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Author Topic: For those who think they love you...  (Read 11485 times)
LongGoneEx

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« on: April 10, 2014, 05:43:08 PM »

I'm saddened by the number of people here who torment themselves with: "Did my ex pwBPD really love me?"  I suspect that when we can quickly answer this question with a definitive NO, we're on the road to recovery.

The question itself should be approach with caution as it's a form of rumination and therefore counterproductive in detaching from a pwBPD. Often we can't control our rumination so in that case I suggest that we approach it by asking: what is love? That is to say, in what actions does love actually manifest? Do some reading of the classics in philosophy and spirituality and you'll begin to see how shallow and unconvincing a pwBPD's "love" is in light their ACTIONS. A big part of our closure lies in fully accepting that the relationship we hoped for was never even a possibility with a pwBPD, and that isn't our fault. Recovery lies in quickly and safely stepping away from our mistake of getting tangled in the symptoms of someone else's mental illness.

Whenever your pwBPD (or suspected pwBPD) declares their love for you (which is usually often and prematurely), kindly ask them some questions about love. Be sure to do so in a tender moment and with empathy, so as not to trigger them. Just listen. Don't challenge anything they say.  And remember their answers, because it might help you later heal when you realize that you're both inside an emotional mirage.

Let me give you an example. Minutes after my pwBPD first declared that she had fallen in love with me, she said: "if I really committed to love then you'll have a special partner for life." Notice the dishonest hedging. From the get-go. As it later turned out, at the time of her declaration she was sexually involved with several other men and broke up with me in a rage several days later when I declined her offer of an open relationship and unprotected sex. Anyway, at the time of this love declaration I asked her when she first knew she was in love. She said with total seriousness that it was BEFORE we ever met (3 months prior). Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post)  Her whole concept of "love" was a fantasy in her mind that was already active before she even met me in person.

It's the classic BPD behavior of IDOLIZE-DEVALUE-DISCARD. "Love" to a pwBPD has nothing to do with you or me as unique, lovable persons, even though real love is precisely the mutual gift of shared personhood. To a pwBPD "love" begins and ends completely in their (disordered) mind. There is no orientation towards "the other," and no concern for the other beyond what selfish ego-gratification "the other" can provide. We are just props in their mentations. That is why they can dispose of us so quickly: we were always just a figment of their imagination and their ephemeral moods. As quickly as they conjured us as their love objects, they can unconjure us. To paraphrase Scrooge's depersonalizing and dismissive comment to the ghost: we were never anything but a piece of undigested potato.

As has often be said here: ignore their words, especially about love, and watch their actions. BPD invariably involves dishonesty, on many levels, whereas genuine love is synonymous with truth. Fire and water.

It's not their fault that they developed BPD as children. But it is their fault that they continue to be abusive children in adult bodies. Their moral choices are their responsibility and not ours. The only way that wouldn't be so is if we buy into their lies, and the biggest lie is that they love you. They are dishonest, firstly, with themselves. If they weren't then they'd take responsibility for their rages, abusive behaviors, disrespect, infidelities, substance abuse, etc. and thereby seek help and be on the slow road to recovery. But as we learn at our peril, most pwBPD never face themselves honestly and would rather have a string of disposable partner objects which they can use as emotional garbage dumps for offloading their projections. This is not what love is. Nor is love the fixing of this unhealthy dynamic. Nor is it becoming enmeshed in a mentally ill person's fantasy of idealized love.

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« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2014, 06:40:04 PM »

"Love" to a pwBPD has nothing to do with you or me as unique, lovable persons, even though real love is precisely the mutual gift of shared personhood.

You put everything so well! But, even if you said just the above - easily the closest definition of love I've ever encountered - it would be sufficient. It is impossible to have shared personhood without someone who lacks personhood in totality. You are basically alone in such a relationship. And the truth is that one is better off alone than being in a relationship with someone with BPD.

I also entirely agree with you that sickness is not a choice, but not doing anything about it is! If they are able to function to the level of hurting people who love them, then they are surely capable of comprehending the situation enough to help themselves and be helped!
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« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2014, 08:17:48 PM »

Well put. How long did it take you to find indifference? Did you allow yourself to be recycled... . 

 I couldn't get a grip ... . split black 4 times. This 5th time... I couldn't turn my back to her lying and cheating and disrespect. I had concrete proof. I ripped her a new _______ " You are nothing more than an incredibly damaged, self-obsessed, emotionally stunted, psychologically immature, entitled, manipulative, selfish, empathy challenged, blame shifting, unaccountable, abusive child in an adult body who is incapable of love."  I then went NC for 4 days and caved in, addicted to her drama and sex, only to get her verbal onslaught like a twilight zone re-tape of what I said to her... . I was accused of being a manipulative liar who only wanted sex ( she was banging one other guy and perhaps her ex bf of 4 years who she is now back with AGAIN.) She reduced love making to a negotiation. I get crumbs and she ___s everyone she wants whenever she wants.    My reward for discovery was to be exiled permanently... . i haven't seen her for one month and 10 days. NC for a bit over a month. Fog is lifting but shes a splinter in my mind... . and the withdrawal seems never ending.
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« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2014, 08:36:31 PM »

I convinced myself I didnt care if she was manipulating and using me as long as I was having a good time... . she made me feel so damn special and alive when she was sexing me and attentive. But after awhile, a short while... . my own self loathing at what I was allowing and tolerating became so frustrating, so alienating to the person I was... . my old self would have walked away at times in the past from women for far less, and never look back. ((Why do these BPD relationships make us feel our options are limited, as if we can never replace THEM with someone else as desirable? Its un-___ing real, the rejection we endure... . for what?))  I just FINALLY had enough... . I was all full of piss and vinegar. I was going to show her who had the testicles... . because in the back of my mind I really believed she call or text. Nope. That sac of mine ended up being a house for a couple or raisins. But with each passing day of NC Im growing them back.
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Skip
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« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2014, 09:31:38 PM »

I'm saddened by the number of people here who torment themselves with: " Did my ex pwBPD really love me?"  I suspect that when we can quickly answer this question with a definitive NO, we're on the road to recovery.
What if we are on the road to recovery and we say yes   Being cool (click to insert in post)   I don't think all the SO's on this board were incapable of love.  Relationship instability doesn't preclude love.   

Is it healthy or helpful for any of us to think everyone is the same - isn't it more likely that there is a spectrum based on the person and the specific relationship.

Whenever your pwBPD (or suspected pwBPD) declares their love for you (which is usually often and prematurely), kindly ask them some questions about love. Be sure to do so in a tender moment and with empathy, so as not to trigger them. Just listen. Don't challenge anything they say.  And remember their answers, because it might help you later heal when you realize that you're both inside an emotional mirage.

This is a great idea.  I also think we should ask ourselves the same.
 
When I first told her I loved her - what did I mean?  Thinking about out, those words were probably more of hope.  After 3 years, what did it mean?  It was clearly more meaningful then.
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« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2014, 10:11:20 PM »

This HITS so close to home. It's like I'm living the same story.
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« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2014, 11:49:09 PM »

 Bullet: comment directed to __ (click to insert in post) Skip

I dont know Skip... . no disrespect but there appears to be a very specific template of behavior and although no two people are the same, its uncanny how being split black, objectified and used seems to be so universal. Does it matter where on the spectrum they fall? Borderline lite? I wanna detach completely so badly, I could use electro-shock therapy and 1200 volts.
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« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2014, 03:12:57 AM »

I feel your pain. And yes, I cooperated in some recycles. I've gotten myself into two BPD relationships, both with high functioning types. The first one (who'd had some CBT before meeting me) involved two recycles and I was desperate to get back with her after each breakup. Her entire relationship history involved numerous breakups with her exes. #1 took me about 1.5 years to get over, mainly because we didn't go NC sooner. I can attest that healing won't begin until you go totally NC. The second one (undiagnosed, but with a family history of serious mental illness) didn't involve a full recycle but on our 2nd date she got angry when I wouldn't answer a very personal question and she broke it off in a huff.  Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post) A week later I got a long, apologetic letter from her saying it was all a misunderstanding and would I please give her another chance.  Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post) She was a former journalist and a professional writer, so it was a very good letter and I caved. But this incident (and others later) were always suspect in my mind and so I never got sucked into the fantasy as much as with BPD#1. I feel quite sure I can ignore anything #2 may send, although she has her replacements and has been NC.

In my case aiming for indifference didn't work because it's too hard for me to be indifferent about something so emotionally powerful. And it's 10 times worse if they use sex against you. What seems to work for me is mindfulness with a goal of benevolent disinterest. This doesn't mean that I don't accept a BPD's beastly behavior for what it was, but ruminating on them is a waste of time and it won't change the past.

Make the most of your exile. Heal. Live the life that you deserve. Her exiling you is ironically the most loving outcome possible. It'll just take time for your heart to catch up with this view of the thing.
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« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2014, 04:41:15 AM »

The answer to your question depends on how we define love. Is love a subjective emotion, only in our heads, or is it something objectively real which exists between two persons? The literature is diverse but most of it in the West is of the latter view. I'm also of the view that love exists between two persons, it is reciprocal, it wills the good of "the other" and it has permanence. I think this way because if we say love is only a subjective emotion then any behavior in a relationship can be called love, for we each define love in our minds. Which is exactly what we rebel against in the way our pwBPD treat us when they "love" us.

If [real] love has permanence then it cannot vanish in a puff of dysregulated emotion the way BPD "love" frequently does.

If love responds to the "ontological worth" of "the other," as the philosophers put it, it means that everyone is intrinsically lovable by virtue of being a person. That includes our pwBPD. But it doesn't mean that everyone is capable of loving because a true lover has to see the worth of their beloved as another person, separate from themselves but equal in worth to themselves. In my understanding and experience of pwBPD, this is not true: pwBPD see our worth only as it relates to themselves and they perceive our "being" as an extensions of theirs. We exist as actors in their mental scripts and they will rage or flee if we, as separate persons, deviate from THEIR script. They don't recognize our freedom or need to be separate persons.

If love responds to "the other" then someone with untreated BPD cannot adequately be "the other" because a pwBPD lacks a core sense of self. We see a mirror of ourselves in them and when their mirroring breaks down we see them: a raging, small child. A person, to be sure, but not a person who can reciprocate love in an adult way. Their "love" is need-driven instinctual mimicry. This is where we need to look closely at how need-driven we are to continue such a charade of "love".

"Instability" in a BPD isn't of the usual relationship variety. It commonly includes infidelity because pwBPD need their supply of soothing objects. It also commonly features breakups and threats of breakups. Those are unloving because it doesn't will the good of "the other," rather it wills the partner's servitude in the selfish meeting of a need.

Good point about hope Skip. I'm far more cautious now about saying "I love you" to anyone than before I met my pwBPD.
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« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2014, 05:48:52 AM »

Excerpt
It's the classic BPD behavior of IDOLIZE-DEVALUE-DISCARD.

