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Author Topic: How is it not personal?  (Read 822 times)
DownandOut
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« on: October 29, 2013, 12:51:20 PM »

I always read on these boards that we shouldn't take the abuse and hatred for us personally because BPD is a very serious illness. At the same time, however, there is a lot of discussion about how we attract BPDs into our lives because of some our own issues. So my question is, how could it not be personal when we enable BPD behaviors? Something about us attracts these types of people and, as a result, we suffer through the terrible relationships they have to offer. They know we have a weakness in us that make us susceptible to their nonsense, they push our limits, and they prey on us. It is personal! A lion eats weaker animals, a lion doesn't eat tigers. A lion and a tiger may fight, but the lion doesn't eat the tiger. I've felt like a lion my whole life, but with my uBPDexgf, I was prey. It was a deficiency of mine that let her eat me. It may not be personal, but it sure seems that way.
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Ironmanrises
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« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2013, 01:13:11 PM »

We indirectly enable their behaviors.

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Waifed
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« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2013, 01:32:00 PM »

I always read on these boards that we shouldn't take the abuse and hatred for us personally because BPD is a very serious illness. At the same time, however, there is a lot of discussion about how we attract BPDs into our lives because of some our own issues. So my question is, how could it not be personal when we enable BPD behaviors? Something about us attracts these types of people and, as a result, we suffer through the terrible relationships they have to offer. They know we have a weakness in us that make us susceptible to their nonsense, they push our limits, and they prey on us. It is personal! A lion eats weaker animals, a lion doesn't eat tigers. A lion and a tiger may fight, but the lion doesn't eat the tiger. I've felt like a lion my whole life, but with my uBPDexgf, I was prey. It was a deficiency of mine that let her eat me. It may not be personal, but it sure seems that way.

I know my ex worked with me and she told me she was attracted to me because I was kind and giving.  I's sorry but that is what I am and I make no apologies about it.  The problem is that we ignore the obvious signs that are displayed by them from Day 1.  I actually saved the IM's from the first time we started flirting with one another.  I had already known her for three years and had absolutely no idea she had a PD and neither did anyone else in the office.  She was very quiet, shy and kept to herself for the most part.  I did sense that she might have a wild side.  (I NAILED THAT ONE).  It was funny looking back at the IM's.  She showed the exact same patterns in the IM"s that the did throughout the relationship.  She was a Waif so she did not rage but she was a master of the silent game.  I saw it in the IM's when certain things triggered her.  This was BEFORE we started dating. 

A healthy person would have written her off as a flake and moved on.  It made me pursue her even harder, almost like a challenge.  The rest is history... .
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musicfan42
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« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2013, 01:34:43 PM »

Yes... it definitely feels personal. I know what you mean about feeling like a lion and then having the tables turn... being the prey. urgh... it sucks.

The only consolation is that you're out of the relationship now-you don't have to put up with it anymore.

I wouldn't think of it as a weakness/deficiency-we're all just human and we all make mistakes... we all have stuff that we need to learn. Have you been in the workshop section of this website? I personally found that very helpful in learning more about boundaries etc.



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heartandwhole
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« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2013, 01:46:26 PM »

DownandOut,

This really feels personal, I get that.  It certainly did for me.  I think what people are saying is that the person with BPD is not only exhibiting these behaviors toward you.  These maladaptive coping mechanisms will come out toward anyone who gets close enough to trigger them.  It is not personal toward you, in that you are especially deserving of this behavior or have behaved horribly, etc.  It's the pwBPD's way of coping, which can feel very hurtful to the person on the other end.  

The lion eats the weak animals because that is its nature.  It could be any weak animal, it's not only that one particular gazelle, because the gazelle was rude or whatever.  Any gazelle that the lion can catch will do.  Our own issues are what allowed us to get "caught."

Unlike a lion, a pwBPD can undergo therapy that will help with these unskillful coping strategies.  

