This time last week, I decided to bring my blogging career to an end, and a couple of days later, shut it down from public view entirely. I also closed down my facebook page, and at the same time, which I didn't mention in that post, I decided to stop seeing Therapist. So, in one fell swoop, I kicked most of my supports out from underneath me. Short of stopping my medication as well (and believe me, I was sorely tempted), there wasn't much more I could do to give myself an express ticket to the psych ward.
There was a rationale for all of this, although given how the intervening week has gone, it may not have been the most sensible one. I was angry, and I was scared, and mostly I was fed up. The anger was, of course, directed at Therapist, because she dared to take last Monday off, which meant I would have a gap of two weeks between sessions. Those of you who don't have bpd just won't be able to understand this, and I'm very glad for you that you can't. It must seem like the most trivial reason in the world for making such a big decision, never mind getting so worked up about it. But here's the thing. Every time Therapist takes a break, be that for a bank holiday, or because she just wants some time off, I take it as a personal attack and a commentary on how she feels about working with me. I quite literally cannot describe the sense of abandonment and rejection that goes along with this, because I don't understand it. I get why it's happening, in theory, but my complete inability to control it kills me. This lack of control makes me angry, which in turn scares me, and so I have a classic knee jerk reaction - fuck everything out the window.
I mailed her Wednesday afternoon to say I wanted to take a break, and she got back to me that evening saying that was absolutely fine, and that she both respected and understood my decision. I fell to pieces. I have a lovely blogger friend who spent most of Wednesday evening stopping me from spiralling into a massive hole. I cried, and I cried, and I cried some more. I knew that would be her response - she's always said ending therapy would be my decision, and she has to take me at my word, but at the same time, the fact that she did take me at my word, and not try to persuade me otherwise, was almost more than I could handle. I felt like the world was falling out from underneath me. Again, I have to say it - those of you fortunate enough not to have the joy of bpd constantly messing with your thought processes just will not be able to understand this. The best way I can think to describe it is this - were you ever in a relationship where you were completely infatuated with your partner? As in, they were all you could think of, first thing in the morning, last thing at night, and everything in between. You counted down the minutes till you could see them again, you analysed every conversation to look for reassurance that they felt as strongly as you did. Your stomach did a back flip every time you saw them, they made you smile till your face hurt. But then one day, completely out of the blue, they dumped you and moved on to the next person, as though they never gave a shit in the first place. You know that feeling? The one in the pit of your stomach, the one that feels like falling? That's what it felt like to have her tell me that she understood, and that we would stop sessions. I'm not saying I'm in love with Therapist, that would be really weird. But the kind of intense need I have for her support, her understanding, her kindness.............well, it's as close an analogy as I can give you.
So, there was that. There was also guilt, a guilt that was almost as overwhelming as the obsessive need I've just described. The last few months have been so incredibly busy, Please Talk has taken a huge amount of my time and energy, and I was worn out. When I get tired, really tired, the wheels fall off, and I completely lose perspective. So when I blogging, I felt guilty for not working on Please Talk. When I was working on Please Talk, I felt guilty for ignoring my kids. When I was at work, I felt guilty for not doing Please Talk. When I was with my kids, my mind was constantly running over my to do list. As for Hubby? To be honest, and I'm only slightly exaggerating in saying this, I'm lucky my marriage hasn't disintegrated entirely.
I have been completely and utterly lost this last few weeks. I've been overwhelmed, overtired, unable to think clearly, stressed to the hilt, and unable to see the wood for the trees. Everything was becoming a burden, and that burden was rapidly getting too heavy to carry. Admittedly, throwing the whole lot to one side may not have been the wisest move, but it gave me some space to think, and it helped me realise very quickly what it is that I need.
It's been suggested a couple of times this last week that stopping the blog was a really good thing, that I spend too much time going over the same thing again and again. But here's the thing - regardless of whether or not I write about it, it's doing laps of my head anyway. The only difference with not writing is that I have no outlet. I make sense of things when I write, not when I think. I realise it mightn't make for very stimulating reading, but that was never the point of this. Obsession, attachment, abandonment - these are core bpd issues, and some of the hardest to overcome. I write about them again and again because I have to, and I will continue to write about them as long as it's a problem. I forgot what my blog was for. I became more concerned with how people were perceiving me than what it was doing for me. My blog was never for the world at large, that was a bonus spin off. It's for me, so I can at least try and understand myself, and keep myself in check. The last week, with no support from Therapist, and no blog, has demonstrated all too clearly just how much I need both, because without the space to think about my actions, thoughts, reactions etc, I'm completely at the mercy of them. Maybe some day I'll get to the stage were I can believe that feelings are not facts, but I'm not there yet, not by a long shot. When I feel something, I feel it 200% and it eclipses everything else.
So, this morning, I swallowed my pride and mailed Therapist to say I'd made a huge mistake, and I wanted to come back. I haven't heard from her yet, and it's quite likely she no longer has space for me. But the relief I felt on sending that mail has convinced me that it was the right thing to do, and the uplift in my mood since has further convinced me. It won't last. That's another thing that's been profoundly affected the last week or so - my mood is fluctuating wildly again, and I can swing from high to low and back again in minutes. Repeatedly. Multiple times daily. Right now, I feel good, really good. I've made some big decisions, hopefully for the right reasons, and the release I'm getting from writing this post is immense. But if she gets back to me and says she has no space........entirely likely to send me straight back down again.
Bpd is merciless. It makes me feel like shit, and it makes me feel like a shit for all the upheaval I cause. Technically, it's not my fault, not entirely, it's how I'm wired, the same as other people have a physical illness. Diabetics don't want to have to inject daily with insulin. But here's the thing - a physical illness does not make you a horrible person. Bpd makes me a horrible person. There's only so much heartache people can take, and there's only so many times I'm prepared to be the cause of that heartache, intentionally or otherwise. That's what scares me, and what exhausts me. All of this drama could have been avoided. A week of torment, misery and anguish, could have been avoided if I had more of a handle on it. I don't want bpd. I don't want to feel like shit, make people I care about feel like shit, second guess myself constantly, make bad decisions, and occasionally hit my self destruct button. I want to stick my fingers in my ears and pretend it's not there. But I tried that. It didn't work, it made things worse. So........I keep going.
Labels: abandonment, attachment, blogging, borderline personality disorder, disordered thinking, emotional lability, mental illness, psychotherapy, rejection, support, therapist, thought spiral