on you…. there’s no hope for you ever changing probably… though it would be nice if you could properly educate yourself about mental illness (note: this does not require going to university and getting a ‘psych degree’ – read a book…. read blogs…. listen to people who have BPD!). If you’re only doing it because it’s Trump then think. Be better than this. Don’t let your hatred of Trump and Republicans turn you into ill-informed, ignorant, insensitive arseholes.

 

I know nobody likes to admit they’re wrong about something. A part of me would be concerned that I honestly upset and embarrassed this woman the other day, and that she was just refusing to admit a mistake. But to be frank I think she’s just a bitter, angry woman, who loves hurting people and putting them down to make herself feel more powerful. I’ve met one or two of them in my life.

 

I hate people trying to paint me as some sort of villain when I’m trying to do something good in the world. I’m not a nasty person (I know you might think so from this post, but this is the releasing of emotions stirred up by a bully)… I don’t like confrontation. I hate conflict. I think the scars on my arms would tell you as much. I’m a peaceful person. I’m quiet and reserved by nature. And my only aim in what I said was to help people who have BPD… to defend them against such vicious lies. To stand up for what’s right. To stand up for those of us with this illness, who feel we have no voice a lot of the time. To try and educate people to stop the stigma. This woman has a fixed idea in her head what BPD is all about. She has demonised us and will never change her stance. Upon hearing that I am one of those with this illness, she obviously decided what sort of person I was and treated me in relation to her beliefs about people like us. This is her problem not mine. She got me all wrong. She misunderstood me as a person… she misunderstood my intentions, my illness, my words. She invented insults out of what I said. She interpreted what I said and tried to tell me what I said / meant, when only I know what was meant… she thought she knew my mind better than I do. She doesn’t know anything but her own mind. I think she lives in her little bubble of hatred… she’s blind to all else. The trouble is though, once someone like this makes up their mind about you, there’s no persuading them otherwise. She’d decided I was a villain, just like Trump and his supporters – I didn’t even have to be a Trump supporter myself to incur her wrath. Once I’d been put in that category there was no coming out of it. I could’ve been the sweetest person on Earth to her, and she would insist I was doing it to wind her up, and to pretend I was better than her.

 

This is what’s known as a ‘superiority complex’. It’s something that’s fascinated me in our politics too, where Labour voters perceive Conservatives to be ‘above them’… ‘looking down on them’…. ‘posh, rich snobs with no idea of real problems’. These attitudes are in themselves ‘snobbish’. Labour voters sneer at Conservatives and call them ‘Tory scum’, to put them down and make themselves feel superior. They claim to be morally superior to hide the fact they  FEEL inferior. The important thing to note is that they’re not actually inferior. And Conservatives DON’T think they’re better than them. This is why it’s called ‘a complex’. They feel inferior, so try to appear superior. Conservatives don’t look down their noses on Labour voters… certainly not for the reasons they think. More recently I’m sure a great many do, but simply because of the behaviour of Labour voters – the same sort of behaviour I witnessed from this woman. When people act like that, you do start to feel like you’re ‘better than them’, and ‘above such behaviour’. You do start to feel morally superior…. and in that way what people with a superiority complex do, is cause the very behaviour they’re afraid of… It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.

 

As someone with BPD I take on the negative things people think and say about me, as though they’re true. This comes from not feeling certain of who I am – I often split on myself, and go from thinking I’m a good person, to thinking I’m a terrible person. And words like ‘arrogant know-it-all’ scar me. They go into my negativity memory bank, for a rainy day when I’m hating myself. They will replay now forever. In a rational, more positive mind though, I know how wrong she is about that. I know I have the qualities of my granddad, and he was gentle, reserved, quiet and a good person who worried and cared about other people.

 

That was all I was doing by my tweet… worrying how those with BPD would feel. Standing up for them. Challenging stigma. If that makes me ‘arrogant’ in someone’s view, then so be it. I think it’s better to defend and explain a mental illness than to demonise it. I just chose the wrong sort of person to do that with. She wants to remain ignorant. I will continue to fight stigma where I can, but I will stay far away from anti-Trump fanatics from now on. They’re not reasonable people. And I’m not strong enough to cope with them.

 

Mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of, but stigma and bias shame us all.

Said by the husband of who that woman would
have supported in the elections. How ironic.

 

 

 

Sick Of Myself.

 

 

I can understand why the suicide rate for those with BPD is so high…. because for the first time in my life I am thoroughly sick of being me. I’m sick of this brain… these thoughts… and what a difficult person I am to know. I hate myself, and I realise I’m always going to be this messed up, so how on earth can I live with that? Don’t worry, I’m not saying I’m about to end my life just yet, but I have had enough of myself.

 

So much of my currently undiagnosed illness occurs on the inside. Nobody knows what it’s like to be me. Obviously if you follow this blog you may have some idea, as you yourself may have it. But I mean those around me don’t know what it’s like. It’s lonely.

