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VIDEO: "What is parental alienation?" Parental alienation is when a parent allows a child to participate or hear them degrade the other parent. This is not uncommon in divorces and the children often adjust. In severe cases, however, it can be devastating to the child. This video provides a helpful overview.
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Author Topic: BPD Stonewalling and Silent Treatment  (Read 1576 times)
Jonathan Ricciardi
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« on: February 10, 2016, 09:25:20 AM »

I'm new here looking for advice.  I have learned a lot about BPD, on line and through counciling.  My ex-GF and I were together for 6 months.  5 months were great.  The problem I have is I have known this ex- girl since we were both about 12.  I'm now 46, she is 43.  I fell for her big time and thought she liked me, I was wrong.  My family and her family have also known each other for both of our lives.  Her uncle is married to my aunt, no blood relations.  We also dated for a short time in college, as when school ended, so did our relationship.  There were no hard feelings.  So there is tremendous history.  

We reunited three years ago, and of course it got hot and heavy.  I saw some red flags but ignored them.  She was separated, for 5 years she told me.  :)uring this 6 months we both frequented each others homes.  We live 40 minutes apart.  We started dating in about Aug of 2012, she officially ended it on Feb. 2013, of course on Valentine's Day.  The downfall started on New Year's Eve, we celebrated Xmas on New Year's, as she has a son and we had only been dating 4 months.  Of course we have been having communication through phone, in person, and facebook.  As I gave her her Xmas present, she opened it, a pair of cowgirl boots.  She then mentioned to me that she forgot my present in her other car.  I didn't think it was a big deal and never thought about it.  Needless to say, this was the last time I would see her.

On Jan. about 6th I asked about her ex, or the separated ex, not truly an ex.  She had told me previously that he doesn't pay child support. No idea why but I was private messaging her and asked her why she doesn't get child support from her ex.  She kept defending his action of not paying child support.  This guy rarely sees the child, maybe once or twice a year.  This is a fact, as I have never seen pictures of her son with his father. I could tell that I inflicted serious pain, even by a text.  As I think people who purposely don't pay child support are deadbeats.  We didn't talk for 24 hours.  

This is when I really noticed a change, she stopped complimenting me was the first thing I noticed.  I called her out on it, and she just said give her some time.  But we were still communicating.  Then about a week later, I asked when we were getting together again, she said this coming weekend.  Well anyways this was the first and last time I let her blow me off.  She called me about a half hour before we were to meet, and cancelled.  She told me her father had been placed in the hospital for dehydration.  I never believed her, but also never called her out on it.  I let it go, then gradually the relationship deteriorated.  I really liked this woman, she knew this.  She then started to stonewall me, brick by brick.  The first step was to block me on facebook, which was odd as I rarely posted on her FB.  We just used it for instant messaging.  I was devastated by this, but we were still communicating via cell phone.  But obviously I knew she was ending this, she asked for space, I gave her space for two days, no communication at all.  On the third day of no contact I stupidly sent her flowers hoping to save things.  She did text and thank me for them, and that did save me for like three days, but then, she just texted me it was over, I was sad.  I was shocked that with our history she wouldn't breakup by text.  So naturally I tried calling her, and she did answer eventually.  But she was mean and distant and wasn't really listening to anything I had to say, it was like she didn't care about me feelings at all.

My question is this, all our lives we learn.  We learn through books, tv, and newspapers, teachers, family, etc... .So if a BPD were to watch the movie, for example, Old Yellow, they don't get the relationship between a boy and his dog? What are they feeling? I felt love watching that movie.  What does a BPD get out of such things.

I never got a Christmas gift from her.  It has been 3 years since this all happened and she has not once contacted me, why?
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« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2016, 12:03:11 AM »

Though it could be couched in the co next of BPD behaviors in that she just split you black,.it sounds like its so much more painful given that you've basically known each other your whole lives.

In addition to my Ex, I had a long term friend split me black overnight. It was shocking to me, especially after she had told me that she loved me. She probably did... .then suddenly didn't. That's BPD. Had you seen this article? Perhaps it can help you understand:

Surviving a Break-up with Someone Suffering with Borderline Personality Disorder
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« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2016, 02:36:20 AM »

Hi there. 

My exBPD discarded me the day after Christmas.  He went back to his ex fiancé.

Turns out they were never exes.  I found out that night when his fiancé called me angry. 

It was all love, kisses, smiles, perfection, until one day it just shattered.  I think the guilt caught up to him and he was too much of a coward to fess up to anything

Sounds like your girl pulled the same crap.

