To My Significant Other Trying to Understand My BPD
Editor’s note: If you experience suicidal thoughts or have lost someone to suicide, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741.
To my sweet dear lover,
There was a time I was actively suicidal and I felt like you didn’t care for me. You asked why this was happening, trying to find out the root of the problem so you could stop it. Fact is, you won’t. I get so stressed out easily when I feel like I can’t answer questions. I can’t solve problems. There is one thing on my mind in that moment and it’s whether I’m going to end my life or not. In those times, I need your caring and nurturing nature. If I get asked questions I can’t answer, I’ll fall off the bridge. I cannot be overwhelmed, especially by you. I will answer your questions later when I’m over this, but in the moment, I need you to be clueless in care. I need you to understand that the root won’t fix me — it’ll just inform you why I’m feeling this way. What will fix me is talking to my best friend and hearing how much they care about me, and that’s you. Please understand this isn’t an attack on you, but an informational guide to answer your questions and guide you to respond in mentioned scenarios.
1. What goes through my mind daily?
Honestly, I wish I could tell you everything, but I can never seem to keep track of it because I only remember to track my mood when it’s negative. However, I will tell you what I can remember. I can remember the different scenarios running through my head, the constant thoughts of “what if.” Then, suddenly I get triggered by something or by nothing. Then it’s an attack of thoughts towards myself, filled with vivid messages.
“I hate you, you’re terrible, you’ll never be enough, they hate you, you’re ‘crazy,’ you’re worthless, you’re such a financial burden, you deserve pain, you deserve to die.”
And no matter how much someone tells me I’m valuable, no one who matters hates you, etc., I still never believe it because that voice keeps telling me it’s all a lie. What goes through my mind on the daily is different each day, but the self-hate is the same. It follows me with a big black cloud that never leaves, telling me how to feel. I feel it every day, even though the outside feels different every day.
2. Why do the little things bother me more than the big things?
The truthful answer is, they don’t. To someone else, they might bother me as much as a big thing, and the big things are just so overwhelming that sometimes I ignore them or procrastinate to act on them. My reaction to the big things is just a defense mechanism. If I push it off, then I don’t have to do it; if I don’t have to do it, then I don’t have to worry about it (even though I’ll worry about it continuously in the back of my mind until it’s too late). The reaction of acting like small things was a big deal is just another side effect of borderline personality disorder (BPD). I can’t help or change that I take everything personally — it just happens. I can work hard on it every day until you don’t see it, but at the end of the day it’s just me learning how to conceal my feelings and not let them bother or pester you. I know you don’t want that because then you’ll ask even more questions, trying to figure out what the little black cloud is doing to my mind. It’s not anything I can really control. It’s just the way I’ve always worked.
3. Where do I get the idea that everyone hates me from?
This is part of the little black cloud that follows me around and whispers lies into my ears so loud I can’t hear the fact you don’t hate me. It tells me things so strongly I must believe it or I’ll die. I don’t know how to leave it. It comes in seasons like all rain clouds do. But much more often, much like the peak of noon comes every day, so does my cloud. I can’t change the weather. I just deal with it, I wait out the storm. Down comes the lies that make me anxious, scared and upset. With that comes all the thoughts I am hated by others.
4. Why do I take things personally?
As another effect of BPD: I take everything to heart. There’s no other explanation but that I feel everything much more extreme than the average person. It’s as if my emotions are on steroids. It’s hard not to because everything seems to hit me on such a personal level. There’s nothing I can change on how outside things affect me. All I can ask of you is to be understanding and to treat each problem like it’s as serious as I feel it.
5. Why do I think I haven’t gone through with suicide?
To me, contrary to popular belief, suicide is not my choice. The feeling of being suicidal comes when my little black rain cloud storms into a giant hurricane superstorm. Out of fear, I claim I’ll die. I’m too scared to live with everything I’ve got. However, most storms do clear out. I have realized there are two paths: to stay here and die by the storm, or stay here and wait out the storm. I’m too scared to run away from it, for this is all I’ve known. I fear one day I will literally die from the storm of major depressive disorder (MDD) or BPD. I scream suicidal thoughts not because I’m on the verge, but because I’m scared for my life that my mental illness will take over and kill me.
6. Why do I feel the need to apologize even after I’ve done nothing wrong?
Much like the fear of the storm, I also fear your feelings and fear everyone else’s. With this, I constantly apologize in fear I might have done something wrong or there was some way I could have helped, but I didn’t. With my apology, I express how sorry I truly feel for whatever you go through and how everything could be my fault, even though it isn’t (that’s one of the lies the black cloud tells me). One sorry isn’t enough.
And with that, I continue to apologize to you for dealing with everything I go through. I don’t mean to hurt you or this relationship. Everything I go through is an immense amount of pain. I love you so much I’m telling you I’m sorry, otherwise, it’d be fewer apologies. I wish I could give you all of my true self and make you more than happy. I wish for your understanding as I go through all of this. Remember the root of the problems won’t fix anything until the storm has passed. So be there for me through the storm.
Thank you for being so good to me through all of this,
If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.
If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, the Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386 or text “HOME” to 741-741. Head here for a list of crisis centers around the world.
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Photo by Pablo Heimplatz on Unsplash