Friday, September 30, 2016

My Favorite Month

I am in a good place right now. My life is stable, and I have a lot of positive things going on. I start a new job working in a charter school on Monday, I live in a place I feel safe and get along with my roommates, Daniel and I are a couple again, I am part of a great UU church community, I've recently made new girl friends, I am starting with a new therapist (that I feel really good about), DBT group is going well, I finished my podcast conversion project and will be recording again soon, I'm getting along with my immediate family (after a couple months of strain), I'm consistently working on my book, and I just completed the testing for ADHD/Autism.

On top of this I have several plans coming up in October that I am looking forward to; writing group at UU starting up, Pay Equity Today's Vote premier at the EMK, Sandwich fair or Daniel's camp, Comicazi Cookie Clash, Hamilton documentary gathering, Comicazi Halloweeniversary, and the Charter school debate at the EMK.

It's easy to feel positive and confident when everything is going well, but that's the problem with BPD. Black and white thinking; everything is either all good or all bad. It is this line of thinking that has lead me to continuously go through cycles. Cycles where I have everything together, and then it all falls apart. Usually because of something small, something that disrupts the all white in the black and white. Grey is where I need to be, or else I become susceptible to the cycle. So, what can I do?

  1. Stay in wise mind. This is obviously easier said than done, but the most important.
  2.  Take things one day at a time. It's okay to plan for the future, but I tend to overthink and think too far ahead. Especially about stuff I have no control over.
  3. Continue with therapy and group.
  4. Look into an every day anxiety med.
  5. Do my best to stay in the grey. Things will go wrong, and that's okay. It doesn't mean everything has to fall apart.
  6. Practice DBT daily.
  7. Try my best to trust Daniel more. Give him the benefit of the doubt. If he doesn't reply it more than likely means he's sleeping or depressed. Try opposite action.
  8. Realize and remember I will struggle.
The most important stuff is not getting into black and while thinking. That's always been the cause of all my losses and cycles. If I have to repeat the word, "grey" in my head, I will.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


The combination of BPD and GAD sucks sometimes. It really, really sucks. SG has been so good about staying in contact with me, and not disappearing. He came to the conclusion that we are a couple on his own, it felt natural. Yet, since that my anxiety and fears of rejection have been kicked into high gear. Worried about the future, worried he's going to leave me, cognitive distortions running rampant. It's overwhelming, and when it's happening it feels like it's never going to be okay.

Yesterday we had an argument over something that we disagree about. After a while I was able to get him to change his opinion a bit. However, I was convinced that we were doomed to fail in the future; that because we disagreed on this one thing, we were going to break up. To make myself feel better, I made a list of all the reasons I love him, and sent it to him. I sent it to him, and asked if he could do the same for me. We texted back and forth, and then said goodnight. Everything seemed fine, but when I didn't get an email back from him in a specific amount of time, I started to panic. The Borderline in me is convinced he's abandoned me, the anxiety makes it seem like I am trapped and nothing will be okay until I hear from him. I try and convince myself he's probably sleeping, but it's no use.  I can't describe the terror when the anxiety takes hold; like you're paralyzed with fear, and no amount of logic will do anything to convince you that it's all in your head. It doesn't matter that we just spoke, or that I know him. None of it matters. The over generalizing happens, comparing the past to now. I know he's made a lot of mistakes and he's hurt me, but he's done so much better; he's put in so much effort.

Then, I get a text from him; and just like that it feels like a monster has been ripped off my back. I can breathe again, my thoughts stop racing. Everything is okay, but it really isn't. Dealing with that kind of anxiety is tiring, it's draining. It causes depression, and it takes a bit to get back to baseline. Anxiety and depression are cousins. I'm scared my behavior will push him away. Paranoid. The anxiety starts again. Emotional amnesia, I forget every time. Every time it's terrible. Black and white thinking, paranoia. It's so hard to stop. Hardest when it comes to close relationships.

