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Before you can make things better, you have to stop making them worse... Have you considered that being critical, judgmental, or invalidating toward the other parent, no matter what she or he just did will only make matters worse? Someone has to be do something. This means finding the motivation to stop making things worse, learning how to interrupt your own negative responses, body language, facial expressions, voice tone, and learning how to inhibit your urges to do things that you later realize are contributing to the tensions.
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bated
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« on: August 27, 2020, 11:00:39 PM »

You can read my background in my post history and have been in an on again/off again relationship with dBPD.  What I have noticed there are lots of questions that get repeatedly asked and there are lots of long-winded answers.  Consider this a quick start guide to relationships with a BPD.

1) Why did (s)he leave me?
Because you have somehow triggered the BPDs fear of abandonment either directly e.g. you threatened to leave or indirectly e.g. you did not answer the phone or respond to a text message.

My experience is it is very easy to trigger this my BPD ex left me because I did not buy her an expensive enough gift for Christmas.  This triggered her fear of abandonment, and caused her to devalue me (read on).

2) But (s)he is my soulmate ...
Yes, it feels that way because people with BPD will typically idealize you, and will quickly make you feel like you have found your soulmate.

I experienced this first hand - it felt like she could read my mind. She was loving, affectionate, best sex I have ever had, etc etc

3) Why does (s)he hate me so much now?
It is called splitting (or black and white thinking).  A BPD person does not think in shades of grey, you are either all good or all bad, there is no in between.  It is a self protection mechanism which helps the BPD devalue you and detach.  Think about it if you were able to instantly hate someone you loved it would be much easier to let go.

Happened to me many times.  Once I suggested that we stay at home over the weekend rather than have a staycation in a hotel, so that we could save some money.  This triggered her, and resulted in her devaluing me (aka splitting me black) and immediately going back to a rich ex who would pay for the staycation.  True story.

4) Will (s)he come back?
The million dollar question. The short answer is, yes, if you want it and are prepared to wait.  

My experience, is that they tend to come back when you least expect it.  I asked my ex about this and she said that she would feel huge amounts of shame, when she broke up with me, which would cause her to do impulsive things, which she would end up regretting.  Note people with BPD sometimes dissociate, to prevent them from "feeling" the emotions ... read on.

5) Will s(he) get better?
The 10 million dollar question.  The short answer is, no, this is a severe mental illness without a magical cure.  There are "treatments" such as DBT or schema therapy that teach coping skills, but that is all that they provide.

My ex has been in DBT seriously for about a 2 years.  I have noticed improvements, for example she is much better at communicating her feelings, but the next trigger is only as far as the next stressful event.

6) Why is (s)he so distant?
(S)he is probably dissociating or starting to devalue you.  Dissociation?  You know when you drive home after work and when you get home, and you can't remember the drive home. Yes, that is what dissociating is like, but imagine being able to do it with a relationship instead of a drive home.  This protects BPDs from feeling emotion, but feeling the emotions is simply delayed and eventually the BPD experiences intense emotional pain.

7) Will I get closure?
This is the 100 million dollar question.  The short answer is no.  The reason BPD people break up with you is most likely nothing to do with you, but rather everything to do with the mental illness which is BPD.  They have the ability to cut you out of their life and move on immediately to someone else.  This is because they have BPD and this should be your closure.

My experience is that while you believe there is still hope for a relationship with someone with BPD, you will cling on to that idea and will not let go of them.  To move on you need to convince yourself that there is no hope.  Until you do that you will not be able to let go.

My ex has never given me closure after a break up, ever!

8 Should I get back with my exBPD?
This should be the billion dollar question!  The problem is nobody likes the answer to this question. No!

My experience with each recycle (aka h00ver), that they idealize you far less.  You get to see and experience more of the BPD symptoms.

9 How do I get over my BPD ex?
This should be the trillion dollar question and the answer is actually quite simple.  The person you fell in love does not exist. Yes, read that again.  You have done nothing wrong, there is nothing you could do to prevent what happened.  BPD is a mental illness which you can't cure.

