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I have boyfriend with BPD and it's very difficult for me to leave him. We argue about the same things over and over again. He's really good at pushing my buttons and saying really hurtful things to get me to react to him, only to tell me that I'm the one being hysterical.

I used to be a really outgoing and bubbly person before I met him and now I'm just depressed and exhausted all the time. When we are good, we're REALLY good... until he does something hurtful again. He's just so good at convincing me that he'll change... and because I love him, I want to believe him every time. At first, I felt that with enough love, I could open his heart.. and change him.. make him a better man. We've been together for almost two years now.. and while I have seen some improvements, he has a long way to go.

I wish I had the courage to just leave... and I wish he had the courage to let me go.

I am a good person.. and I deserve better than this...

but I also love him.... I don't know what to do...

I find it hard to tell this to people that are close to me, especially the ones that know him, too. His public persona is just so charming that everyone either thinks I'm crazy for feeling the way I do or crazy for staying with such a "nutcase".

I just really need to talk to someone about this... it's not healthy to keep it inside all the time...
You need to find the strength to leave. He will slowly eat you alive. If you think you are depressed and exhausted now, it will only get worse.

I know this is going to sound cold and heartless but: save yourself first. You can't save him but you can save yourself. You're dealing with someone with a serious problem and unless he is actively seeking treatment, he won't get better.

I can't say I'm in your shoes, but it's close, and it's hell.

I'm in the interesting position of being involved in a very close but non-romantic relationship with someone with BPD. It's also a long-distance relationship, where he comes to town regularly to work on a project I'm deeply involved in. At first he was so wonderful to me - you'd think I walked on water. I HAD to be part of the project and soon enough he was telling me very very personal things about his relationship (failing) and how horrible his father and ex-wife were. I was immediately drawn into it, became his closest confidant and and his closest 'partner' on the team. He had my unquestioning sympathy and undying support. He was also overly generous and flattering - at first. All this is typical PBD stuff.

Eventually though, as happens with all BPDs, he spotted a chink in my armour. He started pointed out all my faults, his emails became rude and hurtful, writing all kinds of things that in hindsight are just ridiculous. For months, he'd had me convinced that I was the bad guy, that I really was all the awful things he was accusing me of. I had honest to god never felt worse about myself in my life. And all this from someone I wasn't even in a romantic relationship with!

The hardest part has to be thinking you're the one with the problem (since that's what they keep telling you). It wasn't until after a particularly brutal visit where I was near tears almost the whole time, that I decided to try to figure out what was wrong. Thank god for the internet - I had never even heard of BPD before.

I also have some wonderful friends who I let read some of his emails so they completely believe me when I tell them what kind of crazy things he's doing and saying. Because really, I'd sound nuts if I didn't have some of that stuff in writing.

Anyway, figuring out he had BPD was like having a huge weight lifted. Understanding that it's not me, and that I can't fix him, has been a huge relief. I am unbelievably sad that the wonderful person I started all this with is actually only there conditionally (and I no longer meet the conditions) because it was incredible while it lasted.

Anyway, sorry to go on and on about my situation, but I wanted you to know that there are other people who are going through the same thing and it's AWFUL. You've known he's had BPD for a long time already. You need to find the strength to leave because it will not get better. It is a cycle they are going to repeat with every relationship.

Meanwhile, if it helps at all: when he is trying to push your buttons, try to think of him as an immature child and you are the parent. It's helped me tremendously. Not him, mind you, but at least I'm not reacting to him any more and his outbursts are much shorter. And he hasn't made me cry in ages.

