Becca Conroy

@helplesslyhopeful | contributor
My name is Becca Conroy and I spend every day of my life suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, ADHD, Bipolar II and Autism. On my worst days I find my motivation by writing. Through writing I can connect with other people in ways I would never have been able to otherwise. These words are my lifeline in a world that isn't so simple.

Leaving Your Parent After Years of Their Substance Use

I might have been yours when I was 6 months old and couldn’t feed myself. I might have been yours when I was 1 year old and learning to walk. I might have been yours when I was 2 years old and couldn’t cross the street by myself. I might have been yours when I was 3 years old and learning to use the potty. I might have even been yours when I was 4 and learning to ride a two-wheeler or 5 and starting kindergarten. I might have been yours when I was 6 and scared of the dark. I might have been yours when I was 7 years old and had an earache. I might have been yours when I was 8 and 9 and 10 and learning to navigate the world.   But I wasn’t yours when you left me alone by myself all those nights. And I wasn’t yours when you were stumbling around the streets. And I wasn’t yours when you told me I was “annoying” because I said I loved you. I wasn’t yours when you took me away from my entire family. I wasn’t yours when you got drunk and threw my Christmas presents away. I wasn’t yours when you attempted suicide and blamed me. And I wasn’t yours when you stole my medication after I had surgery. I wasn’t yours when you let your girlfriend kick me out of the house. I wasn’t yours when you locked yourself in your room for days at a time. And I wasn’t yours when you left for Atlantic City without telling me. I wasn’t yours when you didn’t teach me how to drive. I wasn’t yours when you didn’t help me with my period. I wasn’t yours when you forgot to teach me about love and sex and how they go together — but even more importantly, how they don’t. I wasn’t yours when you showed up drunk to my high school graduation. I wasn’t yours when you left before they called my name.   I wasn’t yours then, and I’m not yours now.   I’m not yours when I’m studying hard to do my best in graduate school. I’m not yours when I make a good play at shortstop. I’m not yours when I take my medication in the morning or when I go to sleep at night. I’m not yours when I’m planning to have a child. I’m not yours when I think about doing life the right way. I’m not yours when I leave for work every day. I’m not yours when I give life everything I have. I’m not yours when I kiss my husband goodbye. And I’m not yours when he says “I love you” back. I’m not yours when I think about how you’ve hurt me. And I’m not yours when I have flashbacks at night. I’m not yours when I talk about you in therapy. And I’m not yours as I move forward with my life.   I was yours when it had to be that way. I was yours when I had no choice.   But now, I am older, I am wiser, I have a choice, and I am not yours. I am mine.

Community Voices

A Letter to My Younger Self

Dear Younger Self,

In whatever moment you are in right now, remember that the pain won’t last. Hold on tight to that promise as you dry the tears from your eyes, as you question life’s motives, as you writhe in anger. While you live each day with the hand you have been dealt, know that the deck is forever being shuffled. No two seconds will ever be the same, and your future is guaranteed to be vastly different than your past was. Recognize with certainty that the decisions you make today will become catalysts for tomorrow, and this in itself gives you the ultimate power that you need to survive this moment.

When you are confused or unsure, ask yourself, “What am I leaving out of my understanding of this problem,” and think big picture. Find comfort in knowing there is always something larger than yourself. Find solace in the fact that we are all more alike than we are different and find peace in knowing we are all in this together.

Know that even when you think you have nothing, you always have something, however small it might be and however hard you may have to look to find it. Appreciate what you have now, for these things do count for something. Sometimes in life, a grain of sand becomes a castle, a seedling flourishes into a rose, a cloud of dust becomes a shooting star, a sentence expands to a novel, a caterpillar to a monarch butterfly or a newborn baby into a beautiful, majestic human being who has the power to decide what matters in life.

Try not to be so bitter about the past. Yes, it was unfair. Yes, it was hard. Yes, it sucked. And it has made you everything you are today. Do your best not to carry your resentment into this moment; it will eat away at you and make you a skeleton of a human being. Hate will kill us slowly and it will devour all the joy from our spirits and the innocence from our souls.

