Tough Love Sucks

December 30th was our worst tough love day. We have been struggling with when we needed to make some changes regarding the relationship with our girl and setting boundaries. There was a letter written to send to her. It would be impossible to talk to her in person because of her quick fire responses. It touched on the car and the fact it needed to be returned to us, unless she was able to put it in her name and pay insurance. She needs to find a home for, or take her cat. She needs to respect our home and clean the trash out of her room and the bathroom. And the last thing, our home would not be used as her dumping point. She needed to decide where she was going to be living. The letter reassured her that we love her, want and need her in our lives and when she is ready to get help we will be behind her.

The letter never was sent. We were going to send it the week after Thanksgiving. The day we were going to send it she had a huge breakdown. It wasn’t a good day for her or us. Later that week she had another huge fight with drippy dick and called in crisis mode. We decided to wait until after Christmas, probably because we were terrified what would happen after we gave it to her.

Christmas was……………awkward. Her being in the house is awkward at this point. I don’t know what to talk to her about. What do I ask her? I don’t know what her day to day life consists of. I don’t know where she is or what she does. Christmas Eve she was with us and hung out us th some special friends. Christmas morning she woke up early and left to spend time with drippy dick and his family before our family came to our house. I was actually surprised she came home in time and was in a good mood. The day wasn’t awful, but we (my husband and I) could sense the un-comfortableness that happened at times.

The day after Christmas, towards evening, we could tell she was getting ready to leave. As we were talking she said “we will be back tomorrow.” I asked what she meant. She told me that he (drippy dick) had presents for us. I’m fairly certain my head spun in circles and my response was to say “no, that’s not happening.” She got defensive and nasty saying he did it because he isn’t a dick and left the house saying she would tell him to return everything. As she was driving she was messaging me via Facebook Messenger. More about drippy and the presents. I tried to explain I didn’t understand the present thing. She kept insisting that he was trying to be nice and fix things. I responded that it’s a conversation we need to have in person. Within probably five minutes after the messenger exchange with my girl, I get a Facebook message from drippy dick. This is what I received…

“At this point I couldn’t give 2 hoots that you don’t like me, and you have all this resentment towards me. You have expressed nothing but dislike and hatred towards me when all I’ve sought from you was expectance. I’m no angel I’m fully aware of that, but I am trying to mend a broken relationship between you both and myself especially heather and I. I purchased you gifts even though you both didn’t deserve it and I didn’t have to. Why because that’s the type of person I really am I don’t seek conflict I don’t want to have issues with the smith family. I wanted to show you that I want to take a step closer to you not apart, by looking for things you would like spending not only my money but precious time. I know you have a fondness for Star Wars and hot wheels Mr. Smith. I know you like The Wizard Of Oz and Woppers candy Mrs. Smith so I purchased you both something. I didn’t just spend time and money though I swallowed my pride and humbled myself to bring a ray of light into what we have going on as best as possible and it was denied? How can we ever learn to atleast agree to disagree when your acting like a child? Your daughter isn’t going anywhere, one day she will be my wife and bare my children. Your actions will be greatly considered when you are asking to see YOUR GRANDCHILD. I will NOT have a child around such nonsense barbaric negativity it’s a shame and pathetic! Merry Christmas to you both and a happy new year if you will even accept my verbal salutation of peace…”

Yes, drippy thinks of himself as quite the eloquent gentleman. For some reason this just cut through me. It really hit me hard. Not what he thinks of me, but what is my girl doing with someone like this. How doesn’t she see the pathetic person he is? I did not respond to his message. I wanted to, but he isn’t worth it.

I received texts from her shortly after getting the message from drippy asking me what it would take for her and I to get back to where we once were, should she leave him, etc. My responses were that I can’t make that decision for her, we love her and she has to decide what she wants out of life, etc. Now, remember, she started contacting me in messenger and then switched to texting me. Drippy messaged me probably 15 minutes into her drive. No one will convince me drippy doesn’t have access to her facebook and can see every message between us. However, he doesn’t yet have access to her text messages. She doesn’t want him to see her asking me about leaving him and wanting to repair our relationship.

Fast-forward to December 30th. My husband and I are at the store and I get a message from my girl that she will be home soon. While at the store our cameras alerted to motion in the driveway. I checked what was happening and see our girl is home. Oddly enough she is backed up our driveway. She never backs up the driveway. I immediately tell my husband and my prediction that something is wrong with her car and she parked that way hoping we wouldn’t see it. We got home, and sure enough the driver side front fender had a nice dent in it. As well as the passenger side having two nice scuffs. It looks like someone kicked the car. I would have to assume during one of the fights drippy kicked her car.

