Scratching beneath the surface

By Charlotte Edmunds

So, as I start to write this blog, I am sitting in the dark in the small hours of the morning. This is when I do my best thinking! (Hint of sarcasm there).

It’s been a while since my diagnosis was changed from Bipolar to Borderline Personality Disorder. It’s taken a while for it to settle with me. Lots of reading, looking for signs of growing up with BPD, at how one suddenly obtains such a title.

They say a traumatic event can lead to a person developing BPD, and one major tell-tale sign is feeling everything so deeply. This led to me scanning thoughts and memories. Now, there are obvious traumas such as first heartbreak, first controlling narcissistic arsehole boyfriend that made you feel like you weren’t worth shit (just me?) but that didn’t satisfy. My other obvious trauma was my best friend suddenly dying of a complication of flu just three days after I was at a concert with him. Now THIS was a major turning point; I became noticeably more erratic after his death and would behave in a reckless fashion. But these are all well-explored thoughts in my life.

I started to search deeper – my first sad memory. Being around five or six and my first hamster being put down. I would cry in the night for her. I was bereft! My little companion, that I only had a few months became a huge part of my life and I felt her death so deeply.

Following that, move on to when I was eight years old: my granddad dying, and then my second hamster, who I had had for two years and was incredibly close to, passed away in the same week. I remember being devastated and crying in school only to be told to ‘shh!’ And then being utterly obsessed with death and mortality. Something that has never left me! But that’s a thought for another time.

Another thought while dusting down my memories was that I have ALWAYS been called dramatic. Drama queen! Was I an attention seeker, or did I simply have emotions I just wasn’t equipped to deal with? (Something I will be taking to therapy).

As I start to conclude this thought splurge, the diagnosis of BPD, looking at traits and scanning through memories is really starting to help me make sense of what I’ve been through. How I have reacted in situations (example: in the first few years of my relationship, always fighting him, always anxious, always suspicious – because of my insane fear of abandonment, which I can link back and make sense of – I won’t do that here). It serves as a tool to help me deal with the future. It’s made me see the ways in which I can self-sabotage. So, in actual conclusion BPD diagnosis can actually be enlightening and a positive thing. However, it’s still a long road ahead. But maybe I’ll make a few less mistakes along the way!

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