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Author Topic: BPD Mom going through cancer  (Read 102 times)
hi77

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What is your sexual orientation: Confidential
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Parent
Relationship status: separated
Posts: 4


« on: May 04, 2021, 04:21:51 PM »

Hi. First time here. I just am looking for insight and advice at this time. My mom has been very emotionally abusive to me since a very young age. I won't get into specifics but the verbal abuse caused me to start self harming, stop eating and attempt at ending my life. She doesn't know this. When I left for college obviously things got better. I moved back to my home state and then lived on my own for two years, and started therapy and medication management for trauma, depression and anxiety. I am in the healthiest place I have ever been, but I had to move back in with my parents due to my mom being diagnosed with breast cancer. It has been really rough and the verbal abuse comes in waves, but I kept staying because she is sick and the guilt was killing me. She continued to escalate with the things she was saying and it got to the point where I asked for space and was going to live with my friend for a couple of days and she kicked me out and told me to never come back on top of a million other hurtful things. I just feel so sad. She won't allow me to see their dog either and that really got me. I don't know really what else to say, but life is just feeling really hard and I don't know what else to do because holding boundaries with her just made her so much more aggressive. Anyway, thanks for your time.
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beatricex
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What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Other
Relationship status: Married
Posts: 252


« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2021, 08:40:17 PM »

hello hi77,
I'm glad you decided to post.  Congratulations for doing the hard work, and for being in the healthiest place, there is a lot to celebrate there.  I'm happy for you.

As for the current situation, I feel you are very brave.  Totally understandable you got attached to your Mom's dog too. 

 Virtual hug (click to insert in post)

Please continue to post here, if you are comfortable doing so.

b
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pursuingJoy
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Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Inlaw
Posts: 929



« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2021, 10:50:06 AM »

hi77, I'm so sad with you, especially now that you can't see the dog. BPD's have an uncanny way of knowing what will hurt us most. It's typical that boundaries made her more aggressive - if you fear abandonment, boundaries feel like rejection.

What a tough situation.  Virtual hug (click to insert in post) Please know that we're here and we'll support you in any way that we can. Has your mom's diagnosis stirred up some old feelings for you? Big changes do that to me.

In the meantime, get back to that healthy place and find your footing. BPD can drain us non's. You are deserving of happiness and peace and the immense joy life can bring...also, in the long run, the happy and healthy you is the one that's best for her, even if she can't see that yet.

I have kids your age and I can't imagine what you're going through. Here's a mom hug for you, ok? You can do this. I'm so proud of you for coming to see her in a moment of need AND setting a limit and letting her know you needed to stay with a friend for a few days. That's incredibly mature and loving of you, on all fronts. Great job. 
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   Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? ~CS Lewis
hi77

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What is your sexual orientation: Confidential
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Parent
Relationship status: separated
Posts: 4


« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2021, 09:56:47 AM »

Thank you both for your responses. Luckily I’ve been in therapy for the struggles I had as a result of her diagnosis and the way it impacted me as a teenager. I see her behaviors and understand them, but I can’t get past the guilt of leaving her regardless of the awful and intentionally hurtful things she’s said and done. My dad is also an Angel, the most supportive and just has worked so much to take care of her medical bills and I’m worried about his health. Which was of course one of the things she tried to “put on me” while I was packing my things up. Currently, I’m helping him at work to help relieve some stress in an environment that is mentally safe for me. I can’t shake the feeing that I STILL just want a normal relationship with my mom, even though logically I know it will never be what I am hoping and dreaming for. That feels like something I may need to continue to work through in therapy but if anyone has any advice on taking extended breaks from a parent or loved one with BPD and slowly reintroducing them into their lives with strict boundaries, I am all ears. But mostly I want to thank you both for replying and helping me feel heard in a time where nobody around me understands. I am forever grateful.
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hi77

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What is your sexual orientation: Confidential
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Parent
Relationship status: separated
Posts: 4


« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2021, 09:59:43 AM »

Some of the things she has said have stirred up old feelings but I’m able to cope (THANK GOD FOR THERAPY). Thank you for the Mom hug I appreciate it more than you know.
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pursuingJoy
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« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2021, 11:30:39 AM »

if anyone has any advice on taking extended breaks from a parent or loved one with BPD and slowly reintroducing them into their lives with strict boundaries, I am all ears.

I went low contact with my family for about two years after intensive therapy where I realized the unhealthy dynamics driven by my NPD dad. I needed the time to heal and process. When I started opening the door, it was intentional, measured and with guidance from my therapist. It was replying to a phone call. It was a visit where I went to see them (and could leave at any moment if I was overwhelmed). At times it meant confronting former behavior and explaining the harm it had done and why it wouldn't be tolerated going forward (I didn't cover the whole list - no point - I had to prioritize).

Sometimes the family was so relieved to see me, they acted like they were walking on eggshells around me. Sometimes my boundaries made them angry and they lashed out.

I've also gone low contact with my BPD mother in law after a series of boundary busting behaviors. When I started contact again, I stuck to the following:

1. Visits were structured and full of activities. For some reason, down-time to chit chat is a recipe for disaster.
2. Phone calls are only through my husband because she can twist what I say.
3. I've set a boundary that she can't stay overnight in my home. My home is my safe space and I want to communicate clearly that there are limits to what I can offer. So far, this is insulting to her so she refuses to visit us.
4. I've offered to go to counseling with her. Again, this is insulting to her and she refuses.   

I hope this gives you some ideas. Read other threads here - ProudDad12's threads might be interesting to you.
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   Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? ~CS Lewis
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