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Poll
Question: Which of these characteristics have you had periodically throughout your life?
Identity issues: Markedly impoverished, poorly developed, or unstable self-image, often associated with excessive self-criticism; chronic feelings of emptiness; dissociative states under stress.
Self-direction issues: Instability in goals, aspirations, values, or career plans.
Empathy issues: Compromised ability to recognize the feelings and needs of others associated with interpersonal hypersensitivity (i.e., prone to feel slighted or insulted); perceptions of others selectively biased toward negative attributes or vuln
Intimacy issues: Intense, unstable, and conflicted close relationships, marked by mistrust, neediness, and anxious preoccupation with real or imagined abandonment; close relationships often viewed in extremes of idealization and devaluation and alt
Emotional lability: Unstable emotional experiences and frequent mood changes; emotions that are easily aroused, intense, and/or out of proportion to events and circumstances.
Anxiousness: Intense feelings of nervousness, tenseness, or panic, often in reaction to interpersonal stresses; worry about the negative effects of past unpleasant experiences and future negative possibilities; feeling fearful, apprehensive, or thr
Separation insecurity: Fears of rejection by – and/or separation from – significant others, associated with fears of excessive dependency and complete loss of autonomy.
Depressivity: Frequent feelings of being down, miserable, and/or hopeless; difficulty recovering from such moods; pessimism about the future; pervasive shame; feeling of inferior self-worth; thoughts of suicide and suicidal behavior.
Impulsivity: Acting on the spur of the moment in response to immediate stimuli; acting on a momentary basis without a plan or consideration of outcomes; difficulty establishing or following plans; a sense of urgency and self-harming behavior under
Risk taking: Engagement in dangerous, risky, and potentially self-damaging activities, unnecessarily and without regard to consequences; lack of concern for one’s limitations and denial of the reality of personal danger.
Hostility: Persistent or frequent angry feelings; anger or irritability in response to minor slights and insults.
None of the above

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Author Topic: SELF ASSESSMENT | Wonder if you have Borderline Personality Disorder traits?  (Read 8139 times)
EarthMaiden

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« Reply #30 on: August 15, 2011, 06:11:00 AM »

I am wanting to figure out whether or not i have BPD as well as my mother and sister.

I have read a lot of things on and off of this site, but i am concerned that i might have BPD too. I know that i work on myself and take responsibility for my actions. I also know that i do not treat people or situations the way that my mother did, but i could use some more insight into all of this. I see similar traits in myself as descriptions of BPD portray - and in my relationship with my husband i see the drama triangle playing out... .

I am going through some hard things with my husband right now (he has been living away and is about to move back in.) So i have a lot on my plate at the moment. The reason why my husband moved out was due to his own emotional issues, which he is (thankfully) seeing a counselor now and is willing (finally) to see a counselor with me for our marriage too... .BUT - i know that i make mistakes and i want to be the best i can be as he is transitioning into coming back into the house. I feel like if i could get a hold of my own shortcomings and work through things like this with my therapist, then i am only going to strengthen things. I suppose the way i see it is that i dont want to be contributing to negative emotional interactions. I know that knowing whether or not i have BPD will not fix anything, but i want to know so that it will help me develop my goals in a more productive way.

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« Reply #31 on: August 15, 2011, 06:35:32 AM »

It's a good thing to examine your own contributions and health.  

Here's a few links to discussions about BPD:

The Symptoms and Diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder [NEW]

Workshop - BPD: What is it? How can I tell?

Workshop - BPD: PTSD vs. BPD: What is the difference?

Have you considered seeing a counselor also?  Before marriage counseling, its often best that both individuals have their own therapy.  
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EarthMaiden

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« Reply #32 on: August 15, 2011, 06:44:34 AM »

I have been in counseling for almost 2 years now, and i have been diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder that really sprouted itself after having my second child. I definitely view myself as introspective, and have done a lot of work on my emotional IQ in therapy. I even feel like my therapist has been able to teach me tools to help me with mindfulness when i get to a point of severe anxiety. My husband refused to do counseling or marriage counseling until he was gone from the house for about a week. I am very glad that he is going now.
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MagentaOrchid
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« Reply #33 on: August 15, 2011, 07:01:55 AM »