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When the pain of love increases your joy, roses and lilies fill the garden of your soul.
laelle
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« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2013, 02:11:38 PM »

What they admire about you when they idealize you becomes what they hate about you when they devalue you.

"You are a kind person" becomes "You are too nice and therefore weak."

I watched my ex idealize and devalue his friends as well as his students.  It was laughable except when it was my turn.  It is not personal, you are not flawed in some way thereby deserving of it.

Their behavior is not predatory, it is mandatory for their survival. They do not have the ability to act any differently even if they know they are doing something dubious.

They have problems to soothe their own emotional needs, and turn to others to do it for them.  There MUST be someone there to do that job for them.  If they have to lie or steal or cheat to have their triggers in a state of calm, they will do it. The fear,the pain and the demons must be quiet!  If not, they can not bear the pain of living in their own skin.

 Laelle
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Lucky Jim
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« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2013, 02:12:21 PM »

Excerpt
Something about us attracts these types of people and, as a result, we suffer through the terrible relationships they have to offer. They know we have a weakness in us that make us susceptible to their nonsense, they push our limits, and they prey on us.

Hi DownandOut,

Like how you put that.  I'm sure it was true for me.  You could say that we Nons have a certain naivete that allows us to overlook all the red flags at the outset of a BPD r/s.  You could also say that we are particularly kind and forgiving people, which works to our disadvantage in a BPD r/s, in my view.  In other contexts, these are good qualities to have, but not when it comes to BPD.  I learned the hard way . . . after a 16 year marriage to my BPDxW . . .  and I'm no longer as naive as I once was . . . which is a good thing moving forward.

Lucky Jim
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    A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.
George Bernard Shaw
Hazelrah
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« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2013, 02:55:38 PM »

The lion eats the weak animals because that is its nature.  It could be any weak animal, it's not only that one particular gazelle, because the gazelle was rude or whatever.  Any gazelle that the lion can catch will do.  

I don't know why, but I love the idea of a 'rude' gazelle!  Smiling (click to insert in post)

Seriously though, I'm with Lucky Jim in that I feel I was naive in the early going of my BPD relationship... .I felt as if I deserved that 'unconditional' love after all those years.  And in hindsight, I can look back and give myself credit for knowing I am a loving, caring person, as well as someone that has grown considerably as a result of having gone through such a difficult situation.
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laelle
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« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2013, 03:05:18 PM »

I know for me, I grew up in a household where nothing that I did was good enough.  In my relationship with my ex, I kept replaying that same sketch hoping for a different outcome.  That I could be the hero, save the day, and finally be worthy.  This is impossible with someone who is BPD.  They can not sustain their feelings for you therefore, you may be the hero one minute, and the trouble for all their woes the next.   No one has the power to tell me if I am worthy or not.  Only I can do that.

I proved to myself that I was worthy the day I let go and did not try to replay the sketch another time.  The relationship was a dance for two.  One could not have performed it alone.
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goldylamont
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« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2013, 04:17:34 PM »

for me it's definitely not personal even though it does feel like it from time to time  i've seen my ex treat other people just as bad or worse than she treated me. and i also see things she said about previous r/s in a different light; this is just who she is, what she does. wasn't me.
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Changingman
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« Reply #10 on: October 29, 2013, 04:39:13 PM »

It is so crazy being with them, each story they have in there head is true for them. It wasn't me!

Mine broke everything she touched, everything. She brought home a lamp but she'd stopped for a pint and broke the base of it. Everything she started was abandoned when broken, just walked away like a child.

Nothing, no connection to anything. just sex and drinking to justify anyone liking her. Nothing personal, nothing personal at all just her inner self no one else, alone, weird, chaos.
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blurry
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« Reply #11 on: October 31, 2013, 10:43:16 PM »

I keep trying to compare their behavior to a 4 year old who yells at mommy "I hate you!" when told its bedtime. Except unlike the 4 year old, the pwBPD goes out and cheats on you, costs you a job, or your home somehow, or otherwise destroys all your trust in them. That's where it becomes personal. The 4 year old wakes up the next day and loves you as usual, no harm,  while the pwBPD does irreparable damage.

