Posted in Borderline Personality Disorder, Life, Mental Health

Recovering from BPD – Self-sabotage and heading for another crisis

BPD Objects
BPD Objects (Photo credit: Vinally2010)

I was doing well, my recovery from BPD was progressing, so I told myself, but recently I noticed that something wasn’t quite ‘right’ and as usual identifying what exactly was wrong was hard.

I think I may have been lying to myself for a while, I think I may have been masking again. Falling apart inside, outside appearing to be doing well. I think I am self-sabotaging…

I have been slowly picking at trying to work out exactly why I am slipping off the recovery tracks and what has caused this, then yesterday I was replying to an email I had received from someone about BPD and as I wrote my own situation started spilling out and I had a realisation about what is going wrong and why…

This is what I wrote in that email (details of the other person not included)…

Thank you for all your kind words about my blog, it is my hope that what I write is helpful to others

I know exactly what you mean about feeling like a fraud and acting the part, that BPD is an ‘excuse’… not a reason. When I am not doing so well (like now) all those feelings return to me, it takes a lot to overcome them and see that BPD is a reason for how you are but not to let the reason be an excuse for carrying on being that way because we can get help and get better at managing and if we aren’t trying then we are letting BPD be an excuse… (does that make sense? lol)

I think the imaginary conversations are part of BPD, I certainly do that myself too, usually it is my angel and devil arguing with me, or conversations with people that I will never actually have but I cannot stop them playing out in my head anyway… with the angel/devil giving a running commentary, abuse etc – exactly as you explain it!

Again I agree with the ‘deliberateness’ that self-awareness prompts. I am looking forward to my next session with my therapist to discuss this as it is a very big thing for me right now, and it is leading to self-sabotaging behaviour… I need to stop it NOW but there is that bit (that is winning at the moment) that is in self-hatred mode and so I am currently not caring that I am self-sabotaging, if anything I am rejoicing in the fact that if I don’t stop it soon I am going to fail horrifically – but I deserve it!

As for the relationship/love stuff. For me the desperation to find someone who will love me, care for me etc etc is so intense but at the same time the desperate need to avoid letting anyone that close they can hurt me is meaning I am in full on ‘slut mode’ trying to get any guy I find remotely nice to sleep with me, but running a mile from others because I want them and don’t at the same time. And when I tell myself to stop and wait for someone decent I still end up jumping the next guy to show me any attention (hence the angel/devil post this week) I want to have sex with the guy desperately but I don’t cause I know if he does that there is no possibility of a future/relationship but I have to prove that this is not possible… it’s hell

I also agree getting better is terrifying as much as it id desired, and could this be why I am slipping back into BPD thoughts/feelings myself, I’m scared of ‘who’ will I be without BPD? although I question the stable periods as I have (I believe) had BPD since I was a teenager, yet I’ve had years between ‘episodes’ at times, what are the stable periods really? am I stable or am I just better at masking temporarily? I’m confused again in a way I haven’t been since early last year, by mid-late last year I would not meet the criteria for a diagnosis of BPD yet gradually I have deteriorated again – I was just about to say I’m not sure why the deterioration started but as I went to type that the reason, and its secondary cause came to me! I started when I went back to work, and then my ‘non-relationship’ with a younger guy fizzled out. And now (this is a right now as it happens realisation so you are the first other than me to know/hear this!) work (starting a new job) has been a/the key starting point of ALL of my worst episodes! with relationship issues (usually interrupted by my starting work) being the next thing to cause the spiral to escalate!) and guess what I started at the beginning of April – yes another new job! shit! I need to discuss this with my therapist! I need to work to survive but if work is making me ill how do I deal with this? Guess I have a lot to blog about here now too, if I can just find the time to blog!!

Now I just need to try and find a way to overcome these things and not allow myself to continue spiralling out of control… but can I do it before it’s too late? I’m already losing friends again, soon there will be nothing and no-one left to lose… but isn’t that the aim of self-sabotage?

Do you have any tips/ideas that may help me?

Have you slipped off the recovery track? How did you get back on it?



Self-published author whose first book Coffee Break Companion, a collection of short stories and poems is now available on Amazon. S.L.Grigg lives in Bromsgrove with her family. Working in the NHS and enjoying reading, Pilates and travel, amongst other things when she isn't too busy writing.