If you are really concerned, the best thing to do would be to see a therapist with experience in PDs and trauma
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EarthMaiden

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« Reply #34 on: August 15, 2011, 07:26:06 AM »

how do i find one who has experience with that? I think that the people at my counselors office deal with that stuff too. I guess i just wanted to see which items relate to being an adult child of someone with BPD vs. someone with BPD themselves. I will just talk to my counselor about it i suppose. I was planning on doing that anyway, just wanted to read more myself.
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« Reply #35 on: August 15, 2011, 07:40:03 AM »

That's a good start to talk to your c.  If you want to find a specialist then you can talk to your insurance company.  Google.  Psychologytoday.com has a provider finder where you can search by specialists.

I really worried about being BPD myself... .for a long time.  Reading the symptoms, I saw alot of me (now, but mostly at earlier times in my life).  My t has a lot of experience with BPD, and has sworn to me I don't have it.  I still worried about it for a long time.  People say if you worry about it, it means you dont have it.  I have met alot of people with it (on another site).  I think, really, is if you have symptoms, and you aren't at all self-aware of your behaviors, then you are somewhat treatment resistant.  But I have met people with it who are worried about it.  Since children of people with BPD grow up with some of the traits, I think the most important thing is being self aware and working on those issues. 

I worry far less about the label people wear and more about their dedication to recovery.  It doesn't all fit in a neat little box with a label on each.  Being self aware and active in healing is what counts.
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Cordelia
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« Reply #36 on: August 15, 2011, 10:53:58 AM »

I agree with Magenta that the recovery process for someone with BPD and someone who grew up absorbing a lot of BPD mindsets and behaviors is not enormously different.  Working to become aware of your negative behavior patterns, and willing to experiment with ways of changing them, is the key, not the diagnosis.  Whatever your situation is, if you are willing to accept yourself and move forward with patient, positive change, you will be able to build a happy life!   
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« Reply #37 on: August 19, 2011, 08:45:57 AM »

Seems to me that the things you checked are what many children of borderlines feel.

The way I see it is many people will not speak up in any area of life because they do not want, they anticipate, CONFRONTATION. Discussions and resolving issues in a BPD or violent household usually means overreacting, unhealthy confrontation and putting someone on the defensive and all hell breaks lose.

So, I think the things you checked are simply the fall out of being a child of BPD parents and it's just a matter of practicing good (kind, non threatening) communication skills and taking risks.  It's really rather liberating to take the risk and say what you think and feel and want. It's even better when you get what you want.  It is really good when you don't get what you want and then you can make a decision based that rather than allowing unfavgorable situations to go on forever.  How can anyone get what they want if they can't say what they want and feel.  This is the fall out of being a child of BPD parents.  How many times have you said or someone said to you, "I am not a mind reader.  Tell me what you want".

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« Reply #38 on: August 19, 2011, 03:01:30 PM »

I was actually afraid that I had BPD, too.

But, my therapist, who does treat BPD's said that I was way to open to the fact that I might have it to be one.  Smiling (click to insert in post)

I also told her I thought I was co-dependent and she just smiled.

But, I have to think there is something wrong with me to have put up with this type of treatment from two BPD wives in a row.  I am definitely not dating anyone until I have it figured out, and fixed.
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« Reply #39 on: August 20, 2011, 08:59:08 AM »

Hey isilme

I think it is understandable to question yourself and your sense of identity when in these r/s. Perhaps even more so, if you have had parents that have also had BPD. The ground you stand on at times, would appear to be moving and changing.

I haven't had BPD parents (that I know of) definitely some dysfunction and over controlling though. Point being, that when I came out of my BPD r/s, I seriously thought omg I must have it also, as I am nearly as bad as him with how I would react to him... perhaps mirroring though... .I know BPD is stable instability and I kinda doubt whether that is so for my situation. I had unstable situations around me but was I unstable, thats the hard q, for my peace of mind I have considered going to a Psych just to say hey Im worried I was with someone that had BPD and I want you to assess me for peace of mind that I dont have it also.