 

I’m currently at war in my head. I’ve got it in my mind that people don’t like me. I posted a video the other day, explaining the emotional mess I’m in – I thought I’d ‘talk to myself’ as nobody else appeared to want to talk to me. I felt I didn’t have anyone there for me. And this is one of the most shit times of the year for me. Anyway, several times I’ve ‘reached out’ in the hope someone would notice my struggle and check in with me. Nope. Invisible. And to top it off, once I posted the video, something was said that made me question if I’d offended someone. I felt they were having a pop at me. Which is a replica of this time last year. I know you’d say it’s a sign of a guilty conscience if I think it was about me. But yeah, I admit I referenced something said by the person, but nobody would’ve known. And I wasn’t having a go at them, I was having a go about what happened for me, at this time last year which I’m still not over. What they said was merely a trigger for that memory, and those feelings about myself.

 

Fact is I am struggling so much at the moment, and that video allowed me to let some of it out – I was shouting, I was crying. And that’s the tip of the iceberg. I’m sorry, but I had to let it out somehow. If comments were made and they were about me, then I am not very happy. Not in the slightest. That would be a double whammy of triggers for me, from my past with an ex-friend. Not sure I could forgive that. My video was essentially a ‘cry for help’. It was to tell my friends I’m not okay, and I need their help. I’ve got a flipping mental health problem, why can’t anyone understand that?! I’m aware the comments may not have been about me. But I have a lot of paranoia at the moment. I feel abandoned by all of my friends. I feel excluded from a group of people, because I said I wasn’t up to seeing them all together yet… would’ve been happy to meet one-on-one, but a group is too overwhelming right now. But I feel they’re all getting on and being friends and I’ve alienated myself. It makes me think I am an outsider, and they don’t really want to know me… nobody wants to know me.

 

I feel nobody cares about me, and I’m sick of myself for constantly feeling that way. It wouldn’t matter how many times someone proved their friendship to me, I’d still have these episodes where I feel utterly, painfully alone and hated. And I HATE that this is my life now.

 

In the past I would’ve begged people to stay, or to talk to me. But I’ve become so used to being abandoned, and people disappearing on me, that I just give up. I go quiet. I pull away from everyone …. to see if anyone notices. They usually don’t. Or if they do it’ll take a good two or three weeks. Really tells me all I need to know about how much I’d be missed if I wasn’t here anymore…

 

I’m sick of not knowing what’s real. There are some things I’m not sure if they’re true, or if I’m just paranoid, or delusional. It scares me that my mind may not be telling me the truth about situations. I feel I can’t trust myself. But I also can’t check out the stories, so have to just go with my assumptions, as I have with the video thing. I may be very wrong, but I’ve gone with it, and have felt shit all day, because of the comments made in response, that make me feel effectively like I’m being ganged up on by my friends… not that they know anything about it. But this is why I can’t do a group again. I’ve been there and was severely hurt before. I had a friend in the group, run to the rest of the group when she fell out with me, and tell them all our business, and talk about me behind my back. It made it impossible to be in the group, and it all fell apart from there. I cannot go through that again. I already feel like an outsider with them, it would only make it worse if it turned out to be the reality.

 

But this is what I mean – I don’t know what reality is anymore. All I know is hardly any of my friends talk to me anymore. And I don’t know what I did wrong. Did I disclose too much about my mental illness? Do I express opinions they don’t agree with? Am I a horrible person? Because that’s how it makes me feel. I’ll admit, I don’t want to see anyone at the moment, and I suck at replying to people… but it would be nice to know they still care and hope that I’m okay. It would be nice to know they’re there for me in the bad times. Perhaps friends assume it’s a given, but that’s the difficulty with having a mental illness like this… nothing is a given. I need reminding, often, that I matter. And I’m so sorry that makes me a nuisance. I can sometimes just switch and forget anyone’s ever said anything nice to me, or done anything nice. All I’ll remember are the bad things, or the silence of my friends when I asked for their help.

 

I’ll remember the emotional distance. I’ll remember nobody ever letting me be there for them – they always come back with ‘I don’t want to talk’… makes the friendship feel uneven. I’ll remember that nobody ever says they love me. It’s not often been said throughout my life. I’ll remember that nobody ever showed gratitude when I’ve taken the time to do something nice for them. It’s not that I did it for a thank you, but it would be nice to know my effort was appreciated. Heck, even further, it would be nice to know I’M appreciated enough for them to put as much effort in for me! It’s not giving to get. But it’s knowing they value my friendship as much as I value theirs. I wanted to be treated the way I treated my friends. I wanted them to go that extra mile for me. And perhaps at some point some of them have…. but the state of mind I’m in now, I can’t remember such a time.

 

This is what I mean. I’m splitting, and can only really see the negative right now. This is the most severe and prolonged episode I’ve ever experienced of this. I can’t see myself coming out of it with friends on the other side. If they hadn’t already abandoned me, they will now. But I am so close to the edge, it almost doesn’t matter anymore. I can’t keep living like this. I can’t be me.