BPD and GAD team up, they fight me. I'm stronger. I can make it through.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Everything is Overwhelming

I want to talk about the difference between normal levels of anxiety and having an anxiety disorder. Nearly everyone gets anxious, it's normal. What separates every day anxiety from an anxiety disorder is when it starts to affect your life and how you function. I have Generalized Anxiety Disorder, which basically means I am overwhelmed with worrying and anxious thoughts almost 24/7. To the point I feel it physically. I can't explain the sheer terror of laying in bed at night, not being able to breath or calm yourself down, and having every worry and question about your life go through your head. I should of's about the past, what if's about the future; all happening at once. You want every problem, every question, every worry solved right then and there. It's overwhelming, and you're sure you're doomed if you can't figure it all out.

My boyfriend and I disagreed on something having to do with Sex Work. After sending him articles I was able to sway his opinion a bit. I know this was a big deal since even one of his best friends couldn't do this. I know what we aren't going to agree on everything, but for someone with an anxiety disorder it isn't that easy. I jump to conclusions (he hates women and wants to control them!) I ask impossible questions about the future (what if he has a daughter who wants to be a sex worker?), and worst of all I forget all the good things about the person you love. Suddenly this one thing I disagree on is magnified and I dwell on it; maybe even twist it around so it seems a lot worse than it actually is, and pretty soon I'm so deep that I'm convinced the two of us are doomed to break up and not last. It's not as simple as just, "remembering people disagree," it doesn't matter if I know other couples disagree, it doesn't matter that there's so much other stuff we agree on; or that part of why he loves me is because I'm so passionate. What makes it even worse is the black and white thinking that comes from having BPD.

This anxiety isn't just reserved for my relationship. I've had a lot of good stuff happen lately, but I haven't been able to really enjoy it because I'm so overwhelmed with anxiety.

New job? What if I lose it? I have to do my budget. What if they don't renew my contract?

New therapist? What if it doesn't work out? What if I can't get an appointment?

New friends? How long before I push them away.

These are just some of the worries and anxieties that go through my head. All the time,at the same time. It's almost 3:00am and I can't sleep. My anxiety causes night terrors, I wake up panicking, desperate to make everything okay.

Anxiety disorders are cute, they aren't fun. And being anxious about a job interview does not equate to having an anxiety disorder.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Make New Friends, But Keep The Old or Silver and Gold

My feelings on making friends are very complicated. On the surface, I don't like making new friends. Thus, I do not actively seek friendships out. However, if I meet someone and we are getting along, I get excited about the new person; I also get nervous and scared. I've pushed a lot of people away and when I feel like someone may be more than an acquaintance my brain thinks, "how long until you fuck this up and push this person away?" I also have different levels of how my Borderline reacts to friends (think of it like a risk alert chart). Let's use the example of a friend not calling me back within an expected time frame.

FP, Friend(s) I'm Attracted to ( Cis Men Only)-AAAAHHH THEY HATE ME, THEY ARE DITCHING ME.
Cis Male Platonic Friends-Annoyed, irritated.
Women/Gender Non-Conforming Friends I'm Attracted To-Worried, antsy
Women/Gender Non-Conforming Platonic Friends-Meh, whatevs.

Of course, this is not a consistent chart. For example, if I feel like my FP is ignoring me, it can heighten my anxiety and worry. I can easily start to feel like everyone is avoiding me. However, in general, because I get attached to men differently than I do women, my brain reacts differently.

Another reason I have so much trouble with new friends is I just assume everyone finds me obnoxious. Pair this with the fact I've been told when I was younger, "don't talk to my friends," and I pretty much always think I'm a burden. Recently I was introduced to some friends of a friend. I've been chatting with one, and my friend pointed out I'd really get along with another. What does my brain think? "He's annoyed I'n talking to his friends, I'm butting in. I'm a burden. I'm that annoying friend no one wants around. I'm not welcome, but he/they are just being nice."

Finally, and this may be the biggest reason, I'm often embarrassed for people to get to know me. How do you tell a person you keep losing/quitting jobs, moving around, haven't been in a relationship longer than 10 months; and not feel like they are going to judge you for being a complete loser and waste of space? I don't exactly bring these things up on my own, but if I'm asked I try my best to word it in a way that doesn't make me seem unstable as fuck. "I have a shitty mental disorder than severely affects my quality of life. Including, but not limited to, job and interpersonal relationships." I mean, I could say that, but are they really ready to hear about my Disorder? It's even worse when the person seems so put together.