so I say, go and see a professional if it is really concerning you. Only they can give you a concise answer via assessment for likelihood. Remember it is also a disorder that means stable instability (over a lifetime). I think awe can feel like we are going crazy when in these r/s as we don't get validated, it really can be a did that happen or was I imagining it scenario sometimes. So even when you know something happened if someone is undermiining you and claiming otherwise I think that can heighten a sense of self doubt ie the s__t maybe I am BPD one... .and anyone who has been in these r/s has had a sense of their own needs and neediness being heightened for one reason bc their needs aren't being met with a BPD 

If it makes you feel better though I have read many times on these boards people questioning whether they have BPD and Im sure there are even more that have thought it and not written it  Smiling (click to insert in post)
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blackandwhite
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« Reply #40 on: August 20, 2011, 10:00:32 AM »

Hi isilme,

Let me say first that you're on an important journey, and it's so great that you're asking these questions. Children from dysfunctional families usually arrive to adulthood with some messed up core beliefs, such as the ones you starred. Adult children of PD parents will have predictable messed up core beliefs--such as the ones you starred.  Smiling (click to insert in post) The main thing is to use the information to improve you life. Are you working with a therapist?

Like you, I have two PD parents. Early on in therapy I did a lot of core belief work, because again like you, I'd arrived in adulthood with beliefs about how the world works that were absolutely true based on my experience, but were dysfunctional. For example, one of my beliefs was "My needs aren't important. I can sacrifice myself." When I acted on that, my life didn't go too well. When I started to see the beliefs, challenge them, and change them, things went a whole lot better.

With a partner who reinforces your fears about your mental health (ALL children of mentally ill parents have fears about their own mental health; it's completely natural) you're going to need to work harder to get feedback you can trust. Please try not to take in your partner's views on this; he's not able to look at it objectively and seems to use it as part of his own issues. His opinions are not giving you any real information on this topic.

Seeing a professional who can work with you on those beliefs and also give you supportive feedback might be very helpful to you, if you're not already doing that.

A couple of books I'd recommend:



Surviving a Borderline Parent

An Adult Child's Guide to What's "Normal"




B&W

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« Reply #41 on: August 31, 2011, 11:02:37 PM »

I think we all have elements of BPD traits - BPD criteria is so broad that we could all fit into it somewhere but that does not make us BPD.

Can I suggest the book "A journey from abandonment to healing" - my childhood issues are all about abandonment.
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« Reply #42 on: September 13, 2011, 04:58:00 PM »

Thanks. I am reading Surviving a Borderline Parent right now, and looking a lot over these boards.  I never knew there were so many people with similar life experiences.  I know I should hope no one else ever had anything like this in their lives, but it is s little comforting to know I am not alone, and I am not completely crazy for feeling how I do. 

Also, I am using some of the tools on here to help defuse SO's rage incidents.  He has been improving on his own, knowing something is wrong with how easily and to what degree he gets frustrated, but never knew why.  I know better than to say, "You've got BPD traits," but I see now that making sure I am not invalidating his feelings goes a long way towards helping him not see me as the enemy during times of stress. 
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« Reply #43 on: September 21, 2011, 11:56:29 PM »

The ones I have had periodically in my life were these:

Depressivity: Frequent feelings of being down, miserable, and/or hopeless; difficulty recovering from such moods; pessimism about the future;  (I have had 2 times in my life where I would say I was depressed for an extended period of time - more than 2 months)

... .which of course led to:

Emotional lability: Unstable emotional experiences and frequent mood changes; emotions that are easily aroused, intense, and/or out of proportion to events and circumstances.

Hostility: Persistent or frequent angry feelings; anger or irritability in response to minor slights and insults. (especially when dealing with my DHs ex)

And I marked off: Risk taking: Engagement in dangerous, risky, and potentially self-damaging activities.   (But that's because I'm a huge fan of adrenaline stuff - bungee jumping, white water rafting, paintball, etc... .)

I didn't see anywhere anything about disturbed sleep patterns.  I guess it would fall into the realm of Depressivity?  I definitely have an issue with sleep.  I have a difficult time getting to sleep and if something wakes me up, I can't get back to sleep peacefully.  I've always had a bit of a hard time with this, but it's been exacerbated by shift work for years and stress, bouts of depression, etc... .

Even though I wouldn't consider myself 'depressed' right now, I am still labouring with sleep issues.