 

It’s like the transference issue I had last year, I’m writing a post, and spoke about it in the video, about how I’m convinced there was something there… even the most minute thing – be it curiosity… caring … concern … or just being flattered. I sensed something, based on my observations… on an energy level. I can’t say that to anyone, as they would tell me categorically I am wrong. That I’m imagining it. They would rule it out, without even knowing the situation or the observations. Now, I accept that I could be totally wrong about this. But again, this is a case of not knowing ‘reality’. I feel like I’m losing the plot… I’ve gone mad and I’m delusional. But I felt it. To me it was real. It didn’t mean a thing, it was harmless and I was in no way led to believe anything was there. It was more of an intuitive feeling. It’s all irrelevant now anyway, as I’ll never see him again. But it makes me question my sanity. And it’s very invalidating to constantly be told it was unreciprocated / unrequited, when my heart tells me something else.

 

I’m so tired of life. I’m tired of doubting my importance to those who I call a friend. I’m tired of pushing people away and of them never pulling me back. I’m tired of being such a burden and nuisance to my friends. I’m tired of being so depressed. I’m tired of feeling alone. I’m tired of the ups and downs of human interaction. I’m not strong enough for it. And I feel everyone must hate me… and if they don’t, I wonder why not.

 

BPD sucks. No matter how we may try and dress it up, or laugh it off at times. It’s emotional hell. It’s isolation. And it’s endless turmoil. Nobody would choose a life like this. Nobody. And I’m sorry to all those who know the suffering like I do. I empathise with you. Anyone who manages to survive with this deserves a medal. Some people don’t realise how easy they have it. I’d give anything to not be experiencing this illness.

xxxx

Open Letter To MH Professionals, From Someone Lost In The System.

Professionals

*This is in no way an attack on MH services, as I’m sure you all feel the same. It’s an expression of helplessness, and a plea to the powers that be, for something to be done, not just for me but for millions of people in this country, denied the support they need*

 

Dear mental health professionals….

I know you’re under pressure. I know you’re underfunded. I know you have rules and tick boxes that prevent you from doing the job to the standard you wish you could. You work hard and do the best you can, and I have a lot of respect and appreciation for the majority of you, who have chosen a career based on helping ease the suffering of others. It’s admirable. But can I just share with you my experience of being on the other side? Because whilst you may have the option of walking away from your job if it ever gets too much, I cannot walk away from my mental illness. So I’d like to share with you the struggle of existing in this world with this illness, and nowhere to turn for support……

Nine years ago I was doing a couple of courses of DBT. Little did I know at the time I was actually being treated for Borderline Personality Disorder. I hadn’t heard of this before, and was offended at the suggestion that I had this – especially as I had not been told I had it. I thought it meant there was something wrong with my personality… it felt like an insult. I now know that not to be the case at all! A couple of years later during individual therapy sessions I would be given the opportunity to see a psychiatrist, and get the official diagnosis… but it was suggested to me that it may not be a good thing to have this label, due to the stigma around it. I worried it might affect my chances of working. So I decided not to.

I left the care of CMHT and had to try and cope on my own. I’ve had a good five years surviving on my own as best I could, and coming to terms with the fact I do have BPD. But the last couple of years have been the worst I’ve experienced and my mental health has deteriorated. And now I find myself in a bit of a predicament….

You see, I cannot get the support I need. I saw the doctor, who said I’d probably not have success with CMHT, as I wouldn’t meet the criteria to receive their support. There’s no counselling service in existence unless I go private. And given that I don’t work, I can’t afford to pay to go private. So I tried an IAPT service… unfortunately I experienced a problem during this, which wasn’t handled urgently enough or in the best way, and further worsened my mental health… I felt more suicidal, my self-harm increased dramatically, my self-esteem plummeted. And I’m now trying to pick up the pieces alone. I’m not convinced they were set up for someone like me. I feel they’re more for those with mild/moderate depression and anxiety or phobias. This resulted in me feeling like a burden, and too difficult… ultimately a ‘lost cause’.

So I have nowhere to turn now. I cannot afford to go private. I shouldn’t have to. There used to be support for people like me in CMHT, but now it’s like those with BPD have been abandoned. And given that one of the major issues within BPD is abandonment, I find this incredibly troubling that we’d be subjected to that in a therapeutic setting.

 

cmht

 

I know some people with BPD are under CMHT. But this is probably because they have the diagnosis. I am trapped, because I do not have that diagnosis, as I rejected it all those years ago. Now I cannot access the services to see a psychiatrist to receive the diagnosis. So I will never get the support I need. I know those with the diagnosis often don’t get the support they need. But I feel even more stuck, because it feels like nobody understands my battle.

This is one aspect of my mental illness I want mental health professionals to understand…. I am very good at pretending to be okay. I have a lot of pride and dignity, and I contain how I truly feel, because I don’t want people to see me how I really feel. I don’t want to upset / disappoint / trouble other people. I want to maintain control over myself. I’m a very introspective person… I read up about my illness, to make me feel less alone with it and to make sense of it. So I seem knowledgeable / ‘intelligent’. On the outside I may look calm, collected, ‘together’, and even confident and happy at times. This is a mask. One I can’t wear much longer.

All my life I have had this problem – people couldn’t understand why I could do some things, and not others. They couldn’t understand my anxiety, or my difficulties. Because it wasn’t blindingly obvious. They probably thought I was making it up. I never show my reality outside of my house. I don’t like to cry in front of people. I don’t like to get angry. I don’t like people to know I’m struggling. I don’t want them to know about my suicidal thoughts and self-harm.

