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Author Topic: Why does he act like two different people?  (Read 1230 times)
sheepdog
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« on: July 09, 2012, 09:31:16 AM »

I was responding to a post this morning and this question struck me.

My bff wBPD has two close friends:  myself and another girl he works with.

We hang together, and are in the same social circles and are also all friends as well.

The way he 'presents' himself to us, especially privately, is soooo different.  With her, he is the MAN, the tough guy, macho, says things like, "Man up", "Get over it", "You're too sensitive", "Crying is for babies", etc.  He says these things to her about her but also other situations they come across.  She has children and he sometimes tells her to start trying to toughen her son up.  He will also say things to her like, "That's your issue" and "I don't need anyone and never have."

With me, it is the opposite.  I am the only one who has ever seen him cry.  He has never cried in front of her or really shown that side, told her he's scared, etc.  He also used to rage at me pretty bad and never raised his voice to her though he does give us both the silent treatment sometimes.

She has told me that she thinks he sees her as weak.  She is very emotional and cries very easily.  He has told me she gets upset over the smallest, dumbest things (and she does...she is one that if there is not drama, she is not happy...she is working through that).

He has told me I am the strongest person he has ever met.  Back when the raging was going on he told me 'I knew you were strong but I never thought you would be this resilient.'  ?

I know being a chameleon is part of BPD but she and I have been through everything with this friend and we know his back story, all of it.  So why he would present himself two ways is kinda strange to me.

Anyone have similar experiences?
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LetItBe
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« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2012, 10:35:18 AM »

My exBPD seemed like 2 different people to me.  I'm not sure if he came across differently to his friends.  He also told me I was "one of the strongest people he ever knew." 
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Steph
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« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2012, 12:14:16 PM »

 It works for him...

Its about HIM and not you.

He is mean to your friend because he gets to be mean to her. For whatever reason, she stays engaged.  He raged at you because he got to. He says  and does things to you/with you that work for him... and keep you hooked..and sucked in.

  He really has some aspd traits...

And keeping this whole thing going is likely due to codependancy and enabling.


S
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wdone
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« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2012, 12:46:18 PM »

my bf told has  a "good" friend (it is impossible for him to be truly intimate or have consistency with here or anyone, but they are friends), and i remember being shocked when he told me she would cry and she needed him to be strong and to be there to give her advice etc and i said "i am not allowed to cry! why are you like that with her?" and he said he expects more of me. that i was to be strong, that i was his partner.
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this too shall pass...
OnceConfused
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« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2012, 12:52:14 PM »

He is mean to her because he wants to maintain the outward appearance that he is a MAN, a strong one. And yet you have seen his true self.

My xbddgf was the sweetest person you have ever met, very coy, very romantic (w writing poems), very engaging. Her true self only shows up once you get to know her more in various situations. Her inconrgruence caused me so much confusion and not only until my T cleared it out with reference to BPD, I was able to see the two sides of her.
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Steph
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« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2012, 01:11:44 PM »

He is mean to her because he wants to maintain the outward appearance that he is a MAN, a strong one. And yet you have seen his true self.

My xbddgf was the sweetest person you have ever met, very coy, very romantic (w writing poems), very engaging. Her true self only shows up once you get to know her more in various situations. Her inconrgruence caused me so much confusion and not only until my T cleared it out with reference to BPD, I was able to see the two sides of her.

 And always remember...while it seems like 2 sides, take a step back. This IS who she is, who he is...the whole picture. S/he is someone who is adorable and fun and mean and cruel. That IS who s/he is.
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sheepdog
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« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2012, 01:28:47 PM »

But she has seen his true side, too.  She has seen him cry at the death of our beloved coworker but not cry at his stuff/mess and he hasn't shown her the rages.

She has been there through the locking himself in his apartment for four days with no contact, the not showing up for work, etc.

Also, the way that WE deal with him is very, very different.  She is not confrontational.  He could poop on her and she would not say a word.  That is changing now, with the help of therapy.

Though I am not confrontational, I didn't let him get away with things and called him out for the big ones.
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Newton
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« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2012, 03:13:04 PM »

sheepdog...if he is suffering from BPD and untreated then his perception of "self" will be fluid and constantly changing...it seems crazy and bewildering to us because it IS for them...
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gina louise
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« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2012, 12:05:29 PM »

My H can be Mr. Sociability/wonderful with new people-or even people he *wants* to connect with, or have them think well of him. Best behavior, dresses smartly, well groomed, asks all the polite questions, good at small talk though he hates it...mingles well at parties.
Calm, cool, collected and charming. That's his friendly *social half* at work, or NA meetings.

At home, with me-he's a slob in old gym shorts, flip flops and a sweaty polo shirt. Unshaven and farting. Sometimes can't get motivated to talk to me-but will text all day to his kids/ friends.  If we go out to eat-he's still in shorts and flip flops.
He can be moody, irritable, critical and demanding /controlling.  that's his *private half*.

When his mood is stable he can be calm and attentive at home too...it just seems more prevalent outside. Like he *saves* that part for being social away from home.
He was like this when we lived together before marriage too. he saved his best for others.
I got the real *raw* deal at home.

GL
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sheepdog
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« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2012, 10:46:58 AM »

GL - I understand what you're saying.  My bff has actually told me how exhausting it is for him to be 'happy' and personable at work.  When he gets off work, he frequently will take a 3 hour nap and not talk to anyone.

I would imagine keeping up those appearances are very hard for them.

I'm not sure why he is one way with her and not with me - even IN FRONT OF US BOTH he is like that.  Strange...

I agree, Newton!
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