Marlo
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« Reply #44 on: September 24, 2011, 09:57:30 PM »

I feel like I used to display a lot of Borderline behaviors, and was generally really unhealthy, looked to others for validation and resented them when it wasn't enough, could not self-soothe, thrived on chaos, and was totally out of control emotionally.  Not just in my last relationship with the Borderline, but also in my previous big relationships (though there were other factors at work in those as well, including possibly NPD and addiction... .)

But as a result of being with BPD ex, the skills I had to use in order to cope with the relationship, and later to heal from it... .as a result I have for the most part gotten rid of those tendencies, and what remains, I am mindful of and able to manage without acting out in messed up ways.

So it's like... .maybe I was Borderline until I fell in love with a way more messed up Borderline?

Lately I've been thinking a lot about my high school boyfriend and feeling guilty about how awful I was. He wasn't perfect either, but still. I was over-the-top.

I ticked about half of them, though some of them haven't been an issue for awhile... .the relationship ones. I haven't been in a position to have a relationship for a long time. Last relationship was with BPDex and that ended for good two years ago.
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« Reply #45 on: September 24, 2011, 10:39:24 PM »

Yep-I was terrified I was a pwBPD. I was horrifically abused and tortured as a child by my father and older male siblings.

As a young adult I sought T to help me as I knew something was really wrong inside me. I hated myself, was filled with anxiety and kept at arms length anyone that genuinely cared for me.

There is recent research on ACES (adverse childhood experiences) and its impact on the brain and behaviors of adults that have gone through trauma. As I read the research... .well, lets just say, it was me, in a nutshell. No pun intended.

I entered into T at the age of 23 as I knew I was messed up inside. Tragically, the T was not only not licensed but created more harm than good. I was a mess, for many, many years as the T used hypnosis as a treatment. It was horrible, I would have horrific anxiety attacks, etc. and then go into T three times a week for hypnosis. I kept thinking the situation was hopeless and I would never feel full or happy inside. My life was a chaotic nightmare, and it was my inability to think only react. My thinking was so very skewed.

I entered into therapy with a different, licensed T and told her I feared I was BPD. As we worked through my life history and given how hard I worked, she assured me that I was not. Just pretty fragile and more like someone that was brain washed.

Two years later I am happy, secure and feel confident I can handle life. I am responsible, catch me when I behave in 'stinking thinking" and no longer believe life is hopeless. I am close to the folks that genuinely love me... and forgive those that have hurt me.

I am working on living with integrity and shoring up my r/s with my children.

Life is good.

C
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« Reply #46 on: September 27, 2011, 12:49:52 AM »

Ah those traits... .

BPD traits happen to fall under the general category of "HUMAN" and therefore it is not surprising to me that I have exhibited many, if not all, of those traits at some point in time. What sets all those traits apart from a diagnosis is to what DEGREE the traits invade a person's life and how intractable they are or aren't. My simple way of telling if there is a personality disorder or not is by one question: Did the person LEARN from experience? If yes, you all can breathe again. That doesn't mean we don't repeat the same behaviors, sometimes it takes a few times to learn a lesson.

That being said the mere fact I've picked some tumultuous relationships points to a need for:

1. Challenge. If it's too easy, I'm bored and uninspired. Give me the impossible and I'll PROVE I can do it! (except a BPD relationship of course!)

2. Chaos. What better way to self-induce adrenaline?

3. Risk. I thought I wasn't a gambler. I gambled every time I recycled a BPD relationship.

4. Pain. And I thought S&M involved whips and chains. Get yourself a BPD partner and you won't need to buy props.

5. Anger. Someone asked a long time ago "Why are you still with him?" after my 100th complaint... .and I said "So I have someone I can be mad at."

6. Ego. Easy to feel like the picture of mental health when partnered with a BPD.

7. Self-loathing. Also easy to feel like the ONLY person that could love me is the BPD. (Hmmm are we getting the NPD profile yet?)

8. Blame. See number five.

9. Recycling the past with the present. My parent's relationship came back to life with the one I reenacted with the BPD partner... .and I also got a good dose of what it must have been like to be my father when I was a rebellious, out-of-control teen. It came back to bite me in the butt with this relationship.