It's not like the classic NPD behavior of IDOLIZE-DEVALUE-DISCARD, but perhaps you are dealing with a narcissist and this is so. BPD is very different.

Borderlines do not devalue nor do they discard. Instead, they split people into part time selves because they themselves are part time people. They split themselves and they split others and they seek out people who can soothe them. They have an unstable sense of self that swings back and forth on a pendulum between rewarding people (objects) and withdrawing objects. They do not devalue you because your usefulness is very important either way the pendulum swings. This is a disorder that relies on splitting; hate and love. It is a fundamental lack of trust in object permanency during a crucial time of development in childhood. Do not underestimate your part in the disordered thought.

Excerpt
"Love" to a pwBPD has nothing to do with you or me as unique, lovable persons,

"Love" to a pwBPD has everything to do with you or me as unique, lovable persons.

In the beginning, we represented the part time good and this made the person with BPD feel very, very good. It made them giddy, like a child. It made us giddy too. Because they are not “whole,” the part-time bad soon arose out of the fears of abandonment, which forced the person with BPD to have distorted perceptions that the objectified partner was withdrawing, so they clung. And when they clung, they felt like ___, because all the fears and mistrust came to a head and this caused them to hate. That is NOT devaluation. It was an evaluation of your movement that fueled disordered thought which caused impulsiveness to do anything to prevent your withdrawal and when that didn't work, they did anything to not feel badly, including hating you. Anything to stop the fear meant lying, cheating, cutting, stealing, Triangulation... . whatever worked- including fighting with you or, dissociating and becoming mute, as in the detached protector persona that goes silent or speaks in one word replies.

Excerpt
even though real love is precisely the mutual gift of shared personhood.

“The mutual gift of shared personhood” implies an coupling that every person with BPD desires. To become one with the other.  A person with BPD cannot give themselves to others without enmeshment. They have an unstable sense of self, so they do not feel complete without others to support their idea of themselves. They often choose people who have ideas for them. This is the result of disordered belief that they are unable to feel whole and subsequently cannot self soothe their fears and must cling to (use) others. That clinging results in valuation behaviors, such as sex or acting out behaviors such as waifdom but these “personas” become so overwhelming that it turns into self hatred as well as hatred of the blamed “object” for their predicament.  A person with BPD feels despair, not “selfish ego-gratification,” as you stated, but this is a disorder that exists to deny itself. If you think this is done to you for ego, then you are not understanding what this personality disorder entails. People with BPD do this because of a fragile sense of self.

Excerpt
To a pwBPD "love" begins and ends completely in their (disordered) mind.

To a pwBPD "love" is actually a quest for survival that becomes a repetitious compulsion over and over in their (disordered) mind.

Excerpt
There is no orientation towards "the other," and no concern for the other beyond what selfish ego-gratification "the other" can provide

There is complete orientation towards "the other," and excessive concern for the other concerning what "the other" can provide; namely safety and survival. You were evaluated for your needs based upon what you felt was important, then the Borderline provided you with that need.

Excerpt
We are just props in their mentations. That is why they can dispose of us so quickly:

Borderlines cling in parasitic symbiosis, similar to remoras on sharks. That is why they feel controlled, persecuted and so small that they then rage against this slavery by striking out at the perception of you as controlling and persecuting, but they do not “dispose.” You are now a part of their “punitive parent” that exists in their psyche. That parent is the one they yearn for, and who is also the one they are angry about and feel abandoned by. You are all of those things now,but one thing you will never be again is all good.

Excerpt
we were always just a figment of their imagination and their ephemeral moods.

they were always just a figment of our imagination. We projected on to them. They are chameleons doing the work of the magician to make ourselves feel deep emotions that were long buried.

Excerpt
As quickly as they conjured us as their love objects, they can unconjure us.

As quickly as we conjured them as our love objects, they felt controlled and engulfed and were forced to flee to seek out new more rewarding objects to cling to, despite and in fact, because of, the protest from us. There was nothing we could do to stop this. It is a disorder.

Excerpt
In my understanding and experience of pwBPD, this is not true: pwBPD see our worth only as it relates to themselves and they perceive our "being" as an extensions of theirs.

Concerning object relations: narcissists subsume objects as extensions of themselves. Borderlines offer themselves to be subsumed. They do that as chameleons and change accordingly with what the partner desires. They perceive themselves to be extensions of us- not the other way around.

Excerpt
We exist as actors in their mental scripts and they will rage or flee if we, as separate persons, deviate from THEIR script. They don't recognize our freedom or need to be separate persons.

Yes, the disorder demands your participation. The best thing you can do for a person with BPD is to let them go.  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

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« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2014, 06:30:46 AM »

Whether they loved us or not only matters when our belief system is over reliant on the narrative that validation, importance, mattering to others and worth are gift and care packages that can only come from others. Clinging to the idea of love from the outside is why many of us feel so empty. It is why we take the behaviors of our borderline so personal!

When my BPDexbf began to paint me black, cheat, lie and otherwise set the stages for abandoning me I took that to mean that I was a worthless nobody. His behavior dragged me back into my childhood; a place that I never grieved and wanted buried for good.

When the relationship was over I felt like a discarded sandwich, meaningless, devoid of purpose, and empty. My BPDexbf tapped into that part of me that I believed was buried for good. I hid that sad little girl so well for so long that I wasn't even aware of it in my adult hood.  I buried myself in over accomplishment and by being as perfect as possible but I was very emotionally damaged and didn't value myself much.

For the most part of I was the "good girlfriend" then the "good wife." I was the one who gave too much, sacrificed self, and chose partners that lessened my chances of being abandoned all over again. I was the girl who chose the "excuse makers" and dated below. I was the one who believed in the "victim of circumstance" narrative when guys would pitch it to me. I was a willing participant in the narrative of "rescuer." I chose people who didn't respect themselves much because I subconsciously played out the role of rescuer so that I would not be abandoned.

These relationships are a blessing in that they are an opportunity to end this nasty subconscious cycle. Your worth will never come from other people no matter how hard you try.

The abused abandoned little girl inside of me was exposed once my borderline abuser mirrored my beliefs on what I was conditioned to believe that love was. Needless to say my definition of love was piss poor, narrow, and deeply flawed. Deep down I was replaying out an inherited schema from my childhood. My mother was very neglectful, cold and angry at life and I suffered as a little girl but in order to survive I placated, did the dance, played the protector, and did the people pleasing circus act to get the crumbs of affection that I so desperately longed for.

With the ex it was rinse, wash and repeat. Deja Vu. A mirror from my past and an enmeshment bond. In the beginning of our relationship I was finally the happy little girl who was loved, cherished, appreciated, put on the pedestal and valued only to have him flip that on it's head. I had no idea of his sickness or my mother's sickness.

To a person with BPD. Love=need. BPD love is unhealthy and unstable and our problem is trying too hard to make it something that it will never be.

We have no right to say whether they loved us or not because we aren't inside their minds. There are many faces to love and sometimes that face of love is an abusive enmeshment kind. I know my mother loves me; she's just damaged from her own childhood. Just like I know my ex loved me. But I'm an adult now and I don't have to rely on the love of abusers and people who hate themselves to validate me. Our ex's are sick in the head and heart so how the hell can they validate us? They're unstable, unhealthy, toxic to others, and often irreparably damaged.

Our BPD ex's loved us as much as they could. What we don't realize is that our ex's are suffering with a debilitating sense of self-worth, self-hate, self-loathing and this severely has compromised their ability to love others in a healthy way. And I'm sorry but you can't give what you don't have and only a child mind wants a damaged person to rescue them.

This journey is a healing chance to end a damaging screwed up narrative: that we have the power to make others love us the way we need them to. In truth no one has that power. Love and validation come from within. Not from sources outside ourselves.

With grieving and mourning comes the acceptance of the complexity of BPD. BPD's hate themselves and are passport stamped with inner ugly, shame and guilt. So how could they love you in a consistent healthy way?  

Spell
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« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2014, 12:06:32 PM »

Unless they're also sociopaths, I certainly think that pwBPD are capable of love. This doesn't mean it's an emotionally mature, healthy form of love. But it's their version of love. Can it be replaced with hate so easily that it makes us reel? Yep. Does that mean it wasn't real to them when they felt it? Nope. Does that mean it's the kind of love we need? Hell no.

Like 2010 and BPDspell both said, love=need for a pwBPD. Just like a toddler who bases their "love" on whether or not their needs are being fulfilled at the moment ("You're making me go to bed early? I HATE YOU!". And we play our parts by chasing that love, by abandoning our own needs to try to fulfill our pwBPD, to keep that love from turning to hate. Because it destroys us when our partner withdraws love from us.
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« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2014, 03:00:36 PM »

I like this string a lot. It's the first one I've seen that challenges the "disorder" concept. You can use BPD, NPD, or any PD to justify the hited up behavior of an individual. In the end it's just the the way that the individual in question chooses to behave. It's not instinctive behavior. There is no higher power that makes people behave that way. People who do have found that it is the way that they can get what they want from a relationship, society, or individuals. They choose to behave that way.

The sooner people realize that they were conned by manipulative, malicious, people who had self serving reasons to do it, the easier it will be for people to detach. Were those people disordered? Absolutely. The ones that want to get fixed will and the others will learn to deal with the disorder.
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« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2014, 03:58:14 PM »

The sooner people realize that they were conned by manipulative, malicious, people who had self serving reasons to do it, the easier it will be for people to detach. 

Detaching from an illusion--thereby clearly perceiving is beneficial. But the methodology we choose, can sustain the same illusions which we are attempting to dispel. For example, if I characterize my efforts at achieving an idyllic relational outcome as being noble, but castigate my pwBPD as being a manipulative, malicious, chameleon--am I not cherry-picking my realities.

Isn't it closer to the truth that we both played a part in this dance macabre. Why is it that we have never felt more alive than when we were with a person who is lost inside? Surely that must tell us much about ourselves. To understand that dream-weaving, creating the ideal--that we have longed for all our lives--has always been illusory, and will remain so. That no attachment can fill us up, in the way that we yearn for, but that we must find a centered place inside--and let go of that unhealthy need.

When we clearly perceive our relational role in this bond, we are afforded the opportunity to progress--by shedding the desire for an illusion that at its heart is rooted in mimicry and submission. A pwBPD is not sans--this humanizing emotion, or that humanizing action. It is that those elements are arrayed in a mismanaged disordered design--jumbled with extreme pain, effectuating release (of pain) through maladaptive coping tools--which in effect causes their partners great sorrow. They are not simple people to sustain love with--but that remains within the realm of choice.       
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« Reply #14 on: April 11, 2014, 04:08:51 PM »

Yes, we were identified as easy marks for them. Because of human nature and the desire to love and be loved and certain signals that our guard was down and we were more open to their manipulation.