This is just a stop-gap solution though, you don't want to live with an 'immature child' which is what you're doing. You are right, you deserve better. You deserve an equal partner who doesn't put you through hell.
Simply, please listen to Della. She is giving you very good advice.[QUOTE=simplyD;4243918]I just really need to talk to someone about this... it's not healthy to keep it inside all the time...[/QUOTE]I'm so sorry you are going through so much pain. I will be glad to join Della in talking with you about it. I was married to a BPDer and lived with her for 15 years so I am able to share my experiences with you.[QUOTE]I used to be a really outgoing and bubbly person before I met him and now I'm just depressed and exhausted all the time.[/QUOTE]You stopped being yourself about 18 months ago, about six months after you started dating him. For the those initial six months, he likely was so infatuated with you that his anger was not triggered by you (i.e., the infatuation temporarily suspended his fear of your abandoning him). Yet, when the honeymoon ended (i.e., his infatuation subsided), the anger he has carried from childhood started to be triggered by little things you said or did. That is when you started walking on eggshells -- not being your true self -- to avoid triggering his rages and abusive language. You will be surprised how quickly your old self returns after you leave this relationship.[QUOTE]When we are good, we're REALLY good... until he does something hurtful again.[/QUOTE]That is why they call it a [I]toxic relationship[/I]. Keep in mind that this toxicity is not something HE is doing to you. Rather, it is something you two are doing to each other. It takes two willing people to sustain a toxic relationship -- and emotionally healthy people are not willing to do it for very long.

His contribution to the toxicity is obvious. Yours is much less obvious because, with him being an unstable person, you are the glue that holds the relationship together. You do that by enabling him to avoid confronting his disorder and seeking therapy to learn how to control his emotions and how to do self soothing -- something the rest of us started learning when we were four years old.

Sadly, his emotional development became frozen at that age. This is why Della correctly says that you've been living with a man who is the emotional equivalent of a yound child. You, then, are an adult who has become a [I]soothing object[/I] for a man with the emotional development of a four year old. As such, you are impeding his progress by enabling him to avoid learning how to do self-soothing.

I say this not to be judgmental -- after all, I chose to be an enabler for 15 years, far longer than your 2-year adventure. Instead, I say this to empower you with the knowledge that you can end the relationship at any time and that doing so is in his best interests as well as yours.[QUOTE]At first, I felt that with enough love, I could open his heart.. and change him....and while I have seen some improvements, he has a long way to go.[/QUOTE]Instead of getting better, he likely will get worse. Each year that goes by, his resentment will build for your failure to make him happy. Although he can learn to better control his emotions in a therapy program targeted to BPDers, that would take years of hard work. It is highly unlikely he will be sufficiently self aware to commit himself to that task.

The reason is that nearly all BPDers are ego syntonic, i.e., at a conscious level, they believe their behavior is fine and other people are to blame for their unhappiness. In this regard, therapist Shari Schreiber says you have a better chance of flying to the moon strapped to a banana than getting a BPDer to stay in therapy long enough to make a difference.[QUOTE]I wish I had the courage to just leave... and I wish he had the courage to let me go.[/QUOTE]A lack of courage is not your problem.
Most likely, you are a caretaker like me, i.e., you likely have strong aspects of codependence in your personality. The term "codependent" is very misleading. In nearly all respects, the codependent people I've met are fiercely independent and courageous. They will be working full time, taking care of three kids and five dogs -- and still go out dating, hoping to find a mate to take care of too.

If you are a caretaker, you are burdened with strong feeling of [I]guilt and obligation[/I] that are keeping you from leaving. Those feelings -- as intense as they are -- are false because, in leaving him, you have nothing to feel guilty about and have no obligations (because you cannot fix him and are only doing him harm by staying).[QUOTE]His public persona is just so charming that everyone either thinks I'm crazy for feeling the way I do or crazy for staying with such a "nutcase,"[/QUOTE]Yes, I understand. Once you've told your friends enough detail to convince them he has a serious problem, they switch immediately from thinking you are crazy for complaining about a perfect man to thinking you are crazy for tolerating such verbal abuse. They cannot understand that, for us caretakers, it is extremely important that we feel desperately needed by someone.

The problem is not that we want to help people. That is admirable. Rather, the problem is that we are willing to keep helping when it is to our great detriment (and, in our cases, we are willing to keep "helping" even when it is to your BF's detriment and my exW's detriment). We do that because -- from a young age -- we have mistaken [I]being needed[/I] (for what we can do) for [I]being loved[/I] (for the people we already are).