10. Identification. Hate to admit it but I was the BPDbf many years ago as many teens and young adults are when trying to find themselves. I was irritable, oppositional, destructive, stuck, and angry about it. I had no real moral code to stick to, and my identity changed with the color of my hair.I felt the world "owed me one" and made life miserable for people close to me. So the BPD felt familiar... .because he was an old chunk of me! I just did a good job of forgetting all that stuff a long time ago... .Smiling (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #47 on: September 27, 2011, 03:30:25 PM »

BPD traits happen to fall under the general category of "HUMAN" and therefore it is not surprising to me that I have exhibited many, if not all, of those traits at some point in time. What sets all those traits apart from a diagnosis is to what DEGREE the traits invade a person's life and how intractable they are or aren't. My simple way of telling if there is a personality disorder or not is by one question: Did the person LEARN from experience? If yes, you all can breathe again. That doesn't mean we don't repeat the same behaviors, sometimes it takes a few times to learn a lesson.

I totally agree.

As someone from a family riddled with mental health conditions I think it was inevitable I was going to have a few 'off' traits. I think we should embrace all elements of ourselves... .work on the not-so good-aspects yes... .but certainly not fear that those traits exist, else we risk getting into self-loathing territory.

Annie
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« Reply #48 on: October 25, 2011, 08:39:34 AM »

There is definitely something going on with me.  Getting married to two BPD wives in a row has shown me that that doesn't happen to anyone who is completely balanced mentally.

Also, reading up on BPD and other pd's has made me a lot more self aware about my own issues.  There is no doubt that I make my current BPD wife's issues worse at times.  I am embarrassed at how many times I know the right thing to do to ratchet down her emotional disregulation, and instead, I do the exact opposite, spinning what could have been contained into a mild episode, into a huge nuclear blowup.  A completely sane person just wouldn't do that.

I thought I might have BPD or NPD, and sometimes, I still wonder if I have a little of either or both.  I definitely have huge co-dependency issues, some major self-esteem issues, some depression periods, and a real problem with relationships.

I am going to therapy but am still just in the trying to tell my story phase with my T. 

I have also figured out that growing up in a family where any emotion was stifled, the word "love" was never used, and a domineering and rigid mother who has successfully controlled all four of her children from birthing to adulthood, did not do me any mental health favors.

I think that is what gives me the understanding and sympathy to stay with my BPD wife.  But, for the grace of God, there go I.  And, I know that it is really not her fault.

The thing that keeps me thinking of leaving,but staying so far, is that I can't decide if the relationship is making both of us better or worse in the mental health department.
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« Reply #49 on: December 30, 2011, 06:42:38 PM »

I understand what you mean.  My mother is NPD/AsPD, and I have a few traits of BPD (my main problem is black and white thinking). When I heard that I had traits of anything being remotely close to what my mother is, I almost hit the roof too!  I am absolutely nothing like my mother.  She is a malicious, cold, predatory woman who has no ability to empathize with others, while I'm very kind, giving, and loving.

I think that there is a spectrum as far as BPD goes. Some BPD sufferers really aren't the monsters that our mothers were.  Some of them are in great emotional pain, try their best, but fall short because of they have very little to work with.  Then there are others (my mother would be a good example here) who are very abusive, and don't even care about trying to be a good parent.  The result is the same: Children in pain, who usually grow up to be adults in pain. 

I understand why you would want to be nothing like your mother, and I'm sure that you aren't.  You are here, aware that you have some things to work on, and are doing what you have to do to improve yourself.  If your mother is like mine, she would never even admit to a problem like this, much less try to work on it.

Okay, back to your question:  I read somewhere (I think Randi Kreger wrote it) that a Queen/Witch BPD is probably actually a mix of BPD/NPD. 

Any thoughts?
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« Reply #50 on: December 31, 2011, 08:03:05 AM »

Please help me clear up some confusion I am having. I was raised by a queen/witch/some hermit and narcissistic mother. I was told by mental health professionals that I have "traits" of BPD. Reading Lawson's book, I surmise them to be waif-like but there are many waif-characteristics that I do not have.

It's interesting to note, too, that my therapist has helped me see that one of my sisters has waif-like characteristics, too, and my other sister has queen/witch/hermit characteristics like my mother. Thankfully no one is as extreme as my mother... .

How do you know if you are actually showing traits of BPD, or are just modeling behavior and act the way you are because you were raised by a person with BPD?  ?