I may look ‘normal’ to the naked eye, but if you could see the storm underneath… if I could show you how I’m really experiencing the world, you would be shocked. You would be horrified and probably deeply upset by it. But I cannot externalise any of this, because I don’t want to lose control. I don’t want people to see me that way, for fear they will never see me any other way. I don’t want to hurt those who love me. I don’t want people to look down on me.

 

shocked

 

But because I don’t have public breakdowns…. because I don’t try to throw myself off a roof…. because I don’t slash at my arms in front of people, screaming “Just let me die!”…. people don’t know that’s how I’m feeling inside. They think I’m more capable than I actually am. They expect more from me, which overwhelms me and when I can’t do it, they can’t understand why. Just the mere fact I can verbalise what my inner experience is, makes people think I’m fine, when I’m not – I’m just trying to express the inner turmoil in the only acceptable way I know – with words. Because I can’t release it physically, I hope that talking about it will ease the burden… but the burden is actually keeping it physically hidden. And nobody takes it seriously. ‘Actions speak louder than words’. So it feels like it’s going to take me giving up control and losing the plot completely, for my pain to be taken seriously. And what if I still don’t get the support I need? Do I spiral until I end my life? I won’t have control any longer, and that puts me more at risk of acting on my urges. I’m scared of letting go. But it feels like mental health services don’t know how to help if they don’t see someone standing, bleeding in front of them, incoherent.

I actually had a therapist tell me to go away and think what help I wanted from them, as long as it’s within their skill-set. With all due respect to you all, you are the mental health professionals…. you know what your skills are, therefore what you can offer. You know all about mental illnesses and what therapies may help an illness. Yes, I am an expert in my own BPD as I’ve lived with it all my life… but I don’t know what options I have. I don’t know what help there is. It’s not my job to know. I’M THE PATIENT. If I had a total breakdown and showed how I feel inside, you would have to help me. You would know HOW to help me. You would take the lead, do your job and try to heal me. But because I stuff it all inside, so nobody can see, you think I’m capable of doing your job for you and deciding what will help me best. I am the patient, you are the professional – please tell me how you can help me, and if you yourself cannot do it, then please point me in the direction of someone who can.

 

I feel isolated. I can't get the level of help I need as I don't have the diagnosis, and can't get

 

I need to feel there are options for me. Because right now I don’t. I don’t see a future for me. I can’t see me getting through this, because I have nowhere to turn. I feel isolated. I can’t get the level of help I need as I don’t have the diagnosis, and can’t get the diagnosis because of lack of access to the services… so I have no ‘label’ to explain my emotional turmoil…. on top of that I don’t let it show, so people probably question if it’s really as bad as I say. So in a sense I feel I constantly have to prove I’m as ill as I say, but I can’t do this by showing them, I can only tell them… but if they don’t SEE it they don’t BELIEVE it. So I’m also stuck in that way. I’m trapped within myself. And I’m trapped within the mental health services. Nowhere to go. Nobody can help me. And that makes me feel suicidal.

Another thing I want you to note is this: If you ask me if I have thoughts of suicide and I say yes, but that I wouldn’t act on them, don’t just believe me and carry on as if it’s not a risk. I am afraid of the consequences of admitting to wanting to act on these thoughts. So I’m never going to tell you that I might do it. This is how people end up dead. They tell professionals they’re okay, it’s accepted and then they act on it. When I was on a course recently I had a conversation with a therapist, and they asked me if I could keep myself safe that night… I was the most honest I’ve been about it, and said that it would be difficult. I said I would try, but I went home and self-harmed, ending up at the MIU. I knew this was going to happen but didn’t tell them. I don’t want to burden people. And I don’t want them to judge me. I want to seem like a rational adult. 

I self-harmed during my course, and this was discovered by one of the therapists, who had to treat me and advised me to go to the hospital. It was NEVER my intention for anyone to know about it. I was hidden in the toilets trying to treat it myself. That was the closest I’ve ever been to revealing my reality. They saw me crying, panicking, they saw my wounds and scars…. I was a mess that night, and I felt ashamed to have let the barriers down, and let someone see the mess inside me.

This is what I mean…. I feel ashamed of the thoughts I have, the emotions I feel and the way I would behave if I felt it socially acceptable. I know some would think if you’re really that bad you’d have no control over it – well the incident at therapy was one example of when I lost control. You might think it can’t be controlled, but you don’t know me. I have major issues with control, and I guilt-trip myself into maintaining a certain image. I think I would be letting a lot of people down if I didn’t give a damn anymore and behaved how I wish I could. Control is possible, whilst being very unwell. I’ll tell you how I know this… because I can feel it slipping away. I am about to lose control. And it terrifies me. I don’t know what is going to happen when I lose that control. I don’t know what I’ll do, what the consequences will be, and I fear losing myself in the process.

The control I exert over my own mental illness is such a heavy burden. It is like I’ve got myself chained up inside. Like I’m holding my reality hostage. So believe me it’s there, and it’s possible. It’s why every single time I say “I can’t do this anymore” I become one step closer to not doing it anymore…. not hiding it anymore.