Until you understand your motivation for staying in a relationship that is toxic to both you and your BF, you are at considerable risk. The real danger is not that you will stay with him. You likely will leave him soon. Instead, the danger is that -- given your need to feel desperately needed -- you likely will run into the arms of another just like him. I say that because I am the same way. It is difficult for me to feel loved by someone if they do not have an emotional intensity that indicates to me that I am dearly needed.

The danger arises because such emotional intensity usually is quickly found only in emotionally unstable people like your BF and my exW. Because they do splitting (putting them in touch with only one set of feelings at a time), they experience a "purity" of emotions that allows them to adore us in a very childlike fashion. Even now, I miss that intense passion and romance. I especially miss the adoration. Never mind that it lasted only six months.
Outstanding post. It's very educational.

Funny how only six months of bliss can keep someone tied to someone else for YEARS! Like, they believe somehow, some way, that magical six months will come back and become forever. Until they wake up one day and realize they've been waiting longer than the good times lasted for the good times to come back! For me, the bliss came and went, and it only took a few minutes of him hugging me or cuddling me in bed and I was back to being ridiculously happy! Until the bad stuff started again, which was often the very same day (or just minutes later!). Really pathetic that I was willing to put up with months of misery for that few minutes of bliss.

Thanks again... this was enlightening.
[QUOTE]Really pathetic that I was willing to put up with months of misery for that few minutes of bliss.[/QUOTE]Redneon, I'm glad to hear that you found the post helpful. Thanks for the kind words. I just want to add that there is no need to beat yourself up over staying too long in a toxic relationship. I don't think of that mistake as [I]pathetic[/I] but, rather, as an understandable -- even predictable -- [I]result of our upbringings[/I].

In my case, I simply grew up too quickly, trying to meet my mother's needs because they were unmet by my alcoholic father. I therefore became the "little man of the family," the caretaker whose self esteem relied far too heavily on what he is able to do to meet other peoples' needs.

Hence, as it likely was with you, the thought of "abandoning" a loved one whom I knew was ill was anathema to me. It went against every value I had been taught, against my religious beliefs, against my marital vows, and against every fiber of my being.

On top of that, I mistakenly thought -- as nearly every codependent partner does -- that the "real" spouse was the person splitting me white, not the one splitting me black. It never occurred to me that both were equally valid -- or, more accurately, that both were equally invalid -- being largely distorted by her projections and, thus, not an accurate representation of her true self, which remained largely hidden.

Moreover, I found the moments of passion and idealization so intoxicating that I became somewhat addicted to the intensity of such wonderful feelings. It is difficult to let go of being treated like a savior, especially when you have a strong need to be a fixer and rescuer like you were all through childhood. Indeed, the intense passion is so intoxicating that many nonBPD partners wonder whether they will ever be able to forgo it in order to fall in love with a healthy stable person. Whew, what heady stuff!
I just got out of a 20 year marriage in December from someone who is BPD and bipolar and it only got worse. This man made me feel like crap. He became physically abusive too and to this day I am still scared of him.

He left me feeling depressed and all alone all the time and whenever I tried to talk about my feelings or my needs I was told I was selfish. It was all about him. I eventually just held everything in, apologized for everything and just tried to worry about his needs. I slowly died.

I am so much happier now. I am getting my friends back because I chose to not have thigns to do with them cuz it was easier than having to deal with the crap from him. I am focusing on myself and I get and hear compliments a lot again. It is so hard though because I have a hard time taking it for what it is and come back with a remark like are you kidding me, who are you looking at.

Dont let this man wear you down anymore. You can give him everything you have and he will require more. And then there is nothing left of you. Please love yourself first.
I can't believe how many of you have similar experiences...