Thanks in advance.
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« Reply #51 on: December 31, 2011, 11:49:44 AM »

Hi Tiredmommy2,

Thanks for your post. I'm sorry you had a similar experience, but I'm glad I'm not the only one! Sounds like you and I... .and our mothers... .are a lot alike.

Thankfully, my therapist explained the difference between having traits that are egocentric, like our mothers, vs. egodyscentric, I believe the word was, like ourselves. And that's why people like you and I can get better and people like our moms rarely seek treatment.

He also explained the spectrum to me. I don't understand why more books and articles make representation of the spectrum. I'm even beginning to wonder if my husband's therapist thinks I'm a waif, by certain remarks he has said to me that are not true. That would be unethical, since she doesn't know me. Anyway, I'm getting off target here... .

I'm glad you said that some BPD sufferers really aren't the monsters that our mothers were. That's what most people, however, think of when you say "BPD". We need to break that stigma somehow.

You described me to a T when you wrote: "Some BPD sufferers really aren't the monsters that our mothers were.  Some of them are in great emotional pain, try their best, but fall short because of they have very little to work with.  Then there are others (my mother would be a good example here) who are very abusive, and don't even care about trying to be a good parent.  The result is the same: Children in pain, who usually grow up to be adults in pain."

I wish every person in the mental health profession as well as every person who has a life with a BPD or one with BPD traits could read that. 

Yes, my mother is like yours... .would never admit to a problem like this or try to work on it.

Interesting... .yes I do believe my queen/witch BPD mother is also NPD. I haven't read Kreger's book, though.

Thank you so much.  Smiling (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #52 on: December 31, 2011, 12:16:18 PM »

Excerpt
I'm glad you said that some BPD sufferers really aren't the monsters that our mothers were. That's what most people, however, think of when you say "BPD". We need to break that stigma somehow.

I used to be guilty of this too!  When I first found this site, I just knew that my mother had BPD, and since she really was an abusive monster, I thought that everyone with BPD was similar to her.  How wrong I was!  After spending a lot of time here reading the posts of others who had the type of mothers who inflicted pain, but at least tried, I started to see that my mother was very, very different. The level of malevolence that she exhibits seems to be the exception rather than the rule; thankfully so, because I wouldn't wish a mother like this on anyone! 

Excerpt
I wish every person in the mental health profession as well as every person who has a life with a BPD or one with BPD traits could read that. 

I wish that everyone would understand this too... .My last T tried to insist that my mother did her best but didn't have much to work with. Ummm... .not quite.  I saw her "best" with my golden child brother, which still wasn't all that great, but it was a h*ll of a lot better than what I got from her. She seemed to hate me just for being born, and severely abused me just for being there. (I was very quiet and obedient so I really shouldn't have been too much of a bother to her) I spent my whole childhood and beyond trying to prove to her that she was wrong, that I wasn't as bad as she thought I was, but it never happened.  No matter what I did or didn't do, she never accepted me as being a decent person, and I've finally accepted that she never will.  NC all the way for me now.

Your mother may very well be NPD instead of BPD, or perhaps she could have both. Here is a thread where we were discussing the difference if you are interested: https://bpdfamily.com/message_board/index.php?topic=158119.0

BTW, I'm sorry that you have to deal with this. 

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ShadesofGray
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« Reply #53 on: December 31, 2011, 12:56:43 PM »

tiredmommy2,

My mom inflicted pain and I think tried in her own way, but it was more of denial type, blame the bad child, kind of try. Her level of malevolence seems to have matched your mother's. I assumed the majority of people with BPD were like this! I didn't realize she was the exception rather than the rule... .

I "fired" my last T when she tried to use positive psychology tactics on me by saying, "Your mother did the best she could" and "Your mother raised 3 girls; that's a lot of work." These two statements were the most painful things anyone could have said to me. It basically unvalidated everything I had been feeling. It gave my mother the excuse to be who she was. My mother never apologized for the way she treated me, and she never will.

I always felt that if my mother could treat my "golden child" sister one way, but me and my other sister differently, then she was making the choice to do so. How could one person be so evil and cruel toward one child, but so worshiping and loving to another... .

