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Author Topic: Concerned about my child  (Read 376 times)
ConcernedMama

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What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Child
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 3


« on: August 13, 2022, 11:00:36 PM »

I do not know if my child has BPD or not. This is what I do know: I have a child (now in their early-mid 20's) who cut contact with me almost four years ago. This was after a phone conversation in which I asked if my child did not want to discuss something. If the answer was that they did not, my intent was to drop the subject and talk about something else. My child has a pattern of grossly misinterpreting the intent and love of others, including when others are trying to help the child, refusing to consider that the other person might have good intentions and be trying to help my child. This seems particularly true of my child's parents, but my child seems to view peer groups as unable to do any wrong. I thought that with BPD, a child would not be able to form deep connections with peers, but my child does seem to have these, even if I am not certain they are all healthy relationships. Certainly, some of the people are likely very good influences, but I have no idea what they believe about my child. Is that accurate that someone with BPD would not be able to form deep relationships with peers?
There is a history of medical issues that led to intense neuro-psych issues, including rages during which I was attacked by my child when my child was in late elementary school through high school. After the last time my child attacked me, my child wrote me a note telling me that my child loves me but does not trust me. This makes no sense to me, as my child is the one who attacked me when I was trying to keep them safe from going out in a heavy snowstorm where they stated they were going to walk in the snow and just die.
This child has now written to tell me not to contact them or they will contact the authorities or file a protective order. This was following an email I sent to inform them of a family member passing away unexpectedly and offering to cover their expenses if they would like to attend the memorial, as well as a reminder about college funds I had saved for my child if my child would like to use them. I would have called or gone in person to share such news, but my child has requested that I do not contact them, so I was trying to honor that.
My child told me I was emotionally abusive when my child was a teen and I restricted cell phone use for periods of time due to disrespect, not doing schoolwork, not keeping room in order, etc. My child stated I was isolating them and that this is emotional abuse. My child was permitted to engage with others in the home where we were staying out of town, the only restriction was cell phone use so my child would focus on completing schoolwork as my child was very behind in school and I was trying to get them on track before the next school year began. I think my child is also accusing me of other forms of abuse, none of which ever occurred.
I do not know if my child might be experiencing a defense mechanism, as my child may not be able to cope with the fact of the rages during which my child attacked me (hitting, kicking, biting, pulling my hair, clawing me, spitting on me, etc). I never blamed my child, as my child was ill with an inflamed brain and rages are not uncommon for children with this condition. However, my child may not see it that way and be struggling to process it, possibly making it easier for my child to cope if they flip the script and blame mom.
I've also been concerned that my child could possibly have BPD, given the behavior patterns I have seen. Is it possible for a late teen/young adult to be tested for BPD and be able to manipulate the test so it is negative? My child is pursuing a career in the mental health field, numerous therapists indicated my child is very manipulative in their late teens and I have to admit I also saw this behavior in my child and there were times I felt my child was emotionally blackmailing me with suicide threats. I lived in constant worry that my child would make another attempt (my child took an overdose as a teen). My child is very smart and could certainly research how to beat such a test if they wanted to do so.
To be clear, I do love my child very much, feel deeply hurt by this behavior that I do not begin to understand nor want, and am concerned about what is going on with my child that is causing such extreme behavior.
Thoughts?
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Our objective is to better understand the struggles our child faces and to learn the skills to improve our relationship and provide a supportive environment and also improve on our own emotional responses, attitudes and effectiveness as a family leaders
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What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Child
Relationship status: Married
Posts: 110


« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2022, 08:21:18 AM »

Hello and welcome, Concerned Mama. We, too, have been estranged from our adult child: his choice - some similar details to your story. I am glad you've found us.  The burden is lighter, and the information is helpful. Do you have other children? If so, how do they relate to their sibling? We have other adult children with whom we have healthy relationships. This helps. We spend our days giving love to those we work with (I'm a teacher, he's in public service), friends, etc. Bit by bit, we let go of what we can't control. The three C's help: we didn't cause it; we can't control it; we can't cure it.
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Confusion8

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What is your sexual orientation: Other
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Other
Relationship status: N\A
Posts: 7


« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2022, 06:39:27 PM »

Just a thought from a fellow sufferer:

People with BDP interact, feel and interpret the world in a different way. What I may feel is a deep connection with someone is actually not for the other person. It’s also about acceptance, if a group make someone feel genuinely accepted then they will gravitate toward its. I know I suffer with a complete sense of fear of abandonment so anyone who excepts you, you gravitate towards. 

People who have a fear of abandonment tend to lash out or become violent to sever that relationships first so they are in control because they fear you will do it eventually so at least that way they have control. Yes it sounds extreme between family and child but this is how it goes.

I would say that as hard as it is someone with BPD will always test the boundaries to ensure you aren’t going to abandon. It may be hard but saying I love you, I care for you and I understand and validate your emotion (even if you don’t) does a very long way. You may have to come across as over loving to make sure they feel it, I know I have a complete hatred for myself most of them time so you do seem needy, telling them they are amazing all the time is never too much praise. Also shouldn’t be afraid to put out behaviour that is not ok but you just have to phrase in the right way. I love you, I won’t ever stop but I would appreciate you doing this etc.

Wishing you all the best for you and your family
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ConcernedMama

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What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Child
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 3


« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2022, 06:22:50 PM »

Hello and welcome, Concerned Mama. We, too, have been estranged from our adult child: his choice - some similar details to your story. I am glad you've found us.  The burden is lighter, and the information is helpful. Do you have other children? If so, how do they relate to their sibling? We have other adult children with whom we have healthy relationships. This helps. We spend our days giving love to those we work with (I'm a teacher, he's in public service), friends, etc. Bit by bit, we let go of what we can't control. The three C's help: we didn't cause it; we can't control it; we can't cure it.
Thanks for your response. I do not have other children but can see where it might help ease the pain if I did. I miss her and worry for her.
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ConcernedMama

Offline Offline

What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Child
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 3


« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2022, 06:25:29 PM »

Just a thought from a fellow sufferer:

People with BDP interact, feel and interpret the world in a different way. What I may feel is a deep connection with someone is actually not for the other person. It’s also about acceptance, if a group make someone feel genuinely accepted then they will gravitate toward its. I know I suffer with a complete sense of fear of abandonment so anyone who excepts you, you gravitate towards. 

People who have a fear of abandonment tend to lash out or become violent to sever that relationships first so they are in control because they fear you will do it eventually so at least that way they have control. Yes it sounds extreme between family and child but this is how it goes.

I would say that as hard as it is someone with BPD will always test the boundaries to ensure you aren’t going to abandon. It may be hard but saying I love you, I care for you and I understand and validate your emotion (even if you don’t) does a very long way. You may have to come across as over loving to make sure they feel it, I know I have a complete hatred for myself most of them time so you do seem needy, telling them they are amazing all the time is never too much praise. Also shouldn’t be afraid to put out behaviour that is not ok but you just have to phrase in the right way. I love you, I won’t ever stop but I would appreciate you doing this etc.

Wishing you all the best for you and your family

Thanks for your response. It's interesting that you mention validation. She asked me to validate her feelings a few years ago, but they were not based in reality and I didn't want to push her further into thinking that was not accurate and seemed to be making her life harder.
I wish I had the opportunity; however, she has chosen to cut all ties with me at this point, so I do not have the option to contact her.
It seems this is a very difficult thing for the person who has it to live with, also. Know that you are valuable, just as you are. I wish you all the best, also.
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