Friday, February 10, 2017
Wednesday, May 4, 2016
Yes, I'm still struggling with taking my ADHD medicines as prescribed. Addiction? Not sure. Bad judgement? For sure.
I was thinking yesterday that when it comes time to have a baby, during my pregnancy I can't be doing this, taking a larger dose than I'm supposed to. Then I asked myself, "Can I do it? Are my actions automatically geared toward what is best for the baby?"
Several years back when I was attending addiction meetings because my life was spiraling out of control, the instructor told me one day, "Addicts think that if one is good, two must be better." He hit it right on. I definitely have that frame of mind. Maybe I'm not an addict, but I have addictive tendencies and an addictive personality for sure.
I talked to my husband several months back, before he was my husband, about my struggle. I felt like I got no support. Just a barrage of accusing questions from someone who definitely doesn't think "two is better." I also talked to my doctor, who then started restricting the number of days until I could refill my medications. But that didn't help. I just ran out faster and had to suffer through days without it at all. I haven't talked to Doctor or Husband since then.
So that leaves me here. Talking to the world at 2 a.m. when I have to get up and be a responsible "one is enough" adult. I'll get through the day on double or triple my prescription, only to do it all over again tomorrow.
Maybe this is larger than a "personality" trait.
Friday, March 4, 2016
I look around me, and I see no friends. No shopping buddies, coffee dates or spa partners. I have my husband, yes, but every girl needs at least one friend.
My friendlessness is due to two main reasons: I sabotaged the relationships I did have, and I isolate myself from others.
I had a great group of friends in high school. Messed that up. It was all over a project about Julia Butterfly. My mother was in my ear the night before. "Amy isn't helping on this project at all. You're doing all the work." So the next day, minutes before my friend's and I presentation was to begin, I told my teacher just that. My friend wasn't allowed to present with me, and she was turned to the side not making eye contact while I nailed the presentation.
This didn't go over well with the other girls in the group, who had been friends since childhood. So, all of our fun, crazy times were washed down the drain. I spent the rest of my senior year eating my lunch in a bathroom stall because I had no one to sit with. No senior year parties or pictures. I ruined a good thing over a mean act.
Fast forward to college. More sabotage. I lost a really, really great friend and I can't remember why. My group of friends toward the end of college were all friends with my ex, so when we broke up, so did our friendships.
I'm scared to make friends, to meet up with my husband's coworkers, all who have wives I could socialize with. I'm insecure, especially now because of my weight. At least now I have a reason behind saying "no" to social gatherings.
So I lay in bed at 2 a.m. thinking about my friendless life, and I'm sad. Sad but scared to take steps toward meeting new people. Even if I did, everyone already has their core group of friends. It would take a lot of energy to become part of a group, energy I don't have and don't want to invest.
So, why bother?
Wednesday, March 2, 2016
As a Borderline, she projects. So, maybe she is actually saying may God have mercy on her soul. Just maybe.
All this Borderline talk has me feeling a bit queasy. Does this mean it's time for a break? Does this mean I'm getting really close to the soul of the matter? I'm so happy I have a therapist who I can ask these questions to and gain some insight I'm not developing on my own. A past therapist told me to "pepper in" books about borderlines because of the emotions that come up. I have so far been most affected by Beverly Engel's Healing Your Emotional Self. It was when talking about this book that my therapist mentioned pepper. I never finished that book. Maybe I can mix it up a little and pick it back up, and take a break from my current reading. I just don't know, but I trust that my therapist will.
I searched online for some articles about BPD and adult children of BPD parents, but did not find much except links to books to buy. What if a person cannot afford to buy books? What if articles are easier for them to read for books? After my www search, I feel there isn't enough information about BPD that is free and readily available. There are blogs about the subject, which is nice, at least for me, to hear another's firsthand account of growing up with a BPD parent.
This just popped into my head, so I'll share. I never felt like I had a childhood. I had to be an adult and deal with adult emotions, rage and plain awkward situations. I remember my mom and step dad fighting because she cheated on him. He asked why she wasn't more upset when telling him about it. Her response: "Because Kay is right here." I shouldn't have been there in the first place. I remember her saying that she didn't love the guy and it was "just sex." She told me this, a 7-year old. She would never admit that this situation took place, but I don't need her to, because I've found some healing in no longer needing her validation.