I, too, spent my entire childhood, and adulthood trying to prove her wrong. I spent my life trying to get some kind of love from her, by stifling my sense of individuality to be more like the golden child. I'm 42 and still trying to let myself be myself.

I'm quite sure my mother is both NPD and BPD, but I will check out the thread you posted.

I'm sorry you had to deal with your mother, too. But you seem like you are in such a healthy place now, and I'm happy for you.

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« Reply #54 on: December 31, 2011, 01:41:14 PM »

Excerpt
I "fired" my last T when she tried to use positive psychology tactics on me by saying, "Your mother did the best she could" and "Your mother raised 3 girls; that's a lot of work." These two statements were the most painful things anyone could have said to me. It basically unvalidated everything I had been feeling. It gave my mother the excuse to be who she was. My mother never apologized for the way she treated me, and she never will.

I don't blame you AT all... .My last T did this initially, and my initial reaction was to be too shocked to say anything.  During the next session, I told her that I didn't want to hear anything that remotely sounded like an excuse for my mother's behavior because I had spent over 30 years coming up with them myself.  She told me that I didn't have to agree with everything she said, so I accepted that and continued working with her.  I remember telling her about one particularly traumatic event, and she responded by telling me that my mother must have had a rough life.  I don't care what kind of life she had anymore!  I've had a "rough" life and don't abuse my children so enough already! I got so aggravated with her because of this (among a few other things) that I stopped going.  I was paying her good money to help me improve myself, not to make excuses for my mother's abuse.

Like you, my mother has NEVER apologized for the way that she treated me.  Back in my 20s, prior to knowing anything about PDs, I decided to try to talk to her about a couple of horrible things that she did, just looking for any sense of remorse.  There was nothing!  She twisted everything around to turn herself into the victim, then told me that the past was in the past. 

Excerpt
I always felt that if my mother could treat my "golden child" sister one way, but me and my other sister differently, then she was making the choice to do so. How could one person be so evil and cruel toward one child, but so worshiping and loving to another... .

This was my argument with the last T.  I told her that she proved that she was capable of better by the way that she treated my brother, which is the exact opposite of how she treated me.  She treated me like garbage by choice, not because she couldn't do any better... .Believe it or not, the T still didn't understand this, and stuck to her earlier statement that my mother did the best that she could.

I'm not as healthy as I seem, but thank you for the compliment! Laugh out loud (click to insert in post)  I have PTSD and some BPD traits that I'm aware of and working on.  Self-help DBT is helping somewhat.  Smiling (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #55 on: December 31, 2011, 02:46:30 PM »

Hi tiredmommy2,  Hi!

Sorry I'm not very good with the quotes and all, but I'll do my best:

Excerpt

I don't blame you AT all... .My last T did this initially, and my initial reaction was to be too shocked to say anything.  :)uring the next session, I told her that I didn't want to hear anything that remotely sounded like an excuse for my mother's behavior because I had spent over 30 years coming up with them myself.  She told me that I didn't have to agree with everything she said, so I accepted that and continued working with her.  I remember telling her about one particularly traumatic event, and she responded by telling me that my mother must have had a rough life.  I don't care what kind of life she had anymore!  I've had a "rough" life and don't abuse my children so enough already! I got so aggravated with her because of this (among a few other things) that I stopped going.  I was paying her good money to help me improve myself, not to make excuses for my mother's abuse.
Excerpt

Well, I should have also explained that I didn't fire her just because of that... .that would've been a BPD thing for me to do!   (My current therapist loves to point out when I do a non-BPD thing!) Anyway, there were other reasons I stopped being her patient, but that was the last straw so to speak. I cannot believe your T responded by telling you that your mother had a rough life. Just because someone had a rough life does not mean they have the right to be abusive! I'm 42, been in therapy on and off since age 21, and the ONE thing that finally got me to stop trying to please my mother and to stop trying to win her approval and love, was when another psychologist, who likes Albert Ellis's methods, said to me, "YOUR MOTHER IS CRAZY!" That validated things for me, because in MY mind it was either me or her... .I'm sure many people on this board would not agree with his tactics, but it worked. It helped me get a start out of a very dark deep black hole I was in.

It drives me crazy whenever someone excuses bad behavior. I will not tolerate it anymore.