I got him 700 dollars worth of xmas gifts.

He got me a cute pillow.

I think people who act out like this love to do it around the holidays.  Honestly all I can say is she probably had fun with you until she realized the gig was up and she discarded you. 

It hurts I know. 

Are you still hurt 3 years later? 

I'm sorry you went through this
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Jonathan Ricciardi
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« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2016, 08:38:52 AM »

Thank you so much Turk and Rmbr, it means a lot. Turk I have read article and many other, I will again. I do agree with you, it is hard to call her my ex because as she was just separated, not divorced.  She was never mine, that is why she dumped me without thought.

Easier to get out of something mentally if she wasn't into it.  

I'm still hurt, but not depressed or upset, just frustrated.

Part of life is learning and when this went down, I understand she has every right to end a relationship anyway she wants, even if text break up is immature. What I don't understand is how a 43 year old woman, can be so immature. That hurts that I was so dumb to fall for her game. I thought the older you got the wiser and more mature you become.

In some ways I think therapists and doctors are wrong on Bpd, it takes a complete invalid to go through life and not understand caring or empathy. It means that any movie or book can't even be comprehended by a person with PD. I don't buy that, if the PD is smart enough to get into a relationship, date, sex, and anything else, they know what they're doing during break up. I wasn't dating an invalid. What bothers me now is the continuos blocking and ignoring. I'm fine with it, but why do BPD take the rocky road? Why be enemies or ignore exes for years? Doesn't that keep you in their minds, unfinished business?
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« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2016, 10:20:22 AM »

Hi Jonathan525,

I'm in a similar situation, though it's been a year rather than three. I know in my case there was a pattern of avoidant behavior that I saw throughout the relationship, and I guess there's even something called Avoidant Personality Disorder:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avoidant_personality_disorder#Signs_and_symptoms

He has some of those traits as well (not all--he's actually got great social skills), and was diagnosed (wrongly, I think) with ADHD. So I think the avoiding might be part of his special mix of dysfunctions. Maybe same in your case?

On the other hand/in addition:

Why be enemies or ignore exes for years? Doesn't that keep you in their minds, unfinished business?

YES. And maybe that's the point. Not to finish business. It's unbearably final.
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« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2016, 10:37:11 AM »

In some ways I think therapists and doctors are wrong on Bpd, it takes a complete invalid to go through life and not understand caring or empathy. It means that any movie or book can't even be comprehended by a person with PD. I don't buy that, if the PD is smart enough to get into a relationship, date, sex, and anything else, they know what they're doing during break up. I wasn't dating an invalid.

Hi Jonathan525,

No, you weren't dating an intellectual/cognizant invalid, but you were dating an emotional invalid. A pwBPD was emotionally arrested at a very early age of development (before the age of 3); therefore, while someone that is emotionally mature can easily connect the emotional dots and predict the outcomes of emotional acts/behaviors, a pwBPD simply doesn't have the emotional capacity (emotional maturity) to do that. Many people with BPD are indeed quite intelligent; while, at the same time, they are emotionally, toddlers. How many testimonies have you read on the boards where the Non is complaining about the intellectual capacity of their ex? It's always a complaint about an emotional issue/deficiency in the pwBPD.
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« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2016, 10:44:56 AM »

Many people with BPD are indeed quite intelligent; while, at the same time, they are emotionally, toddlers. How many testimonies have you read on the boards where the Non is complaining about the intellectual capacity of their ex? It's always a complaint about an emotional issue/deficiency in the pwBPD.

I would go so far as to say emotional immaturity is the number one most commonly shared trait seen on these boards.
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Jonathan Ricciardi
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« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2016, 10:47:42 AM »

Apollotech I respect your comments. with that said, if I was dating an emotional invalid, then we would have never got together.  It takes emotions to start dating, it takes emotions no matter how short or how long, to stay in a relationship, it takes emotions to end a relationship.  Sorry but they know what their doing.  

Steelwork... .I'm sorry you're going through this.  

Even if my ex had APD... .we would have never met... .they avoid people.

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« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2016, 11:00:07 AM »

Quote from: Jonathan525 link=topic=290204.msg12731184#msg12731184


Steelwork... .I'm sorry you're going through this.  

Even if my ex had APD... .we would have never met... .they avoid people.

Totally, of course. As I said, I think he had traits of this. Not all of them. For instance, if a conversation was going in a way that made him uncomfortable, he'd make a sudden, nonsensical shift in topic.

He talked a lot about self-loathing.

Generally very conflict-averse--partly I think because he could only respond to conflict with aggression, and he didn't want to do that, and so he avoided.