A friend of mine actually recommended the book "Walking on Eggshells" and that's when I KNEW that my boyfriend had BPD. He fit every symptom perfectly (scary, I know). I mean... I've been in healthy relationships, so I knew SOMETHING was up, but man.. had I known it was this bad... I would have steered clear... or maybe not. I have this thing.. where I just want to help people... it's a freaking curse, I tell you.

Anyway... I'm so glad I found all of you. You have no idea (or maybe it just feels that way). This feeling.. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy...

Okay, so here's the thing... I was about to renew my lease with him next month. He made me all sorts of promises to get me to sign it.. but now I'm starting to see through it all..

Before we moved in together.. he had cheated on me.. He told me a year later... and I just felt.. conned.. tricked into living with him... being with him.

But then he starts crying and stating that he did it because he didn't want to lose me... and being the caretaker (or moron) that I am.. I just hold him in my arms and tell him "it's okay... we're in this together."

I feel sick. I feel sick to my stomach. Some days, I just lay in bed and cry. If my family knew what I was going through, they would be so heartbroken. I often find myself lying to them.. building him up..

Plus, I've been here through all of his relapses (he's had drug issues) and emotional breakdowns. Of course, nobody knows about these things except for the two of us... and being how he is, he actually makes me look like a burden in front of his family, blaming things on me when things don't go as planned.. and taking all the credit when things do.

His mother is a textbook sociopath by the way.. so I'm just always stressed out.. if not about him, then about his mother.. who blames anything and everything on me...

Please help me.. please give me that extra PUSH to move out and go on with my life.. I know I need to do it.. I KNOW that this relationship is toxic and I just.. miss my old self... I miss the girl that sings while she drives.. and dances when she's alone... I miss being... happy. I even miss being lonely. He's ALWAYS there to make me feel bad.. to bring me down. If I don't do EVERYTHING his way, he ALWAYS finds a way to project his unhappiness onto me..

and If I continue to live with him, I may never be able to leave.....

How would you all go about this? How would you all break up with an emotionally manipulative person that you're living with? I feel like I'm losing my mind... and I'm just.. exhausted.

I'm just so unhappy... but I feel stuck.

Also, thank you all so much for your previous posts... it has helped me a great deal. Now at least I know that I am not imagining these problems... and I know that I must break away from them.. and knowing that many of you have been able to do it, gives me hope, too...

I just need some help.. some encouragement.. some advice.

Thanks again....
Get out, I wish someone would of encouraged me. I knew it was all bad things that were happening and I did not deserve any of them even though everything was always my fault. It will not get any better. You are already losing yourself.

I walked "on eggshells" always trying to watch what I said, how I said it, dont be too hyper, dont be too sad. Dont be pushy but if I sat back and did not ask then I did something wrong too. NOT WORTH IT. Now I laugh again. I can be hyper, loud and the things I use to. When my ex sees me like this he sometimes tell me I am being fake now. That I dont know who I am. I tell him no, I had to be fake around him. He use to ask me why couldnt I love him. WTH! I did love him but he said he could not feel it. He complained of this issue even as a child so I tell him until he finds it himself so one else can.

You can make yourself happy again. But only you can. I did the build up thing too with my family and was always (as my therapist tells me) the peacekeeper. Trying to keep people from being mad at him and him being mad at everyone else. The end result was I was the one always unhappy.

Be strong, you can do it. And I understand about so many people being inthe same boat. I had found so many old friends on facebook and am surprised how many of them have just gotten out of similiar relationships and many of them abusive also. Makes me so sad to see how this affects everyone.
Don't sign the lease. As Fernee says, you should get out. I will write more about this tonight when I return from work.
"Walking on eggshells". That's EXACTLY what I was telling my friends I was doing around him way back last August. Every move was based on how I thought he might react. Would it annoy him? Will he like this? What would he want me to do? I get so annoyed with myself just thinking about how scared I was. And the best part? He told me he couldn't stand how timid I'd become. Said things like "where's the old --?" or "For god's sake get a backbone!". (Of course, when I do stand up to him, he goes ballistic.)

