Help me develop a DBT-based parenting program!

This program will be based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. If proven successful there is a high possibility it will be moved online to support moms from around the world!

Here is the link for the survey! Thank you for your help and support 🙂

Experiences of Mom’s with Borderline Personality Disorder/Borderline Traits

 

My Most Pressing BPD Issue

Image reads: “What issue is most pressing for you as a person with BPD or traits? What do you struggle with the most and really want to work on? How do you imagine your life might be improved if you improve in this area? Ready? Set? Share!”

Thanks, to Debbie from Healing from BPD and DBT Path for this post!

Diagnosis aside, all of us have an issue in our lives that needs to be worked on and doing so would improve our lives for the better. I have always felt that one of my best qualities is  my willingness to learn more about myself and continuously improve who I am. I have never seen this need to change parts of myself as a bad thing so long as they are parts I want to change, not what others think I should change.

What issue is most pressing for you as a person with BPD or traits?

My most pressing issue is how I function within my relationship with B.

What do you struggle with the most and really want to work on?

I struggle with feeling confident in my relationship with B. No matter what happens that proves our relationship is strong and we love each other, I always tell myself that I am doing something wrong, will always do something wrong, that he doesn’t love me and he will leave me. These are very distressing thoughts that are made more distressing when he does something that reinforces it such as when he stays over a friend’s place and leaves me with no way of paying for transit to get to work….like today….this is, of course an accident and he is apologizing and I know he feels horrible. My first thoughts are that he doesn’t care about my work, my work is not valued and that he doesn’t care about me. This emotionally hurts and also sometimes physically hurts as the emotions I feel (sadness, guilt, shame, anger, fear etc. ) caused physical reactions in my body such as chest pain and nausea. I want to work on making the thoughts go away or, at least having the intensity lessen.

How do you imagine your life might be improved if you improve in this area?

My life WILL be improved WHEN I tackle this issue (which I am always working on). I will have confidence in my relationship, in myself and in B. I will react with less intensity which will decrease the emotional and physical pain I feel. My relationship will be healthier because there is no doubt or any doubt does not stay long as it is dealt with appropriately through the use of skills, such as expressing when and why I am upset in a calm manner instead of yelling it in his face. I feel like I will be able to look at what I have and just feel warm and fuzzing inside, knowing it is here to stay.

I am getting to this point. Nothing will take this from me.

What is yours?

“I Can’t Help You”

I waited 4 months for an appointment at the Centre for Addictions and Mental Health (CAMH) just to hear the words, “I can’t help you.”

Last September/October I was slowly but surely becoming suicidal due to being on psych drugs. While my doctor knew my Borderline Traits diagnosis and knew I had difficulty with and wanted to control my anger when I became suicidal and scored high on depression tests my treatment because all about depression. I noticed that my file mentioned depression and never borderline and when I was switched to an antidepressant the idea that I was depressed became solidified. But I am not depressed and haven’t had traces of a mood disorder since I was 18 years old.

I pursued the appointment at CAMH because I wanted to know if I was on the right medication. I ignored the voice inside me that told me to speak out against the appointment being made with the hospitals Mood and Anxiety Clinic. But, I thought, maybe feeling suicidal like this means I have more going on then just borderline traits. I tried to hang on and wait for my August 6th appointment but I know that if I had stated on the psych drugs I would have attempted to end my life again. I went off of them and after withdrawal the suicidal thoughts and feelings went away and have not returned with that ferocity since.

I sit myself in the front of the CAMH psychiatrist and tell him that I stopped the psych drugs, am no longer suicidal , haven’t self harmed in 3 months and am happy. He already knows the basics about me because he has my emergency room intake form from January 2014 in front of him. I fill out the depression and anxiety questionnaire and know from my answers that it is obvious neither are my problem.

“I see no signs of a mood disorder.” he tells me. I knew that already. He tells me to look into DBT and I explain that I have tried and can’t find free or cheap programs. Of course, the woman who would be able to help me is in vacation. He wraps up our appointment quickly and tells me that he can’t help me but any information he finds on DBT he will send to my doctor. I left the appointment fuming.

