Archives for repetition-compulsion

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Borderline Personality Disorder: Google-Stalking Your Therapist


Is Google-stalking your therapist morally wrong, a self defeating masochistic exercise in futility, considered Borderline Personality Disordered behaviour or worse, or downright creepy, dangerous and illegal; or is it healthy curiosity and something everyone does but would not admit to – or perhaps all of the above?

I have received emails from my blog readers and heard personal anecdotes from people who have Facebook and Google-stalked their therapists and I have heard of therapists who...
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Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder: Mental Cramps and Diarrhea


Sometimes, I catch myself having fierce arguments in my head with people I have never met, about situations that have not happened, followed by resolutions that are never satisfying. My headspace is cranky and irritable and there is no logical preceding incident; it is just where my head automatically ends up when let off the leash and wanders free range. I call this IBS - Irritable Borderline Syndrome.

Now, when I catch myself doing this, I redirect my thoughts into something else. I discovered I was doing this on the 45-minute journey to and from work. Without external noise distraction (my radio/CD broke) and only my thoughts to keep me company on the stop/start traffic jam journey to and from work, I was mentally irritable from plotting evil thoughts, arguing with my inner self and ruminating long before I reached my destination. My armpits and skin would itch with stress induced hormones and my bowels and intestines would cramp into knots.
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BPD: Narcissistic Injuries, Madness and Mindfulness

When you suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder (or complex trauma) one person’s constructive criticism or negative response is another person’s life-threatening narcissistic injury. I received a narcissistic brain hemorrhage this week when my challenging and authoritative therapist decided it was not relevant to our therapy to watch a video link I had emailed her.

My borderline reaction went to DefCon One in less than a nanosecond and I thought my brain would implode.

To be fair to myself, my thoughts remained relatively mindful (she’s said no before for the same reasons and yet I continue to email her things; it could be said that an idiot does the same thing all the time and expects a different response. If that is the case, then I am that idiot) but my body was transported instantly back to the mid-seventies where school bullying and parental fighting had finely tuned my fight, flight or freeze response.
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Borderline Personality Disorder: Is Your Therapist Dogged by a Dark Side?


At my last therapy session my therapist turned into a savage rottweiler; baring her sharp teeth at me, picking me up by the scruff of my neck and shaking the living daylights out of me. The doggone woman deliberately picked a fight about nothing, provoked me into a snarling row, called me a liar and then threatened to sue me for slander.

Interpretation of unfolding events is always a personal perception. I have been seeing her again for some workplace issues that need resolving. I was having problems accepting constructive criticism from the top dog in my organization. I found I was getting deeply triggered when told I was not achieving what I was supposed to achieve in the way she wanted it achieved and I was getting my feathers ruffled in a big way, getting upset, huffy and resolving the issue by fleeing or freezing.

So when within five minutes of arriving, my barking mad therapist activated every button on my panel and almost blew us both up, I almost called her a bitch, walked out the door and planned on brooding, ruminating and plotting impotent revenge against her for the rest of my natural life. Talk about an idealizing transference killer.
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Borderline Personality Disorder: Emotional Punching Bags


At what point does a therapist decide to terminate a client because their relationship has broken down? Over the past three years writing my blog I have received many emails from therapy clients telling me that their therapists terminated them, either for no reason or for a small infraction within the relationship.

Are therapists being over-sensitive or are clients diagnosed with borderline personality disorder unaware of their own personal lack of empathy towards someone who is on their side? Being terminated for relationship issues with the therapist does not make sense to me. The entire reason we are in therapy is because we have huge external relationship problems and this plays out in the therapeutic relationship and the therapist should be aware of this.
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Borderline Personality Disorder: Terminations, Funerals, Ceremonies and Party Harty

Does a proper termination procedure lead to cleaner closure and the getting of wisdom with a brave new life? After umpteen years of therapy, do you just say goodbye, pay your last bill, move on and live well? What if the Olympic Games had no opening and closing ceremony, would it feel disjointed, incomplete and impermanent? Would you have really believed it was over unless you had the colourful, spectacular dancing and acrobatics? Would you really believe it was all over?

The short answer is no. Long term therapy, no matter how painful needs a proper meaningful conclusion with all the pomp and ceremony, flag waving and breast-beating, singing and dancing so that you have the experiential feel of completion, a celebration of a fabulous relationship that had to come to an end. I thought I was different.

I thought I could just slink out the front door, never to be seen or heard from again. I could not bear planning the black, hopeless, grim, dismal, humourless, staunch, staid, stiff upper lip funeral of the person I loved and would never see again. I planned death and destruction not resurrection and life.

I wrote my therapist a letter of which I did not expect a reply (see
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Borderline Personality Disorder: Final Email to My Therapist

Dear XXXXX,

I thought it was safe to let you know how I was doing. I thought it was safe to email you about what my thoughts were regarding brief psychosis –v- depression (which is something I have finally made sense of and wanted your opinion on because I trusted you). I told you what my current working life was like and I felt as though I got a rubber stamp response because nothing in your email referred specifically to what I had actually said or achieved.

In therapy once, you asked me to always let you know how I was doing because you didn’t want me to move on and disappear out of your therapy life. You also once told me you loved me and trusted me deeply and that you would never abandon me.

With those bold statements comes a considerable amount of post-therapy responsibility to clients, even to the most adjusted but vulnerable client who has left your therapy and your rooms. With that comes a duty of care to accept that sometimes the client who wants to move on feels much dissonance, ambivalence and an overwhelmingly disproportionate sense of obligation and responsibility to her former therapist to keep her informed lest she feels abandoned by her.
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Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder: Getting Fired From Many Jobs


Over the years, I’ve been fired, resigned or walked out (before I was pushed) on more jobs than there are symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder.  I never understood why this was happening to me and I always thought it was the company’s fault, the other employees fault or that the Universe hated me.

There was always a honeymoon period where I fitted in for a couple of months, then came unstuck when the first small drama occurred.  This was always followed by a huge behavioural reaction from me.  I had not learned how to accept the vagaries of how companies operated, the diverse range of personalities concerned and my own borderline reaction to real or perceived workplace situations.  I reacted before I reasoned.
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Borderline Personality Disorder: Mindfulness and Acceptance with Rude People


I was recently at a social function and eagerly went up to this woman I work with, touched her shoulder and said, “Hi, how are you?”  She stared at me, looked very uncomfortable and frantically searched around for either someone more interesting to talk to or someone to rescue her from me.

This is a woman I have found curt, abrupt, dismissive, snappy and abrasive in the past.  I have never had an interaction with her where I have left feeling as though a warm breeze has blown through me, but rather a cold, icy wind that has left my whole being feeling fractured and discombobulated.

I knew this and yet I still went up to talk to her because, as a chronic masochistic people-pleaser, I unfailingly seek approval and acceptance from totally wrong and inappropriate graceless women.  I cannot bear the pain of rejection and abandonment from anyone even though I did not like her and essentially had split her into the “bad” part of the good and bad.  I always had an intense negative emotional reaction to her, felt deflated, empty and questioned who I thought was, and after an interaction with her I wanted to throw myself off a cliff. 
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