He wasn't shy in social situations, actually had a very outgoing personality and SEEMED to make friends easily, but non of his friendships were deep, and all were dropped easily. So though it seemed otherwise, he always kept emotional distance.

He referred to himself as "a master of the 10-second relationship"--meaning that he was good at having little bits of business with strangers around holding doors, lines, cashier encounters, stuff that didn't matter. I think he had actually gotten good at social skills as a way of overcoming/stuffing/compensating for his deep distrust of himself and others in social situations.

Did you notice anything in your relationship that, in retrospect, seems like avoidant behavior? I ask because maybe it could help you deal with those unanswered questions.
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« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2016, 11:08:52 AM »

At the end of course I saw avoidant behavior, breaking up by text is an example.  But no one even the so called experts can explain to me why people with PD orders, can get involved with someone if they have emotional issues? It takes emotions to start and end a relationship.

If one of their friends or family dies, do they just go, "oh well".

When they see a person beheaded in the Middle East, they cant comprehend that?

How about going through high school, and college, and then at the age of 43 you meet a guy and after all those years of life you can't feel emotions? I don't buy it.

How about if these people had a pet as a child did they hate it? Please don't get into animal abuse.
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« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2016, 11:11:43 AM »

It might be more helpful to think of emotional disturbance/dysfunction rather than lack of emotion. It's said that people with BPD have very STRONG emotions, and that they have trouble regulating them--especially under certain kinds of stress.
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Jonathan Ricciardi
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« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2016, 11:15:59 AM »

Ok see what is going on now, is people are cross-diagnosis.  OK then I was wrong she must not have been BPD.

Name me one PD that doesn't have emotional immaturity. 
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« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2016, 11:19:30 AM »

Apollotech I respect your comments. with that said, if I was dating an emotional invalid, then we would have never got together.  It takes emotions to start dating, it takes emotions no matter how short or how long, to stay in a relationship, it takes emotions to end a relationship.  Sorry but they know what their doing.  

Steelwork... .I'm sorry you're going through this.  

Even if my ex had APD... .we would have never met... .they avoid people.

Jonathan525,

They are not "emotionless." They are emotionally immature. There are people in the world who enjoy hurting others, but those people have mental disorders which are separate from BPD. Now, those sadistic traits/disorders may run comorbid with BPD in a pwBPD, but that's not a product of the BPD. Perhaps your ex has other issues?

I don't know what brought your relationship to a close, but I'll bet the house that it was an emotional issue. So, think of it this way, assuming that I am correct, if someone was in control of their emotions and emotionally mature, wouldn't they try to work things out? Wouldn't they try to have a constructive discussion to see what could be done to save the relationship? Wouldn't peace offerings be extended and responsibilities be taken and sincere apologies made? Or, would they rant and rave, go silent, act out inappropriately with others, point fingers, reject responsibilities, etc.? I think that as you learn more about the disorder and how it manifests itself in a pwBPD and in a relationship with a pwBPD, you'll come to see that she actually had/has very little control over herself. Simply, she doesn't control her disorder; it controls her. There is much going on below her surface which comes out in sometimes very charming ways and sometimes in very hurtful ways.
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« Reply #13 on: February 11, 2016, 11:26:38 AM »

Ok see what is going on now, is people are cross-diagnosis.  OK then I was wrong she must not have been BPD.

Take a look at the second post on this thread--about co-occurrence of other personality disorders. ("Comorbidity"

https://bpdfamily.com/message_board/index.php?topic=58157.0

Name me one PD that doesn't have emotional immaturity. 

I'm not sure I understand what you're asking.

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Jonathan Ricciardi
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« Reply #14 on: February 11, 2016, 11:27:06 AM »

Apollo, I'm new to this, and from my understanding through cousiling and homework, very few are diagnosed strictly with BPD, they have other illnesses and traits.

I totally agree with you that my ex showed complete BPD during our relationship.  However, if someone is mature enough to get into a relationship, date, then why the immaturity during breakup?  Its very contradictory.
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« Reply #15 on: February 11, 2016, 11:33:10 AM »

So, I am not an expert at all, but... .

1. How mature do you really have to be to get in a relationship? Especially in the early infatuation part of a relationship. Maturity seems more important to maintaining a relationship. For instance, how do you handle a conflict?

2. pwBPD go through periods when they have more or less trouble with emotional regulation. And their behavior changes depending on what is going on around them, or what they perceive to be going on. In other words, their emotional deregulation can be "triggered," and then you see changes in them.

