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Author Topic: How Can They Not Know They're Crazy  (Read 6251 times)
avoidatallcost
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« on: January 19, 2012, 03:12:51 PM »

Ok here's the thing.  My 25 year old BP ex gf had attempted to commit suicide and had been committed to the psych ward of a mental hospital, both in her teens.  She had been a cutter throughout her teens, and even during our relationship I had noticed fresh cut marks on her arms so apparently she did not outgrow this.  Her father had abandoned her at birth, and her mother - who was a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic - emotionally and physically abused her.  Also, my ex had been sexually abused when she was 4.  From the age of 14 on, my ex was shipped from one foster family and group home to another.  In addition, she had a consistent history of very abusive relationships that were full of break ups, violence, and (so she says) date rape.  To my knowledge, none of her many "relationships" had ever ended well.

So with all this evidence, and because my ex spent so much time writing in her journals about herself and about her feelings, surely she must have known she was mentally ill or at the very least that there was something really wrong with her?  Any thoughts on this?  Was her sense of denial so strong that with all these facts she truly thought everything wrong in our relationship was my fault?
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« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2012, 03:31:00 PM »

even when they can admit to their own problems, the "real" problem will always be us. The real "fault" will always be outside of themselves. It is the only way they can survive.

At the end of this last recycle, I told him the closest thing I ever to said to "you have BPD"... .what I actually said was "It is chaos in your head and we both know it." and I told him that he has a Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde problem. Yeah, he knows he is ill, but it is still all my "fault".
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CaptainM
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« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2012, 03:40:07 PM »

I've struggled to crack this nut myself and I guess it comes down to the core of why PD's are so hard to heal.

Firstly, the BPDs traits force a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy that justify their irrational feelings. They feel something irrational, force that feeling onto others, then the feeling is justified. They fear abandonment, chase you away in a bid to protect themselves, and you (in their eyes) 'abandon' them.

Secondly, it would be pretty difficult to accept that the way you are, the way you feel, the way you perceive is somehow 'wrong'. If you see a tree, smell a tree, touch a tree and then someone comes along and tells you the tree doesn't exist... .who would you think the crazy one is? We're coming along and telling them that their reality isn't the "right" reality and wonder why they have difficulty accepting it. To them, if they feel it, it's real and if we deny it, we're crazy.

So all your ex's evidence proves to her is that life sucks and is horribly unfair. She sees everyone else waltzing through life with ease and it seems like all the bad stuff just happens to her.
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avoidatallcost
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« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2012, 03:41:50 PM »

Yeah, he knows he is ill, but it is still all my "fault".

Interesting... so your ex at least acknowledged he had a problem?  I figure that mine did too, otherwise why would she agree to go see a psychiatrist regularly and continue to take a variety of medication?  I remember I once (mistakenly) told her I felt like a victim in this relationship.  She proceeded to tell me that this was a feature of borderline personality disorder, and that I was always painting myself as a victim in our relationship.

I responded by telling her we were both victims of her disorder.  

She didn't say anything back to me.  Maybe she realized it was true?  Is it possible our exes sometimes agree there is something seriously wrong with them?  Or do they go on forever after thinking that we, the non-BP's, were at fault for everything?
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JonnyJon42
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« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2012, 03:42:00 PM »

I think most get it at some point that they are messed up like justmehere said when they think about it they just turn it on the outside world. they do things like Im crazy casue of my boyfriend so ill leave him and find a guy im better with like that guy i met last night he was nice and i think he really gets me not like my boyfriend. Keep in mind she could of just met this guy and only talked to him like 20 mins Laugh out loud (click to insert in post).

Most dont want to get help cause the way they live is working out for them up to this point and if its not working out again outside worlds fault not me
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avoidatallcost
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« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2012, 03:43:27 PM »

Firstly, the BPDs traits force a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy that justify their irrational feelings. They feel something irrational, force that feeling onto others, then the feeling is justified. They fear abandonment, chase you away in a bid to protect themselves, and you (in their eyes) 'abandon' them.

So even if my ex dumped me in the most horrific way, complete with rubbing salt in the wound for 3 months yes 3 months post break up, she still think I am the one who abandoned her?
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« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2012, 03:44:03 PM »

My ex knows something is wrong with him and he's been seeing a psychiatrist monthly for  7 years. Unfortunately, it's more for having his prescriptions refilled than for serious therapy--although they do have counselling sessions that lift my ex's spirits.