We walked in the house and she was in her room. I yelled up the steps and asked what happened to her car. Her response was a very assy “what are you talking about?”. This went back and forth a few times. She claimed she had no idea and why wouldn’t she tell us, etc…. However, she never went out and looked at her car….. Through the conversation she was told the car would be staying parked in our driveway. She walked away mumbling “fucking fantastic”.

The day continued, I had no idea she was going to be home and made arrangements for my middle son and his wife to eat dinner with us. We also had our granddaughter. I had no idea how my girl would be or even if she would come out of her room to eat and see her brother and niece. She did come out of her room and eat with us. After dinner she said she was going to take a shower. Our son and daughter-in-law left, and we were getting our granddaughter ready to take home. I get a message from my girl (yes, she was only upstairs) asking if she is allowed to go. I asked her to come downstairs and talk to us. She came down and I asked her what happened to the car, she still claimed she didn’t know. I told her the car stays here. She starts slamming around the house saying she’ll have drippy come and get her and just being mean in general. She decides she has to get out of the house and tells us she is going for a walk, along with some smart-ass comments about the car. I decide I will take the baby home and my husband stayed at our house as a just in case.

As I’m driving my baby home my middle son texts saying that my girl is messaging and calling them and she wants them to pick her up, etc. Mind you, both our sons live within about 2-3 minutes of our home. I drop baby off at her house and when I get home my son’s car is parked out front. Walk in and she my husband but no one else, and then I hear the yelling from upstairs. I walk up and my girl is wild, scary wild. She has garbage bags and is cleaning up the trash from the bathroom and her bedroom. Her brother is trying to talk to her, but at this point there is no talking to her. I have seen the rage and wildness before, but never to this extent. Her brother has never seen it. My girl was talking about killing herself and doing it right this time. I said if that is where she is at she needs to go to the hospital. She freaked and said if I ever do that to her again I will never see her. She continues in her rage. Making all sorts of comments about having to get out of the house and leaving. I asked her if there is anything in her car she needs and she tells me to fucking burn it all, she doesn’t care, etc. I said okay, then give me the keys. Now she completely exploded in rage. She threw the keys at my face, I ducked and the keys took a chunk of wood out of the door trim. My son pushed me out of the way and got in her face telling her not to touch me. She punched him in the chest and stormed out telling everyone to get the fuck away from her. My husband tried to stop her and she told him to fuck off and get the fuck away from her. She stormed out saying she would find someone to pick her up.

We all stood in the kitchen in amazement and disbelief, but knowing we did what we had to do. My girl came back in about five minutes later, all while talking to drippy on speaker phone, went to her room and came right back down and went back outside. We moved to the family room and she came back in and said she needs things from her car and needs her keys. My husband had taken them to the basement to hide them. When she saw him going to the she told us how pathetic we were by hiding her keys and some other nasty things, again all while drippy is on speaker phone. She got the keys, took stuff out of her car and threw them back in the door and told us to have a nice life. Someone picked her up and that was that.

She did TEXT me later that night.

It just saddens my how her brain works and how her thought process works or doesn’t work. I have to remind myself and others that her brain is messed up. It is not an excuse for her, it’s the truth. She is the only one that can decide she wants the help and then accept the help.

I don’t know when I will see her again or how she is doing. I haven’t gotten many messages from her at this point. I am worried and I am scared.

Again…

Ironic, I was typing a blog about an hour ago. The blog was about the dreams I kept having this past weekend, all surrounding my girl child. And I got a phone call from her. She was crying, screaming, wailing, hysterical, gasping for breath. She was saying she can’t do it anymore, everything is fucked up, nothing ever works out, she doesn’t want to be here anymore………..the connection sucked and it was hard to understand her. I have unfortunately dealt with this before and knew I had to keep my voice calm and get her to focus on me and what I was saying. It was taking much longer to get her to focus on my voice and listen to what I was saying. I asked where she was and she said told me at his (drippy dick) brother’s house. I asked if she was alone and she said no, he (drippy dick) was there. I could hear him yelling at her in the background. She told me she would call me right back. I told her to stay on the phone with me and that she needed to come home. She hung up.

I called and called and called her. I sent her messages. I finally get a response via message that she is good, everything is fine. I messaged her to call me, she said she is fine. I demanded she call me. She did. She was in her denial mode. Denying there is a problem with her, because she is fine. Denying she should come home, because she is fine. Everything is fine. She isn’t coming home, she is staying there with him.