This is a complicated topic, especially because some of my friends I have feelings for. Oh, there's a good example. Heidi and Green Lantern cut of contact with me around the same time. Heidi, told me she'd contact me again, and just needed a break. Despite having her literally sit across from me on the T and not say a word, I haven't tried to contact her once in the past four months. Green Lantern ended our friendship and said things that were upsetting and hurtful. I've emailed and texted him multiple times since then. I miss him a lot. The difference? Heidi, while one of my best friends, was just a platonic (and a woman) friend). Will was a dude I had a crush on.

The cherry on top? Add in my fear of abandonment and being alone.

Did your head explode?

Sunday, September 11, 2016

It's Not Fall Yet....But Soon

Like most stereotypical New Englanders, fall is my favorite season. Let me first explain why I love the fall;
  • I'm still able to spend time in nature as the weather, while a bit cooler, hasn't become to cold to bear.
  • Fall flavors; apple cider, Pumpkin, Cinnamon. I enjoy things flavors both in taste and scent. Instead of floral and sweet lotions, I prefer pumpkin spice and apple pie.
  • Comicazi Halloweeniversary. My comic book shop's annual Halloween/Anniversary party.
  • The Sandwich fair (named for the town not the type of fair it is).
  • UU church season. This is a new one, but now that I'm a part of the church community I am looking forward to the upcoming church season.
  • Halloween. I admit, I'm not as obsessed with Halloween as I used to be, in fact it's not even my favorite Holiday anymore. I'm not really a "spooky" person who makes a ritual out of watching Hocus Pocus. However, I love seeing different costumes and houses decorated. Of course, as a Pagan Halloween also means Samhain. That above all is why I look forward to the holiday.
  • New episodes of my shows!
  • The start of football season!
  • The colors. There's nothing like fall in New England.
  • Apple picking. If I can make it.
  • I'm starting to like wearing fall clothes a bit more than summer. I definitely have more "fashion" in the fall.
As you can see, there's a lot about fall that I love; it's also a trigger for racing thoughts. I don't mean to say I have them specifically all throughout the fall, but rather the thought of fall as an abstract. You see, fall means the end of the year is coming; the end of the year means my birthday is soon, my birthday means I'll be another year older, that means one less year I have to have kids. I start counting years, months, weeks. The solution? Make sure I have plenty to look forward to; not only in the fall, but the whole end part of the year. I feel like it's important to have stuff planned during these months. In summer it's easier to be spontaneous and go to the beach or Castle Island because the weather is usually nice. Planning things during the last half of the year gives me a sense of stability. Especially as the winter months come and I spend less time outdoors (I'm not a fan of being cold).

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Can You Love Someone You Don't Trust?

He told me he'd take me to ride horses, he told me we could go to Saratoga. I didn't get that. I should be used to him telling me things he doesn't follow through with.

We met in fall/winter of 2013 (when I started working at Easter Seals). He broke up with me in the shittiest way in Oct of 2014. First time he ghosted me was Dec 2014-March 2015. We talked for literally maybe 3 days. Then he ghosted me again from March 2015-early summer of 2015. Then from Aug 2015 until April 2016 and we've been talking since then.

Last summer around the middle of August, like the 15th/16th, I took SG to a football game. We had talked previously about him staying over after the game. The whole time I was under the impression that was the plan. It wasn't until we were driving back that he told me he wasn't staying over. I had, what I admit, was a really bad reaction. Basically he drove away with me sitting on the sidewalk in hysterics. We talked afterwards and he assured me everything was okay. I asked him about hanging out for Labor day weekend and possibly sometime before that. After that day he started to become flaky with communication. Promising me we'd talk and he'd call, but not responding to me and when he did it was only a text message assuring me we'd talk soon; or that he wasn't in the mood to talk. I kept trying to get him to let me know about Labor day weekend plans, and he didn't give me a solid answer until last minute. Eventually he just stopped talking to me all together in what would become the third time he would ghost me. We started talking again this past March/April, and I learned that the whole time everything was not okay and he was actually really upset about the way I reacted that night. But, you know, instead of being honest he just avoided me and acted flaky and eventually isolated.