A child might run away from home for a few hours till they cool off but the pwBPDs version of that is an extramarital affair.

I don't know what it'll take for me to separate the behavior from the person, its easy with a child throwing a tantrum, but with my wife, I'm not sure ill ever forgive or not take it personally. Almost wish it was bipolar or schizophrenia, that way the insanity would be directed at anyone around her and not just me, in which case I might not take it personal.
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Supernova9star

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« Reply #12 on: October 31, 2013, 10:59:19 PM »

It blew me away how he kept telling me not to take it personally when he decided to leave me. It's so hard to even imagine that not affecting me personally. And yes... .especially when the behavior is only directed at me behind closed doors. Everyone else gets to see mr charming. How do you not take that personally?

I don't care if he thinks he is just punishing me right now or hurting me to get his way. His little mini vacation he thinks he is having will be a permanent one this time. I won't take him back again. It makes it so much worse to know he is intentionally making these choices knowing how much pain he is causing me. How the f*** do I not take that personally?
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Ironmanrises
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« Reply #13 on: November 01, 2013, 12:31:50 AM »

It blew me away how he kept telling me not to take it personally when he decided to leave me. It's so hard to even imagine that not affecting me personally. And yes... .especially when the behavior is only directed at me behind closed doors. Everyone else gets to see mr charming. How do you not take that personally?

I don't care if he thinks he is just punishing me right now or hurting me to get his way. His little mini vacation he thinks he is having will be a permanent one this time. I won't take him back again. It makes it so much worse to know he is intentionally making these choices knowing how much pain he is causing me. How the f*** do I not take that personally?

My exUBPDgf... .

Told me... .

Even when I was just friends with her... .

Long before... .

I even knew of her BPD... .

":)on't take it personally... ."

In reference... .

To her withdrawing behavior... .

And RAGE behavior... .

She exhibited.

I have her actual... .

Words of this... .

Saved in 16,000+ texts... .

I have with her.

I had no idea... .

At that time... .

What that actually meant.

I would... .

Soon... .

Find out... .

When Round 1 started... .

And came to an end.

In bold.

Radical Acceptance.

That is really... .

The only way.

Is it easy... .?

No.

Not by any stretch... .

Of the imagination.

What other choice do we have... .?

None.

It sucks.

I know.
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goldylamont
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« Reply #14 on: November 01, 2013, 12:39:42 AM »

It makes it so much worse to know he is intentionally making these choices knowing how much pain he is causing me. How the f*** do I not take that personally?

you know what i've found is that even though i know some of my ex's behavior was done on purpose, i'm still able to see that it wasn't personal (but only after many months). mainly this is because i've seen her do this to 2 other men after me (i stopped contact after that). actually not just love relationships but two different platonic girlfriends of hers have approached me over the course of a year saying that they feel something is wrong with her. she has a tendency to use her sexuality to try to hurt friends and lovers, and was surprising to see her extend this to women friends too.

all in all though i say give things time. it will just take a lot of time and self reflection, other beautiful people to come (and/or go) in your life and it becomes less personal. no riding on high horses here though--i took things as *very* personal when it was all going down. and this is because i was that "person" at that time. she really hurt the person that i was, then. but through growth and healing my "person" is changed. i was forced to shed my old person--the one who loved and trusted this other 'person'. i was angry (still remnants of this, but manageable), hurt, confused as hell. slowly but surely now i'm just starting to care less.

for me things that pop up in my subconscious are important indicators of my needs/desires. and now in my daydreams i imagine being with other people. starting a new life with someone else. her person has become a shadow to me and i'm shedding the last skins of the old me from before. allow time and perseverance to peel away each layer of the old you, usually you will see that they act the same way with others, and gradually it feels less personal. does this make sense?  
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