The one good thing that came out of the appointment was he confirmed that psych drugs are not a path I should pursue. It was nice to hear a psychiatrist say that. Still, the pain of walking out with nothing to go off of that I didn’t already know or try was very strong. Even though I say I don’t care about it, I do.

I’ll put more thought into it when I have the time. I’m not at risk for anything bad. I just want there to be more good.

Notes From The Moment- Part 2

I rarely write in Pride in Madness when I’m in the midst of a rage. When my body is vibrating and my mind bent on destroying myself it is impossible to sit at the computer and type what I’m feeling. There are rarely words, just screams and thrown objects. One night though, maybe back in March, I grabbed my note pad and wrote the thoughts that were flying through my mind. I would like to share the second of 4 notes with you.

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“I want to do this alone. I want my physical to match my emotional, so I can stop lying to myself but these lies have to be based on something. Don’t they? I don’t want help. I don’t want someone there to stop me when I fall apart.”

I feel like certain things are happening in my life that are damaging me. I’m told that they’re not happening. Even in my “wise mind” I know that some of them are and I want people to stop telling me otherwise or I need to stop lying to myself. it’s extremely frustrating. I really wish that I was alone, or at least living alone, so I could fall apart and do what I want to do. People keep me  together and sometimes that’s just not what I want. I want to fall apart free of shame. i won’t get mad at myself if I do that but I know others will.

Previous:

Part 1

Gender Bias in Psychiatry

“Phyllis Chesler’s Women and Madness (1972) was perhaps the most influential book of this period, advancing the thesis that woman were held to different and higher standards of reason and normalcy then men, that the psychiatrization process was profoundly gender-biased in its premises and effects, and that the very constitution of sanity and ‘mental illness’ in the late 20th-century was anchored in the bedrock of male normativity.” -Mad Matters, pg. 6

Ever since receiving my borderline personality diagnosis in 2008 I believe it was a result of being an angry young woman. As many of us know, anger is not a “desirable” characteristic in a woman but how else are we supposed to express the negative emotions we feel? Well, we’re not. I believe this is also why women are more likely to experience depression and anxiety then men. We feel something, we are told not to and then when we can no longer suppress we’re told it’s “too much” and we’re diagnosed mentally ill. I really and firmly believe that we are just living in a society that is telling us what to do and how to do it when what we really need is to do and be what we want.

What do you think?

Notes From The Moment- Part 1

I rarely write in Pride in Madness when I’m in the midst of a rage. When my body is vibrating and my mind bent on destroying myself it is impossible to sit at the computer and type what I’m feeling. There are rarely words, just screams and thrown objects. One night though, maybe back in March, I grabbed my note pad and wrote the thoughts that were flying through my mind. I would like to share the first of 4 notes with you.

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“The social constraints keep me here. No acting out, no yelling, not screaming, no punching or kicking. NO FIGHTING!!! Ignore what I feel needs to be done. My whole life is suppression. How do I let go of one thing without losing control of the whole thing? Maybe I should just do it? Yes, that’s fun.”

This was after my social worker encouraged me to bring down the walls. I try very hard to act the way society wants me to act and I was hoping that if I let my walls down I could fall apart because that would be better trying to keep it together.

Giving Up Power

While reading about self sabotage last night I had an epiphany.

This is what I wrote in my journal yesterday night:

“I need constant reassurance from Michael because in the past my partners held the power to decide my life. I gave that to them and they also beat me down and took it. I didn’t trust my judgement then and I clearly don’t trust it now. I expect Michael to decide something he knows nothing about and doesn’t want. I am so worried that he’ll sabotage me that I’m actually handing it over when I need his reassurance because my own isn’t good enough.”

I give Michael all the power he doesn’t want.

It is the power I don’t have and I want.

This isn’t fair to either of us.