Cate: 1 BPD: 0

Image credit: D.Hilgart/Flickr.com

I’m celebrating a victory today.  Small, yet still very meaningful to me.  Personally I think celebrating the small steps is just as important as the major break-throughs.  Always.

Someone swore at me today on my Facebook page.  This was a first, although it is something I am used to in the support groups I run (although only when trolls sneak in).  I can handle that when it happens  I have a responsibility to protect members of the groups from these people and so have come to accept that it is simply part of the job.

But to swear at me on the Facebook page associated to this blog was new to me.  I immediately recognised the name as a friend of a friend, but had no reason to think why this person would do that.  The victory though, was that I didn’t immediately take it personally.  Actually my first thought was that the person didn’t agree with the quote I had posted, and it wasn’t until later that I thought that perhaps it was aimed at me.

Now I know this stuff goes on in social media all the time, and I have handled it so that it won’t happen again (from that person anyway).  But let me explain why this happens to be a victory.  Firstly I need to put it in the context that I’m not someone who swears often.  When it happens (like when a family member accidentally lost control of their car and tried to run me over recently) there is usually a pretty good reason.  That said, I accept that unfortunately, for a lot of people swearing is almost second nature.  I find that sad.  Why can’t they find some real words to express themselves properly?

People with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) invariably assume that everything is directed at them personally.  We can have paranoid thoughts (although that has never been a great problem for me) but more so, we have a very unstable sense of self.  That means we take things personally.  We have a tendency to assume everything is about us, although I hasten to add that isn’t some sort of vain pride but rather the inability to separate ourselves from the situation.  Anyone who has BPD will tell you that it is a constant battle to achieve this separation.  While we are great at splitting, realising that the whole world is not about us is a little more difficult.

But I did it.  My automatic assumption was that this torrent was not aimed at me but rather at the quote.  This is big!  It is very big for me.  Actually in hindsight I’m sure it probably was aimed at me, although I don’t understand why, but it doesn’t actually matter and I can shake it off and not let it wreck my day.  Actually the person who posted it is the one with the problem and this is not all about me.  It’s time to celebrate.

Oh, and if you were wondering what the quote was,  it was something very relevant to me right now:

“We need others.  We need others to love and we need to be loved by them.  There is no doubt that without it, we too, like the infant left alone, would cease to grow, cease to develop, choose madness and even death.”

 – Leo Buscaglia

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12 thoughts on “Cate: 1 BPD: 0

  1. Dorothy

    congratulations for being able to recognize the anger was aimed at something else….not to get off topic but I want you to know that learn a lot from reading your posts!

  2. This is awesome, Cate! 🙂 Congratulations for this huge step, and I have to say I look up to you for it, ’cause I know I would have taken it personally. I do that all the time, so to read that you didn’t gives me hope that maybe I’ll be able to reach that same point too someday. Thanks for sharing this, and that person lost out on a valuable experience by responding to you like that.

    In addition, I’m like you when it comes to cursing. It will come out in times when things are at their worse (at least worse in my eyes). But, for the most part I never curse. Just like you, I can’t understand why people can’t find “real words” to use. To each their own, but that one really does boggle my mind.

    Also, I have no idea what anyone could find wrong with the quote you wrote, let alone find a reason to curse at you for it. Obviously it hit a nerve for him or her, which makes me curious, but that’s up to them to deal with.

    1. Thanks Summer. Actually I’m still amazed at myself for not taking it personally. It seems I’m changing and that has to be a good thing, and yes it means there is hope for us all. 🙂

  3. Pingback: Deceived | Infinite Sadness… or hope?

  4. Pingback: Careless Words | Infinite Sadness… or hope?

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