Saying that we were complicit in the behavior is like saying that an attractive woman is complicit in her rape. Or that an unarmed person is complicit in being attacked with guns.
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« Reply #15 on: April 11, 2014, 07:03:35 PM »

Some loved us as well as they could, and some didn't.

Some of us loved them as well as we could, and some didn't.

Love can be both poison and antidote in these relationships.

On a constant disordered loop which we help spin.

Placing ourselves on a pedestal isn't much different than putting someone else there.

Except we're the ones who fall, when we fall.

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« Reply #16 on: April 11, 2014, 07:08:45 PM »

Im an older guy... . my exBPD was young and incredibly sexual and not boring. She hooked me by making me feel like I was reliving my youth as much as drowning my very experienced senses with her intense love bombing. But from the beginning... . I knew I was never number one, together for almost a year... . I sensed she was lying about leaving her ex, I gave her money, clothes, set her up in an apt so she could be free of her ex... . who she is now back with! Not to mention other guys... . one in particular I busted her with... . and he is whining and spewing his undying love for her all over his FB page... . as her white knight if she will only talk to him. How did THAT happen under my nose?  

So yes... . it takes two to tango. But to be discarded 4 times, short durations only to be exiled now with NC for 5 weeks... haven't seen her for 6 weeks... . is withdrawal that is worse then any drug. The longing for her sex, her insane personality, the stupid drama... . is exquisite at times. LIKE NOW.  I have not broken NC. The fog sometimes lifts... . but then hammers me back down mercilessly. She never gave a ___ about me... . not really. Her actions prove it.
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« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2014, 09:20:08 PM »

 Bullet: comment directed to __ (click to insert in post) 2010,

Inasmuch as we both agree that a pwBPD (or NPD) has a disordered mind, it's self-defeating to focus too much on what they think or feel, trying to impose our scientific analysis upon their chaos. It's rational human nature to do so but it's also how we easily get trapped in nonsensical BPD FOG, instead of just walking away once we realize, in our own mind, that "the other" is disordered.

Probably anyone who has encountered it has an urge to classify, theorize, analyze, compartmentalize and organize the BPD/NPD behaviors. But does it really matter if our exes were BPD or more NPD? Isn't it like asking a bleeding victim what model of handgun they were shot with? These disorders overlap.  These disorders wound. And sometimes they even kill.  Both are illnesses characterized by extreme selfishness. NPDs and BPDs both objectify other persons and frequently don't care about the moral, emotional, ethical and relationship fallout of their behaviors except inasmuch as it relates to their own selfish gratification. Their focus is obsessively inward whereas (true) love is outward-focused and wills the good of "the other." People with UNTREATED mental illnesses like BPD and NPD are completely unsuited to be relationship or marriage partners and should be completely avoided. Easier said than done, as they don't come with a sign around their neck reading ":)ANGER, WILL ROBINSON."  Even the ones receiving treatment are risky propositions. So it behooves anyone to know the signs of these mental illnesses and get out fast as soon as they manifest.

If we must analyze what happened to us in these relationships then we must do so from a perspective which is external to the disorder. We have no choice: we can't directly know what goes on in a disordered persons's mind, or anyone's mind for that matter. What we can do is be mindful of our thoughts and observe the objective reality which is external to us, specifically the actions, reactions, lies and (just as important) the complete lack of empathic action of pwBPD or NPD. If we conceive of (true) love as ACTIONS, not just words, we'll quickly see through the fiction of BPD or NPD "love".
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« Reply #18 on: April 12, 2014, 09:59:50 PM »

I guess I was one of the "lucky" ones to know whether she loved me or not... .

My dBPDexgf actually told me that she isn't sure about her feelings for me. Then once NC started, she said she "thinks she loves" me. Then she loves me. Then questioning my love for her, and not even mentioning her feelings... . Then she stopped contacting me, and I hope it stays that way.

Does it hurt that I fell in love with someone who could not love me back? Heck yeah!

So, did she love me or didn't she? She does not even know what love is... . So, how can she love at all? I'm guessing your BPD exes are not all that different. I say, for now, believe whatever helps you detach faster.
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« Reply #19 on: April 14, 2014, 01:26:09 AM »



I like this thread because it raises the great tipping point of understanding for many on these boards who are trying to detach from these relationships. What is love?  Did he love me?  Did she love me?  Do I still love him/her?

The first point of understanding for me is that I can't define anyone other person's experience of love other than my own.  Again, I can't define any other person's experience of love other than my own.  Sounds banal but think about it.  If you were to interview 500 different people and ask them for their definition of love you would likely get 500 different answers.  More importantly, ask yourself.  "What is love to me?"  "What does it mean for me?"

I had breakfast with a friend today who knows all the involved parties in my BPD r/s.  I told him that the immense pain, trauma and heartache that I'm feeling is likely not actually for her.  In fact it is much more profound.  The pain comes from the realization that my own working definition of love was not reciprocated to me and the rejection of that belief causes me immense pain.  So does that mean I'm empty or unloveable?  It sure feels that way or something close to it but the answer is "no". 

What it likely means is that my definition of love was either poorly conceived, ill-defined or was simply offered to someone who had no ability to return it in kind to me.  No shame in our own uninformed folly, at least the first time.  Either iteration results in pain.

So I think as helpful as it is to understand all the psychodynamics of BPD (and it is fascinating), to read through the accounts (equally heartbreaking, harrowing and fascinating), process the behaviors, get out of the fog, etc, I have found the most profound thing for me moving forward is first to secure and perhaps rediscover my own healthy working definition of love that I want to hold myself accountable to and then choose from healthy people who have a greater real-world ability to return the offer in kind.

So instead of ":)id she love me?" or ":)id I love her?", I ask did I hold myself accountable to my definition of love -- for me the answer would be "no" -- and did I share it with someone who was able to understand, define and offer an equally accountable, healthy love of their own?  No again. 

Looking forward I feel that my new working definition of love is healthy, more enduring and infinite but the circuit must be complete for the current to properly return.

What definition do you hold yourself accountable for?  Do you have one?  Start now, it's never too late.




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« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2014, 02:45:53 AM »

Lone gone Ex

That was deep, and very well said and thought out... . It's true, especially if the person is trule BPD and more so if they are not seeking treatment or betterment of themselves.  It's one thing to say their childlike, but to not take responsibility for thier actions and chaos they bring in others lives and their projection, is completely wrong and easily put, dysfuntional... .

How can someone love you, if they don't love themselves?

How can some want you, if they don't even know who they really are?

How can you love some, or give them, when they are empty and broken? All the love will pour out and never be enough, until they fix the damage! And thats through dedication to treatment and them begining to admit that, they need help.

Nice post, thank you!
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« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2014, 03:12:27 AM »

2010 and BPD spell... .

Thank you for both of those posts... . Very insightful and hit the bulls-eye for me on some things.
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« Reply #22 on: April 14, 2014, 07:20:12 AM »

It's good advice now but at this point it doesn't really matter. I wish I knew now then what I didn't know then. I have always despised self=absorbed and selfish individuals and I always knew she had these tendencies. I used to say to myself, 'what a selfish bhit.' It doesn't matter or help me now.
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« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2014, 09:40:27 AM »

Such an interesting thread to read.

My story is a little different. I left my BPD and I have no desire to recycle. The one hang-up I have in my mind is she asks how I can so coldly end the relationship and walk away NC.

Since we broke up she has threatened suicide and when that didn't work she sent me a sonogram image to say she is pregnant. The sonogram is cropped and doesn't show any personal details and she is unwilling to provide further evidence. She still insists she will tell everyone that I left her and made her suffer an abortion without showing her sympathy or responsibility.

I don't believe she is pregnant, but I do recognize the desperation in her method to get me back. She hurts. She asks ':)id I ever love her?' And 'how can I leave her so coldly if I every genuinely cared for her.' These are relevant questions from the other side of the BPD breakup. In the time we were together I desperately tried to love her. I gave her all. The fact she needed that from me or manipulated it from doesn't mean I didn't have a problem here too. I gave away my boundaries so she felt loved and supported, special. Once I recognized that I had done this, I questioned "how could she do this to me and not see how much it hurts me". In reality, I rarely complained because I didn't want to upset her or cause a fight. I wanted her to feel accepted and loved.

The question here now isn't "did she love me" "did I love her" etc... . The only meaningful question I can ask myself is "why did I love in a way that was detrimental to my well being, that made me feel unloved?". I allowed this treatment and resented her for taking what I was willing to give. Her needs, actions and intentions were not pure, but my desire to find and develop love was so misguided how can I blame anyone else for the result? Finding someone to love is simple, defining what qualities that person should embody and what boundaries you need to set is not. Those questions are most important to me now.

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« Reply #24 on: April 14, 2014, 10:01:44 AM »

Thank you 2010, BPDspell.  It's always good to re read your thoughtful and wise responses.  It's a good cold smack of reality when Im down or feeling as though I didn't do enough. At least that's how I feel

CiF
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« Reply #25 on: April 14, 2014, 02:54:17 PM »


I have a question for you. My exBPDgf of 2 years and I had our first serious clash back in september when my grandmother died. She offered absolutely no emotional support and worse, even poking fun of her death with sentences like "at least you inherited her bottle of Xanax". It was devastating and utterly disrespectful. On the day of the funeral, she was sitting home, not giving a damn about the whole thing and as it later turned out, she was chatting with other men at a dating site while I was standing right behind a coffin. I trusted my gut feeling and checked her browsing history as soon as I got home. We broke up.


Few days later she contacted me, missing me badly. I asked about what she had done in the past 5 days, confessed a date but nothing serious happened, no sex so I gave in, we recycled. A week later I got back my old phone from her, she forget to log out from her Facebook account. When going through the message log, found out about my replacement, the same day we broke up she went on a date with him like nothing happened, had sex and took a morning-after pill because the condom broke. After the recycle, they still talked and met behind my back. Well, that was "nothing happened" from her perspective. When I confronted her she didn't show any remorse or guilt. In fact, started to torture me with the filthy details of their first night together while I was escorting her to doctor like a stupid chump. Out of blue, she told me informations like he had a big house, better car and more money. There was a cruel grin on her face when saw that I was hurt. I still can't belive what happened, just 1,5 weeks after the funeral, mourning and my significant other tortures me on purpose.

I know that their love is need based, lack empathy but this was unneceseraly cruel and callous. Textbook BPD or comorbid with something else?

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« Reply #26 on: April 14, 2014, 07:06:58 PM »

I know that their love is need based, lack empathy but this was unneceseraly cruel and callous. Textbook BPD or comorbid with something else?

BorisAcusio,

As with many mental illnesses borderline personality disorder can cormorbidly exist with other disorders such as HPD, Schizophrenia, and NPD. This is why we can't paint our ex's with one giant brush stroke. They're individuals. But BPD can exist with other offshoots of mental illness. Many can be full on NPD as well. My ex was certainly a hybrid took extreme joy in punishing others once painted black.  Smear campaigns, absolving himself of what really went down in his breakups, even revenge porn. Yep. He was a real piece of work.