I can't tell you the number of times in an argument, or on the precipice of an argument, he'd tell me "It's not you. I have to figure out why I'm feeling this way. I have to stay in this moment and see why I'm feeling this way." He even said this the night of his major rage which is the last time we were together October 16, 2011 at 2:45 a.m. Smiling (click to insert in post)

The thing with my ex is he knows something is wrong with him--way more than ptsd and definitely not adhd (I'd think he was BPD and NPD)--but I believe he thinks the "right" woman will be able to fix him, or he will meet the "right" woman and voila! He will change! He used to call himself wildly eccentric and try to tell me how it is I should behave, what I should do when he goes into his "incommunicado, brooding" mode (translate: silent treatment). So, inevitably, it's always the "wrong" woman's fault... .and it's always his "children's" fault... .and it's always his "mother's" fault... .and it's always his "older sister's and her husband's" fault... .you get the picture.

M
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CaptainM
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« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2012, 03:48:50 PM »

Firstly, the BPDs traits force a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy that justify their irrational feelings. They feel something irrational, force that feeling onto others, then the feeling is justified. They fear abandonment, chase you away in a bid to protect themselves, and you (in their eyes) 'abandon' them.

So even if my ex dumped me in the most horrific way, complete with rubbing salt in the wound for 3 months yes 3 months post break up, she still think I am the one who abandoned her?

Probably. Mine kicked me out of my house, told me she hated me, belittled me, tried to take me to court for my personal savings etc etc and is now (a month or so later) trying to contact me to figure out why "she wasn't worth trying for" and that I promised "I'd always be there for her".

She says her issues are that she's "emotionally fragile" and she "finds it hard to trust people" - in a moment of weakness when I tried to defend myself (silly silly me) and pointed out that she left me (every single time, at least once a year) and she was unfaithful many many times she somehow turned it around and told me that "I should grovel my way back" because she never did anything wrong and it was all my fault.
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« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2012, 04:06:32 PM »

Periodically, my ex would exhibit what seemed to be realization of the extent of her disorder (usually accompanied by sobbing and utter despair), but in retrospect, I'm not entirely sure this wasn't (at least in part) not only a way for her to subsequently justify more dysfunctional behavior ("whaddya expect ... .I'm crazy", but to also have it appear to me she might be on the verge of seeking treatment/cleaning up/whatever.

Which, as of a month ago, hadn't happened.
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« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2012, 05:18:38 PM »

Gosh, it's so sad to see others suffering the same kind of emotional gaslighting. It's just... .depressing. In recent months, its been told to my family dxBPDgf has said ALL her problems were because of me. She "only" has PTSD now because of me. I made her slash on herself, throw herself down the stairs for attention, suicide attempt, steal and lie. It makes me sick so many others suffer from this abuse as well.

Up thread CaptainM's point about a BPD and a tree is well taken. I agree with it. A BPD paradigm is normal to a BPD.

I'll add that in my experience BPDs have such a hard time accepting their disorder because they are continuously seeking people who'll reenforce they aren't the problem. They can't confront their demons. They'll draw people in, distort what is really going on and get this person to be on their "side."   If someone points out that what they're doing isn't normal, the shame, the guilt and the persecuted victim mentality start.  Further, their inability to self introspect coupled with lack any "big picture" can make them unreachable.

DxBPDgf started therapy and got the situation got WORSE as it went. Our relationship was souring and I'm sure the therapist was challenging her and making her address things. ExBPD knew she had problems, but when she started facing them she really fell apart. It was as if her sense of self was so tied to being a victim and that she'd been persecuted, being presented with many of her problems were due to her choices and were consequences of those choices overloaded her. She couldn't process because it challenged much of victim doctrine of the last 15 years. Rather than face it, run; and that's what she did. Right to her disordered mother who has a history of having her children taken away and is disordered as well. And of course, her bio-mother who refuses to get help for her issues is reenforcing the idea that getting help is bad (distrust of the system), nothing is wrong. Right what exBPD wanted to hear.