I have stories for days. Her always telling me she had to walk around on eggshells because of me. I was five years old, mother! I didn't understand the phrase, just understood that I was bad and made her feel bad, I just didn't know why. I feeling some anger recounting these events, as I'm entitled to feeling. I hope there are others who have come across my blog and found it helpful, perhaps after not finding any helpful information online. And alternately, I hope I'm not screwing up someone's beliefs. But this is my story. Others are certainly different, but we all dealt with the same type of behaviors: projection, splitting, raging, crying...
I'll keep sharing my story as long as there is someone out there who is reading it.
Tuesday, March 1, 2016
"...sons and daughters may feel like they can't live life independently while maintaining a relationship with their parent." pg. 32
"...adult children report difficulty navigating boundaries and setting appropriate limits with others." pg. 33
"Many adult children have trouble recalling times when they just felt like fun-loving, silly kids." pg. 33
"They may have difficulty accepting care and attention. It's hard for them to feel happy and content." pg. 34
"Adult children may have learned to be shy and self-conscious about their physical appearance, behavior, and emotions." pg. 36
'"They may lack a well-defined sense of self..." pg. 37
"Adult children feel like they, too, fell down, like they failed as children and are flawed or 'defective,'... pg. 37The reason I'm sharing these excerpts is a) this describes me to a T b) I feel confident that others, maybe you, feel some of these same ways. The more I read, the more doors open in my heart and soul, and I want to share, share, share.
Surviving a Borderline Parent by Kimberlee Roth and Freda B. Friedman, PH.D., LCSW is a great book and I highly recommend it. Why? It eases you into remembering your childhood and emotions, and gives insight on what and why you feel certain ways as an adult child. And I love that they use the term "adult child." I wanted to scream so many times as an adult to my mother, "But I am the CHILD!" No matter my age, I will always be the child, and my mother will always be the adult. She will always hold the ultimate responsibility. That fact adds a few feathers to my wings.
Monday, February 29, 2016
This is a perfect example of her extreme, unwarranted behavior. First she wants to buy stuff from me, then she wants God to have mercy on me. Why? Did I not answer her back like she expected? Who really knows...I don't even think she knows. As much progress as I've made this incident was a major set back. I missed a day of work and was very lazy this past week, sleeping every chance I could get. Her words are so damn hateful. And I hate to admit it, but she struck a chord in me. She infected me again, and I hate it.
My counselor helped me make some sense out of it. She said, "It's like you have this little gem, this online shop where you can be creative and share your work with others. And it's almost as if she robbed you of that." This is very much how I feel.
She's pushing mid-50's and her behavior is the same as it was 30 years ago. When will she change? When will she start living a better life? Does she think she is living a better life? I want to know, but she would only lie and deny...her best traits.
In Surviving a Borderline Parent by Kimberlee Roth and Freda B. Friedman, PH.D., LCSW, I've hit the section about guilt. I didn't really think Guilt applied to me until I started writing this post. I feel guilty for my disdain of my mother. I feel guilty for saying these things about her. Not because "she's my mother" but because I realize how utterly unhappy and unrestful she is, and it hurts me to talk of someone with emotional handicaps, someone who I know has so much to give to this world.
I was telling my husband the other night, "I've seen her at her best. She is active. She is funny. She is caring and gives great advice." These qualities are trapped inside of her, strangled by the Borderline she is perfecting to become.
I learned from my sister she talks about "not being here" and "I think it would just be better if I went to sleep and never woke up again." Making suicidal threats is characteristic of Borderlines. But, are these threats? Is she asking for help in the only way she knows how? I told my husband about this and he went into action mode, the mode I sometimes cannot stand, but the mode that shows he cares and he's listening. "Can you have her committed? Even if temporarily. Have someone look at her?" I don't think so if she's not in immediate danger of harming herself or others. But what if she is! Do I intervene? I can talk to my sister, ask her to dig a little deeper when our mother makes these comments. But my sister and I have an unspoken promise - she doesn't talk about me to our mother, and vice versa. But maybe this is an exception. My mother is such a liar and manipulator, I don't know what to believe or what to dismiss, but when one hints at suicide, it seems to me that you should always take them seriously and not dismiss their words. More to come on what transpires from this.
For now, I'm continuing to read Surviving a Borderline Parent. Quickly, there is one passage I want to share with you, one that caused me to put the book down for a few days without realizing this passage was the catalyst.