You're singing our song, simplyD. I don't think anyone can truly understand what it's like unless they've experienced it first hand, and we have. We completely understand. My girlfriends have read his emails and call him things like a nutcase and sociopath but they don't know what it feels like to be manipulated like that, to be alternately emotionally crushed and then dangled carrots...

You have to be strong. His love is conditional, and you will NEVER be good enough for him to stop this behaviour. Getting away from him will be the first step in getting your old self back.

I've already started. My fellow is at the point where he pretty much hates me non-stop now and it breaks my heart but it also gives me more strength. Knowing that he could turn on me like that, so completely. Very liberating. (Of course, I say all this now, lol. Let's see what I have to say when I have to see him again in 2 weeks!)

Anyway, be strong, don't sign the lease!
[QUOTE]How would you all break up with an emotionally manipulative person that you're living with?[/QUOTE]SimplyD, the thing I found most helpful was to strengthen my personal boundaries and stop walking on eggshells around my exW. If you still have any notion that your BF really loves you for yourself, just start acting yourself for a few days. He will react like you have thrown acid into his face. He likely does not value you for the person you are but, rather, the [I]soothing object[/I] you have become.

Don't you have greater aspirations than spending your life being someone's soothing object? Of course you do. So tell him to get himself a vibrator. Or, better yet, leave one on the coffee table as a parting gift.

As to the need for strong personal boundaries, a therapist who claims to have treated numerous BPD couples wrote that such relationships typically last either 18 months or 15 years. This caught my attention because my relationship lasted almost exactly 15 years. And it should be of interest to you because you are barely past the 18-month figure.

The relationship lasts [I]18 months[/I], he said, when the nonBPD partner has [I]strong personal boundaries[/I]. Such a person, he explained, will enjoy the intensely passionate six-month honeymoon and then spend up to an additional 12 months trying in vain to restore the conditions of the honeymoon. At that point, this emotionally healthy partner gives up and bails.

The relationship lasts [I]15 years[/I], he said, when the nonBPD partner has [I]weak personal boundaries[/I], causing him to become so enmeshed in the BPDer's problems and feelings that he never leaves his BPD partner. Instead, the BPDer leaves him. The reason is that -- over the 15-year period -- she grows increasingly resentful of his inability to fix her or make her happy (an impossible task).

I would be remiss if I did not mention a second very helpful thing: righteous anger. As soon as he has another temper tantrum -- and it will be soon -- hold on to your anger. Nurse it. And keep holding on to it for three months, six months, a year -- whatever it takes to keep you from returning.

As I explained earlier, such anger is not justified because -- after more than 18 months in the toxic relationship -- you are now contributing to problem as much as he. Nevertheless, hold on to the anger anyway. Use it like a crutch to walk safely away and then kick it aside when it has fully served its purpose.

Finally, I note that building stronger personal boundaries is essential not only for finding the will to leave but also for staying safe later. After all, it does not matter much whether you leave if you will go running into the arms of another man just like him.[QUOTE]His mother is a textbook sociopath.[/QUOTE]Nobody knows for certain what causes BPD. A number of studies strongly suggest, however, that it generally is caused both by heredity and childhood abuse. The most rigorous of those studies likely is the 2008 study of nearly 35,000 BPDers. It found that roughly 70% of them reported being abused or abandoned in early childhood (but not all abused people develop BPD, however). Because the remaining 30% reported no abuse, the prevailing theory is that BPD can be caused by heredity alone, by a combination of heredity and abuse, and by abuse alone.

I mention all this so you are aware that there is a strong probability that your BF inherited a predisposition for mental illness from his sociopathic mother. If so, there is a good chance he will pass that predisposition along to one or more of any children you have with him. And to some of your grandchildren.

Whether the predisposition will take the form of BPD or another PD is unclear. As I mentioned, 30% of BPDers seem to have developed the disorder absent any abuse. So it is possible that the predisposition would take the form of another PD like NPD or APD (i.e., new name for sociopathic). And, of course, the outcome would be even worse if he ends up verbally abusing the children like his mother did to him.

