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The Effect of Borderline Personality Disorder on My Friendships. Or, How I Spent My Summer Vacation

It’s something I don’t like to talk about because I feel ashamed.  Ashamed that I let friendships die.  That I let friendships die because I’m an asshole.  No judgment, it’s the truth.  When I’m not blaming myself I’m blaming BPD which, in essence, is blaming myself BECAUSE OF BPD.  Geez Louise.  Can ya see the dysfunction there?  So yeah, I am unable to maintain friendships.  I do the typical BPD thing where I meet someone; I become infatuated with them because they’re so cool and life’s so great and let’s skip off holding hands into the sunset.   

And then they do something sucky.  For me, that something becomes a dealbreaker.  For non-BPD people, that something is probably just a minor irritation and certainly not something to end the friendship over.  So there I am, peeved like a cat whose tail you’re pulling, and my friend is cut off.  Unfriended, blocked, deleted from contacts, DEAD TO ME. 

Which is fine and dandy until I realize, far too late, that what they did was really just a minor little thing, and that I’d over-reacted and that I miss them.  Then I scramble to try to get them back into my life but, as you can imagine, they’ll have none of that.  They don’t understand why you flipped out in the first place and they sure as hell aren’t going to let you do it to them again.  So I suffer.  I pine for them.  Mourn their loss.  Kick myself hard in the ass.  Rinse and repeat, because I know that I’ll do it again.  Over and over and over and over.  Until maybe next time.  Ya gotta be optimistic, right?  Grumble grumble.  I only say the “until maybe next time” because I’m pretending that all of the therapy I’ve done has made a world of difference, and that I’m enlightened and upbeat and setting out to change the world.  Truth be told, I’m not sure that DBT did a whole lot for me.  It seemed to make a difference while I was taking the classes, but I’m not sure that the effects are long term.   I gained enough insight through years of therapy that I am fairly well aware of the borderline-y things I’m doing as I’m doing them.  I’m just lacking in the ability to not act in those borderline-y ways.

So the friendship issue is this – I want friends, but I’m scared of friendships because of my history of ruining them.  I’m also daunted by the actual process of making friends.  The whole what’s-your-favorite-color bullshit.  Taking the time to get to know someone only to realize that they’re not the kind of someone you want in your life.  I haven’t had much luck making friends out in the real world.  Work friends aren’t really friends that you hang out with, at least my work friends aren’t.  And I’m not a joiner of groups or clubs.  I’m not a class-taker.  I’m not a hobbyist.  I could join some groups or clubs, or take some classes, or become a hobbyist, but let me be realistic here – no way, I don’t wanna, fuck that shit!  So, those things being out, I have the internet.  Ah yes, the trusty internet.   

This is the day that I open myself back up to friendship.  Wish me luck.

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