I don’t know where she is. I don’t know who she is with. I don’t know if she is safe.

In the dreams I had about her, she kept getting farther and farther away from us. We would find her and she would disappear and each time we searched for her it was harder and harder to find her. I feel her slipping faster and faster into a black hole. I am so fucking scared she will fall so far into that black hole that we won’t be able to save her. She will be lost and gone from our lives forever.

Ironic.

Some days I amaze myself

Today I am amazed at how fucking stupid I am. I feel like my world has been stuck in a tornado for the last year. Occasionally, I get to experience the eye of the storm and feel a bit of calm; mostly it’s just the wind spinning me in circles.

When I woke up this morning I made a promise to myself to be stronger, put the girl child out of my mind and get some shit accomplished. I made a list. Not a long list, but still a list. There were five items on my list, I have crossed out three. I’m feeling accomplished. And then I amazed myself…

I had this fabulous idea to make a family calendar for Christmas presents. I would put everyone’s birthdays, anniversaries, special family moments, etc on the calendar. Each month would have family pictures of the person(s) who have birthdays that month to remind us of special times we have shared. I typically have to remind my “adult” kids of relatives birthdays, etc. So a calendar would be perfect – right? I decided to start saving pictures for the calendar. I told myself that I would get an early start, feel really great about what I accomplished and try to relieve some of that pre-Christmas stress.

The sadness hit like a fucking train. Pictures. My girl is in the pictures, so many of the pictures. Will I have more pictures to cherish with her or has that come to an end? Will I get to celebrate the holiday’s with her, her birthday, Mother’s Day? And again, I am caught up in the tornado. My emotions are everywhere. I am hurt, sad, angry, confused…….How fucking dumb am I not to realize before I started that my girl would be in the pictures?

I experienced my two sons leaving home and I did okay. Of course I was sad and missed them. But I was also very happy for them. They found the person that makes them happy and are starting their own families. It’s wonderful to sit back and watch them grow and feel proud about what they are accomplishing. I want to experience that with my girl. I want to be happy she left home and is finding her way, but the circumstances are so insanely different. How can I be happy she is living in a shit-hole city with a hood rat? I want to respect and accept her decision; I can’t. I am terrified for her life. I guess I’m just not there yet. Will I ever get there? I don’t know.

People suggest as parents we should go and talk to a professional about the situation. Okay, I totally agree with that. Tell me how to find one? The professionals that deal with BPD are few and far between, that I know for a fact. They don’t provide therapy for only relatives of BPD patients; they provide therapy for families, which would includes the BPD patient. Our BPD patient has refused therapy. I have talked to other therapists/psychologists for recommendations. No one feels comfortable giving me recommendations because BPD is so……………what word can I use….intricate? Each person BPD patient has some similarities, but also has their own way of thinking/dealing. That is why therapy for families is suggested, but the BPD patient is a crucial element in that therapy.

I HATE FEELING THIS WAY.

I am lost

My rock

It has now been a little over two weeks since my girl has been home. She stopped home this weekend, after we were in bed. She took a shower, got more clothing and left. Our security cameras caught her coming and going. I am trying so hard to make each day a normal day. But I can’t. As I am planning my days, whether it is what to make for dinner, a trip to the store or dinner out with friends. My first thought is her. Will she like what I’m planning for dinner, does she need her lactose free milk, would she want to go along to eat or maybe we will bring something home for her. But she isn’t home anymore and I have not been able to wrap my brain around that. My thoughts are consumed with her.

I had some communication with her this weekend. She told me she got a job through an employment agency with a shipping company. She will work four, 10 hour days. She hasn’t worked longer than two weeks at a stretch as a part-time employee. She told me that she is very safe and doing really well. Her anxiety is basically gone and she is dealing with her anger issues. How did I interpret this? “Living at home with you and dad was my problem. I am fine now that I am away from you. I don’t need help with my BPD. I am normal now.” My fear is the time will come and the bubble will burst on her new wonderful life. The chaos that comes with BPD will rear it’s ugly head. I am scared when that starts to happen.

As we move through our daily lives pretending the world is a wonderful place, I would be lost without my rock. He is a man of few words. Where I am an extrovert, he is an introvert. We balance each other fairly well. Through this hell I have sobbed and slobbered on his shoulders, arms and pillow. He stood by my side when I needed a drink or 12 to help me forget. He loves his family fiercely and would stop at nothing to protect us. I would be lost without him. He is my husband, my lover, my very best friend and the love of my life. I would be a wreck without him. I hope that we can soon learn to live without constant fear and worry.

