Questioning My Experiences With Borderline Personality Disorder
Not but a few months ago, I was given a diagnosis that changed my life: borderline personality disorder. It explained so many bizarre parts of my lived experience, but it also scared the hell out of me. Even as a mental health professional, I didn’t truly have a good understanding of the disorder. So I read, and I asked questions, and I searched every mental health outlet I could find.
Today I have a much better, though not complete, understanding of why I am the way I am. Many people with BPD have traumatic experiences in their past. I would be one of them. In dealing with my past traumas, I often wonder if it really happened the way I remember. Was it really that bad?
The answer will always be yes, no matter the event.
But I often question these memories because of my diagnosis. BPD leads a person to feel everything to the highest capacity. Others would describe it as over-exaggerating everything. I prefer the former because the latter has led me to question my feelings of very difficult events.
Recently, I had a flashback to a time where a man was unusually friendly to me and it had my trauma senses tingling. I freaked out and ran away. The man, who happened to live in the apartment across from me, followed me and banged on the door for almost 10 minutes while I hid in the farthest corner of my apartment and called my dad.
Looking back, I wonder if that was paranoia, or if I did the right thing? Was it smart of me to call the police, or was I exaggerating?
Luckily for him, the police in that town were incredibly lazy and convinced me not to file a complaint.
Now, years later I look back and wonder if it was my BPD that affected me in those moments. Did I have the right to respond to any discomfort I felt? Absolutely. Did I take it too far? Not sure. Was I scared so bad I had anxiety attacks until the day I moved out for fear the man would come after me? Sure did!
Truth is, I reacted the way I felt was best at the time, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Maybe I overreacted. Maybe I acted the way I was supposed to. Who knows?
Regardless, I’ll likely question my reactions towards everything, which makes my anxiety even worse.
But I’ll manage. And that’s OK.
We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.
Getty Image by tommaso79