Fastfoward to a few weeks ago, almost the exact same weekend as the football game. He cancels plans and then isn't able to hang out the following weekend. I have a not so great reaction. Suddenly he's flaky with communication, doesn't really get back to me about potential plans; says he'll call, but doesn't (ie-we texted tues and he said he'd try to call Wednesday. It's now Sunday and nothing). There are difference between this time and last, and I'm trying desperately to focus on them. -He has said this time that he wants to see me ASAP -He apologized for putting me through this -He said he wanted to try and make it down to see me this week -I might be overeacting about my reaction. It was not as bad as last year -He told me he's having a bad reaction to his meds One of the major things about SG is he absolutely hates upsetting me or hearing my, "sad voice." It's why he broke up with me the way he did. Not to be malicious, but because he's a coward and can't deal with hurting me;and he will be the first to tell you that. It's why him reassuring me and telling me everything is okay and things are fine does little to help, because he's done that so many times in the pase, and things were not okay. He's pretended they were just to keep me happy or avoid upsetting me. He has issues of his own, which I'm sure you've picked up on. The most difficult part about writing this is that I'm hesitant to talk about his struggles in such a public setting. At the same time, it's also hard for me to talk about my troubles with him without giving a full explanation of what he deals with, without fear of people judging him.
I want to trust him...but his actions speak louder. He says he still cares and wants to see me and isn't going to ghost me. I wanted to trust him, but I am realizing that part of me doesn't. His actions speak louder than his words. He keeps saying, "I don't know what else to say to you," every time he tells me he stills cares about me deeply and wants to see me ASAP. It's not that I don't believe him, but when he says it and then doesn't return my text or calls for days; how am I supposed to believe he's acting any differently than before? Maybe there is a difference, but he needs to work on letting me know through his actions. We've been over it multiple times. If he's having a hard time, he can text and let me know he needs space. He doesn't, and so it's hard for me to see the the difference in his behavior.

The thing is, I know he's trying. There's little things he's done, and small progresses he's made, but he still has such a long way to go. I also have a lot of work too. I'm trying to give him the benefit of the doubt, but it's so hard with the timing of everything. Especially because within the past month he's seen three of his friends and his sister (they all live out of state). I've always been paranoid that they talk him into distancing himself from me, even though the rational part of me kind of believes that's not true. Still, sister visits and suddenly he's not communicating? But then on the other hand he keeps talking about how he really wants to visit? Then there's the fact that maybe he's not communicating because he was too upset that he couldn't. This is my point, I never know with him.

Here's the hardest part. I have trouble trusting him,but I love him. I love him so fucking much. A big part of what causes me anxiety is that I haven't really done much dating since breaking up with him. In fact, I haven't been in an actual relationship since we broke up. I've dated here and there, but nothing serious; and every time we start hanging out it's always intimate. I'm scared in order to have any type of a future I need to completely cut him out of my life. I cannot, we cannot, be platonic friends. We've tried. I also, know what it feels like to live with out him. It feels like a hole has been ripped from my chest, and the very thought of being with anyone but him, of him being with someone else, is too upsetting to even think about. I've breached the subject with him, about what we're going to do, and he won't talk about it. He doesn't really like thinking ahead, it's one of the ways we differ.
He told me that he doesn't see himself marrying me. I told him this made me feel like I was a place holder. Because it essentially meant he didn't plan on being with me long term (not that we are actually "together). So, what did he plan? Being with me until someone better came along? How did he intend on working that out? He explained that he doesn't seem himself marrying anyone, because he doesn't want anyone to have to deal with his issues. He's also is worried about not being able to be there for me. Basically all his reasons have nothing to do with how he feels about me. He loves me, all his best moments over the past couple of years having been with me. He's also said that he can't think that far ahead because we haven't spent a lot of consecutive time together. I also know he doesn't want to say things that hurt me, that he has unrealistic views of relationships, and that I have a hard time knowing if he means it when he says there's a possibility of us being together.

He won't let me go, and I'm afraid if he does the only way he can is by ghosting me. I can't let him go. It's a fucked up situation and right now I'm trying not to contact him. This is part of what's causing me to have such a rough time. I can do fine for a few days, but the thought of completely cutting him from my life....I don't even want to think about it.

I love him. I don't know what to do, and I'm scared I've wasted to many months and a future.