I don't know. Does that help at all?
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Jonathan Ricciardi
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« Reply #16 on: February 11, 2016, 11:40:04 AM »

I think it takes a lot of maturity to get into a relationship... .it takes work.  Phone calls, texts, private messages, dates, and sex.  We also lived 40 minutes away, plenty of time to set emotions.  This was a short 6 month relationship, there is no doubt in my mind, she figured out I was smarter than her an wasn't going to play her games.  Hence the three years of no contact, stonewalling, silent treatment, whatever is the term of the day.

I think steelwork, and please don't get mad, I think this is all an excuse for people with PD's.
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« Reply #17 on: February 11, 2016, 11:41:34 AM »

I think it takes a lot of maturity to get into a relationship... .it takes work.  Phone calls, texts, private messages, dates, and sex.  This was a short 6 month relationship, there is no doubt in my mind, she figured out I was smarter than her an wasn't going to play her games.  Hence the three years of no contact, stonewalling, silent treatment, whatever is the term of the day.

I think steelwork, and please don't get mad, I think this is all an excuse for people with PD's.

I'm not mad--not at all! I think we just don't agree is all, and that's fine.

I was just taking a crack at it to see if I could help you understand the things that were confusing you about her behavior at the end.
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« Reply #18 on: February 11, 2016, 11:44:25 AM »

jonathan525,  

emotional immaturity is a hallmark of BPD and other personality disorders. of course, emotional immaturity is not unique to personality disorders, but i dont see where thats "an excuse for people with PD's" or where "phone calls, texts, private messages, dates, and sex" have anything to do with emotional maturity. can you elaborate on that?
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« Reply #19 on: February 11, 2016, 11:52:08 AM »

My theory is, she went back to her ex, I have no proof.  But the break up was so bad that if she found a new man, as in, not her ex, but someone else, she would have rubbed it in my face.  She didn't, that is why I think she went back to her separated ex, it would be embarrassing to tell me she went back to a deadbeat.  But I know, and my therapist admits that they won't last.  I wish it would for their son's sake. 
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« Reply #20 on: February 11, 2016, 11:54:32 AM »

I know my ex is embarrassed about the person he's in a relationship with now. I'm sure that's a part of the picture in my case as well.
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Jonathan Ricciardi
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« Reply #21 on: February 11, 2016, 11:55:00 AM »

once removed, the point is these people are emotionally immature, they're emotionally immature when they start a relationship too, and continue it right? So if that is the case, then anybody who ever dated these people is shmuck?
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« Reply #22 on: February 11, 2016, 12:01:46 PM »

Apollo, I'm new to this, and from my understanding through cousiling and homework, very few are diagnosed strictly with BPD, they have other illnesses and traits.

I totally agree with you that my ex showed complete BPD during our relationship.  However, if someone is mature enough to get into a relationship, date, then why the immaturity during breakup?  Its very contradictory.

Jonathan525,

You bring up a good point. I will ask you this about her in the beginning of the relationship: was she indeed emotionally mature in the beginning? For example, did she come on too strong, did the relationship move at breakneck speed at her beckoning, was she overly communicative---diverging private information too quickly, was there talk of marriage, children, etc. early on in the relationship, were you her everything right from the get go, was sex easily and quickly accomidated, was there black/white thinking on her part, etc? If the answer is yes to some of those, I'd say that that points to her emotional immaturity right from the beginning. As I stated earlier, if you ex is afflicted with BPD, there is a disorder running in the background driving her actions, a disorder she doesn't control. The emotional immaturity is built in because she was developmentally arrested at a very young age. She never formed an autonomous self.

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« Reply #23 on: February 11, 2016, 12:08:30 PM »

She showed about 90% of the things you listed.  I know many couples who start out that way and get married, and it last, getting to know someone in a new relationship is always a whirlwind.

You're starting to make me feel stupid, because I fell for it.

Again if they're emotionally immature, that of a 3 year old, they would never get into relationships. 
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« Reply #24 on: February 11, 2016, 12:16:20 PM »

If you are stupid, then welcome to Stupidtown!

As you said, many relationships start out thrillingly. And then they calm down. So there's nothing stupid about getting caught up in a thrilling new relationship. And then, once in it, if you've bonded with that person, you'll make allowances and adjustments for the lack of calming-down in this one, and if you're like me, that will be especially true because of the almost narcotic quality of the adoration you're getting. And if you're like me, you might have issues in your past that made you especially vulnerable to the adoration, and then especially driven to "fix" your lover's loneliness, insecurity, trouble thinking straight at times--to redress all the terrible things that happened to him/her in his/her past, etc. And you might find his/her eccentricities attractive, even--unconventional.