I don’t even know anymore

It’s one of those days.

I keep replaying the last 10 years of my daughter’s life wondering where I could have done something differently. Why didn’t I realize something seriously was wrong before now? All the what if’s are on a continuous loop in my head.

She came home yesterday around noon time. Our security cameras alerted me to motion in the driveway. I sat at work watching the camera, watching her. I needed to see her face. I needed to make sure she was physically okay. Did she have bruises? Did she have cuts? I obviously couldn’t see all that from the camera. But she was home.

I returned home from work around 4:15. I figured she was in her room wrapped in her blankets sleeping or watching Netflix. I was right. She was asleep. I started dinner, doing the normal daily after work stuff. My son and daughter-in-law stopped over to eat with us (I was trying a new recipe). I went to my girls room to wake her up and see if she was going to eat with us. She did come downstairs. She was pale, looked exhausted and didn’t say much. This was the first time in 6 days that I saw her. She slowly opened up, not talking about the past 6 days, but just the normal banter that happens at dinner. After dinner I stepped out on the porch to get some air and sat down at the patio table. I apparently had dropped my head and was rubbing my eyes/temples when my girl walked out. She asked if I was okay. I was honest and told her no, I wasn’t okay. I seriously can’t even remember everything that was said. It was mostly me talking. Only talking, no yelling, screaming, etc. She told me that within 3 months she would be moving out to move in with the boy and his family. I told her all my honest fears and worries for her. I told her over and over and over again that she would always have a home with us and the door would always be open for her. The conversation was probably 35 or 45 minutes. It was long, it was repetitive, it was emotionally draining. I think it went as well as it could have. I was shocked when she told me she was leaving again that night to go to the boy.

It was a sleepless, restless night. But that is becoming the norm. I stood in the shower this morning and couldn’t remember what to do first. Holding the soap in my hands wondering what to do with it. Every action or motion I make today feels like it drains me just a little bit more. Driving to work I was on autopilot. I think I drove safely. I honestly don’t remember.

I want to be pissed off. I want the anger and rage to take over and push me to the next phase of whatever this is. Is it grief? Is it a sense of loss? What is it that I’m feeling? I want to tell her she owes me thousands of dollars for all the shit I tried for her. All the crystals that help anxiety, the essential oils that help anxiety and depression and the headaches and that help her sleep better, the money on the spiritual healer that she didn’t listen to, the pure sage stuff to cleanse the house and her spirit, the new mattresses and bed linens that had to be replaced because her cat pissed on them (because she doesn’t clean the litter boxes), the new clothes because she lost more weight than she should have and had nothing to wear. I could go on and on. Our savings is lower than ever and I have to pay my school taxes. That’s on me. I was trying to help my girl. All I did was help my girl walk out the door.

Living in the wake of mental illness

It has now been 6 days since my girl has been home. I have had limited contact with her. Each day I ask if she is come back to town, I don’t use the word home. Each day she tells me she will be back the next day. That hasn’t happened.

I honestly have no idea when I will see her. I basically know nothing about what she is doing or where she is at. I know a general area she is in, but that is it. My mind is filled with horrible scenarios, all ending in her leaving this world. I can’t understand that she doesn’t care enough to see her 1 year old niece, or the cat that we finally agreed to let her get. The cat was like her emotional support animal.

I know that her Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is in control of her mind. I have read and read and read about BPD and it’s manifestations. I am trying to understand. I am trying to wrap my brain around it. It’s hard.

There is another side to loving, caring and living with someone that has a mental illness. All the people that love and care about my daughter get caught in her wake. There are days where the lake is smooth and crystal clear and it’s a joy to be around her. There are days when the lake is a little rough and you are never sure what might trigger her. And then there are the days that are pure hell.

Another piece of the illness, at least in my daughters case, is how she chooses to keep her surroundings. I really can’t believe I am sharing this, but it’s part of it. I am sharing pictures of my daughter’s bedroom and the bathroom my daughter uses. I can only assume that the chaos she chooses to live in is similar to the chaos in her mind. Both my husband and myself have cleaned her room and bathroom numerous times – always with the promise that this time she will keep it clean. The pictures don’t show the shit that is stuffed behind the bed or under the bed. And I never know what I will find shoved in drawers.