In the case of my exW, all five of her adult children (who were my step kids) have mood disorders. Specifically, two suffer from panic disorder, one has some strong BPD traits, and three have depression. Of eight grandchildren, only two are old enough to evaluate because they are young adults. One of them has bipolar disorder with some strong BPD traits and the other suffers from ADD.
Gosh, I find your posts so interesting and educational, thanks!

My ex is not BPD (at least, I don't believe he is...he's just a spoiled, selfish, mean person who thinks the world owes him everything he wants and becomes angry when he doesn't get it), but he has some of the behaviors. Funny how you said the 15 year thing...I met him exactly 15 years ago and while we were not in a relationship the whole time (we dated for a few months 11 years ago, had a 5 year split during which we both dated others, yet he spent the entire 5 years trying to get me back, then had a 4 year relationship). He dumped me a year ago and is now in a relationship with someone who ie EXACTLY like him...she is selfish and demanding, they fight constantly(physically...she's given him black eyes and he puts bruises on her regularly) then get back together within hours, they are insanely jealous of one another, they are both extremely controlling...and he loves her like he's never loved anyone else. She is his dream girl and he wants to marry her. I agree that she's perfect for him because their sickness feeds off of one another. Oh, and they both abuse drugs and alcohol, something I would never do. He vowed to me a few years ago that he was determined to find someone just like him, and he did.

It's so liberating being away from him...I actually feel like thanking him for dumping me (I won't actually do it) because I am now out of that miserable situation and can live again. I was hurt when he dumped me, but that was because I'd become so enmeshed in his world that I didn't know how to not be in it anymore. But again, thank God he dumped me because I'd still be there. I feel fantastic now (after stupidly being sad for the first few months!) and I am now seeing someone whom I don't feel the need to rescue, save, pacify, do things and get things for because he likes them (never mind what I like or want!), and I don't feel the need to become enmeshed in his world, because mine's just fine.

Thanks again for the info, it's terrific!
Yeah thanks truth be told, you're more interesting than my abnormal psych professor.
With all due respect, no one other than a qualified mental health professional conducting a clinical assessment of simplyD's boyfriend could diagnose him as having BPD. Nor can anyone here predict exactly what the boyfriend will do, or where the relationship will go, based on an unsubstantiated, amateur guess that he is inflicted by a certain mental disorder.

That said, simplyD, it is clear that you and your boyfriend have some compatibility issues which probably negate the success of a long-term relationship. I think it would be helpful to focus on this issues without looking through the prism of BPD, which may skew your analysis of what's really going on.
That's true that people do get caught up in labels and use labels to predict and explain behavior, especially in this culture where the majority of people have some three-lettered acronym syndrome. I was under the impression that this guy had been diagnosed as having BPD, though maybe I missed something
if you educate yourself on the subject and live thru the experience of being with someone with BPD, you can become very adept at recognizing them.
You don't need a PHD and you don't have to be a rocket scientist.
[QUOTE=caberg;4248448]With all due respect, no one other than a qualified mental health professional conducting a clinical assessment of simplyD's boyfriend could diagnose him as having BPD. Nor can anyone here predict exactly what the boyfriend will do, or where the relationship will go, based on an unsubstantiated, amateur guess that he is inflicted by a certain mental disorder. ... I think it would be helpful to focus on this issues without looking through the prism of BPD, which may skew your analysis of what's really going on.[/QUOTE]
No one can ever predict what anyone we don't know will do, BPD or not, so by that logic all advice on this board is useless, and as far as diagnosing him goes, maybe it would be more PC to say 'he exhibits classic BPD behaviour', as opposed to 'he has BPD', but I think we all get the point here, and our advice would probably be the same. Very few people with BPD ever agree to their diagnosis anyway, or even seek treatment since they think there's nothing wrong with them.