I've come to realize any time someone goes beyond the "persona" the BPD is projecting at the time, that's when the chaos starts. Whether it's a child, adult child, spouse, family member or therapist that starts calling them on things - it triggers a bunch of things and it goes to hell.

My experience highlighted in the case of exBPD that she is just completely unable to deal whats down in her dark recesses. She'll mirror and project as a survival mechanism all the while avoiding what's driving the whole thing.  Until she does, the sad pattern will continue.



Excerpt
She says her issues are that she's "emotionally fragile" and she "finds it hard to trust people" - in a moment of weakness when I tried to defend myself (silly silly me) and pointed out that she left me (every single time, at least once a year) and she was unfaithful many many times she somehow turned it around and told me that "I should grovel my way back" because she never did anything wrong and it was all my fault.

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« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2012, 07:21:27 PM »

My exuBPDbf knew there was something wrong with him. He had been in and out of T his entire adult life and has had 2 failed marriages and a string of failed longterm r/s's... .He has also been off and on meds for his depression/bipolar but rather chooses when and if he will stay with any type of treatment plan involving T or meds... .After the first 9 months of our r/s when the mask starting coming off, he admitted his deep depressive cycles. I mean, they were pretty hard to hide. Then as time went on he would fluctuate moods and then finally when he would emotionally pull away enough he would tell me "Mermaid, I am sick... .there's something wrong with me and my fear is that I am not capable of having a r/s"... .I honestly believe he knows there is something VERY wrong, even though he probably doesn't know about BPD. He is not diagnosed by a Dr. although he pretty much fits all of the characteristics to a T... .My thoughts are that he knows there is something wrong but has a fear that even with a lot T and meds, he will not get better. So he tries to live in a world where he is constantly trying to distract himself with outside stimulation and addictions so that he doesn't have to do the work to try to heal and get to the bottom of what his issues are. Very sad... .very, very sad... .
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« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2012, 11:21:56 PM »

At the end of this last recycle, I told him the closest thing I ever to said to "you have BPD"... .what I actually said was "It is chaos in your head and we both know it." and I told him that he has a Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde problem. Yeah, he knows he is ill, but it is still all my "fault".

I told my ex-fiance that just 3 days ago when he tried to recycle me after he broke up with my replacement

I strongly believe that my ex-fiance knows and realizes that there is something wrong with him... .but he blames everyone else to be the reason to trigger that thing "wrong" inside of him

My ex-fiance told me that even his 13 years old son... .his friends and his co-workers asked him if there is something wrong with him... .he has all these beautiful women in his life and yet... .he couldn't find what he is looking for

He told me... .he really doesn't know what is wrong with him

I think most get it at some point that they are messed up like justmehere said when they think about it they just turn it on the outside world. they do things like Im crazy casue of my boyfriend so ill leave him and find a guy im better with like that guy i met last night he was nice and i think he really gets me not like my boyfriend. Keep in mind she could of just met this guy and only talked to him like 20 mins Laugh out loud (click to insert in post).

Most dont want to get help cause the way they live is working out for them up to this point and if its not working out again outside worlds fault not me

I agree... .they all suspect something is wrong but can't wrap their fingers about it... .so the easiest way to avoid shame is to blame the victim for all their faults
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« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2012, 11:35:45 PM »

Excerpt
So with all this evidence, and because my ex spent so much time writing in her journals about herself and about her feelings, surely she must have known she was mentally ill or at the very least that there was something really wrong with her?  Any thoughts on this?

"Her father had abandoned her at birth, and her mother - who was a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic - emotionally and physically abused her.  Also, my ex had been sexually abused when she was 4.  From the age of 14 on, my ex was shipped from one foster family and group home to another."

At what point must you realize that this is normal for her?

You're asking about mental illness from *your* perspective. I'm assuming that you are aware of what's normal and what's not- according to your upbringing.  At any point in her childhood, was there normal as *you* know it?