Do your best to start fresh with each new morning, for every day will bring with it something that will try to bring us down with its own setting sun. People will be cruel. Luck will run out. Bad things will happen to good people. We will do things we are not proud of. It is in letting go that we find freedom, it is in starting fresh that we find the vision we need to move on. It is in taking two steps forward that we create a new beginning.

Sometimes you must be your own hero. Sometimes the rest of the world and everyone in it is going to let you down. There will be moments you find yourself utterly, utterly alone with no one to show you the way, no one to hold your hand, no one to guide you. Forgive them anyway. Most of the time, they know not what they’ve done, and the rest of the time, they are still only human, imperfect, and flawed by nature. Their forgiveness is your own healing.

The secret to happiness is finding joy in the little things. Take time to appreciate the small moments that make life worthwhile; the parts of life that can’t be purchased or fabricated. The early morning sunrises over the Atlantic Ocean, the warmth an unexpected hug brings, the smiles that come with genuine gratitude on a Christmas morning, the way your dog meets you at the door on a cold and lonely night, first kisses, new love, growing old together, the smell of a fresh book in your hands, the sound of a song you haven’t heard in a long time, the first snowfall of a season, a good memory, a freshly baked cannoli and the feeling of accomplishment. These things don’t have price tags, yet they are priceless in and of themselves.

To the reader, remember as you view this letter that this is my story, this is my message to my younger self. Your narrative is different, special, and unique in its own right. Do not let anyone tell you anything different. Do not ever let anyone make you feel less than, for you are certainly more than they will ever be. From your first breath to your last feel empowered to be just who you are and have no shame in sharing it with the world. Nobody has earned the right to dictate your autobiography. There is freedom in knowing you are free.

Growing Up Without Unconditional Love From Your Mother

She sees photographs of her nieces and nephews hand-in-hand with their parents, tiny fingers intertwined as they walk down the street. She receives holiday cards with infants and toddlers snuggled beneath the embrace of a mother and a father, “best wishes” strewn across the bottom of a Hallmark card. And on a daily basis she bears witness to parents all over, smiling adoringly at the kids they brought into this world. And each time this happens she gets that same feeling in the pit of her stomach. That sharp pain of a dull knife puncturing her heart; only deep enough to maim, not enough to sever. It’s the same feeling that screams to her, “Shouldn’t that be enough?” “Shouldn’t the conceiving and bearing of a human soul be enough reason to love the very thing you’ve created?” “Isn’t the service of creating life good enough reason to love that which you’ve born?” But she knows from experience that it isn’t enough. She knows from experience that blood does not run deep, tenderness is never promised, commitment is not reality and some of us will go an entire lifetime never knowing what it is to be loved unconditionally. So to those of you who question every day why you’re not important, I understand. And to anyone who has ever asked themselves, “Why me?” I understand. And to those who have ever hated themselves because of the disdain they feel when looking at the loving embrace of a mother and her daughter, I understand. To all of you out there who question their own worth, you are not alone. To all of you who are filled with rage at the hand you’ve been dealt, you are not alone. And for those who pray every night for something to change, you are certainly not alone.

Community Voices

Why We Write

We choose to write not because we want to, but because we need to.

We write because to not would rip us apart from the inside out.

We write because the emotion is so large there is not enough room within us to bear its brute force.

We write because there is no other means of escape.

Our pen is our voice when we can make no other noise.

It is a cacophony of our thoughts, feelings, wishes and desires.

It is the commencement of any and all language we hold within us.

And it is all we have when our throats are not hoarse enough to speak the truth.

Our paper is the secret keeper to the darkness within our souls.

It is the epitaph to our gravestones.

It is our obituaries before they greet us.

It is the mirror to everything we’ve ever lost, everything we’ve ever gained and everything we’ve tried to forget along the way.

We write so that our hearts don’t close forever.

We write so that our spirit remains intact.

We write to remember.

We write to be free.

Mental Health

Depression

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Community Voices

We Are All Just Doing the Best We Can

I don’t know who you are, or where you come from.

Your name, address, and specifics are all unbeknownst to me.

All I know is that you are human, just like me.