11 thoughts on “Recovering from BPD – Self-sabotage and heading for another crisis

  1. I’m 48 and just diagnosed a month ago. This has been a very confusing time for me. I was relieved to have the diagnosis, but after researching became very discouraged at the thought that I would always be like this. After further research and finding blogs like this I’m feeling optimistic about recovery. I’m lucky. I have a spouse of 11 years that was on the verge of leaving me until this diagnosis. Now he reads everything he can gets his hands on and started changing his ways with me when my episodes start. I begin DBT therapy on Monday. I’m scared. I don’t know what to expect. I’m hopeful. Fortunately I’m high function and have never had issues with jobs. And my friends have no clue I’m this way, but on the other hand. I’ve learned about thoughts being black and white and friends are either great or horrible and when they are horrible, there is no way around this for me and I have no trouble cutting them out of my life. The one think I don’t think I’ll ever get over is how horrible I’ve treated my husband. I love more than my own life. It’s like that book. I hate you but don’t leave me. Very confusing!


    1. I hope the DBT is going well, you certainly can recover from this, I have! You are lucky to have good suport, very good that he is reading up and willing to work with you on getting better. Good luck, you can do it 🙂


  2. I have a bipolar friend and noticed so many similarities. This post is only for informatiion. NOT to criticize bipolar. The difference betweent the two (as I have googled) is: bipolar is an illness of the brain. BPD is an illness of emotional regulation. What do you think? It am friends with her. We both have our mood swings. Can it be true that there is a chemical difference aka bipolar brain disorder, BPD emotional disorder?



    1. Hi, sorry for the delay replying! BPD is an emotional disorder but brain studies have shown there is a difference in the function and chemical actions of the brain of people BPD too, so I’m not sure that the two conditions can be separated that way… emotional regulation is a brain function after all… 🙂


  3. You’re right in that BPD isn’t an excuse. Sometimes I feel like I’m making excuses for not working, or not driving in cities, or not doing anything I just don’t want to do. But then I try something, experience a completely overwhelming situation and remember WHY it’s not an excuse.
    Living with BPD is a reality. You can have “better” periods, but the illness is always there (unless you worked out a way to rewire your brain?). You just need to find your limits. It sounds to me like work is a major factor for you, just as it is for me. I’ve had 6 jobs in my lifetime, and I wasn’t happy in either of them. I kidded myself on that I was coping, but they made me all stressed and tangled up inside. Especially the shop/waitressing jobs; any where I had to deal with people who might say or do anything. Totally freaks me out. Which is why I’m not rushing into finding work again. I hate living on benefits; I hate not having money to buy my kids the things they want. But I’m living a happy, contented life. I think I owe my kids a happy mum (after 2.5 years in hospital). A happy mum who doesn’t have much money is better for them than a stressed out, potentially suicidal mum who can afford to take them to the zoo (except, I couldn’t actually take them because that would involve driving into a city!).
    BPD is always going to be there, waiting to jump on you when you least expect it. I would say it’s a case of arranging your life to limit those moments. I hope you find the right combination for you.


    1. Thanks Stacey, indeed BPD is a reality but we do punish ourselves and feel like it is an excuse. It would be so easy if we could just rewire our brains! lol Yeah I’ve just realised the link between some of my worst periods and work, I always love the job itself but I guess part of the issue is I put undue pressure on myself and feel I need to ‘prove’ something by working longer and harder than necessary, in case I have a bad spell where I just can’t focus enough to do anything 😦 I agree that being happy and healthy is more important than work or money but there comes a point where living on benefits is just not survivable any more either (as well as the personal thing of hating being on them) but as you say, it’s then about finding the right balance. I hope I manage to do this too! 🙂


  4. I have lost all my relationships over the last two years. I have tried to “fix” them, but its too late. As one friend said “I am not a dog you can send away and whistle back”. Sorry. I am at my wits end myself. I also have my problems letting go of relationships that have ended.
    But I have accomplished one thing: I am desperate for a relationship. But I refuse to jump into bed right away with anyone who is interested in me. Maybe due to being about twice as old as you, I learned that it leads…..NOWHERE. I did have a relationship once with a man who wanted to marry me. I wanted him around me and when he bored me I would ask him to leave. Ten minutes later I felt so lonely, that I called him back. This became a pattern I began doing with others, but they wouldnt let me to it to them. I recently read a quote: Dont take people for granted, because one day they may never return.

    Best wishes, Elke


    1. Great quote Elke and so very true. Yeah, we do have a habit of destroying relationships (mostly unintentionally). I am trying to defeat my devil now and not jump into bed with every person that shows me attention, time will tell how I get on with that! Partly I want a relationship, but a huge part of me doesn’t cause I don’t want to go through all those things again that I’ve been through before… :/


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