Just because your boyfriend hasn't been officially diagnosed by a professional doesn't mean our advice is any less valid. I think most of us who've had to deal up close and personal with someone with BPD (or classic BPD behaviour) will agree that it's pretty clear and regardless of an official diagnosis, the results are the same. I think it's very important to continue to consider that your bf has BPD, it effects how you will have to deal with him and what the possible outcomes are.

Ultimately, if it walks like a duck...
Caberg, I've read a number of your posts on the Relationship board and have found them articulate and insightful. I also found that they set a level of respectfulness to which I will aspire as I take issue with several of your statements.
[QUOTE=caberg;4248448]No one other than a qualified mental health professional conducting a clinical assessment of simplyD's boyfriend could diagnose him as having BPD.[/QUOTE]I agree. None of the posters, however, attempts to render a diagnosis. Indeed, none of us has claimed that a diagnosis is necessary. A strong pattern of BPD traits -- even when that pattern falls below the diagnostic level -- is sufficient to destroy a relationship and make your life miserable.

At issue, then, is whether SimplyD is capable of recognizing a strong pattern of those traits when it occurs. Like Della and Rosequartz, I believe she is. Indeed, I believe most 18-year-olds are capable of doing so and should be provided this information during their senior year in high school (or first year in college) so they have a prayer's chance of protecting themselves. Millions of them could avoid years, if not a lifetime, of pain and suffering if they were taught how to recognize basic behavioral traits at the very time they are starting to search for compatible mates.

As Rosequartz says, this is not rocket science. By the time you were in your late teens, you likely could easily identify women who were too selfish and self-centered for you to consider dating, much less marrying. And you were able to do that without being able to determine whether the selfishness was so severe as to merit a diagnosis of NPD.

Like the traits of being selfish and self-centered, the nine BPD traits are surprisingly easy to recognize once you've read about them. What is difficult is determining whether they are sufficiently severe to warrant a diagnosis. More difficult still is knowing how to treat the disorder effectively. Hence, diagnosis and treatment are the province of professionals. Identifying the traits, however, is easy because every healthy human being exhibits all nine BPD traits, albeit at a low level.

If you think you can wait for a psychologist to give you a diagnosis, please think again. It is unlikely to happen. For one thing, you cannot afford to drag a psychologist along on every date. More importantly, strong BPD traits (when untreated) can destroy a marriage and make your life miserable even when they fall well short of the diagnostic level. Imagine being married to a very selfish woman who does not have full-blown NPD. Hence, the absence of a BPD diagnosis does not mean you are safe.

Moreover, psychologists seem very reluctant to tell a patient she has BPD. One reason is that insurance companies usually refuse to cover that disorder but will cover depression or PTSD. Another reason is that they know a patient suffering from BPD almost certainly will terminate therapy when given such a feared diagnosis. So, in the unlikely event your GF is given such a diagnosis and tells you, so much time will have passed that you will already be married to her and have several kids, some of whom may have inherited her disorder.

Of the nine traits, the one that seems to be the most exotic and intimidating -- by far -- is splitting (i.e., dissociation). You exhibit this trait, for example, when you are driving and suddenly realize that you cannot remember anything about the past ten miles, not even the three stop-lighted intersections you passed through. It also occurs when you walk to the kitchen and, while opening the refrigerator door, suddenly realize you have no idea what you came into the kitchen to get.

In both of these situations, one part of your mind is daydreaming while another part is driving your car and walking you into the kitchen. Importantly, while this is happening, your consciousness is in touch with one part but not the other. That is, the two parts of your mind are "dissociated" or "split" because they are not connected.

Indeed, your brain is hard wired to do splitting whenever you are suddenly scared or startled. For example, when you are in a crosswalk and suddenly look up to see a truck bearing down on you, your mind is incapable of rational, logical thinking. Instead, it does only black-white thinking, i.e., splitting. It thinks only "jump left" or "jump right." These traits, then, are behaviors that all of us can learn to recognize.[QUOTE]Nor can anyone here predict exactly what the boyfriend will do, or where the relationship will go, based on an unsubstantiated, amateur guess....[/QUOTE]Agreed. That is why the posters are trying to help SimplyD understand what typical untreated BPD behavior is like -- so she is better positioned to judge for herself whether her BF exhibits a strong pattern of BPD traits. After all, she knows ten thousand times what we know about the guy. And she knows far more about his behavior than most therapists are likely to see during their 50-minute sessions held once a week.