If not, then why are you insisting that she become aware that your normal and her normal are different and make changes?  The bottom line is: your realities are different and no amount of pleading is going to change that. You also need to understand your recommendations to her to be "normal" are almost as though you are translating hieroglyphics.  A child raised in these circumstances knows no "normal" like you do- Idea

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« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2012, 11:44:24 PM »

My BPD ex-husband saw a psychiatrist for over 20 years and had a sister who had been both jailed and placed in a mental hospital.  He knew something was wrong but still told both wife #2 and wife #3 and his mother and who knows who else that it was me, all me.  I do not know what is wrong with their logical reasoning skills, but they cannot seem to actually take responsibility for their behavior and its consequences.
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« Reply #14 on: January 20, 2012, 02:19:31 AM »

By far most know something is (very) wrong IMO. My xBPDgf was very aware of her BPD. Because of the things she said, I think she knew more about BPD than I ever knew. Why didn't she do anything about it? First of all, she sought refugee in short term quick fixes. She also pretended to wear it as a badge of honour: "I am crazy, the rest is boring". It is a personality disorder, so she thought this was her. If she changed this, ME wouldn't be ME anymore. Especially for somebody with a lack of identity, this was very scary for her, to become somebody else. She tried to figure herself out many times. While she knew everything about BPD, her answer was always "I donot know why I do those things, I cannot even explain myself to myself." She was clueless about the world, and most important she was clueless about herself.
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Beach_Babe
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« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2012, 05:56:56 AM »

That pretty much sums mine up... .she knew she was "crazy," admitted and sought help for BPD-but I think some of them are incapable of change... .too LF
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« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2012, 06:23:09 AM »

Her exact words:

If I come and live with you, you will get bored of me within a month and then what will I do…….I will be alone as no one will want me.

Perhaps they sometimes know they are acting and feeling weird. Key word *sometimes*, as pwBPD quickly revert back to ‘is everybody else’s fault that I feel this inner pain and emptiness’.

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« Reply #17 on: January 20, 2012, 06:42:02 AM »

At times, my stbxw will describe her BPD symptoms very accurately and honestly.  She will say, I have these emotions boiling over inside of me, and I just can't control them, and I am trying so hard, and I realize the awful things I am saying and doing, but I can't stop myself.   And, other days, she will say she is tired of people thinking there is something wrong with her, it's me who is messed up, and I just tell everyone there is something wrong with her.

It makes treatment and therapy very hard, because if she is not in the first mood, she will just not bother to show up at the T.
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Finished
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« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2012, 06:48:36 AM »

Firstly, the BPDs traits force a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy that justify their irrational feelings. They feel something irrational, force that feeling onto others, then the feeling is justified. They fear abandonment, chase you away in a bid to protect themselves, and you (in their eyes) 'abandon' them.

So even if my ex dumped me in the most horrific way, complete with rubbing salt in the wound for 3 months yes 3 months post break up, she still think I am the one who abandoned her?

In a strange way yes ... .My ex also did the dumping ... .However, I've come to accept that I pushed this sometimes consciously and other times subconsciously, over about six month period because I had encountered suicide threats in the past and was scared if I just left he would kill himself.

He did the dumping in a completely unnecessary and hurtful way. I have realized that because I didn't chase him down and fix us again and get us to reconcile that I "let him go" and that it was all my fault. I didn't stop him from leaving. So I'm the one who left him.

Twisted I know.
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« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2012, 08:48:28 AM »

At times, my stbxw will describe her BPD symptoms very accurately and honestly.  She will say, I have these emotions boiling over inside of me, and I just can't control them, and I am trying so hard, and I realize the awful things I am saying and doing, but I can't stop myself.   

yes towards the last half of the r/s my exBPDgf would say the same thing.

since becoming friends with her ex husband who knew her for 10 years and myself being with her for a little over 3, making her 30 or so when they met, she was completely unaware of what was going on with her.  when she was about 36 they went to 3 or 4 reputable marriage counselors and given she's a relatively high functioning BPD they got absolutely nowhere with that. 

i met her when she was almost 39.  when she had just turned 40 i broke it off over some crazy behavior and she ended up in a T office having a breakdown and talking suicided with myself and her ex husband there.  after an official bipolar dx (for insurance companies sake) she began admitting she had some real problems.  she had also had a recent string of 3 jobs that she had to leave due to unfavorable circumstances because of her behavior.  tho she went in and out of admitting it, i recall one of our last conversations she admitted she has trouble connecting with people, esp those close to her.  she'd say i just need a really stable guy, but most likely i'll end up alone. 

it seemed like progress but it was at a snail pace and she made plenty of excuses about not going to therapy.  in the end it was too little progress for me, too many fights and my health couldn't take it.

but i do think that given the right circumstances they can (at least mine did) begin to realize something is pretty wrong with them.  i imagine it must be scary for them.  i sometimes think it was also her age?  i've heard that some BPD's symptoms decrease with age.