Today, I am numb inside and out. I ugly cried for about an hour on Friday. I needed that. The tears come out of the blue. Sometimes it might be a song I sang in the car with my girl or a memory that comes up on Facebook. I’m sad, I’m pissed off, I’m hurt, I’m so fucking angry, I hate the boy, I hate the disorder. Most of all I hate not being able to save my girl.

Letting her go

I lost. He won.

She isn’t getting therapy, she’s getting a job where he lives and is moving in with his family. He is a basic hood rat. He is a drug dealer. He is a narcissist. He is controlling her. He won’t let her go til she is dead. He will beat her, physically and mentally. He has made me her enemy.

How long until the newness wears off and her disorder takes over? How long until she creates a whirlwind of a mess in her new place? How long until she quits the job because she isn’t ready for it? If she ever comes back home, how much worse will she be? How long until there are more cuts? How long until there are more attempts?

I extended an olive branch to him. He (figuratively) slapped my face and declared the conversation over. I spoke of my girl and what she needs and how we can help her. He spoke of his ego, never of her and her well-being.

So many what if’s, so many fears……………

Emotional Conflict

As a self proclaimed super mom, there are days/weeks/months/years that I feel like a complete and total failure. I am not looking for a pat on the back or a “but you’re doing great” comment. I’m being honest. I can’t imagine anyone that is a parent/guardian/caregiver/whatever hasn’t felt like a failure at some point. And it’s not so much an outward failure where my kid showed up at soccer practice with no cleats, shin guards, water bottle or ball; more of an inner failure. The struggles we feel daily. The times when we question our decisions and the answers we gave to important questions. The times when I say to myself – I have no fucking idea what I am doing.

As horrid and awful as it sounds, I am having a moral and inner fight about suicide. I feel an overwhelming sadness washed over me the last few years. I have a nagging voice in the back of my mind that keeps saying “what if”. What if I am wrong to try to convince my daughter to stay in this world? How can I tell her over and over again that things will get better, but they haven’t? How can I know what she feels? When she tells me she doesn’t feel connected to anything in this world or she finds it impossible to feel any amount of happiness. Who am I to tell her she has to stay and fight? Am I being selfish in keeping her in my world? Am I being selfish to allow her to continue to feel the daily pain of her life? This feels so wrong to put into words, but I question my decisions daily.

I sob when I have dreams that she is gone, that I can never see her smile or smell her hair when I hug her. But what about her? Is she holding on because she feels guilty? Have I made her feel guilty? She finally has an actual diagnosis of what she has been fighting, but I keep telling her the diagnosis doesn’t define her. I am begging her to get the therapy. I am asking her to give her life one more year to see the change the right therapy can make. But she has to want it, she has to accept it, she has to embrace it. Can she? Will she?

Diagnosis

Feels like an eternity since I actually sat down and put my thoughts and feelings into words. That’s not to say that I haven’t had some amazing ideas that I know my followers would love…….however, this is about my baby girl.

At some point over the last few months, seeing my girl continuing to struggle it was decided she should undergo testing to determine what is going on. We were fortunate that she agreed to the testing and fortunate to have a very experienced psychologist administer the tests. The tests were conducted over three days. They were a combination of IQ and cognitive tests, as well as anxiety, depression, ADHD, and personality tests.

On 9/30/19, we met with the doctor to find out what the testing showed. I’m honestly not sure what I expected, but I didn’t expect to be told my girl has Borderline Personality Disorder. As the doctor began to explain what BPD is and what the key factors in this disorder are; it was like she was explaining the lat 10 years of my daughters life. It’s not that only one or two factors sounded “right” – they all sounded “right”. As the doctor continued to explain the disorder, I could feel my girl silently sobbing beside me. I keep trying to imagine what she felt hearing the results.

The doctor recommended a very specific type of therapy called Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). And explained the reason all the other therapy and medications my girl has tried over the lat 10 years hasn’t worked is because the therapies were not specific to the disorder. The medications did nothing at all. This is a biological disorder.

We left the office with the name of a very well respected psychologist who is skilled in DBT. The psychologist isn’t taking new patients, but gave the name of another psychologist who also does DBT, who also isn’t taking new patients. But from that psychologist we received the name of two other psychologists, neither of which treat BPD. Within a few days I had a list of doctors/groups that I called with no luck. Either new patients were not being accepted or they did not treat BPD patients. I reached out to the psychologist who did the testing. How can we have a 30 minute meeting advising our daughter of this diagnosis and be sent away with nothing to really help her? The testing doctor then provided the name of a group that treats BPD patients. It has to be to good to be true, right? Right. The group is a two hour drive, one way. I still called, explained the situation to the intake person. She took all the information and called me back with an appointment time the following week.