Please don't beat yourself up. It may seem like a useless bromide right now, but this is an opportunity to learn more about yourself.
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« Reply #25 on: February 11, 2016, 12:17:12 PM »

I would go so far as to say emotional immaturity is the number one most commonly shared trait seen on these boards.

My observation as well.  And we don't even realize it.  It's hard to see something like that in ourselves.  Like attracts like.
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« Reply #26 on: February 11, 2016, 12:17:45 PM »

once removed, the point is these people are emotionally immature, they're emotionally immature when they start a relationship too, and continue it right? So if that is the case, then anybody who ever dated these people is shmuck?

She showed about 90% of the things you listed.  I know many couples who start out that way and get married, and it last, getting to know someone in a new relationship is always a whirlwind.

You're starting to make me feel stupid, because I fell for it.

Again if they're emotionally immature, that of a 3 year old, they would never get into relationships.  

a shmuck? hardly Smiling (click to insert in post). i think there is some confusion here as to what constitutes "emotional immaturity". emotional immaturity does not preclude an ability to get in, or even, necessarily, have a lasting relationship. it happens all the time.

emotional maturity has to do with consistency of emotions. in a romantic relationship, it has to do with the ability to face obstacles and grow as a result. it has to do with the ability to see your partner as a whole, with both flaws and positive qualities. people with BPD lack a stable sense of self, as well as an unstable sense of those around them. thoughts and feelings are fleeting and generally unsustainable. that doesnt mean youre a shmuck or that you were conned or that it was all a game. it is all very real, and intensely strong for a person with BPD, sometimes too strong; sadly, it is not sustainable.
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« Reply #27 on: February 11, 2016, 12:26:12 PM »

I hate to say this, it gets more confusing.  Again I'm 46, I wanted this relationship to work.  I did everything imaginable to make it work.  I was never, ever mean to her till she dumped. 

I go back to my original post, that these people know what they're doing. 

Do they watch a family member die and think nothing of it?

Do they watch a person get beheaded on the news and think nothing of it?

I don't buy that at 43 years old she has no idea what she is doing.  It is nearly impossible to go through life and not feel emotions.
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« Reply #28 on: February 11, 2016, 12:31:27 PM »

jonathan525, emotional immaturity is not an absence of emotions; i think you are confused here. people with BPD feel emotions very intensely, often, indeed, too intensely. emotional immaturity does not equate to a mindless unfeeling zombie who has no idea "what theyre doing".

it is confusing, i understand. keep reading, posting, and asking questions. things will make better sense with time.
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     and I think it's gonna be all right; yeah; the worst is over now; the mornin' sun is shinin' like a red rubber ball…
cosmonaut
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Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 1057



« Reply #29 on: February 11, 2016, 12:37:26 PM »

Sorry but they know what their doing

Perhaps an analogy might help to better understand.  Like all analogies it has it's limitations, but I think it might better explain the state of mind that pwBPD seem to experience when dysregulated.

pwBPD experience extreme emotions.  I mean extreme.  Like you and I probably can't really understand.  Emotions that are overwhelming - more than they can stand.  So, they have to stop the emotions in the best way they can.  It's a matter of self preservation - the most powerful instinct we have.

Think of a dysregulating pwBPD as a drowning person.  A drowning person is certainly aware that they are drowning to the point that it's all they can think about.  Getting that next breath of air is the focus of their every thought.  It is a fight for survival.  A drowning person will climb on top of another person in a desperate attempt to survive.  In is at a deeply instinctual level.  It is not something they are conscious of the consequences at the time.  They will even climb on top of someone they love.  When I was a teenager, I became certified as a lifeguard.  One of the most important things that lifeguards are taught is this rule.  It is extremely important that a lifeguard take steps to protect themselves in how they approach and rescue a drowning person in order that they are not both pulled under.

Can you imagine now how an impulsive action to climb on top of a rescuer isn't something that is exactly thought through?  It is an instinctual, knee jerk reaction.  It's not planned.  They may feel unimaginably guilty afterwards, but at the time survival is all that mattered.  I think this is similar to what many pwBPD experience when dysregulating.  Their behaviors are highly impulsive.  They are snap decisions to stave off overwhelming emotions.  One of the most notable aspects of BPD is profound shame, and many pwBPD feel extraordinary guilt about how they behave sometimes.  But they just can't stop themselves at the time.  One of the most important aspects of treating pwBPD is awareness - training their minds to be aware of these sorts of situations so their conscious mind can intervene and redirect the response to a more healthy one.
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