I have been there.  It is incredibly painful and you will probably go through a period of depression.  Speak to a therapist who actually understands what BPD is.  Speak to a trusted friend - my friend helped me to see how my ex was using and manipulating me.

Getting over someone with BPD is not easy because of the idealization and the lack of closure. My advice is to watch lots of YouTube videos on getting over your ex with BPD.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2020, 11:12:18 PM by bated » Logged
legalboxers
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« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2020, 11:13:50 PM »

This helps me. I’m hoping she don’t come back. But this was my 5 month of agonizing pain. It’s an empty shell feeling. Its exactly to the ‘T’ of what I’ve been through
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bated
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2020, 12:28:58 AM »

This helps me. I’m hoping she don’t come back. But this was my 5 month of agonizing pain. It’s an empty shell feeling. Its exactly to the ‘T’ of what I’ve been through

I hear you.  What I have found to help is every time I catch myself thinking of her, I tell myself to STOP.  I dont always remember to do it but it does help.  Also, if you feel anxious, dont try to fight it.  Just acknowledge it and tell yourself that you are feeling anxious. This really helped me and often stopped my anxiety in its tracks.
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legalboxers
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« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2020, 06:32:35 AM »

@bated it’s beyond anxiety. I read this and I have not been asleep. Was watching YouTube videos about this all night I feel as if I’ve been robbed. Like I mentioned I’ve deal with worse crap in my life with my father when he was alive, bullies at work and in school, but this is a different animal. It hit me in the knees and head and I am down. With this covid stuff going on (I’m in NYC) so it’s on my mind and very prevalent. My whole issue with all of this is the plans she made for my birthday and Christmas. I don’t have anything in my life, I take care of my mom who is 85, the stuff she said was like my light at the end of the tunnel only to have that light turned off
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bated
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« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2020, 08:55:36 AM »

@legalboxers it is hard, not going to deny that.  What really help me with sleeping was listening to meditation and/or positive affirmation videos on YouTube.  Here are a few good examples:

https://youtu.be/9HuUtshnOEA
https://youtu.be/IrY_b_teSX8

What I would do is watch on my laptop and turn off autoplay and dim the screen so that when I fell asleep, I would not be woken.  Listening to a soothing voice worked really well for me and I would eventually fall asleep.

I would also listen to audible books and set the sleep timer.

Hope this helps!
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legalboxers
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« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2020, 09:15:46 AM »

@bated: I havent slept last night. I was reading this all night. Its scary and sobering. I may use the 2nd youtube link to help me. With all I have been through the past 2 years, I did not need this
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bated
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« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2020, 01:31:55 PM »

The one other FAQ I would like to add

10) (S)he really opened up and was vulnerable with me and declared undying love ...
The alarm bells should start ringing immediately when this happens.  People with BPD have a big fear of being engulfed by you.  Just when you think things are going well, is when you are devalued and discarded.

This happened to me and you can read it about it on my previous posts.  She declared how much she loved me at night, and the next day broke up with me and completely rejected me.  She immediately went back to an ex.

a quote from someone with BPD that really helped me:

As a woman who has BPD, interpersonal relationships have proven to be next to impossible for me. And while I do have positive characteristics that people are drawn to; a friendly disposition, killer hair and a pretty smile, I also have all the fear of abandonment issues, insecurity, low self esteem, etc that defines this nasty disorder. So. I am a good actress. I can appear strong, confident, and secure in who I am. I can make you laugh, listen to you talk about your hopes and dreams, tell you things I think you would want to hear. But honestly, I’m not doing these things for you. I’m doing them for me. Oh! How I don’t want to be alone! I so want you to love me. Pathetic, I know. But I’m not able to keep up the facade for more thanv6 months or so. And even if you are the nicest, kindest, most thoughtful man I’ve ever been with, it’s not going to matter because my insecurities will rear their ugly head and I won’t be able to trust you. You could be the best lover. You could say you love me 3 times a day, you could do all kinds of little things to show me that you love me, but I won’t believe you. Not only that, but I will begin to believe you are lying to me, or secretly making fun of me or chasing other women. I will start a passive aggressive campaign to hurt you so you know what it feels like. I’ll do these things because I haven’t been able to learn how to love myself. All the positive attributes I had previously portrayed vanish into thin air, and from start to finish (1–7 months) I manage to estrange yet another man from my life. I’ve been in therapy for years trying to adapt new ways of thinking. And even though I so long to be healthy, I have come to accept my limitations and stay out of romantic relationships. I’m so tired of hurting…myself and others. The cool thing I’ve gotten from therapy is recognizing that It’s not that I pick the wrong men, but mostly it’s that I have no business even attempting to have another relationship with a man until I can learn to live and forgive myself. By then, I probably won’t even want one. Lol.