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« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2012, 10:16:53 AM »

even when they can admit to their own problems, the "real" problem will always be us. The real "fault" will always be outside of themselves. It is the only way they can survive.

Well said... .That's the story of my life in my current relationship.

Admittedly, it's nearing its end.  I'm tired trying to make this work and I'm tired of not feeling good enough.  My partner is just never happy and wakes up cranky... .Of course, it's always someone else's fault. 

Tired.
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« Reply #21 on: January 21, 2012, 08:15:18 AM »

Excerpt
So with all this evidence, and because my ex spent so much time writing in her journals about herself and about her feelings, surely she must have known she was mentally ill or at the very least that there was something really wrong with her?  Any thoughts on this?

"Her father had abandoned her at birth, and her mother - who was a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic - emotionally and physically abused her.  Also, my ex had been sexually abused when she was 4.  From the age of 14 on, my ex was shipped from one foster family and group home to another."

At what point must you realize that this is normal for her?

You're asking about mental illness from *your* perspective. I'm assuming that you are aware of what's normal and what's not- according to your upbringing.  At any point in her childhood, was there normal as *you* know it?

If not, then why are you insisting that she become aware that your normal and her normal are different and make changes?  The bottom line is: your realities are different and no amount of pleading is going to change that. You also need to understand your recommendations to her to be "normal" are almost as though you are translating hieroglyphics.  A child raised in these circumstances knows no "normal" like you do- Idea

Hi. My exes childhood history was somewhat similar. We all have slightly different perceptions of reality don't we? Most of these issues are resolvable though between a 'normal' couple where emotional dysregulation is at a minimum. However, when that dysregulation is out of control, that is when those issues become the dramas and crises that balloon into 'r/s deal breakers'.

Via research and much soul searching i understand her problems from MY perspective. My empathic skills allow me to also see her problems from HER perspective. This allowed me to detach to a degree and to move forwards. I did say quite early on in our rekindled 'romance' (14 years on and off), that we wanted different things... .so i knew via gut instinct that as rosy as it had been painted, there was something 'off'.

So yes, i myself, know the way forwards for me. A healthy acceptance of a few facts. Our 'normal' is different, i can't change that or be involved with the process of that change, some things, no matter how good they seem, are not meant to be, i look after me and she can look after herself etc etc etc ... .i could go on.

I think that the point avoidatallcost may have been making is this(and forgive me if i misinterpreted it) ... .

The thing that got me angriest of all was the fact that she plunged headlong into this 'big love' thing without any thought for the consequences whatsoever. She is 44 years old and has had a disastrous marriage, a disastrous LTR prior to me with the father of her child and other equally disastrous r/s.

She has NEVER lived in a domesticated environment (i.e. Living with your partner under the same roof) for longer than 6 months without it all going South. During the idealisation stage though, she had a plan to construct this domestic scenario. Her words ... .'It's all coming together', after meeting her daughter, family and all the other r/s building exercises. All of her words pointed to a future together.

I am 51 years old myself and am well aware of the mechanics of a 'normal' r/s dance, which happens however much you don't want to play games, it's a courtship ritual after all. That's all good exciting(but not damaging) 'dancing'.

So we are not 'kids' ... .and yes i know her development was arrested and that her head is stuck back at around 5 years old. I expressed doubts about the r/s and at every turn she swore to me that she had it all together this time.

My point is ... .Regardless of being developmentally arrested, they have life experience ... .in my exes case, a trail of totally failed r/s etc. Even after all that, they still take no personal responsibility for anything, not during the r/s or after the event. She never EVER considered the fact that *I* could get hurt at any point. She has also had some family therapy and some other 'course' as she called it, which i think may have been DBT by the description she gave. So SHE knows!

Mentally ill or not, i for one am not in the habit of absolving anyone for acting irresponsibly to the extreme. They are clever enough to manipulate and manufacture extravagant situations so, in my book, even though dysfunctional they must be savvy enough to realise the damage that they do, especially when armed with the knowledge of previous failures.