You have a heart that beats with purpose, just like mine.

You are filled with muscles that keep you strong, and a body that maintains all the structure one could want for.

And because we both breathe the same air, inhabit the same world, dream, think and discover in all the same ways, I have to believe that we are both doing the best we can.

And for that, I wish the same for you as I do myself:

I wish for you to revisit the moments that made you feel whole and surpass the ones that broke your spirit.

I want only for you to freeze all the beautiful split seconds that passed you by before you were ready to let them go and to instead grip them with all your might so that they never escape you.

I hope you take them in for all that they are, knowing full well that within seconds they will be but simple memories.

I pray that you never allow the world to define you by your illness.

I hope you stand tall both inside and out, defend yourself and fight with every fiber of your being when the time calls for it.

I pray you know that there is no single thing that makes a person whole, and that you are, in fact whole in every single way.

I hope you take pictures with your heart and store them deep within the crevices of your mind’s eye to recover when the time calls for it.

I pray that you realize now and forever that we are all but a moment in time; a flash, a blink, a heartbeat, and nothing more.

I pray you carry these words with you, and that in every decision that you make and risk that you take, you bear in mind the temporary nature that is life.

More than anything else, I hope that in the end, you know you were worth it.

Mental Health

Borderline Personality Disorder

7 people are talking about this
Community Voices

We Are All Just Doing the Best We Can

I don’t know who you are, or where you come from.

Your name, address, and specifics are all unbeknownst to me.

All I know is that you are human, just like me.

You have a heart that beats with purpose, just like mine.

You are filled with muscles that keep you strong, and a body that maintains all the structure one could want for.

And because we both breathe the same air, inhabit the same world, dream, think and discover in all the same ways, I have to believe that we are both doing the best we can.

And for that, I wish the same for you as I do myself:

I wish for you to revisit the moments that made you feel whole and surpass the ones that broke your spirit.

I want only for you to freeze all the beautiful split seconds that passed you by before you were ready to let them go and to instead grip them with all your might so that they never escape you.

I hope you take them in for all that they are, knowing full well that within seconds they will be but simple memories.

I pray that you never allow the world to define you by your illness.

I hope you stand tall both inside and out, defend yourself and fight with every fiber of your being when the time calls for it.

I pray you know that there is no single thing that makes a person whole, and that you are, in fact whole in every single way.

I hope you take pictures with your heart and store them deep within the crevices of your mind’s eye to recover when the time calls for it.

I pray that you realize now and forever that we are all but a moment in time; a flash, a blink, a heartbeat, and nothing more.

I pray you carry these words with you, and that in every decision that you make and risk that you take, you bear in mind the temporary nature that is life.

More than anything else, I hope that in the end, you know you were worth it.

Mental Health

Borderline Personality Disorder

7 people are talking about this
Community Voices

Hope for a Happy Ending

In the last four hours I have traveled to the depths of hatred and heartache and ascended to the utopia of love and joy.

I have smiled, laughed and cried all within the same ninety seconds.

I have been enveloped in pride and encased in disappointment, swathed in fear and calm, wrapped in envy and jealousy.

In the last four hours I have quit something, then re-committed all in the span of three minutes.

I have engaged, disengaged, failed and then passed with flying colors.

In the last four hours I have felt utterly, utterly alone and isolated in one moment and then supported and embraced in the next.

If three minutes, ninety seconds or four hours can possess such ecstasy and such travesty, think about all the emotion, urge and pressure that a day, a week or even a month can hold onto.

It really is no wonder that you and I spend days feeling confused and disorganized.

It is completely understandable that there are evenings we spend alone in our homes crying out of desperation and fear for the future, questioning what is right and what is wrong.

It makes sense that we would seek solutions to problems that have no true answers, feeling a longing for an ease we haven’t felt in years.

It is easy to see why each and every one of us would be reaching out into the night with a frantic hope that what we need is waiting for us on the other side of the sunset.

The truth is, you and I aren’t that different.

The reality is, every one of us are more similar than we realize.

And in the end, we all just want the same things:

To feel love, and to be loved because of who we are and what we have to offer the world.