Some borderlines can turn quite hateful and punitive but in my personal opinion this is how they spread their God-awful feelings about themselves to others who they have come to lean on.

My ex was so angry that I broke off things with him that he literally threw the kitchen sink at me. Things got so bad I had to get a restraining order. In their disordered minds they've lost control and now it's time to make you pay because they don't like losing. It's child's thinking at it's finest.

So yes. Telling you about her ex's and her dalliances is all about her plan to further attack your esteem cause hers is feeling pretty low. Believe you me. A happy person who's moved on isn't interested in dangling ex's for attention. It's all about hurting you because they hurt. It's all about having that last parting shot.

Borderlines lack empathy due to their stunted emotional child minds. So when things aren't about them they tend to panic and act out because they've worked so hard to groom you for their needs. Anything that throws this regiment out of whack changes the script and they can't make those emotional adjustments like an adult. Sometimes they can fake empathy but their empathy chip has been severely compromised.

So if your relatives are dying, if you lost your job, if your pets or your kids are sick….they will feel threatened. If they deem someone more beautiful, richer, smarter: instant jealousy. They are highly unstable and deeply insecure often making them possessive and territorial. Seems asinine to us but in their mentally ill minds not having that control is a  fear and trigger that our minds cannot process this because we aren't mentally ill.

Spell

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« Reply #27 on: April 14, 2014, 11:08:21 PM »

My ex was so angry that I broke off things with him that he literally threw the kitchen sink at me. Things got so bad I had to get a restraining order. In their disordered minds they've lost control and now it's time to make you pay because they don't like losing. It's child's thinking at it's finest.

So yes. Telling you about her ex's and her dalliances is all about her plan to further attack your esteem cause hers is feeling pretty low. Believe you me. A happy person who's moved on isn't interested in dangling ex's for attention. It's all about hurting you because they hurt. It's all about having that last parting shot.

There's another danger here which we perhaps don't directly perceive in all this BPD/NPD generated emotional drama.  Dr. Joe Carver has an interesting article on this site about how we form our memories of events.  He notes that if our emotions are aroused at the time a memory is formed then it's imprinted much more deeply into our minds. This is true for enjoyable and unpleasant experiences.

It seems to me this has some helpful implications for us nons. We can help ourselves by being mindful and thus avoiding emotional arousal AT THE TIME BPD/NPD ABUSE OCCURS. Ultimately this boils down to not deceiving ourselves with false hopes when the very first signs of BPD/NPD behaviors start to present. At the first red flags, we assume that they can cheat sexually, lie, abuse drugs, explode into rages and argue in circles. Since we know this, we expect it. So it ought not to take us off guard or draw us in. If it transpires, we try to let it go. And begin preparing to leave them. ASAP.

We may also want to think twice before getting prematurely or repeatedly sexual with someone we suspect may be BPD/NPD, because we may not be able to control our (euphoric) emotional state during sex - which attaches us more to a pwBPD. 

If Carver is right and if we can avoid or at least minimize emotional arousal/dysregulation in ourselves, the memory of all those BPD abusive behaviors and happy times is less likely to be deeply imprinted in our psyche. Which should help us in the detachment process.

I have no scientific evidence for this, but I can report that detachment from my 2nd BPD relationship went more smoothly than from the first because I was "expecting" certain BPD/NPD behaviors after the early red flags.  The overwhelming feeling at end was one of disappointed resignation but no great sense of anger, loss or any desire to be recycled.
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« Reply #28 on: April 15, 2014, 07:17:51 AM »

Do you love yourself?

This is a very important question to ask yourself. It can also lead you down a different path when you decide that you want to love yourself.
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« Reply #29 on: April 15, 2014, 09:57:38 PM »

Excerpt
2010, inasmuch as we both agree that a pwBPD (or NPD) has a disordered mind, it's self-defeating to focus too much on what they think or feel, trying to impose our scientific analysis upon their chaos.

The reason you are here is because someone has formulated a personality theory. Otherwise, you wouldn’t even know what BPD was and you wouldn’t be compelled to post here.

Personality theory isn’t scientific analysis; it’s just theory, which is just another way of saying that it is someone’s observations and personal opinion.

Since you keep mentioning the “other,” it’s important to note that you are referring to developmental theory. Developmental theory addresses every single one of us as human beings.

We all developed differently. We are as different as snowflakes, yet we share the same human traits. Some of us struggled through the different stages of development due to different reasons, such as neglect or emotional deprivation, abuse or enmeshment.  It’s because of those differences, that we can contrive reasons for arrested development.

But arrested development is not illness. It is the failure to mature successfully into an internally secure (whole) person due to distorted perceptions about free will. Those distorted perceptions are precisely what becomes the personality disorders that cause instability and interpersonal problems.

Excerpt
It's rational human nature to do so but it's also how we easily get trapped in nonsensical BPD FOG, instead of just walking away once we realize, in our own mind, that "the other" is disordered.

Plenty of people on the forum have been left behind before they could walk away. It is a trauma. No one is trapped by their understanding when they seek to understand themselves. It is a fundamental truth to know oneself. There is a reason why the break-down of these relationships are break-throughs for many people. They uncover many repressed fears and "cover-up coping" mechanisms that have been repetitious compulsions for much of early life.  This need to understand is really is a correction of sorts, for behavior that needs to be addressed in order to achieve personal growth. Sometimes we have to learn from our choices even if we try to claim them as mistakes.

Excerpt
Probably anyone who has encountered it has an urge to classify, theorize, analyze, compartmentalize and organize the BPD/NPD behaviors. But does it really matter if our exes were BPD or more NPD?

Very much so.  One suffers from ego grandiosity and the other suffers from ego deficiency.  You can learn allot about yourself if you ask who *needed* to be in the lead.

It takes two to tango. The lead was probably more narcissistically inclined then they would like to admit. Borderlines are not dominant. Narcissists are. Narcissists often do not know they are narcissistic because they have fashioned a false self that is very defensive. Borderlines can be considered quite open and often telegraph their woes to others as a learned helplessness. There’s a difference there that’s very important in recovery, especially if the false self of the narcissist has an identity crisis in the aftermath.

NPD and BPD are completely different yet they complement each other like pieces in a puzzle, especially concerning complementary needs. And yes, there is also a personality theory that Narcissists are attracted to Borderlines for a reason and vice versa.

Excerpt
Isn't it like asking a bleeding victim what model of handgun they were shot with?

No. It’s like asking them why they think they got shot. If you don’t ask, and choose to decide “objective reality” by saying there was no responsibility to the self- then you are actually repressing the learning experience. It will surface later again as a stuck point in some form of memory unless it is dealt with and resolved or it may even be repeated. Yes, the victim would get shot again unless they understood what it was they did to get shot. You can’t just tell them to avoid all people that appear like they have BPD. They have to know why for reasons that make them less anxious and paranoid.

People need to be heard. They need to talk about their experience. They have a perception. Sometimes it’s distorted and needs correcting. Having a theory about the reasons for the shooting helps remove doubt, guilt and gives a sense of reason to an otherwise unreasonable occurrence.

Excerpt
These disorders overlap.  

Not really. They are very different.

Excerpt
These disorders wound. And sometimes they even kill.  Both are illnesses characterized by extreme selfishness.

Maybe we should figure out what our attraction was to this person before we dehumanize them.

Excerpt
NPDs and BPDs both objectify other persons and frequently don't care about the moral, emotional, ethical and relationship fallout of their behaviors except inasmuch as it relates to their own selfish gratification.

Many narcissists are altruists and care deeply about “moral, emotional and ethical” behaviors, much to their own detriment in interpersonal relationships. Borderlines objectify themselves as offerings. This isn’t selfish gratification, but fears of worthlessness. Both NPD and BPD have defectiveness at their core but they have formulated “personalities” that seek to resolve that defectiveness with faulty methods that turn compulsively repetitious.

Excerpt
Their focus is obsessively inward whereas (true) love is outward-focused and wills the good of "the other."

“Wills the good of the other” is another way of describing projective identification. Most people involved with a person with Borderline personality, (especially vulnerable narcissists) use projective identification to “outward focus” good as well as have the Borderline carry their bad. This is a form of splitting against the self and others.

Excerpt
People with UNTREATED mental illnesses like BPD and NPD are completely unsuited to be relationship or marriage partners and should be completely avoided.

These are broad statements that are untrue. But if it helps you to put a sign out, “no BPD or NPD allowed,” then that’s what you have to do. This is all or none, black or white thinking which often overemphasizes the dangers in social interactions and misjudges people.

Excerpt
If we must analyze what happened to us in these relationships then we must do so from a perspective which is external to the disorder.

It’s important to understand what part you played in the disorder.

Excerpt
We have no choice: we can't directly know what goes on in a disordered persons's mind, or anyone's mind for that matter. What we can do is be mindful of our thoughts and observe the objective reality which is external to us, specifically the actions, reactions, lies and (just as important) the complete lack of empathic action of pwBPD or NPD.

“Objective reality which is external to us” isn’t going to help dig into the reasons for why this relationship was so deep. The entire point of therapy is to re-visit subjective reality, which is reality seen through our inner mental filters that are shaped by our past conditioning. We interpret a lot of things based on our memories of events that have happened in the past. When we re-visit them with the help of a calm arbitrator, then can re-think them through and create a more objective reality. But it’s only by asking the hard questions when we dig to get at the tough stuff from childhood. Many people have both BPD and NPD parents, and demonizing them by saying that it “behooves anyone to know the signs and get out fast” doesn’t make the memories or conditioning from childhood go away.

There are people on the forum who are choosing to ask the hard questions for their own personal growth. They understand that without doing the hard work of self examination, they may never discover their reasons for being attracted to a person who they both cannot live with yet cannot live without. There’s a long dormant reason for that which surfaces later in therapy.

Now here’s the hard part. You can come on to the L3 leaving board and say, I don’t care what people with BPD think or feel. It’s impossible to tell! Stop asking questions.  I don’t think I should change anything about the way I am. It wasn’t me. Why should I be the one who is introspective? Thank you, I’m not looking for any feedback.

Should the rest of the forum stop asking questions too? Or do we make the sober realization that sometimes, people do things for a reason. Those reasons can be fear or control or grandiosity to cover feelings of defectiveness. Those reasons can become a working hypothesis. They become patterns. Those patterns easily create defenses (coping mechanisms.)  And the coping mechanisms can be faulty and repetitious, done over and over again, rote, without consciousness without any change or development or personal growth. AND that goes for all of us in life until we have an experience that changes us. Let’s call it an awakening.

We all have coping mechanisms, denial, anger, splitting others when they make us angry, but yearning for this lost object that represented all good before they became all bad. That’s worth investigating and digging deeper (at the very least) so we don’t go out and fall into the same pattern again. It’s not enough to say you’ll avoid anyone who gives you pause. You have to discover the reasons why you find this person attractive in the first place. In fact, you may even be drawn to them for a reason that you need to discover something about yourself.