N.B. I have forgiven her for her alternate reality as i know that she can't help it. However, they lack empathy when the chips are down and that is one of the key elements of 'Being Human'.
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« Reply #22 on: January 21, 2012, 08:36:37 AM »

My ex had repeated attempts at taking her own life with pills and one time told me she was cutting to ease the pain from the feeling of failure. She admitted herself into a mental hospital when she dropped out of her studies, wanted to show me a favourite spot where she thought of ending her life and regularly broke up or triangulated for strange and bizarre reasons. She was textbook BPD traits but was very quiet about what therapy she was receiving. Her family were the same, calling her issues, depression. She once told me there was nothing wrong with her, just a slight anxiety problem. Other times, she would tell me she was just a nobody and I shouldn't be with her. She was demanding, cruel, parasitic and highly toxic. To me, mentally ill but to her, it depended on the mood. Either way, it would be watered down.
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« Reply #23 on: January 21, 2012, 11:24:04 AM »

Short answer here, and I'm not being flip... .because they are crazy! The socially acceptable term may be mentally ill but for sure we absolutely will make ourselves crazy if we try to apply normal thinking to their actions.

Personally I would love my H to admit he was crazy because it would validate me but I know for sure he's not in the business of validating my feelings and experiences.  Laugh out loud (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #24 on: January 21, 2012, 11:40:39 AM »

You're asking about mental illness from *your* perspective. I'm assuming that you are aware of what's normal and what's not- according to your upbringing.  At any point in her childhood, was there normal as *you* know it?

I find it interesting to think of this in terms of MY issues. I was with my H for 29 years, and the first 20 were filled with chaos and drunkenness and abandonment. Yet, even though I always knew that this was not *normal* I had no idea what to do about it. I was just as sick as he was. Often, I would join in the chaos, out of fear  ?  I had my own abandonment issues.

From one of my previous posts:

"I have been seeking answers and understanding as to why I have stayed for 29 years with such a destructive person. Why have I justified and defended a r/s that everyone else seems to see is bad for me? Why have I constantly believed in promises that are never kept? Why have I continued to use repetitive, destructive and cyclical communication attempts? Why are others horrified by what happens, but not me? Why have I felt so stuck knowing my H is going to repeat his destructive behaviors but believing there is nothing I can do about it? Why have I been unable to detach from someone I do not trust, or even like much of the time? Why do I find myself missing a r/s that nearly destroyed me (I attempted suicide)? Why was I so willing to sweep my hurt, fears, anger under the rug just to continue the same destructive r/s? Looking at this make me feel like I am the one insane! And perhaps I have been... .it all has to do with TRAUMA!"

So, who's the crazy one here? God knows, I acted pretty crazy myself out of my own desperation.

As far as my H, I think he also has known all along that something is terribly wrong. He has said, many times, "I am not a bad person!", as if he is trying to convince himself. He has said, "I know that Mr Hyde is a problem" as if this is some outside force to reckon with. But feeling bad does not offer any relief, or any solution. Its not like he knows he's crazy, its more like he feels like a bad person and fears the man in the mirror.

To me its all very sad. Yes, I have plenty of my own issues. But I a much better ability to seek recovery because I see the sickness. He knows something is wrong, but in his perspective HE is wrong, so seeking recovery seems an impossibility. His illness keeps him so lost in the forest, I dont know that he will ever be able to see the trees! So sad.
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JonnyJon42
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« Reply #25 on: January 21, 2012, 03:49:41 PM »

Thank you captinkirk

Its ok that they are ill in the head but its not ok that they NEVER learn no matter how many times they do the same things and no matter how many times it happens they never take ANY responsibility. With age you would think the options would start to dry up and they would have to look at the facts but from ive seen it dont seem to work that way they can be 60 and look back and still look at it as not there fault that they have a massive corpse pile behind them.
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« Reply #26 on: January 21, 2012, 04:21:31 PM »

Getting a BPD to realize they have issues is the primary goal at the beginning of tharapy if they do they can improve, I've seen it.

Understanding that you can go from doctor Jekyll to Mr. Hyde and lose control of yourself is a HUGE step.

