I have finished reading “Borderline Personality Disorder: New Perspectives on a Stigmatizing and Overused Diagnosis” by Jacqueline Simon Gunn and Brent Potter. I highly suggest this book if you are interested in viewing BPD in a better light and in a light that I believe to be more correct, that BPD is actually untreated trauma. I want to share with you a story, well a dream, a BPD labeled client of the author’s shared with them, as I believe it describes my experience perfectly and probably yours as well.
He described in great detail a terrifying monster, something like a dinosaur, ravenous, with savage blade like claws perusing him through a dense jungle. The creature issued eardrum-splitting screams as it tore through the thicket. The man ran frantically, but the steps of the giant were rapidly catching up. Realizing he could not outrun the beast, the man stopped and turned around to face the fiend. Upon realizing the pursuit was over, the beast stopped and said, “I’ve been trying to get your attention! I am hurt. Help me.” The man suddenly noticed that the creature had a gash in its leg that required attention. The man tended to the wound, and the nightmare ended. -pg. 109
This dream is a great analogy for the experience of those labeled with BPD. We scream, yell, fight, throw things and destroy ourselves because we are hurt. We are the beast. We terrify and cause great stress to those who love us and want to support us. They are the man. I do not believe this dream shows any blame though. The beast is not communicating in the right way that it is in pain and the man is not taking the time to stop and try to understand why the beast is upset. It’s only when they come together that the problem is solved. It is the responsibility of both parties to understand what the other needs.