 

I know some would think if you're really that bad you'd have no control over it – well the incident%

 

I know that when I finally lose control, I will feel so ashamed that I will not want to live anymore, and I need to know there will be a safety net to catch me. I need to know it’s safe to let go and lose control, and fall apart, and someone will keep me safe. Otherwise when I finally show you all the pain I’ve locked up inside, I’m not sure I will make it out the other side. And I don’t really want to die. I just want life to not hurt so much. I want people to care about me. I want to have something to live for.

It shouldn’t be that I have to reach utter crisis point to get the help I need. The help should be offered to prevent that risk to my life. That’s what makes me feel totally worthless – that I’d be left to reach that point where I might die, before you’ll help me. It shouldn’t be that way. But I can see in my case that’s the way it’s going to be. Because nobody understands BPD unless they’ve had it. And nobody can understand a mental illness that they can’t see. If the only visible sign I have are my self-harm scars, then nobody could ever understand what leads me to cause them. This is my personal interpretation of ‘quiet borderline’. I know many don’t agree with me on this, and I’m still forming my own opinion on it, but my BPD is so hidden most of the time, that nobody would believe how much I’m suffering.

 

crisis

 

With most illnesses the strategy seems to be to treat the symptoms… but if I hide the symptoms, and only write about them, then those wanting to treat them cannot do so. And I’m neglected. I just want one mental health professional to stick with me while I fall apart. I want them to believe what I’m experiencing and let me express it, whilst protecting me from myself. I just want to feel safe and supported. And I really don’t right now. I don’t know who I can turn to. I don’t know what to do. I feel powerless.

You see we’re not all that different – you feel powerless to help me, I feel powerless to get help…. the only difference is, to you I will just be one more person who couldn’t be saved… a statistic….but for me, I will be no more. Gone. Dead. So please, will someone do SOMETHING to provide the help and support people like me need in this country? I don’t want to die. I need help. Someone please create that help – don’t leave us all to an ugly fate. There may be some misconceptions out there about those with BPD, but I know from talking to many of them, they are the loveliest individuals with a heck of a lot to give. And to lose all those lights from the world would be a tragedy.

I know you try your hardest to help us where you can, but more people need to unite to get help for those of us lost in the system… those of us in the middle, who are ‘too ill’ for IAPT services and ‘not ill enough’ for CMHT to help us… at least that’s what I was told. Where are we supposed to turn? BPD puts us most at risk of doing harm to ourselves, or taking our own lives… we are desperately in need of support. Please value our lives enough to do everything you can to get us that support. I don’t know what my ‘rights’ are as a service user. I don’t know what’s on offer to help me. It feels as though different sectors of the NHS can’t agree on what help there is for me. Can you please start to communicate with each other and come up with a strategy, so that when someone in dire need comes along, they can be directed to the right support? I feel like I’m floating around in the system and don’t belong anywhere, which is a reflection of my experience in life… the feeling I will never belong, that I’m worthless and a burden. These beliefs are being mirrored in my experiences of trying to get help. It feels like my life doesn’t matter. And too many others have this experience. Things need to change.

 

mirrored

I want to start campaigning for more support for those with BPD. And when I feel mentally stronger this is something I will look into. In the meantime, I hope those within the profession can do all they can to change things from the inside. I know it’s a huge ask, and not something that can just happen – it takes a lot of work and money. I’m just asking if you have a voice within the profession, please use it to save lives. Those most in need are being left behind. This cannot be right. I know that most of you would agree, and are just as frustrated at the injustice. Hopefully enough of us can take action to try and bring about a change.

Thank you for taking the time to read.

xxxx

IAPT, BPD & Me.

iamalone

 

*Apologies for any bad language – a slight personal rant included. Mentions self-harm & suicidal thoughts*

 

I don’t know if I’m just not understanding the meaning, but there seems to be something very misleading about ‘IAPT’ services…. ‘Improving Access to Psychological Therapies’ – how exactly do they do this? I had access to them for four sessions. Okay I did a twelve week group as well, but that’s very different to working on your own individual issues with support. Four sessions to fix not only the problems I had before the group, but just the one to resolve issues that were awoken by the group. So yes, I had access, but now I don’t.

I feel that by ‘improving access’ they mean it’s accessible to everyone – in other words you can refer yourself. And you will get seen because it’s such quick turnaround. They see you for a couple of sessions and then ship you off to a group course to keep you occupied, before signing you off of their books, and shipping the new recruits in.

In a word, it’s a FACTORY.

There was something I saw on Twitter recently about IAPT and the burnout rate for Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners and High Intensity Therapists. This made me stop and think about the pressures that the staff are under to reach targets and provide the service they do. They may not have the training they need and the funding, to help those in need, and perhaps they feel powerless. But I had it pointed out to me that that’s not my problem.

I shouldn’t have anything to do with that side of things. I should expect top-notch care from people whose job it is to keep me safe and well. And if they failed me, they failed me. I shouldn’t feel sorry for them, that they are struggling too. I shouldn’t feel like a burden or like I’m too complex for them. I cannot help having the mental illness I have. I cannot help the fact there’s no support out there for people like me. I’m in need of help, and I should take up whatever help I can get – and it’s their job to provide that help. If they couldn’t do that, they’re not up to scratch, and that’s down to them.

