Falling In Love Triggered My Borderline Personality Disorder

Just over a year ago, sitting on a beach log with my mother, I told her, “Honestly, at this point, I don’t know if I even want a relationship.”

This shocked her. I had always been a hopeless romantic—someone in love with the idea of love—so it was strange for me to be spouting this new idea.

But, by the last quarter of 2021, this was where I was at: my heart had been broken enough times for my brain to question whether or not love was worth it. Everyone probably feels this way at some point in their life. Couple this normal human experience with the crippling fear of abandonment that my borderline personality disorder plagues me with, and I had a lot of incentive to never make myself vulnerable again.

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A Letter To The Therapist Who Threw Gasoline On The Fire That Is My Borderline Personality Disorder

Dear therapist,

You know I was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. In fact, you helped me recover from it eight years ago. You know, for me, it manifests itself as an extreme, irrational fear of abandonment, and frantic attempts to avoid said abandonment. You have worked through these issues with me before.

Alongside my borderline, you know I am the most anxious fuck. No one needs to bother warning me about the sky falling, because I am already well-prepared for all the potential ways the sky could fall.

Tied into both my anxiety disorder and my BPD, you know that one of my greatest flaws is how I struggle to let go of intrusive thoughts and pull myself out of obsessive thought loops.

To put it simply: my mind often feels like a prison, a prison I have no escape from. Sometimes, if I catch the trigger early enough, and if the right supports are in place, I manage to crawl out of the thought loop. But when things get really bad, I often feel as though the only thing that can save me from my own mind is time.

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I Have Borderline Personality Disorder—But I Am Not A Bad Person

I have a secret: I have borderline personality disorder.

Yes, I am one of those people. I could tell you the story of how this particular illness came to manifest in my brain, but perhaps another time. For the purpose of this essay, really, all you need to know is that I, like many other people, have trauma.

The specificity of my trauma matters not; all that matters is that at some point things got fucked up. Things got really fucked up—so, in order to survive, I developed some maladaptive coping mechanisms. One of these maladaptive coping mechanisms was an eating disorder; another was self-mutilation; another, social alcohol abuse; and finally, my most addictive, borderline personality disorder.

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