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legalboxers
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« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2020, 02:15:20 PM »

@bated...#10... that was her..right to the letter...*sigh*...
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« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2020, 05:25:42 PM »

Hey bated!

Quick question... you say you two have broken up many times - at this point were they really break ups or was "breaking up"  normalized as they way you solve (actually can't solve) problems?

Are you "broken up" now?

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bated
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« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2020, 06:44:13 PM »

Quick question... you say you two have broken up many times - at this point were they really break ups or was "breaking up"  normalized as they way you solve (actually can't solve) problems?

The first time we broke up I did not know she had BPD.  The second time I knew and was the one to suggest she might have BPD.  It resulted in her getting a diagnosis of BPD.  The third, fourth, fifth, and I think the sixth time were probably when it became normalized.

Are you "broken up" now?

We are broken up now and it is as a result of her devaluing me and accusing me of being an addict (completely untrue I hasten to add).  I have made the decision to move on, but I have learnt a lot about BPD and hope others can benefit from my experiences and intense emotional agony and pain!).
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grumpydonut
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« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2020, 07:42:28 AM »

Thanks Bated. I am at a low atm, and that was very nice to read.
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legalboxers
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« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2020, 08:16:01 AM »

@grumpydonut @bated you folks ok?
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bated
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« Reply #12 on: August 29, 2020, 12:21:52 PM »

@grumpydonut @bated you folks ok?

@legalboxers I am good thanks.  This is not my first rodeo when it comes to BPD as I have had 3 years of this but I have decided no more.  I will not take her back no matter how much she pleads or tries to love bomb me.

It is not easy but you have to let yourself go through the grieving process.
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legalboxers
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« Reply #13 on: August 29, 2020, 01:33:34 PM »

@bated sadly it is mine. I am coping.. 1 month.. but Im coping. Im not taking her back...under any circumstances.
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brighter future
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« Reply #14 on: August 31, 2020, 08:06:45 AM »

The one other FAQ I would like to add

10) (S)he really opened up and was vulnerable with me and declared undying love ...
The alarm bells should start ringing immediately when this happens.  People with BPD have a big fear of being engulfed by you.  Just when you think things are going well, is when you are devalued and discarded.

This happened to me and you can read it about it on my previous posts.  She declared how much she loved me at night, and the next day broke up with me and completely rejected me.  She immediately went back to an ex.

a quote from someone with BPD that really helped me:

And even though I so long to be healthy, I have come to accept my limitations and stay out of romantic relationships. I’m so tired of hurting…myself and others. The cool thing I’ve gotten from therapy is recognizing that It’s not that I pick the wrong men, but mostly it’s that I have no business even attempting to have another relationship with a man until I can learn to live and forgive myself. By then, I probably won’t even want one. Lol.



Thanks so much for this post, bated. It was a huge help to me, especially the testimonial that you posted from the woman that has BPD. The part of her testimonial where she said "I have no business even attempting to have another relationship with a man until I can learn to live and forgive myself" hit very close to home for me. My uBPD ex-g/f sought treatment for her issues for 3-4 months during our nearly two year relationship. What this woman said in her testimonial is exactly what my ex'es psychologist told her in therapy (that she had no business being in a committed relationship). According to her, she told the psychologist that she "couldn't lose me" and "had to try to make things work" while she fixed herself. She quit therapy a couple of months after that, and I noticed a steady decline in her condition 4-5 months after leaving therapy. We broke up about 10-11 months after she left therapy. She cried out for help and said she needed to return to therapy several times but never did.