To have a handful of close family and friends we can count on when we have lost sight of the big picture.

To be treated with kindness and consideration.

A friend to call when it’s 3 AM and our #Nightmares won’t fade.

To be appreciated and respected for our values, the building blocks that make up our core.

To have a reason to smile when we wake up in the morning, and something to be grateful for when we lay our heads at night.

To have the freedom to dream and reason to believe they could come true.

A roof over our heads, food on the table and something to call our own in this world.

More than anything though, we all just want hope; hope that if today is hard, tomorrow will be better.

Hope that there will always be an opportunity to right our wrongs.

And hope that no matter what, there will always be a chance for a happy ending.

1 person is talking about this
Community Voices

New diagnosis

So today I got my BPD diagnosis. I’ve suspected I’ve had it for around 5 years. It’s always been diagnosed as recurrent depression but I knew it was more. Today I have finally spoken to an amazing psychiatrist and she spotted it within 30 minutes!
I now feel really numb. Like should I feel happy I have a diagnosis, should I be upset this is what it is. What do I do now? Do I tell people? So many questions and no answers in my head.
#BorderlinePersonalityDisorder #BPDDiagnosis

7 people are talking about this
Community Voices

We Are All Just Doing the Best We Can

I don’t know who you are, or where you come from.

Your name, address, and specifics are all unbeknownst to me.

All I know is that you are human, just like me.

You have a heart that beats with purpose, just like mine.

You are filled with muscles that keep you strong, and a body that maintains all the structure one could want for.

And because we both breathe the same air, inhabit the same world, dream, think and discover in all the same ways, I have to believe that we are both doing the best we can.

And for that, I wish the same for you as I do myself:

I wish for you to revisit the moments that made you feel whole and surpass the ones that broke your spirit.

I want only for you to freeze all the beautiful split seconds that passed you by before you were ready to let them go and to instead grip them with all your might so that they never escape you.

I hope you take them in for all that they are, knowing full well that within seconds they will be but simple memories.

I pray that you never allow the world to define you by your illness.

I hope you stand tall both inside and out, defend yourself and fight with every fiber of your being when the time calls for it.

I pray you know that there is no single thing that makes a person whole, and that you are, in fact whole in every single way.

I hope you take pictures with your heart and store them deep within the crevices of your mind’s eye to recover when the time calls for it.

I pray that you realize now and forever that we are all but a moment in time; a flash, a blink, a heartbeat, and nothing more.

I pray you carry these words with you, and that in every decision that you make and risk that you take, you bear in mind the temporary nature that is life.

More than anything else, I hope that in the end, you know you were worth it.

Mental Health

Borderline Personality Disorder

7 people are talking about this

Growing Up Without Unconditional Love From Your Mother

She sees photographs of her nieces and nephews hand-in-hand with their parents, tiny fingers intertwined as they walk down the street. She receives holiday cards with infants and toddlers snuggled beneath the embrace of a mother and a father, “best wishes” strewn across the bottom of a Hallmark card. And on a daily basis she bears witness to parents all over, smiling adoringly at the kids they brought into this world. And each time this happens she gets that same feeling in the pit of her stomach. That sharp pain of a dull knife puncturing her heart; only deep enough to maim, not enough to sever. It’s the same feeling that screams to her, “Shouldn’t that be enough?” “Shouldn’t the conceiving and bearing of a human soul be enough reason to love the very thing you’ve created?” “Isn’t the service of creating life good enough reason to love that which you’ve born?” But she knows from experience that it isn’t enough. She knows from experience that blood does not run deep, tenderness is never promised, commitment is not reality and some of us will go an entire lifetime never knowing what it is to be loved unconditionally. So to those of you who question every day why you’re not important, I understand. And to anyone who has ever asked themselves, “Why me?” I understand. And to those who have ever hated themselves because of the disdain they feel when looking at the loving embrace of a mother and her daughter, I understand. To all of you out there who question their own worth, you are not alone. To all of you who are filled with rage at the hand you’ve been dealt, you are not alone. And for those who pray every night for something to change, you are certainly not alone.