Yes there are massive gaping holes in the NHS and mental health services. Something needs to be done about this. The staff are doing the best they can. They’re likely stressed and unsatisfied with the state of things too. But the difference is they are able to quit if they want. They can leave their jobs if it gets too much. I don’t have that luxury. I cannot quit my mental illness. I wish I could but I can’t. I need the help of people like them, in order to try and pull myself out of it. I rely on them. So I need them to do their best to help me.

And unfortunately in my experience I don’t feel all of them did their best. Even my doctor seemed disappointed in them. She knows how hard it was for me to keep going back to the group after my self-harming incident… that I pushed myself through the last few weeks of the course, to get the support at the end, and didn’t receive it. She herself had said weeks ago that the service was unlikely to abandon me at the end of the course, as clearly I’m not well……… that’s obviously not how the service works!! It seems they get rid of you, regardless of what state you’re in.

 

10

 

I wrote something about my incident so that the facilitators of the group, and my therapist would be aware of it. I believe those running the group read it, though I could be wrong – not sure I trust anything now, regarding this service. But I believed my therapist had it passed on to her. However it seems it was ‘added to my notes’ – which she clearly had no interest in reading. What was the bloody point?? I had already harmed because an encounter with one of the facilitators had left me feeling powerless, and that had made me question what the point in using the skills was, since they wouldn’t allow me to do so…. so to have my therapist, on top of that, make me feel like I wasted yet more of my time, I just think there’s no point trying with them. It’s not even like I’m a difficult person, refusing to co-operate! I was eager to learn, and to try things… I had knowledge and was pro-active. But it seems I was ahead of them in some regards. I knew what they could do to help me, but they didn’t seem to have a clue.

Is this my problem, or theirs? Is this a lack of training? Is it a lack of experience with someone like me? Am I too demanding? Am I too clued up about my own mental illness? Is it lack of funding to actually offer me real help? Is it apathy towards me?

Whatever it is, it felt like I was screaming out and pleading for their help, and they refused to give it. I felt like ending my life at times, as it would be doing them a favour, as I’m clearly a burden to them, just as I am to everyone else. I honestly thought they wouldn’t care if I did end my life, and they would’ve left me to get to that point. I actually considered doing this at one of the sessions. I harmed myself in a dangerous place, not caring about the consequences. But I was interrupted before it could go too far. I patched myself up and carried on as if it hadn’t just happened. They never knew this, and never will unless by some miracle they happen upon my blog and know it’s me.

At one point I spoke to one of the facilitators, and he said that if I’m struggling with the course and can’t go on with it, I could be offered a different therapy… I asked if that was through a different service somewhere else, and he said no, through this service. But me being a glutton for punishment, I chose to see the course to the end, and see my therapist. Now, if I hadn’t finished the course, would I have been offered this magical different therapy I wonder…? Because I sure as hell wasn’t offered it at the end. I don’t even know what it would have been!

I thought IAPT was about accessing different therapies – I thought it would open doors to recovery by being referred on to people who could help me… I thought it was this ‘stepped care model’ and with me being ‘Step 3’ I could be ‘stepped up’ to the CMHT if necessary. So do I assume that my therapist didn’t think I was ill enough to require this level of help? She clearly didn’t think I needed ANY help, as she discharged me! She thinks I need to help myself now. Well thanks a fucking lot! It’s not like I’ve been trying to do that for the last five years of my life!

Do they honestly think a twelve week course will help someone like me, and then that’s it? In a normal circumstance then perhaps… but given the disruption to my learning I experienced during that course, because of self-harm and transference, it’s almost impossible to feel I’ve benefited from the course, like others may have. So to treat me as a normal case, thinking I should be able to cope on my own now, because I’ve learnt the skills, taking no responsibility for the individual difficulties I faced because of this service, it’s not on. It’s not good enough.

And I hate to be someone who complains. I hate to seem ungrateful. It’s particularly hard, because one of the facilitators actually patched me up after I harmed myself, so I feel grateful to her, and the other one I admired greatly and felt emotionally attached to, so to slag off this service after the work they put in makes me feel really guilty.

But I think it is possible to be grateful for the help I did receive, to feel the way I do about one of them, and still say the help I received was not enough. It was a bad experience. They could have done more. And should have done more. I’m trying to come to terms with this conflict. I am grateful, I liked the facilitators as people, I feel strongly about one of them still, but as a service they let me down. And in fact each member of staff I came into contact with let me down personally in one way or another at some point. But people make mistakes, I know this. They are only human.

I don’t know if I’d use this service again. If I did I’d ask to see a different therapist, as I feel like we didn’t really gel. In fact I didn’t like her attitude at all. But right now I just need to recover from using this service. In the new year I hope to look at my folder from the group, and really reflect on what was discussed, because right now it’s a blur of emotions when I think about it. But otherwise it’s just business as normal – I have had to survive on my own for years now… no, I shouldn’t have to… I should get the support I need, but obviously that’s not going to happen, so I have to continue on as before, just with more psychological scars to contend with. I’ll give it my best shot… either I’ll sink or I’ll swim. I’ll either recover on my own, or I’ll reach the point where I can no longer be denied the help I need. That’s the sad state of the mental health services now… you have to be on death’s door before they’ll even contemplate helping you anymore. Either that or you have to be mild / moderate to be helped by IAPT. Unfortunately I’m more complex than that, despite what this service’s paperwork indicates (they said I had something like moderate depression and mild anxiety – you can’t diagnose me from that piece of paper, let me tell you that! It doesn’t cater for people like me). But the thing is I’m not actively trying to kill myself, therefore I’m not ‘ill enough’. So I, like many other people, particularly those with BPD, am stuck with nowhere to turn. That’s why being abandoned by this service now is a kick in the gut. I’m isolated because there’s no suitable help out there for me.