I drove my daughter to the appointment. Yes, she is 19. Yes, she is considered to be an adult. But I really don’t give a shit because the last 10 years has sucked and she will always know that I will be supportive of her. She met with the psychologist alone first and then toward the end of the appointment I was called in so I could hear the recommended treatment. I could tell as soon as I entered the room that my girl was comfortable with this therapist. She was asking questions, talking and seemed more at ease. Th treatment would be two days a week. One day is a two hour session that is basically like a classroom setting to learn new skills and coping mechanisms. The other day is a one hour private therapy session. Included with the treatment is phone check-ins with the therapist. The therapist was concerned because of the distance between our home and the facility. It is also a huge concern of mine. Yes, my daughter can drive. But after a two hour drive to get to the facility, a two hour session, and another two hour drive home – I just don’t feel good about it. She will be mentally exhausted after the therapy and I don’t think driving on highways and expressways would be a smart situation to put her in. I am still exploring a drive service and trying to figure out how that would be paid for……………

I asked the therapist if there were any other facilities closer to our home that have a similar type program for DBT. Nope. They are the only one in the state and actually have patients from nearby states due to the success of their treatment plan.

Seemed like things were finally falling into place. One little hurdle, my daughter has to agree to the treatment. She has to agree to go and commit to a year of intensive treatment. She hasn’t agreed to it. She is in denial. She is tired. She doesn’t know if she has anymore fight left in her. She doesn’t think her life is worth it. She doesn’t want to have to fight her brain every single day to try and live a normal life.

Borderline Personality Disorder is very hard to understand. I have been reading only things recommended by the therapists we have been dealing with. I feel the following is an extremely accurate explanation. I am probably going to be sued for using this – but you can’t get blood from a stone.

“Beneath the clinical nomenclature lies the anguish experienced by borderlines and their families and friends. For the borderline, much of life is a relentless emotional roller coaster with no apparent destination. For those living with, loving, or treating the borderline, the trip can seem just as wild, hopeless, and frustrating. Jennifer and millions of other borderlines are provoked to rage uncontrollably against the people they love most. They feel helpless and empty, with an identity splintered by severe emotional contradictions. Mood changes come swiftly, explosively, carrying the borderline from the heights of joy to the depths of depression. Filled with anger one hour, calm the next, he often has little inkling about why he was driven to such wrath. Afterward, the inability to understand the origins of the episode brings on more self-hate and depression. A borderline suffers a kind of “emotional hemophilia”; she lacks the clotting mechanism needed to moderate her spurts of feeling. Prick the delicate “skin” of a borderline and she will emotionally bleed to death. Sustained periods of contentment are foreign to the borderline. Chronic emptiness depletes him until he is forced to do anything to escape. In the grip of these lows, the borderline is prone to a myriad of impulsive, self-destructive acts—drug and alcohol binges, eating marathons, anorexic fasts, bulimic purges, gambling forays, shopping sprees, sexual promiscuity, and self-mutilation. He may attempt suicide, often not with the intent to die but to feel something, to confirm he is alive. “I hate the way I feel,” confesses one borderline. “When I think about suicide, it seems so tempting, so inviting. Sometimes it’s the only thing I relate to. It is difficult not to want to hurt myself. It’s like, if I hurt myself, the fear and pain will go away.” Central to the borderline syndrome is the lack of a core sense of identity. When describing themselves, borderlines typically paint a confused or contradictory self-portrait, in contrast to other patients who generally have a much clearer sense of who they are. To overcome their indistinct and mostly negative self-image, borderlines, like actors, are constantly searching for “good roles,” complete “characters” they can use to fill their identity void. So they often adapt like chameleons to the environment, situation, or companions of the moment, much like the title character in Woody Allen’s film Zelig, who literally assumes the personality, identity, and appearance of people around him. The lure of ecstatic experiences, whether attained through sex, drugs, or other means, is sometimes overwhelming for the borderline. In ecstasy, he can return to a primal world where the self and the external world merge—a form of second infancy. During periods of intense loneliness and emptiness, the borderline will go on drug binges, bouts with alcohol, or sexual escapades (with one or several partners), sometimes lasting days at a time. It is as if when the struggle to find identity becomes intolerable, the solution is either to lose identity altogether or to achieve a semblance of self through pain or numbness.”

Kreisman MD, Jerold J.. I Hate You–Don’t Leave Me (pp. 11-13). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.