Now is not the time to stop asking questions nor is it the time to be avoidant. You cannot avoid every single person with a personality disorder. They are co-workers, Doctors, teachers, postal workers- they are everywhere. The best thing you can do is understand yourself first.  Idea

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« Reply #30 on: April 16, 2014, 01:25:40 AM »

2010-VALID POINTS... . AND others make interesting points as well, I respect them all.

I believe it is complicated for anyone to assume or presume that we weren't loved by another, regardless of their actions that were detrimental in one walking away from the relationship.  If a person is BPD OR NPD, does it really make a difference, yes I would say it does... . Mnay people are out there in the world that we encounter on a daily basis with a long list of problems, to avoid them all would have to put ones self in complete isolation and it isn't likely.  I often look at my own role in the relatioship that I was a part of and it has helped me grow a great deal. Reading people thoughts and opinions and various perspectives on these boards has been a major help as well.

I look to myself and realize that I ignored many  red-flags from the very begining, both in their actions and my own for why I chose to ignore those  red-flags. I went through various stages of emotions, and I have remained N.C. even though I have to see her at work atleadt 3-5 times a week.  I didn't go N.C. to be mean, though intially it felt that way.  I did it to protect myself from what was becoming a horror show and the complete inability I had in attemtping any form of cordial contact with her.  With time, going N.C. was healthiest and best for me, as well as my reputation and peace of mind at work.  I hold no bitterness towards her, or anger... . I realize the mistakes I made and have learned from them a great a deal.  After all these individuals have issues that were within them a nd long exisiting before we met, as well as my own issues.  The combination of myself and this person just brought what was in the dark to light, and thats what made everything as loaded and difficult as it was.
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« Reply #31 on: April 16, 2014, 05:42:04 AM »

I know that their love is need based, lack empathy but this was unneceseraly cruel and callous. Textbook BPD or comorbid with something else?

Borderlines lack empathy due to their stunted emotional child minds. So when things aren't about them they tend to panic and act out because they've worked so hard to groom you for their needs. Anything that throws this regiment out of whack changes the script and they can't make those emotional adjustments like an adult. Sometimes they can fake empathy but their empathy chip has been severely compromised.

So if your relatives are dying, if you lost your job, if your pets or your kids are sick….they will feel threatened. If they deem someone more beautiful, richer, smarter: instant jealousy. They are highly unstable and deeply insecure often making them possessive and territorial. Seems asinine to us but in their mentally ill minds not having that control is a  fear and trigger that our minds cannot process this because we aren't mentally ill.

Spell

Thanks for the reply. That is exactly what I experienced. Sometimes I see a great gap between the common empiric knoweledge gathered by the members from day to day interaction with their SO and the more academic one 2010 presented.

First, how can you possibly dehumanize someone who is poking fun of your dead relatives, cheating on you while your father dying of throat cancer and offering absolutely no support? Both happened in real life with members and these are deeds you would expect from a sociopath. They can be intentionally cruel, vindictive. Mine was cheating on her husband for 7 years with at least a dozen men. She proudly told me that had an intense high from having sex with both of them on same morning within few minutes apart. Then torturing the paramour with the details and laughing on the aroused dumb hubby. Completely self-absorbed. In her mind, she had the right to do whatever she felt to fulfill her needs.


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« Reply #32 on: April 16, 2014, 08:03:42 AM »

excellent conversation on both sides... .

... .

Excerpt
It's rational human nature to do so but it's also how we easily get trapped in nonsensical BPD FOG, instead of just walking away once we realize, in our own mind, that "the other" is disordered.

Plenty of people on the forum have been left behind before they could walk away. It is a trauma. No one is trapped by their understanding when they seek to understand themselves. It is a fundamental truth to know oneself. There is a reason why the break-down of these relationships are break-throughs for many people. They uncover many repressed fears and "cover-up coping" mechanisms that have been repetitious compulsions for much of early life.  This need to understand is really is a correction of sorts, for behavior that needs to be addressed in order to achieve personal growth. Sometimes we have to learn from our choices even if we try to claim them as mistakes.

i don't think the original person posting this meant that people don't need to self-reflect or learn from the experience. how i understood it is that it can be dangerous for someone who isn't fully detached to count on depersonalized rationalizations for the causes of BPD. it's totally true that a pwBPD may act out of deep fears of abandonment, lacking a sense of self. it's so refreshing to understand this. on the same token the way these fears often manifest is through infidelities, physical and emotional abuse. when detaching we have to keep all of these things in perspective.

... .

Excerpt
Probably anyone who has encountered it has an urge to classify, theorize, analyze, compartmentalize and organize the BPD/NPD behaviors. But does it really matter if our exes were BPD or more NPD?

Very much so.  One suffers from ego grandiosity and the other suffers from ego deficiency.  You can learn allot about yourself if you ask who *needed* to be in the lead.

It takes two to tango. The lead was probably more narcissistically inclined then they would like to admit. Borderlines are not dominant. Narcissists are. Narcissists often do not know they are narcissistic because they have fashioned a false self that is very defensive. Borderlines can be considered quite open and often telegraph their woes to others as a learned helplessness. There’s a difference there that’s very important in recovery, especially if the false self of the narcissist has an identity crisis in the aftermath.

NPD and BPD are completely different yet they complement each other like pieces in a puzzle, especially concerning complementary needs. And yes, there is also a personality theory that Narcissists are attracted to Borderlines for a reason and vice versa.

suggesting that we need to look at ourselves to make sure we aren't narcissists ourselves, , been there and done that my friend. my ex called me a narcissist after we broke up (amongst plenty of other things). this had me scared for a while. i'm a confident person. can be pretty ambitious. i consider myself a leader in many ways... . so when she said this it really hit me hard. so i took the matter to several trusted friends, one of whom i shared a leadership position with... . they basically laughed at the idea and told me i was the furthest thing from being selfish/un-empathetic. definitely gaslighting and projection.

look at ourselves? ya. but 2010 in my case my ex accusing me of narcissism was just my exBPD being loony. puhlease, seriously? i don't take any of her projections seriously anymore, how could i?

something that's never felt right to me is the tendency to refer to any "bad" behaviors of pwBPD as having to be NPD -- is this really true? i see this often, whenever someone refers to bad behaviors and then has evidence that the pwBPD is conscious of it then a likely response is that they have NPD also. i don't know, i'm not an expert. i will say this though--NPD doesn't fit my ex much at all. BPD does to a "T"--but when she hated me? Are you kidding she was completely Narcissistic! I've lovingly referred to her as a lazy narcissist  . There are definitely some behaviors i hear about that sound more N than B, but I'd love to hear other's opinions on this--is it really true that if a pwBPD does nasty things to you and takes pleasure in it that they are also NPD? are we over analyzing something as simple as the fact that they just hate and want to punish you for the moment and this manifests in narcissistic behavior? i know the N traits don't show as much in some pwBPD but sometimes i feel like people want to separate the nastiest behaviors into a separate category; thus alleviating negative stigma from a BPD prognosis.


Excerpt
Excerpt
These disorders overlap.

Not really. They are very different.

the more i think about it i believe this is where some of our thinking may differ. 2010 i think you have a very valid argument that from the perspective of the ego that NPD is completely different from BPD. But from an outside perspective regarding empathy they are quite the same. A NPD abuses with no empathy but they think they are the greatest thing since sliced cheese. Likewise a BPD can abuse with no empathy but they actually lack self esteem and they put on a NPD face to try and cover this up. Still, empathy-less abuse is what their partner sees. Interesting and important to understand the differences in ego though.


Excerpt
Excerpt
These disorders wound. And sometimes they even kill.  Both are illnesses characterized by extreme selfishness.

Maybe we should figure out what our attraction was to this person before we dehumanize them.

i think extreme selfishness BPD is simply a common trait for BPD. not all the time... . actually in my case i would say most of the time my ex wasn't extremely selfish. but overall, she only cared about herself and her own demons. she's a human of course. you know people can get away with almost any kind of behavior if they own up to it and try and change. if someone is extremely selfish though then that's just where they are at--they're still human but no need to sweeten up extreme selfishness. my ex was very attractive in many ways when she was successful at hiding other parts of herself. i was attracted to her for the same reasons i have been attracted to normal healthy women.


Excerpt
Excerpt
NPDs and BPDs both objectify other persons and frequently don't care about the moral, emotional, ethical and relationship fallout of their behaviors except inasmuch as it relates to their own selfish gratification.

Many narcissists are altruists and care deeply about “moral, emotional and ethical” behaviors, much to their own detriment in interpersonal relationships. Borderlines objectify themselves as offerings. This isn’t selfish gratification, but fears of worthlessness. Both NPD and BPD have defectiveness at their core but they have formulated “personalities” that seek to resolve that defectiveness with faulty methods that turn compulsively repetitious.

the first argument says something that is true of behavior while the second is simply an explanation of the behavior. they *do* act out of selfish gratification, *because* of fears of worthlessness. both are true but they aren't opposing ideas. i feel as if we run the danger of using explanations as justifications if argued in opposition to the behavior. both are true and compliment each other in understanding what happens.


Excerpt
“Wills the good of the other” is another way of describing projective identification. Most people involved with a person with Borderline personality, (especially vulnerable narcissists) use projective identification to “outward focus” good as well as have the Borderline carry their bad. This is a form of splitting against the self and others.

good point.


Excerpt
Excerpt
People with UNTREATED mental illnesses like BPD and NPD are completely unsuited to be relationship or marriage partners and should be completely avoided.

These are broad statements that are untrue. But if it helps you to put a sign out, “no BPD or NPD allowed,” then that’s what you have to do. This is all or none, black or white thinking which often overemphasizes the dangers in social interactions and misjudges people.

i will agree that this is too broad. people with PDs exist on a spectrum just like "nons". it is understandable hearing it though from someone who has been hurt by the r/s. i have a friend whose mother i recently found out is dpbd... . and in her words she said "these people shouldn't be allowed to have children". and yes this is an over generalization of course. yet still points to the depth of pain caused by the abuse.

Excerpt
Now here’s the hard part. You can come on to the L3 leaving board and say, I don’t care what people with BPD think or feel. It’s impossible to tell! Stop asking questions.  I don’t think I should change anything about the way I am. It wasn’t me. Why should I be the one who is introspective? Thank you, I’m not looking for any feedback.

Should the rest of the forum stop asking questions too? Or do we make the sober realization that sometimes, people do things for a reason. Those reasons can be fear or control or grandiosity to cover feelings of defectiveness. Those reasons can become a working hypothesis. They become patterns. Those patterns easily create defenses (coping mechanisms.)  And the coping mechanisms can be faulty and repetitious, done over and over again, rote, without consciousness without any change or development or personal growth. AND that goes for all of us in life until we have an experience that changes us. Let’s call it an awakening.

