It’s Borderline Personality Disorder Awareness month. Wear grey for your friends who have BPD to show your support.
What is it like to have BPD? Well, I suppose that’s kind of like me asking you what it’s like to NOT have BPD, because we’re both so used to our own normals.
But from my purposeful social learning, and from comments on TV shows, I think I can tell how I’m different in a lot of ways.
In Law & Order SVU, when the psychiatrist suspects someone has BPD, it’s stated like this horrible diagnosis– “Maybe even Borderline.” In my music therapy classes, BPD was described as one of the worst types of people to treat.
So I think it’s very much misunderstood.
My greatest fear is being abandoned, so sometimes I hold on to people too tight. If the other person doesn’t tell me this, sometimes the person ends up pulling away for good and I do lose a friend. I wish so much that people would just tell me if I’m crossing a boundary. Then I won’t cross it anymore, and our friendship can be saved.
People with BPD can actually be some of the most empathetic people you will meet because we feel ALL the feelings.
I expect to have therapy as always a part of my life–so I hurt other people less, including myself.
Sometimes, not too often, but once in a while I step back and look at my life and wish I could be normal. Why can’t I feel normally? Why can’t I understand people’s actions? Why do I have such anger, passion, sorrow, doubts, fears?
I don’t know. But I do know this is the biggest thing in my life, more than albinism, more than just the anxiety and comorbid disorders. I do know that I wouldn’t be writing this if I didn’t want people to be less afraid of mental disorders. I know I would judge people’s addictions more if I didn’t know what it was like to do harmful things to myself because I feel so much. I know I wouldn’t need to be this brave if I didn’t have Borderline. Every relationship is scary, but I can’t give up.
I can understand people with disorders better because of this. I listen better because of my experiences. I stand up for people who can’t stand up for themselves. I know I can make a difference and encourage people. And I hope I can get this conversation started so that BPD isn’t as scary. I’m just a person with a problem, but so are you. It’s okay to talk about it and to ask questions. Wear a grey ribbon and tell them why– for those who can’t speak for themselves.