"While it's indeed possible for those with BPD to change their feelings, beliefs and behaviors, it's not likely, especially after so many years.As you try to accept your situation and move beyond it, you must give up the hope, the fantasy, the wish, that your parent will change significantly. Think of it this way: if they do change, it will be a wonderful gift, a bonus, but it's not something you can realistically expect." (pg. 56)Not something I can realistically expect. I suppose this answers the many questions I've asked in this post. Such a sad realization though, don't you think?
Sunday, February 28, 2016
I'm not acting responsible. I often (okay always) pick clothes up off the ground, throw them in the dryer to take out the wrinkles, then wear them. To work. It's not that I don't have the time. It's that I don't have the energy, the will, the desire. I cleaned out the library closet yesterday, which was a huge undertaking. I lifted all the heavy boxes myself and organized it so you can actually walk through it. I also purged some items that I forgot I even had. I figured if I had gone this long not even remembering I had it, I probably didn't need it.
I bought two bookshelves from Target, one of which arrived just a few days ago. The husband hung it up and I quickly decorated it with books and a few accent pieces. The library is my santuary. It still needs furniture, but I just go in there and sit on the floor and read or magascrap or make my frames. We are doing some furniture shopping today, and as I type this post, I am in full hair and makeup with a cute outfit on. What has gotten into me!
Maybe like the husband, I got a little fed up, too. Not doing anything can be extremely exhausting. I'm just starting to care more, to love myself more and to appreciate what I have more. I don't know if it's my reading of Surviving a Borderline Parent that is bringing me some healing energy, but whatever it is, I'm liking it. I just pray it doesn't go away. The thing is, unlike times in the past, I'm not doing everything 100% perfect and taking care of every last out-of-place item. I'm doing a little at a time, which is manageable. I'm reminded of the Fly Lady, who gives great tips on organizing and cleaning and clearing space in your home bit by bit.
And I suppose that's the motto I'm adopting as of today: Bit by Bit. I can do bit by bit.
Saturday, February 27, 2016
Five Hundred Pound Peep: No Longer Allowing Bad Treatment in my Life: When one is an ACON and enters a healing phase, it can bring upheaval to your entire life. I have ended several friendships in the last...
Monday, February 15, 2016
Ongoing or frequent feelings of being hollow, empty, or fake.
"Lacking a strong core, a sense of self they can trust, they feel out of control and dependent on others, forever victimized."The books goes on to give the example of one woman's experience:
"Generally she [mother] was inconsistent and sabotaging, and we never knew when she'd blow up and then give us the silent treatment, lock us out of the house, or punish us for some unknown transgression. She blamed us for her shortcomings."My mother was infamous for giving the silent treatment, to one of us at a time as I talk about in my previous post, or to all of us. I was punished for the smallest of things, while being reminded of all of the big mistakes that I made which made any punishment of hers acceptable.
Once, me and my sisters were at the grocery store with her. I started to put a yogurt in the basket and she said, "No, I can't afford to be getting you yogurt." And I looked at my sister and said, "But it's only 40 cents." My sister laughed, and all hell broke loose. She yelled at me and embarrased me, then punished me with her ever-favorite silent treatment, grounded me for days which included her yanking the t.v. in my room out of the wall and telling any friend who called that I was grounded. She reminded me how I wasn't a good sister or role model to my sisters, and I don't appreciate anything she does for me. No, the 40 cent remark wasn't nice, but the punishment did not fit the crime, her cruelty was uncalled for, and assigning thoughts and emotions to me was just dumb.
Either underexpressed or overexpressed feelings of anger, seen in frequent displays of temper, rage, recurrent physcial fights, or extreme sarcasm or withdrawal.
"Those with BPD may go to great lengths to deflect anger in others, which can be infuriating to a loved one trying to communicate honest feelings. Parents with BPD may not accept responsibility for their behavior nor be willing to listen to how they might have caused emotional or physical harm. If you try to point out their behavior, they may lash out with an abusive tirade or stone cold silence, attempting to place blame on you instead ("If you hadn't of done this, I wouldn't have had to beat you.").The one physical thing that I remember she did was push me into my closet. I peed in my pants because I was so scared and taken off guard. And I was in middle school when that happened. In that aspect, I guess you could say I was lucky. I don't know how I would deal with or overcome physical abuse. She was physical with my stepdad, and I witnessed their fights, called 911 once because I was so scared. After my mom learned that I was the one who called the police, she told me after they left as I laid in bed crying, "Thanks a lot. Now I'll have a record." Then she left the room. I was about 5 years old when this happened. Oh no, comforting me because I obviously had been scared to death didn't make sense. But shaming me and blaming me for her "record" was a reasonable response from her. Bitch.