We all have coping mechanisms, denial, anger, splitting others when they make us angry, but yearning for this lost object that represented all good before they became all bad. That’s worth investigating and digging deeper (at the very least) so we don’t go out and fall into the same pattern again. It’s not enough to say you’ll avoid anyone who gives you pause. You have to discover the reasons why you find this person attractive in the first place. In fact, you may even be drawn to them for a reason that you need to discover something about yourself.

Now is not the time to stop asking questions nor is it the time to be avoidant. You cannot avoid every single person with a personality disorder. They are co-workers, Doctors, teachers, postal workers- they are everywhere. The best thing you can do is understand yourself first.  Idea

totally agree on the self reflection. i will say though that i'm not so comfortable sharing everything about my thoughts of self reflection here as sometimes i kind of feel like an outsider in this regard and don't want to offend anybody. my thoughts do peek out in my writing though. and i've gained invaluable insights from others, both about myself and BPD as a result.
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« Reply #33 on: April 16, 2014, 09:45:33 AM »

suggesting that we need to look at ourselves to make sure we aren't narcissists ourselves, , been there and done that my friend. my ex called me a narcissist after we broke up (amongst plenty of other things). this had me scared for a while. i'm a confident person. can be pretty ambitious. i consider myself a leader in many ways... . so when she said this it really hit me hard. so i took the matter to several trusted friends, one of whom i shared a leadership position with... . they basically laughed at the idea and told me i was the furthest thing from being selfish/un-empathetic. definitely gaslighting and projection.

look at ourselves? ya. but 2010 in my case my ex accusing me of narcissism was just my exBPD being loony. puhlease, seriously? i don't take any of her projections seriously anymore, how could i?

LOL, we really shouldn't take it personally. My ex called her husband emotionally unavailable and distant. No cudling, caress, kissing, that's why she cheated on him, at least from her own admission. Now I know that she set up herself as a victim. I was shocked when found out about his living conditions when they still lived together. The guy has been sleeping in a separate room for 5 years, on an old matress, no furniture just a small CRT TV . First I thought that she was right, the ex hubby must have had some serious problems.

When we eventually hit the devaluation stage. She started to call me wussy/little girl for being emotionally available. No more kissing, cudling. Those were the things that she missed and loved at first and missed from the previous relationship. We couldn't even sleep in the same bad anymore so I found myself sleeping on the floor at my own place. With them, history repeats itself.

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« Reply #34 on: April 16, 2014, 09:56:30 AM »

Probably anyone who has encountered it has an urge to classify, theorize, analyze, compartmentalize and organize the BPD/NPD behaviors. But does it really matter if our exes were BPD or more NPD?

Excerpt
Very much so.  One suffers from ego grandiosity and the other suffers from ego deficiency.  You can learn allot about yourself if you ask who *needed* to be in the lead.

It takes two to tango. The lead was probably more narcissistically inclined then they would like to admit. Borderlines are not dominant. Narcissists are. Narcissists often do not know they are narcissistic because they have fashioned a false self that is very defensive. Borderlines can be considered quite open and often telegraph their woes to others as a learned helplessness. There’s a difference there that’s very important in recovery, especially if the false self of the narcissist has an identity crisis in the aftermath.

NPD and BPD are completely different yet they complement each other like pieces in a puzzle, especially concerning complementary needs. And yes, there is also a personality theory that Narcissists are attracted to Borderlines for a reason and vice versa.

I have had the hardest time trying to figure this out because my ex was a waif type who was very private.  I know she has strong BPD traits but i also saw narcissistic tendencies at times.
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« Reply #35 on: April 16, 2014, 10:15:31 AM »

i don't think the original person posting this meant that people don't need to self-reflect or learn from the experience. how i understood it is that it can be dangerous for someone who isn't fully detached to count on depersonalized rationalizations for the causes of BPD. it's totally true that a pwBPD may act out of deep fears of abandonment, lacking a sense of self. it's so refreshing to understand this. on the same token the way these fears often manifest is through infidelities, physical and emotional abuse. when detaching we have to keep all of these things in perspective.

It's great to host an intelligent discussion like this.  Thanks, everyone.

To add two points (not to debate any)... .

Stages of Healing   It was a revelation to many here to read Roger Melton's opinion about the cycles of a failed "BPD" relationship - to learn that the contrast in attitude that many experienced with their partner was really about stages in a relationship.

https://bpdfamily.com/tools/articles.htm

Part of the debate here is because of a similar evolution - the stages of healing. Our attitudes change as we evolve in our healing.

Depth of Healing  Some of us evolve our healing further than others.  

There are thousands of case histories here and I'd define the endpoints of the spectrum as those that shrugged their relationship off as the "conning of a normal healthy person" and those that stopped and reevaluated who they are in a relationship and reached for greater emotional maturity.

I've been here long enough to see some members repeat their experience with new partners or see them jailed for abuse themselves, or end up on Dr. Phil, or even kill themselves.  I've seen others change and go on to have live better lives, some even resuscitate broken families and marriages.  We have cards and letters saying this placed saved a family, a child, a life.

You don't have to guess (or take my word for it) as to which "style" ended up where, just read some of the older members files.


Healing and making sense of this is hard.  Very hard.  Why?  Because we all approach it with fear and protective bias.  In some cases, or at certain times, the bias blinds us from learning what we really need to learn - or to see ourselves as we really are - to heal and grow.

If you want it (healing) you have to find the bias and break through.
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« Reply #36 on: April 16, 2014, 07:42:50 PM »

Excerpt
People with UNTREATED mental illnesses like BPD and NPD are completely unsuited to be relationship or marriage partners and should be completely avoided.

These are broad statements that are untrue. But if it helps you to put a sign out, “no BPD or NPD allowed,” then that’s what you have to do. This is all or none, black or white thinking which often overemphasizes the dangers in social interactions and misjudges people.

2010, Thank you for your input. Rest easy that I never implied that nons shouldn't introspect or take responsibility for our relationship behaviors. In my mind, love and responsibility go together. But I'm of the view that such introspection is severely hampered whilst one remains attached to a mentally ill person whose actions envelope one in fear, obligation, guilt (FOG) and possibly even in physical violence/financial abuse/substance abuse/legal problems. So we will have to agree to disagree on the matter of untreated pwBPD/NPD as marriage and relationship partners. I stand by my view that they should be completely avoided in such roles. Clearly not everyone has freedom to just "walk away" from relationships with pwBPD/NPD (e.g. family members, custody of children) but if they do, my advice remains "walk away". Not walking away entails a very real danger of harm to self and harm to a pwBPD/NPD if we become their enabler.

I get a sense that you've amplified, rephrased and de-contextualized some things I've written to support the implications that my views are those of a dichotomous thinker, an "vulnerable narcissist," and someone who is prone to depersonalize the mentally ill.

So to be clear: I distinguish between mentally ill persons and their (unacceptable) behaviors.  As I wrote in my initial post, pwBPD/NPD are persons. Pathologically selfish persons, to be sure, but persons. Meaning they have inherent dignity, equal to my own, by virtue of being persons like me. In the language of philosophy, they have ontological worth. And in the language of philosophy (from whence I borrowed phrases like "wills the good of the other": [real] love responds to the ontological worth of "the other," rather than to the qualitative values of "the other". For this definition to apply in relationships with pwBPD/NPD, both partners would need to have an understanding of what constitutes "the good" and "the other". It's hard enough for a completely rational person to be clear about these things - they're among the deepest questions of life/philosophy/metaphysics. It's questionable, at best, that someone with an untreated serious mental illness can correctly conceive of these necessities for genuine love.

To your points about science: The nuances of human behavior have been contemplated and recorded since the invention of writing. Across many cultures, times, and intellectual paradigms. There is healing truth and value in these accounts. The scientific method to which you refer is a Western intellectual creation of relatively recent vintage. It implicitly makes many assumptions about an (objective) reality and about human beings. Modern psychological theories and the (maleable and somewhat controversial) DSM classifications aren't the only ways of looking at BPD and NPD behaviors. Meaning that NPD/BPD behaviors predate the scientific method and so clearly they have an existence irrespective of modern scientific categories. That these behaviors have recently been organized by the DSM under the label of BPD/NPD etc. is all very convenient but my original point was that there's a vast philosophical/metaphysical literature dealing with questions commonly discussed here. Questions like what love really is, how does real love manifest in one's ACTIONS, what true friendship really is, selfishness and self-centeredness, false selves, ethical relationship behaviors, moral obligations in relationships, "willing the good of the other" in a relationship, and so forth. By examining that literature it becomes quite clear how meaningless is a pwBPD/NPD's FOG-inducing use of the words "love," "I love you," and even "let's be friends." Clearly you adhere to a positivist paradigm in your critique of me. That's fine provided you're aware that there are other systematic and logically tenable views of these matters.

@Skip, goldylamont, thank you for your insightful comments.

Interesting dialog, everyone!

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« Reply #37 on: April 16, 2014, 11:37:55 PM »

Like Skip said, great stuff.   In debates regarding absolute "truths" and also those in which the parsing of subjective reality are involved I typically default to "The truth is in the middle".  It's both instructive and great theater to juxtapose the ontological, experiential realities of BPD against the clinical ones and for the purposes of my own recovery as a "non" -- the end game for the majority of us here I imagine -- I think it's important to ingest a potent distillation of both.  As a layman non-clinician, the reality of my recovery is based largely on the experiential model of my interaction with my pwBPD but that model is well buttressed with an understanding of the developmental psy behind it.  In other words I can apply towards my recovery as much from Fairbairn, Kohut, Masterson or Miller as I can from my own (non-clinical) experience with my pwBPD or the thousands of case histories so generously presented on this board.  So for the recovering non like myself it's a buyer's market and instruction is everywhere, valid and each carrying its own applicable truth.  Go to where your truth is and apply it to your recovery but realize every truth may not apply to you.  So in this sense both LGEX and 2010 are right.