Excerpt

Like you, my mother has NEVER apologized for the way that she treated me.  Back in my 20s, prior to knowing anything about PDs, I decided to try to talk to her about a couple of horrible things that she did, just looking for any sense of remorse.  There was nothing!  She twisted everything around to turn herself into the victim, then told me that the past was in the past.  
Excerpt

My mother not only never apologized for how she treated me, but she blamed ME for how she treated me, blamed ME for her rages and how she acted, and even DENIED hitting me (well... .that was in front of my dad, so maybe she was lying on purpose, I don't know.) I know I will never get an apology. When I recently asked my sister for an apology for very cruel behavior she showed toward me when I was in a car accident, her reply was a very bhity, "That was a long time ago." I guess these people are utterly incapable of saying the words, "I love you" or "I'm sorry".

My mother did the same thing as you... .twisted everything around to make herself the victim of a misbehaved child (which I wasn't. I was a good kid.) Or, she blamed the stress of her relationship with her own mother on how she behaved. She once got a speeding ticket while she was going ballistic on me in the car, and yup that was my fault, too. Everything was my fault. She'd shake and scream, "LOOK AT WHAT YOU'RE DOING TO ME!" so loudly her face would turn purple and she looked like a monster. So even her abusive behavior was my fault.

Excerpt

Excerpt
I always felt that if my mother could treat my "golden child" sister one way, but me and my other sister differently, then she was making the choice to do so. How could one person be so evil and cruel toward one child, but so worshiping and loving to another... .

This was my argument with the last T.  I told her that she proved that she was capable of better by the way that she treated my brother, which is the exact opposite of how she treated me.  She treated me like garbage by choice, not because she couldn't do any better... .Believe it or not, the T still didn't understand this, and stuck to her earlier statement that my mother did the best that she could.
Excerpt

WOW. I'm so sorry you had an obviously incompetent therapist. I haven't brought up this fact to my current T, but I'm going to make a note to do so and will try to remember to tell you what he says. There's no way in hell either of us should ever think that this was a person "doing the best she could" because if that was the case, she would have gotten help!

Excerpt

I'm not as healthy as I seem, but thank you for the compliment! Laugh out loud (click to insert in post)  I have PTSD and some BPD traits that I'm aware of and working on.  Self-help DBT is helping somewhat.  Smiling (click to insert in post)
Excerpt

Please give yourself more credit! I haven't been on this board for about a year, but I clearly recall that you were extremely helpful to me in your posts and replies. I also have PTSD and some BPD waif-traits that I'm aware of and working on, with a wonderful therapist who understands BPD and is just such a nice person. I feel very safe with him. He always reassures me that I'm working hard, which helps a lot, because I feel like a lot of my other therapy was a waste of time and money.

What kind of self-help DBT do you do?

Happy new year to you, tiredmommy2! [/quote]
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« Reply #56 on: December 31, 2011, 03:15:30 PM »

My future ex comes from a long line of messed-up people.

She and her mom make an amazing team of abuser and abused.

From my early teens to mid 20's I was put in set up to be manipulated, lied to, lied about, and emotionally and mentally abused and neglected.

I have been out of the house from them for a year, but I am still damaged. I am sorry to hear anyone went through worse than I did. My experience is/was a good day for many people on here.  
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« Reply #57 on: December 31, 2011, 03:49:40 PM »

Excerpt
. I am sorry to hear anyone went through worse than I did. My experience is/was a good day for many people on here.

I would like to share something that I learned quite a few years ago:  Pain is pain.  My pain is as painful to me as yours is to you.  I'm sorry that you had to endure what you did. 

Sahdesofgray, I use www.dbtselfhelp.com/.  There's a link on the left for lessons, so that's where all the good information is.  The other thing that I found very useful was here: www.BPDrecovery.com/HomePage The links for The 10 Types of Twisted Thinking and The 10 Ways to Untwist Your Thinking were helpful - I used them to pinpoint some of my own twisted thinking... .There was a time where I would have been ashamed to admit that I had some traits of BPD, but as you can see, I'm over it. I now think that it would be almost impossible to grow up in this toxic environment and not have at least a few traits, so it's par for the course as far as I'm concerned. 

Happy New Year to you too, Shadesofgray (love the name, btw)!   

   

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