I remember a time when a former friend compared her diagnosis to mine. It wasn’t the same - wasn’t anything close to being exactly the same. A mood disorder and a personality disorder can be comorbid (linked) with each other, but not always.
I have Borderline Personality Disorder. It’s considered a ‘death sentence’ by some psychology professionals because the stigma and complexity attached to the diagnosis is so strong, it can sometimes cause your health provider to have ‘strong emotions’ towards you - a polite way to say that your disorder can occasionally cause your therapist to lash out at you. Which is well, apparently not unheard of in these cases.
I often feel the need to apologise for having this: for not being ‘cured’ or ‘fixed’ after six years of therapy, or not fitting exactly in whatever box people have set out for me. Characters who have been described as having BPD range from Anakin Skywalker or the titular Gone Girl, to Cersei and Jaime Lannister. None of these are flattering depictions.
Coping strategies can range from harm reduction to implementing structure and straight up avoiding certain triggers. You’d think after six years I’d have this all figured out, but I don’t. At least not all the time.
One way that has worked?
Acknowledging that while this element of my psyche makes me incredibly sensitive to rejection and abandonment, it also allows me to feel deeply and empathise with a wide range of people. It’s made me a better leader, a better friend and a better partner - if not a somewhat difficult and occasionally nitpicky one.
Sometimes it’s easier to send people the link above to show them that it’s not ‘all in my head’, sometimes I don’t want to even try. On days like this, I do feel like giving up - but as long as someone out there genuinely wants to learn more, I think I can keep going.
If you're ever feeling low, just remember to 'Keep going!'. Sometimes that's all you can do and nothing more.
Things always get better with time. As Winston Churchill said 'If you're going through hell, keep going.'.
If you are like me on a quest for mental clarity and self improvement as tools to live a more meaningful life, Nathaniel Drew and Matt D'Avella are two key players you need to look up on YouTube!
They helped me grow in so many ways.