IAPT obviously isn’t geared up for those with BPD. But is that my fault? No. When I was discharged from the CMHT I was told that this service I’ve just used, is my option. In fact they’re my only option. So that’s why the doctor told me to speak to them. They’re most suitable for those with depression and anxiety, and hooray – I have both, but I have more than that too, which they can’t help me with. But does that mean I cannot have help? Since I don’t have an official diagnosis of BPD I’ll probably never get the level of help I need. I’ll probably never be able to see a psychiatrist to even be given the diagnosis now, so I am well and truly screwed. I, like many others with BPD, appear to be a casualty of the system, yet again. Not well enough to be treated by IAPT, and not ill enough to be treated by CMHT. Yet we as BPD soldiers, are most at risk to ourselves, so how it can be allowed that we suffer on our own I really don’t understand. At times I feel we’re deliberately being left to fend for ourselves, so that we will become part of the statistic, of ‘1 in 10 dying by their own hand’ – perhaps they want that particular statistic to grow. Maybe society wants us gone. Maybe I am a burden. Maybe they want me to kill myself as I am deemed ‘weak’. Like survival of the fittest, and although we’re stronger than most people will ever be, we’re viewed as ‘pathetic’ and ‘beyond help’… whilst those at either end of the scale for mental health are ‘worth saving’.

 

for your very special wishon thanksgiving!

 

The damage that is being done to those of us who already have in-built beliefs, that we are worthless, a burden, unlovable, and we fear rejection and abandonment, is off the scale. I’m screaming inside ‘WHY WON’T ANYBODY HELP US?!‘ Do we not deserve help just as much as someone with mild depression? Have we not got as much to offer the world as someone with moderate anxiety? Does my life mean NOTHING??

Mental health services should be there to fix these beliefs we have about ourselves and life. They should be helping us to feel worthy. To make us realise we’re not a burden and we deserve love. They should be supporting us and encouraging us, not neglecting us and abandoning us after a couple of sessions. Many people with BPD, though not myself, have experienced neglect or abandonment as a child – to have that replicated by mental health services in adult life, is shameful.

I feel I was neglected in this process. And now I’m on my own again… with more negative beliefs lumped in, just to make it all that more difficult. I feel resentful towards them.

But the only good thing I feel right now, is a unity with all those other people out there with BPD, who cannot get the support they need, and are just as desperate as me. That gives me strength right now, to fight for justice for them, if not for me. The mental health services may not think my life matters, and I might not think my life matters, but I believe the lives of other BPD soldiers matter. And none of them should be let down like I have been let down. So I will keep speaking out for them. They are the only people who understand how I’m feeling right now. They are the ones who know what it’s like to constantly be at war in your own head, and to feel like your heart is screaming in pain, and exploding silently in your chest. The only ones who know the battle to get up in the morning, and pretend that a night of crying and harming yourself didn’t happen… we live to fight another day, with no hope in sight. They are my family. And they matter in this world. If mental health services can’t see it, then at least I do.

I know the strength it takes to ride this rollercoaster every single day. I know the ‘highs’ that aren’t actually all that high, and I know the lows, as low as Earth’s core. I know the feeling that we will never fit in, and function in this world like ‘normal’ people. I know the self-hatred. I know the intense emotions and the emotional and physical scars they leave us with. I know the despair, the fear and the loneliness. I know the pain of just living. Whilst others enjoy their lives we simply exist, and try to survive. We deserve more than this. But we can’t do it alone. We need mental health services to help us. That’s their job. So unless they want blood on their hands, it’s about bloody time they do it.

xxxx

 

worth.jpg

 

 

Poem: One Slash.

*This poem is about self-harm & depression, so read with care*

 

One Slash.

 

 

One slash of skin and the monster within

Breathes new life.

From that moment the whirlpool had me;

I pedal hard beneath the water, but to no avail,

I cannot escape the clutches of darkness…

I’ve tried and I’ve failed.

The fog has thickened,

The tunnel has collapsed,

The weight of the world has doubled upon my shoulders;

My heart has grown colder.

There is no joy anywhere in sight.

Everything troubles me, nothing is right.

Erratic emotions,

Volatile moods,

One word and then SLASH,

The monster stirs, clawing at my arm;

Although it is a part of me, it wants to do me harm.

Never before in my life, have I been victim more –

Victim to my unstable mind,

I watch my life as it all unwinds.

My sanity splatters against the walls of my soul,

I’ve lost my compass, and all of my control.

Torn apart from all that held me together,

That one slash of skin has changed me forever.

