So lately I’ve been watching a lot of videos and blogs as well as informative videos about all of the things I’ve been diagnosed with to kind-of understand it, considering that for me, my behaviour doesn’t feel like an illness or a chemical imbalance at all. Until recently, I never knew that my BPD existed, so of course I thought everyone with depression and anxiety felt the same things that I do every day, and had the same relationship issues as I do. But as it turns out, a lot of my relationship and mental stressors are caused by my borderline personality disorder; which is essentially a serious mental illness which is characterized by unstable moods, behaviour and relationships. It can be caused genetically, or from environmental factors, and I’m not entirely sure where mine comes from, because I haven’t picked up on any BPD traits coming from either of my parents. This disorder is also commonly paired with substance abuse, depression, anxiety, etc. and you usually have trouble regulating your thoughts and forming personal relationships stably. From what I’ve gathered, there are 3 main parts involved in BPD and relationships, which is idealizing, devaluating, and splitting. All of these things I can personally relate to. And I shall explain them all, as well as how my BPD has effected me, and how I’m dealing with it now, and my recent recollection of psychotic episodes.
Okay, so first off, there is idealizing. Which is basically when someone with BPD meets another person, whether it be in a personal relationship, or a romantic relationship, and you create this image in your mind of what you think they should be or do. Whether it be them bringing you gifts, or being romantic, or being smart, or saying certain things, etc. Basically anything that you make them out to be that is positive in any way. You think the world of them, you put them on a pedestal, you believe they can do no wrong, and that they’ll fix you or be everything that you want them to be. For example, in my own relationship, I constantly make up scenarios in my head, of Connor coming to school with me, or bringing me somewhere nice, or getting me something nice, and I used to imagine that my perfect person would do grand romantic gestures, and all of these wonderful things. So I was creating a distorted wonderful image of who I wanted him to be.
Now, devaluating is the opposite of that, which personally happens to me more than idealizing, in my recent life. Devaluating and idealizing can fluctuate, and they’re on two different sides of the spectrum. One is black, and one is white. Often in a relationship (no matter what type of relationship) people with BPD will switch between these two options very, very quickly. Sometimes with a small trigger, and sometimes for no reason at all. Personally I find it happens a lot more often when I have time to think. For example, I’ll be getting ready, and Connor will be sleeping, and I’ll sit beside him, and draw on him, and think about how wonderful he is, and then a few minutes later after thinking about something he did wrong in the past, suddenly that wonderful view of him is entirely destroyed and now everything is his fault in my head. I’ll go off on him, I’ll get angry, I’ll get frustrated, etc. But while in my devaluing state, there is no more of that wonderful view of him. I can try and remind myself of it, but my mood will stay sour and my mind will keep pinning things on him. Occasionally when something bad does actually happen, my brain will basically shut down, and I’ll go into an episode, where I’ll cut, or rock back and forth and whisper, or scream, or throw things. (Usually these happen when I’m alone.)
Something I’ve realized about BPD is that people with it are very good at twisting people’s words around. You have an overwhelming sense of insecurity, and nothing is ever your fault- you’re never the bad guy. In an argument, your partner or friend will say something, and you’ll find incredibly sneaky and strategic ways to make them feel bad, or feel like they’re the wrong one. And to you, maybe they are the wrong one. Because this mental illness overwhelms your brain. To this day, I don’t think anything that has happened in the past is my fault. I still find fault in everyone else, even though I am acutely aware of this behaviour being an action from my borderline personality disorder. I’m also very good at lying because of this, as well as picking up on other people’s movements and emotions and mannerisms (which may just be because of my social anxiety and quietness.)
The last part of relationships with bpd is splitting, which is the switch between the last two things. It usually happens very, very quickly for me, from a matter of seconds to about 10 minutes. Of course I don’t know anyone else with BPD so it’s incredibly hard to tell if that’s something that changes with person to person, or if it’s a universal thing.
Something else that I’ve VERY commonly struggled with that is included in borderline personality disorder is an overwhelming fear of abandonment. Every relationship for you will not be permanent in your eyes. You will constantly be thinking that people are starting to hate you, or that people don’t actually like you, and your fear of this will greatly reduce your successful friendships and relationships. You will have a desire to leave before being left, or push people away before they can hurt you. This is a common thing for a lot of other people, but from what I understand, it’s much worse and to a much greater degree for those with BPD. Their mind does not leave this type of thinking.
I’ve recently learned that BPD can also include brief psychotic episodes, and 80 percent of people with borderline personality disorder are suicidal, and a lot of them do have issues with physical self harm- all things that I’ve struggled with immensely. The most interesting part to me, though, are the brief psychotic episodes. I’ve witnessed psychosis, and manic episodes in multiple videos, which scare me greatly, and they’re almost like when you’re watching an exorcism film and the person is dark and sinister, and sarcastic, and sexual, almost like that. Since they had that effect on me, I never really saw myself as someone who got psychotic episodes until I started to think more about it, and how people with BPD often have them to a lesser degree.
It brings me to when I was younger, and if I was occupying myself, sometimes I would have this thing, where I would focus on the silence so much, that I started to feel like I would go crazy, and I’d want to hit my head, or scream, and I’d whisper things to myself, and I’d yell and scream inside my head because I was trying to break the silence, and I’m not sure if that’s because of my borderline personality disorder, but it happened to me the other day. Every time that I paint, and I’m alone, I get that silence, and i start to yell inside my head, and I feel like I’m going to burst into tears or throw things or explode, and I start to whisper, and my head gets all blurry and complicated- it’s hard to explain. But I’ve also had these sinister feelings wash over me, where I’m so emotional that I start to rock back and forth and I feel like I’m going crazy, and I want to pull my hair or hit myself, or do something, and I’d scratch at my arms. It seems strange to me that of all the things I’ve been acutely aware of regarding my emotional stability I never once questioned any of these actions or feelings, and I never attached them in my mind as being some form of psychotic episode.
I don’t know, I just thought I’d give my own experiences and a little info on what’s going on in my head from a psychological standpoint.