She definitely deflected her feelings on others. Telling me in elementary school that she had to walk around on eggshells when she was around me. Are you bleeping kidding me? I was like six years old, too young to even understand the concept of walking on eggshells. She kept on with that eggshell business until I left to go to college when I was 18. News flash mommy: we had to walk around on eggshells. Not the other way around.
I think if I told her about these experiences she would deny them, and may actually and honestly not remember saying those things or doing those things, And if she did, it was because...repeat after me, "You don't appreciate anything I do for you. You weren't being a good sister or role model. You probably did x or y or z." Basically a big shaming f-you to my childhood experiences.
Despite these memories I am having, and because of these memories I'm having, I'm going to continue reading Surviving a Borderline Parent. I need to expunge these thoughts and emotions so I can better heal. And I believe within these pages, healing is awaiting my discovery.
Sunday, February 14, 2016
The Symptoms of BPD
It was the second symptom that jumped out at me. Patterns of relationships that are intense and unstable; repeated tendencies to shift between extremes of loving and hating another person. This sounds exactly like my mother, but it sadly sounds a little like me in years past. Could this realization be what brought on the anger?
"They tend to see others as entirely good or entirely bad, as hero or villain, as ally or enemy, rather than see a person as generally good despite a few flaws. Sometimes they'll split siblings, believing one is the perfect child while another is nothing but trouble."That last part: "Sometimes they'll split siblings, believing one is the perfect child while another is nothing but trouble." Sooo what I had to deal with growing up. There were three of us sisters and an on-again, off-again boyfriend who she put through hell. He had a drug problem, I even think my mother did drugs occasionally with him, but I still felt kinda sorry for the guy. She was so mean to him, hurling the most hateful words about his sons, his manhood...and us sisters were witness to it all. We were also witness to her hatefulness to one of us at a time. She would deprive one of us (mostly me) of attention and affection while doting on the other two sisters in front of the "bad" child. It was a merry-go-round that I didn't want to get on, and I was on guard all the time because I knew my turn was coming up.
Another symptom: Frequent mood swings and intense emotional reactions, irritability or anxiety of changing duration-anywhere from a few hours to a few days. Sooo my mother, to this day, and sadly, a little like me in years past. I have improved drastically over the years as I've gone down the counseling and medication journey. When I think of my self at different points in my life, I am embarrassed. The only thing I ever saw were my mother's freakouts, so I naturally just freaked out. Do you see how I'm justifying my actions? I just realized I'm doing this. Yes, I have problems but I'm working on them, and have been for several years. She's on the same freakout rollercoaster she's been on since I was a child. This I know because one of my sisters still communicates with her and has come to me frustrated, angry, sometimes crying, because of her bullshit she pulls.This section goes on:
"Often, the person doesn't remember-or claims not to remember-what was said or done during his previous feeling state or mood."An example in the book from a BPD survivor is accounted:
"He [parent] only railed for a few minutes, but he said some of the most hurtful things ever. To this day, whenever something special happens, I hesitate to enjoy it-I'm always wondering when it'll come crashing down."My own example:
My mother threw an absolute fit a few days before my college graduation. She hadn't talked to me at all about coming to my graduation, when should would come, if she would come, while my boyfriend at the time and some of my family made plans far in advance at were staying at the house we shared together. There was no room at the Inn by the time she decided to "get excited" about the most important day of my life and my biggest accomplishment yet. "You don't even have room for your mother?" she says. No, I don't. But there are tons of hotels she can stay in like other sane people are doing. Then it started.
- I'm a hypocrite and going to hell
- I used my grandmother's death to gain sympathy from people
- My sister (one of them) isn't coming because she's a "manager" (she put emphasis on that) and can't get off of work
And there you go, people. The story of my life growing up. I'm reading this book and writing about it because I'm writing and living a new story now. A story with happiness, love, acceptance and self-awareness. I may be on chapter 1 in my life story, I'm really not sure. I just know this: my story will be of healing. And healing has definitely begun.
- I never know from one hour to the next what I'm in for.
- I learn to notice the most subtle of cues so I have some warning as to what's coming.
- I don't trust what you tell me, because days, hours, minutes later it could-and likely will-change.
- It's better not to get excited or feel good about circumstances or accomplishments because my happiness may trigger a violent reaction.
- It's just easier not to bask in the glow of good things, because it may be quickly followed by humiliation.