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« Reply #38 on: May 20, 2016, 11:51:02 PM »

Guys I think this is one of the most powerful threads on these forums, I hope the mods don't mind but I'd like to give it a bump for all the newcomers. This was truly a great discussion.
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« Reply #39 on: May 21, 2016, 03:11:13 AM »

Really good read! Thanks for bumping it up Ahoy  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #40 on: May 21, 2016, 03:29:49 AM »

Thanks for your comments BPDspell, 2010 and Skip. Very helpful.
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« Reply #41 on: May 21, 2016, 07:32:51 AM »

I just wanted to comment on what my spouse said to me... .In the beginning it was "puppy love", I believe... .like a movie. He was very romantic, but allot of it was for show. Lots of public kissing to make himself look good. Later I believe he was just keeping up the act, treating me like a queen and always texting and sending me "kisses" and saying I love you. In the end he told me he would always love me since I was such a big part of his life. Then it was down to I miss you... .and he would start to cry and then abruptly stop when I would start. It almost seemed to me it was a way of conjuring up emotions in me to see if I still had them. Now he feels this girl is "the mother of my child" kind of thing... .in fact, that is what he said. Everything he says seems to come out of a movie. Since I do believe he studies movies and uses their stories, it is very possible! I think they love you in a romantic way in the beginning and then more like you are a parent or family member later. I think they do not know what true love is for sure by their nasty behavior. Were we loved? Not really, you don't abuse, lie to or cheat on someone you love. I believe they don't know how to love, it's all about what we do for them and how we make them feel. If they see us feel loving, then they feel love. When we begin to see the mask drop, I believe our behavior changes and they are sensitive to that. Then they think we don't love them and then they change too. It's impossible for anyone to remain in the "puppy dog love" phase forever, especially when being mistreated. That's when it all falls apart. Which would happen in any relationship. I think they think of us later if we really meant anything to them... .we are "missed" and idolized when gone. They will try and have a reason that it is best we are not together, since they live in their own storybook world and need to justify their actions. We did love, but we thought we were in reality... .but in reality, abuse doesn't equal love. We can move on knowing we did all that we could do, loved this person the best we could and we know now that we love ourselves enough to not allow this sort of relationship to take us over ever again.
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« Reply #42 on: May 21, 2016, 07:57:03 AM »

Longgonex you hit the nail right on the head with this. I am in total agreement 100%! My ex can't well now love anyone. I knew and meet my ex in late 85 early 86. Became friends at 12 and dated at 14. There were no signs at all if she was mentally sick and i believe she wasn't. She genuinely loved me. Then my Mom broke us up threatened and lied to my ex and months later she went into a mental hospital for months. Never saw her again after that . She then forums me on FB and told me she still loved me. Well push / pull I love u I don't. She told me she did t know how to love. She didn't want to hurt me. But she did. She told me she was bipolar but her behaviors never added up with that disorder. I researched and it came up as BPD. Well I tried helping her and she threatened me with a no contact restraint order. The sad part is she herself told me she can't have men use her body like that anymore she just can't. So she knows she is ill but then goes back to denying it. Very very sad.
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« Reply #43 on: May 21, 2016, 11:50:35 AM »

Thanks for bumping.

Reading through the responses, esp those from 2010, I was one again left wondering how BPD and NPD can be so different as to be apparently mutually exclusive and yet still occur as comorbidities.
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« Reply #44 on: May 21, 2016, 04:09:06 PM »

steelwork, ive wondered that myself. someone suggested to me that you might get a good mental image with the "witch" subtype of BPD. i dont know if thats the answer, but it makes sense. as well as keeping in mind both are spectrum disorders.
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« Reply #45 on: May 21, 2016, 04:59:47 PM »

Loves, loved, will love, doesn't matter. How were you treated, are treated, will be treated... .THAT will tell you everything you need to know. Everything else is just noise.
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« Reply #46 on: May 21, 2016, 07:28:28 PM »

Putting a definition on love is an adult relationship is subjective in itself. But I do agree that "love" for a BPD is clouded,  selfish and doesn't conform to a non's standard.  However,  I know I love my children and my family,  unconditionally.  I honestly think that's the only real love that exists.
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« Reply #47 on: May 21, 2016, 07:44:29 PM »

I'm saddened by the number of people here who torment themselves with: ":)id my ex pwBPD really love me?"  I suspect that when we can quickly answer this question with a definitive NO, we're on the road to recovery.

I know the original post is old, but I have something to say to this in particular. I still can't give a definitive 'yes' or 'no' to the question of whether my ex loved me, but I'm not ruminating over it any more either. For me, a big part of my recovery was learning to accept that there are some things I will always be uncertain about. This is one of them. I need to go on and live my life. You can't get a definite answer to everything in life, and sometimes it only hurts you to chase after one.

Maybe he loved me. Maybe he didn't. Maybe he tried his hardest. Maybe he didn't. The only things I can be certain about are that I loved him, I tried my best to make it work, and I got terribly hurt. That's all I need to know. Sometimes I still crave reassurance, crave answers, but with distraction and mindfulness and a few cognitive-behavioural tips and tricks I'm able to get myself moving on again. I don't fully understand the periodic table, or how the electromagnetic spectrum works, but those things don't cause me any pain at all - maybe one day my ex will be added to the list of completely benign unknowns. 
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« Reply #48 on: May 21, 2016, 09:38:47 PM »

I know, right?

Thanks for bumping.

Reading through the responses, esp those from 2010, I was one again left wondering how BPD and NPD can be so different as to be apparently mutually exclusive and yet still occur as comorbidities.

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« Reply #49 on: May 22, 2016, 02:53:02 AM »

Hi all,

It's a good thread and worth re-reading

I would question the conclusion that NPD and BPD are mutually exclusive

From what I've read co-morbidity is extremely common and the different disorders can be a lot more fluid that the one might initially imagine.

In her book The Narcissistic Borderline couple Joan Lachlkar's, a highly respected and experienced therapist writes;

"Since narcissistic/borderline traits, states, and characteristics are not clear entities and tend to vacillate, diagnosis can be elusive. Ironically, when the borderline progresses in treatment, he or she becomes more narcissistic (there is nothing worse than a narcissistic borderline). In addition, an individual may exhibit both narcissistic and borderline characteristics simultaneously, further confusing the issue. It is challenging enough for therapists to diagnose individual personality disorders"

Some therapists describe borderlines as failed narcissists

The diagnosis and treatment of PD is not a science. It's a worthwhile attempt to frame and understand a range of complex behaviours that often feel contradictory and incomprehensible.

It can help by giving us a frame of reference to process and heal from traumatic relationships but it's not cut in stone.

Reforming

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« Reply #50 on: May 22, 2016, 08:28:42 AM »

I find this post is just a great general discussion on BPD.

With regards to the love argument, my 2c was that, yes I was loved. But BPD love is not the type of love any of us want or are searching for. It's immature and stunted.

I think my definition of love can best be described as Shrek... .Shrek has layers like an onion and healthy love is built on layer after layer of compassion, trust and respect.

In conclusion:

BPD - love=need

Non BPD - love=Shrek
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« Reply #51 on: May 23, 2016, 03:15:02 AM »

Excerpt
In her book The Narcissistic Borderline couple Joan Lachlkar's, a highly respected and experienced therapist writes;

"Since narcissistic/borderline traits, states, and characteristics are not clear entities and tend to vacillate, diagnosis can be elusive. Ironically, when the borderline progresses in treatment, he or she becomes more narcissistic (there is nothing worse than a narcissistic borderline). In addition, an individual may exhibit both narcissistic and borderline characteristics simultaneously, further confusing the issue. It is challenging enough for therapists to diagnose individual personality disorders"

Reforming

When you cherry pick a quote, it’s important to understand the context in which it was intended. You are on Page 50 of The Narcissistic / Borderline Couple: New Approaches to Marital Therapy which is a primer for therapists dealing with Borderline and Narcissistic COUPLES in marital therapy. That means two people, in a room, with a third person acting as an arbitrator. The question for the arbitrator is who is grandiose and who is deficient in ego. It is a perfect storm of triangulation.

The opening sentence left out from this quote was:



“The profile of the narcissistic/borderline couple constantly shifts as one partner stirs up unresolved issues in the other.”


Unresolved issues. Issues that haven’t been solved with both parties. Not comorbidity- but shifting profiles while in distress.

So what she’s saying is that it’s very difficult to assume who is more narcissistically inclined during a crisis. For instance, a narcissistic man whose Borderline wife is cheating on him will most definitely have a narcissistic injury that makes him appear vulnerable and unstable while his Wife, fed by her persecution complex will confuse self esteem with anger and puff herself up to appear grandiose- but she is only mirroring her new lover and the idealization he feels. This is the chameleon nature of BPD and what makes marital therapy so difficult because of the offset triangulation.

Narcissists, on the other hand do not adhere to people, instead they work tirelessly to avoid attachment. So to see a Narcissist come into therapy absolutely crushed is a bit offsetting, leading the therapist to wonder whether he has an unstable sense of self or merely suffering an intense narcissistic injury.

Lackar includes chapters on the differences between the narcissist and the borderline (as well as subtypes) and how they fit together in pathology. Her writing seeks to help the therapist find clues on how to determine who is narcissistic and who is borderline and she provides conclusions at the end of each chapter but she also makes the statement that if a Narcissist is suffering a narcissistic injury, they can certainly appear similar to a Borderline. And if a Borderline is puffed up and pretending, they can certainly appear narcissistic. But both are situational states and not rigid.

Nowhere in her book is the word “Non” used by this board.

So if we take from her chapters, we see several key points-

“In this chapter we have strived to shed additional light on what keeps narcissistic couples together and to develop a further understanding of their intricate interactions. Narcissistic/ borderline couples express their pain by blindly repeating their dysfunctional behaviors without learning or profiting from experience.

“The partners in these beleaguered relationships are in complicity with one another as they move through their psychological dance, create their unending drama and forge an ultimately unsatisfying bond.”

“Couple therapy is an experience that occurs among three persons: the two partners and the therapist. It is a deep emotional experience involving intense communication and deep seated feelings that starts with the profound challenges of a primitive relationship and matures into the awareness of healthy dependency needs and mutual respect. With each session the curtain opens and the opportunity for a new script begins.”

Now, having read that- you might think, great! If I can get him or her into therapy we could just work it out and resolve all this.

Unfortunately, that is an “other directed” response, and one where “The partners in these beleaguered relationships are in complicity with one another as they move through their psychological dance, create their unending drama and forge an ultimately unsatisfying bond."

It is an unsatisfying, primitive, false bond that is self-referential for both the narcissist and the borderline. The narcissist tries to get the Borderline in control and the Borderline fights against it. The more the narcissist fails, the more he suffers a narcissistic injury. The more the Borderline fails, the more he suffers a persecution complex.

“The narcissistic / borderline couple forms relational love bonds through attachments to internal and external objects that ignite the flame to fuel them.”

(“Internal” are the beliefs-*what you think about* and “external” are the people- who you connect with concerning your beliefs.)

“The local transmitter is the process of projective identification or dual projective identification, which casts the roles of the partners as designed or pre-scripted through their attachments to internal objects."

(That’s a fancy way of saying that other people are used to represent how we feel about ourselves- well before other people are known to us by name.)

So if the narcissist is really insecure about himself, but hides it behind his appearance or physique or money or job description, his narcissistic injury concerning his unsatisfying, primitive false bond while only serve to remind him of how he is a failure- something he always feared yet tried to cover up with a false self. So he will fight to the ends of the Earth for another chance to redeem himself.

And the Borderline, with their primitive and fantastic self-delusion, clings in parasitic fashion and then hates with distorted perception, failing to trust and maintain loyalty while the narcissist hopes for repair- absolutely crushes the narcissist.