If they can't see that the prognosis is dim.  The fact my BPD wife has come to know she has issues was the most important reason I decided to stay with her.

Sir5r
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« Reply #27 on: January 21, 2012, 05:04:56 PM »

... .  The fact my BPD wife has come to know she has issues was the most important reason I decided to stay with her.

Amen to that. I would have stood by my ex if she had done that too! No doubt!
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JonnyJon42
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« Reply #28 on: January 21, 2012, 05:17:53 PM »

Mine over the years have said she has a issue just for lip service. If they say it and mean it they will get help but they dont want help they just want to keep living the lie cause up to this point it worked or they think next time it will be different but it never is always the same crap. If my ex called me said she has this problem and want to get help and got help i would take her back and forgive her but thats the thing she dont want to get help cause like in the past they are going to tell her to get away from her grandma which she wont do.
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« Reply #29 on: January 21, 2012, 05:42:11 PM »

In the end it was too little progress for me, too many fights and my health couldn't take it.

I completely empathize with you. DxBPDgf didn't show any improvement, if anything the freefall got  much worse. The fact your exBPD showed improvement and responded perhaps gives her a chance. In the end, in my case the strain, my hair falling out and my skin getting this constant hive like rash - I just couldn't take it either. The best thing for me was to make sure her child was in a safe place out of her care and for me to get out.

Has your health bounced back? I took 3 months for my color to come back and a year to return to feeling like I used to feel.

but i do think that given the right circumstances they can (at least mine did) begin to realize something is pretty wrong with them.  i imagine it must be scary for them.  i sometimes think it was also her age?  i've heard that some BPD's symptoms decrease with age.

Yes, I agree. They have to be strong and high functioning. If they can open the door and face it without running - they have a chance. If that door scares them too much and they want external validation that it's everyone's fault for their plight - it's hopeless.

Early in my time at bpdfamily, I forget who pointed out that BPDs may appear to get better as they age, is, perhaps an illusion. This person surmised that by the time the BPD is 40 (or earlier if they had children young), they have probably have had children. Those children could be enmeshed with the BPD and the BPD has learned to keep the more chaotic elements of their disorder "behind closed doors."  Instead of projecting on to an adult who might react negatively and result in conflict, they have a captive child(ren) now who they raise in "roles" and constantly project upon them. If a BPD mother is a single parent, chances are no conflict will be shown. The children are now her the vessles of her projection. They have been groomed since birth for these roles, so there is often little conflict. The BPD projects without resistance. The BPD appears stable, but it's the children who show the telltale signs that something is seriously wrong.

With my exBPD, she was completely like that. Family business was not to be spoken about out of the home. It took a huge push by me to disclose to the youngest child's pediatrician that there were odd (and frankly - scary) sexualized behaviors the child was engaging in. DxBPDgf HATED that I brought it up. She hated it that it was out there. That belonged only in the family by her strict reasoning. Doctors, therapists - anyone one who could help were not to be trusted. In my view, she KNEW it wasn't normal and bringing it up would put a spotlight on her. She'd rather hide it instead of get the child help. The youngest also at six years old was at least two years behind in development despite being a very smart child. That was later diagnosed with ADHD, emphasis on the hyperactivity, a learning disorder and displayed considerably anxiety.  

That child was the "bad" child.

She had a boy who was the family "oracle."  He was parentified, her perfect little man. In his words, at 13 he was a "momma's boy."  He was all that was good in the universe.  In reality, he was manipulative, lying, disrespectful of any boundaries and expected to be treated as an adult. After all he was an equal to adults.  I saw quickly that this boy had a persona for his mother. With almost anyone else, including his half sister and his father, whom he spoke very coldly and darkly of: a very different persona.  His anger at any reasonable boundary was strange. He wouldn't respect any house rules. Passive aggressive was how he lashed back. He is a narcissist in the making. His mother has raised him that think he is special and entitled to be treated in a way.

I came through my own reading and understanding that he has two distinct identities. The one his mother expects him to be (projection) and his. The anger is the boys true core.  I do feel sorry for him. At least his half sister is out of living with their mother. This boy, is, will and probably never will break the duality that has made him so anger so young. His "specialness" is now tied up in his identity.

Some BPDs are masters of hiding the disorder as they age. They channel it on the kids.  
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