Living on the Borderline
by Michael Stewart
“Borderline, feels like I’m going to lose my mind” — Madonna
Living with Borderline Personality Disorder is not exactly what i would call “living”. For the most part, it’s actually pretty fucking miserable. You’re a prisoner to your own emotions, and many times they can change so frequently and quickly that it’s hard to even understand why you’re even feeling them at all, and so intensely at that. One minute, everything could be going just fine but can go south rather quickly if someone says something we perceive to be rude or disrespectful and most of the time, our zero to one hundred response to whatever perceived behavior can come on so quickly that usually we can’t even understand how we got so angry in the first place.
Unfortunately though, by then, we have already reacted and said some mean or hurtful thing or acted out in some way so extremely that the damage has already been inflicted and once again we are left feeling embarrassed and ashamed because of our loss of control of our emotions. I can’t even remember how many times I have lashed out at the people i care about like my mother or someone I’ve been involved with, and to be honest, I’d rather not know. That’s not something anyone wants to keep track of.
These patterns of behavior cause us to withdraw socially a lot of times due to fear of possibly fucking something up with a loved one or drive us into downward spirals of drug and/or alcohol binges, which can temporarily ease our pain of simply existing, but in reality, cause even more pain, depression and anxiety down the road. Sometimes, if you’re lucky enough to experience borderline personality disorder concurrent with anxiety or depression, the agony of the sheer amount and intensity of the thoughts and emotions that flood you’re brain can be exhausting. It’s like having a never ending loop of anger, frustration, confusion, guilt, shame and every other horrible feeling going on in your head that the only relief is to just go to sleep, which is how I deal with them when I experience an “attack”.
I’m not writing this to try to gain any sympathy or pity because they are my feelings and I have to own them, but merely to try and cast some perspective into how we experience situations whereas the other persons involved might see us as being “crazy” or “reactive”. It’s not very fun on our end either. Who really enjoys or would choose to experience life in that manner? I, for one, do not and am tired of having to apologize for things I’ve said or done and having to constantly make amends for them.
I hope this finds whoever is reading this with an open mind and in a place of wanting to understand a bit more of how we might experience things, and maybe to have a bit more empathy and patience when we are having these “moments” of insanity.