Yes, Cluster B’s do have allot in common, but it’s their pre-scripted roles that show us differences to their internal reference. In other words, it doesn’t matter what false self people show outwardly to the World- what matters is why they created that false self and what it really means as a method of coping and survival and why the “other” party (that’s you and me and everyone on this board) finds it so attractive.  Thought

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« Reply #52 on: May 23, 2016, 08:12:10 AM »

2010: Thanks for this really interesting summary.

But I'm wondering more than ever: how is it that a person can have both BPD and NPD (i.e. Be "co-morbid"? What could that mean? Are we actually talking about a pwBPD who sometimes mimics NPD behavior and vice-versa? If so, spectrum (which seems to mean degree of morbidity?) would have nothing to do with it.

Then there are the othrr PD combinations. But these two seem particularly opposite.
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« Reply #53 on: May 23, 2016, 10:25:45 AM »

Hi 2010,

sorry if I'm hijacking the thread a little bit... .but some time ago I asked you (via PM) your general take on HPDs, mostly about the differences with BPDs.

So, I want to seize this opportunity to ask you again your general view on HPDs Smiling (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #54 on: May 23, 2016, 12:39:05 PM »

Ugh this just made me sad. But I know it's very true. Sad for me sad for him. Sad.
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« Reply #55 on: May 23, 2016, 12:39:57 PM »

They seem opposite to me too.

2010: Thanks for this really interesting summary.

But I'm wondering more than ever: how is it that a person can have both BPD and NPD (i.e. Be "co-morbid"? What could that mean? Are we actually talking about a pwBPD who sometimes mimics NPD behavior and vice-versa? If so, spectrum (which seems to mean degree of morbidity?) would have nothing to do with it.

Then there are the othrr PD combinations. But these two seem particularly opposite.

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« Reply #56 on: May 23, 2016, 01:29:07 PM »

They seem opposite to me too.

2010: Thanks for this really interesting summary.

But I'm wondering more than ever: how is it that a person can have both BPD and NPD (i.e. Be "co-morbid"? What could that mean? Are we actually talking about a pwBPD who sometimes mimics NPD behavior and vice-versa? If so, spectrum (which seems to mean degree of morbidity?) would have nothing to do with it.

Then there are the othrr PD combinations. But these two seem particularly opposite.


I am not a clinician, so let's start there.  And, I've read that pwBPD attract caretakers, co-dependents, and/or pwNPD, so the two do seem distinct.  That said, my wife was all over the spectrum for both NPD and HPD to go along with her BPD.

As far as NPD:

Requiring constant admiration to feel the bottomless pit of her emptiness? Check

Having a sense of entitlement, as in spending every dollar she could get her hands on because she deserved to live a certain lifestyle ?  Check

Taking advantage of others to get what she wants?  How often do we talk about manipulation and deceitfulness on these boards again?

Unwilling to recognize the needs of others?  Isn't lack of empathy a common, recurring theme here?

Envy?  Oh you better believe it.

I don't know how many boxes need to be checked under the DSM 5 or what distinguishes disorders, but looking back, my wife checked all but one box for BPD and checked enough of the DSM 4 criteria for NPD to make me wonder if a dual diagnosis is somehow possible.  

Again, not a clinician, but the overlap is something I experienced personally.  Also, my wife suffers from officially diagnosed conditions that overlap in odd ways with personality disordered characteristics, so it's just a grab bag of issues
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« Reply #57 on: May 23, 2016, 06:29:08 PM »

They seem opposite to me too.

2010: Thanks for this really interesting summary.

But I'm wondering more than ever: how is it that a person can have both BPD and NPD (i.e. Be "co-morbid"? What could that mean? Are we actually talking about a pwBPD who sometimes mimics NPD behavior and vice-versa? If so, spectrum (which seems to mean degree of morbidity?) would have nothing to do with it.

Then there are the othrr PD combinations. But these two seem particularly opposite.


I am not a clinician, so let's start there.  And, I've read that pwBPD attract caretakers, co-dependents, and/or pwNPD, so the two do seem distinct.  That said, my wife was all over the spectrum for both NPD and HPD to go along with her BPD.

As far as NPD:

Requiring constant admiration to feel the bottomless pit of her emptiness? Check

Having a sense of entitlement, as in spending every dollar she could get her hands on because she deserved to live a certain lifestyle ?  Check

Taking advantage of others to get what she wants?  How often do we talk about manipulation and deceitfulness on these boards again?

Unwilling to recognize the needs of others?  Isn't lack of empathy a common, recurring theme here?

Envy?  Oh you better believe it.

I don't know how many boxes need to be checked under the DSM 5 or what distinguishes disorders, but looking back, my wife checked all but one box for BPD and checked enough of the DSM 4 criteria for NPD to make me wonder if a dual diagnosis is somehow possible.  

Again, not a clinician, but the overlap is something I experienced personally.  Also, my wife suffers from officially diagnosed conditions that overlap in odd ways with personality disordered characteristics, so it's just a grab bag of issues

Ouch yeah mine ticked a few of those boxes too. I'm a believer mine is more in the BPD camp, but these traits were certainly exhibited at different times in our relationship, especially near the end.
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« Reply #58 on: May 23, 2016, 06:55:23 PM »

Excuse the very long quote below (typing on phone makes editing long quotes too hard), but if you read what 2010 says, you can see that he's talking about the deep structures of NPD and BPD in a way that makes me wonder how they could coexist in one personality. In terms of object relations: Narcissists subsume objects. Borderlines offer themselves as objects to be subsumed.

Truthfully, that last part is hard for me to grasp. My understanding is that pwBPD lack internal objects and latch onto others for that reason--but in any case it seems like the basic personality dynamics would make them mutually exclusive.
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« Reply #59 on: May 24, 2016, 07:30:40 AM »

I wish some day I'd get an answer to this.
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« Reply #60 on: May 24, 2016, 08:07:25 AM »

is it confusing you with regard to your relationship, or in general?
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« Reply #61 on: May 24, 2016, 09:10:22 AM »

Both.
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« Reply #62 on: November 20, 2018, 12:41:28 PM »

Bumping this up.

What do you think?  How would you describe the love you experienced with your ex?  If you said "I love you" to him or her, what did you mean?

 

 

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« Reply #63 on: November 21, 2018, 10:41:20 PM »

Hi Insom,

Thanks for bumping this up  

Excerpt
How would you describe the love you experienced with your ex?  If you said "I love you" to him or her, what did you mean?

The love that I experienced in the beginning was attention with her idealization - I loved the attention that she gave to me that says that there’s something wrong when you like being out on a pedestal. It’s not good to be wanted to be split white all of the time are you objectifying the other person because you have this need.

The other thing that I felt like she placated  was my loneliness I parented myself since I was fifteen years old and I didn’t rely on anime Jesse but myself because I didn’t tryst other people I felt like I was going to get abandoned all over again my biological mom abandoned me, my adoptive died when I was 8 that’s a form of abandonment and my dad kicked me out of the house when I just turned 15.

It’s like what 2010 said i fell into a pattern i didn’t have guidance in my life I shut myself of from most people and became self absorbed I didn’t process the trauma in my childhood it was definitely repressed again like 2010 said those were feelings were buried that resurfaced when I met a pwBPD.

I have anxiety and depression I was angry when I was younger I recall one say that anger turned i ward becomes depression. My exuBPDw also placated my anxiety I felt like I wasn’t as depressed but I was depressed it got worse later on as things more chaotic in the r/s but I liked all of these things about it felt like she was a part of me that was missing. There was a safety there at the beginning I felt like she was the few that could reach me behind the walls that I had put up and it soothes that inner child that was abandoned.

What did I mean I said I love her? At the time I thought that I had my soulmate she was only in the current city I live in for a few months and she left I didn’t chase her while she was here but after she left she left me a notebook that said that she loved and that we would write our experience together on our journey I thought that she was amazing so I thought that this is the person that’s in my life that I’m probably meant to marry. There’s was definitely a fantasy played out there what we define as true love in pop culture.

I think of love in an entirely different context today then I did then because I value myself and take care of myself a lot more now and that makes me happier I don’t need someone else to make me happy although it is nice to share myself with my gf and like BPDspell i don’t seem that external validation and love to measure my value as a person there was time before and when I met my pwBPD.

The other thing is like 2010 said I was seeking knowledge about myself I still do I don’t think I’ll ever stop that but. I didnt  have boundaries back it’s like expected someone else to know what I needed and trusted them completely that their actions won’t hurt me and I think that also came from low self esteem the low self worth. I can still seek knowledge about myself with boundaries.
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« Reply #64 on: November 22, 2018, 01:11:39 PM »

I suggest that we approach it by asking: what is love?

i agree. this is a good place to start.

Do some reading of the classics in philosophy and spirituality and you'll begin to see how shallow and unconvincing a pwBPD's "love" is in light their ACTIONS. A big part of our closure lies in fully accepting that the relationship we hoped for was never even a possibility with a pwBPD, and that isn't our fault.

one such classic says: "love keeps no record of wrongs".

i dont think that our closure lies in keeping record of, or overemphasizing the wrongs. i tried, and struggled hard in spite of it. i think that if my ultimate conclusion had been "she never loved me", i would have continued to struggle.

for every wrong on my exes end, there were many rights; many loving actions that i can cherish today.

for every right on my end, there were many wrongs.

Whenever your pwBPD (or suspected pwBPD) declares their love for you (which is usually often and prematurely), kindly ask them some questions about love.

my ex used to ask me those questions; ask why i loved her, in tender moments. i never had very good answers, and the first that came to mind was always "because you love me".

children in adult bodies.

if people with BPD are children (theyre not), if you have children, try asking them why they love you.

"because you are a good mommy/daddy"

"because you are a special mommy/daddy"

"because you are a funny mommy/daddy"

"because you make me rice krispies in the morning"

"because you love me"

these are immature, but sincere expressions (words) of love. we dont discount them because they come from a child. we dont ask ourselves what actions they have committed that disprove these words.

But as we learn at our peril, most pwBPD people never face themselves honestly and would rather have a string of disposable partner objects which they can use as emotional garbage dumps for offloading their projections. This is not what love is.

i agree. we should aspire to greater love. we should ask ourselves what love is. we should ask ourselves if, and why we love others. we should separate our fantasies and projections from the other person who, in the process we fail to see as an autonomous and loveable human being.

at a later point after this experience, we should ask ourselves if we fell short in our ideals about love, how our ideals of love have changed or grown, whether they will evolve going forward.

Nor is it becoming enmeshed in a mentally ill person's fantasy of idealized love.

now thats the crux, aint it? how do we become enmeshed in someone elses fantasy of idealized love, without having one ourselves?
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« Reply #65 on: November 25, 2018, 08:07:37 PM »

Wow ... .and thanks Once ... .  Love as a fantasy bond ... .Definitely thought provoking ... and clarifying ! ... .and probably true ... .in different capacities  ... .for many of us ... .
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