She professed her undying love for me right up until the very end as well and kept asking for engagement/marriage. There was some bizarre and flighty behavior mixed in there as well in the 1-2 weeks leading up to the breakup. One Tuesday in early April she showed up at my house to give me the "either we get married or I'm out" ultimatum. I told her we needed to wait to sort out emotional baggage first before making that commitment. She disagreed. Two weeks later she was out rebounding with the guy that she rebounded with a short while after she left her ex-husband. She dumped this guy to start dating me about six weeks into their relationship, and I didn't find out about him until she told me about it 4 weeks into our relationship. She's been with him going on 4 months now, and I've been told she is hitting him up for marriage. I'm sure she's wanting to get him hooked before her mask comes off and he figures out who she really is. It all seems so crazy sitting here and looking back on all of this. What an awful illness this is and all of the people that it hurts.

I wish you well.

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bated
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« Reply #15 on: August 31, 2020, 10:38:23 AM »

Thanks so much for this post, bated. It was a huge help to me ...

@brighter future - So many people on this site have had almost the identical experience when it comes to pwBPD.  The way the relationship unfolds is extremely formulaic which is why I decided to do the post, with  straight talking, direct answers.  The answers are available on this site, but often in longwinded explanations which often go off topic or provide an indirect answer.

For people just finding out about BPD it can take months to get enough information to make an informed decision about whether you want to continue pursuing the relationship or not.  I hope that in some small way this post will help people like this, as well as helping the seasoned "veterans" who sometimes go down rabbit holes, or who get stuck in limbo waiting for the BPD to return to them.

The key for me is that BPD is a severe mental illness which cannot be cured.  It can be managed by coping strategies, but there is no magical cure.  Once you accept this, you are much better equipped to make a decision on whether you want to continue a relationship with the BPD or not.

I chose not to continue because my experience is that pwBPD tend to drag you down to their emotional level, resulting in lots of anxiety, stress, and unhappiness.

Best of luck.
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brighter future
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« Reply #16 on: September 01, 2020, 08:49:04 AM »

them.

I chose not to continue because my experience is that pwBPD tend to drag you down to their emotional level, resulting in lots of anxiety, stress, and unhappiness.

Best of luck.

Thanks again. Yes, I can relate to this as well. My uBPD ex-g/f's constant mood changes, financial issues, constantly changing viewpoints, and her children's issues were a huge source of stress and anxiety for me. Looking back, I should have set better boundaries earlier on in the relationship, or I should have gotten out of the relationship a long time before it actually ended. I just hoped and prayed that things would get better for her. Of course, they never did.

At the time of the breakup, one of the things my ex devalued me for was my anxiety. Like my counselor said, "Good grief. No wonder you were anxious dealing with all of these issues." It's funny how BPD people can't see (or even care) how their issues affect others. I will claim 1/2 of the responsibility, however, for staying in the situation.
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« Reply #17 on: September 04, 2020, 04:39:41 PM »

Excerpt
It's funny how BPD people can't see (or even care) how their issues affect others.

They can't because they are themselves in permanent torment, even when you don't see it and there is no space available to care about someone else. At the end of the day, a "relationship" with a pwBPD is extremely one-sided, they have needs to be satisfied and can't really reciprocate, they can fake it in the beginning but that's about it.
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« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2020, 10:17:22 PM »

That is some amazing Truth - well put I can relate to everything stated  - Thank you
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« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2020, 10:33:49 PM »

I have found one very simple way to quickly end a conversation with my soon to be ex wife of 20 years who has been diagnosed with BDP and recently  finished 6 weeks in a rehab after I kicked her out of the house for cheating.  I simply ask about a deeper issue in life - and the texts quickly end. Then in a few days or a week she will pop back up with a picture or a text but its always something very superficial - after 3 months seperation I can really see how much of a child she is at close to 50 yo. Simply put  Everything is viewed through a very self centered lens just like a child.
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