The path I walk is treacherous in nature,

And frightful to the eye;

A slice of me no longer cares if I live or die.

They summoned the demon inside,

Walked away, and now I’ve nowhere to hide.

Its grip on my heart cannot be denied.

The sickness tells me they want me to perish,

An untimely death.

If I cannot help myself then I don’t deserve breath.

If they knew the violence of the monster they’ve released,

Would they swoop in and help me tame the beast?

One slash was all it took

To lure me back, and have me hooked.

One slash, one bad relapse,

One letting of blood and now I’m trapped.

Please save me someone, save me from myself;

I’ve drifted miles away from everyone else…

Alone,

Suspended in purest black,

I’ve fallen too far, now there’s no way back.

There’s no safety net as far as the eye can see…

Could this be the end of me?

I’ve lost the person I used to be.

God, take me back before that night,

Make those blood-stained tiles dazzling white;

Take that razor from my hand,

Make the encounter go as planned;

Undo my actions, and heal my heart,

For that one slash is all it took for my life to fall apart.

Constant Conflict.

 

Constant

 

 

 

 

* Self-harm / suicidal thoughts mentioned *

 

 

The constant battle. The battle between your head and your heart…. your reasonable mind and emotional mind….. between your will to survive and the urge to give up.

Having a mental illness is tough enough to recover from, without having a ‘voice’ inside you, urging you to stay down… to get worse… to undo all your hard work, and do yourself harm, or worse.

If you’ve never experienced it then you’ll never understand why mental illness can be so exhausting. You might look at someone like me and think ‘Well you don’t do very much compared to me, yet you’re always so tired…. you’re just lazy’. And that is unbelievably wrong.

Having a mind in constant conflict with itself has to be one of the most exhausting things in the world. Imagine being bullied, to the point you want to end your life. Think about how it would feel if your best friend suddenly turned on you, and told you what a piece of shit you are, every single day. Or picture yourself climbing a steep staircase, and just as you near the top, someone stops you, and pushes you and you tumble all the way to the bottom, and have to start again… and they keep doing this every time.

Now imagine all those things happening at once. That is what it’s like to be me. Only the bully is in my head. I am the best friend who turned against me and abuses me every day. I am the one pushing myself back down the staircase every single time. My mind is my enemy. My emotional mind is my enemy. And it wants me to give up on life. It wants me to keep harming myself. It wants me to do things totally out of character for me.

It is the thing urging me to go back into the toilets at my therapy group, harm myself again, only this time do it right, and make sure I don’t wake up. It’s the thing telling me to find a tall building, or a bridge and contemplate the end, so that someone can save my life and make me think I’m worth something. It’s the thing telling me to sabotage every good thing in my life, so that I have no reason to hold on anymore.

I am battling between the desire to be well and make everyone proud of me, and the wish to have a complete breakdown, where I’m not responsible for my actions, and nobody will judge me for what I do, and I won’t have any guilt or shame for it. I want permission to fall apart and not be okay.

The fight inside me right now is about my next therapy session… do I really show willing to do better than I did a few weeks ago? Or do I do what the voice inside wants me to do, and repeat what I did a few weeks ago? I battle these thoughts by saying they’ll likely kick me off the course if I did it again, and my life would spiral from there. But the voice inside me screams ‘I don’t care!’

It’s like being an adult, yet having a three year old inside, throwing a tantrum whenever you suggest something that will help you. And I feel like a parent who’s been worn down by that toddler, and is about ready to cave in and give it what it wants. I can’t battle any more.

Constant conflict. Internal battles. A split mind. That’s the story of my life right now.

One part of me wanting to get better… the other wanting to self-destruct and put myself in hospital. One part desperate to let go of the past, the other desperate to cling on. One part shouting at me telling me this transference thing ‘ISN’T REAL!!’… the other saying I should stop invalidating my feelings. One part of me in awe of the miracle of being alive, and the other hating life. One part thinking I’m an awful person, and that’s why everyone treats me like shit, and the other part thinking I’m a good person, and don’t deserve to be treated like shit. One part loving someone, and the other wishing I’d never met them.

My mind is split between the reasonable and the emotional… and I think the idea is that mindfulness is supposed to help the two come together, to reach ‘wise mind’ and allow me to make better choices in the present….. I tell you, it’s going to take a heck of a lot more than mindfulness to fix my mind. I cannot see it working. The emotional mind is screaming too loudly. It’s too far gone… it’s in despair.

The scales are tipped in the wrong direction for me now. There’s less desire to hold on, be strong and fight the urges, and more desire to give up and cut, and not care. And I feel so ashamed about this. I expect better from myself. But I’m just so sick of fighting the whole time. Nobody knows how noisy it is inside my head every day. Nobody understands the urge… the need to lose control and do ‘something stupid’. I’m so fed up with having a conscience that keeps me trapped in conflict. Why do I have to think about consequences? Why do I have to consider the impact on other people? Why do I have to care what people will think of me? Why can’t I just be like other people and just do what I need to do, without hating myself? I’m sick of being this person. And then I feel guilty for not wanting to BE this person… for wanting to go against my morals and values. I can’t bloody win! I beat myself up whatever I do.

The war won’t stop. I just want to make it stop.