Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Imagined Abandonment

It's been a while since I've posted. Honestly I do not have a valid reason or excuse for this. I guess life just happened? I'm unemployed again, and although it's discouraging I'm trying to think positively about things. I've taken the opportunity to get out more. I've been fishing, hiking, discovering new places, visiting people. For someone who gets so attached to other people it's a great thing for me to be getting out and doing things on my own.

It is, as I mentioned, discouraging however. The only jobs I've been able to keep a year or more have been retail jobs. I've never really had a long term job, I think the one that lasted longest was Game Stop. What's most discouraging is knowing that people judge me (either to my face or behind my back), and not being able to explain to them why I can't keep a job. If I tell them it's because of my illness they will either tell me to go on disability (I have my reasons for not wanting to) or tell me I am using my illness as an excuse. But the truth is jumping from job to job is a very common occurance with BPD. My new therapist is going to set me up with a program that will help me better manage my skills at work.

Job troubles aside, I think I've been doing pretty good. I'm living each day moment by moment (or at least trying too), and I've been getting pretty good at managing negative thought. I've even been able to have conversations about things and people that previously were off limits because they did nothing but send me in a direction I did not want to go. I'm not saying I still don't get triggered, but I'm getting better at managing.

The last thing I wanted to talk about in this post is rejection/abandonment. Most of you know that fears of rejection and abandonment (whether real or imagined) are a core part of BPD. For me it's probably the symptom I struggle most with. What is most frustrating for me is not the abandonment I feel when someone doesn't call me for days or cancels plans or really does abandon me (break up, cutting me out of their life), but the feelings I get when something good ends.

Most people feel a bit sad when a friend visits and they leave. The fun is over, and the friend must return home. But for most that feeling ends relatively quickly with the knowledge they will see/talk to their friend again. For people with BPD something simple as a therapy session ending can bring on the same feelings one would have from a breakup or losing a loved one.

This happened to me today. Yesterday I hung out with Pete for his birthday, and it was an amazing day. I had a small trigger, but was able to get through it with his help. Other than that the day, as he said, was person. But this morning I woke up with a deep feeling of sadness and despair. I'm going to see him on Thursday, but it still felt painful.

This is what BPD does, and this is what is hardest for me to cope/deal with.

But I know I can do it.

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