Moreover, our inability to accurately predict is why we are sharing our experiences of living with our BPD partners. If SimplyD should decide that her BF has strong BPD traits -- and the title of this thread reveals she has already done so -- our experiences may give her a better idea of the probable outcome if she remains with her BF, following the path that so many of us pursued for years.[QUOTE]I think it would be helpful to focus on this issues without looking through the prism of BPD....[/QUOTE]Perhaps you are right, Caberg. I nonetheless believe that SimplyD is best positioned to make that decision. As explained above, I feel she is fully capable of recognizing a strong pattern of BPD traits in a man she has been living with for nearly two years. For starters, she has already read the most popular -- and one of the most respected -- books ever written about this terrible disorder.
Hon, you have to get out. You sound like a wonderful person and fully of life. It isn't too late for you to get back what you lost. Realize you lose yourself with people like this. When I left my ex I caught myself saying negative things about people, just random people in the mall, on tv, whatever. I thought "this isn't me, what's going on?" and I realized that I was parroting things he said our whole relationship. I've since shaken that off, but really, it is hard not to pick up bad habits, thoughts, ideas. Get out of there and start dancing and singing again. If you don't you'll be wondering why you didn't and what you should do all over again a year from now and you'll have lost yet more time to him.
[QUOTE=della1;4247597]"Walking on eggshells". That's EXACTLY what I was telling my friends I was doing around him way back last August. Every move was based on how I thought he might react. Would it annoy him? Will he like this? What would he want me to do? I get so annoyed with myself just thinking about how scared I was. And the best part? He told me he couldn't stand how timid I'd become. Said things like "where's the old --?" or "For god's sake get a backbone!". (Of course, when I do stand up to him, he goes ballistic.)

You're singing our song, simplyD. I don't think anyone can truly understand what it's like unless they've experienced it first hand, and we have. We completely understand. My girlfriends have read his emails and call him things like a nutcase and sociopath but they don't know what it feels like to be manipulated like that, to be alternately emotionally crushed and then dangled carrots...

You have to be strong. His love is conditional, and you will NEVER be good enough for him to stop this behaviour. Getting away from him will be the first step in getting your old self back.

I've already started. My fellow is at the point where he pretty much hates me non-stop now and it breaks my heart but it also gives me more strength. Knowing that he could turn on me like that, so completely. Very liberating. (Of course, I say all this now, lol. Let's see what I have to say when I have to see him again in 2 weeks!)

Anyway, be strong, don't sign the lease![/QUOTE]

della, how do you deal with seeing him? I start to feel pretty strong between times when I have to see him. But then it is definitely a one step forward, two steps back kind of feeling..... I struggle to maintain my peace when I have to be around him. Do you have any tips?
lets put it this way as not to offend anyone....

IF he has BPD, it is safe to assume that he will not get any better, he will just get worse.....

if he's just a nasty person with a bad attitude, he will also just get worse.

I hope that is politically correct enough for everyone!
I agree, these people don't see the need to change (if they're not diagnosable) because so far, it's gotten them what they want in life. After all, they have a GF/BF/spouse who, instead of running for the hills, is trying to find out ways to "deal" with them, or trying to find the magic formula that will stop them from whatever hurtful behaviors they are doing, or trying to find ways to make THEM happy instead of thinking about their own happiness. What's not to like about that? No consequences, no change.
Let me just be clear. I am 110% sure that he has BPD. There is not a single doubt in my mind.

Today, I told him that I will be moving out. Instead of trying to talk to me, he snapped at me, saying that I'm getting in the way of his studies. He's always suddenly busy when I want to talk about how I'm feeling. Just minutes before, he was listening to music and relaxing on the couch...

I then said that I was going to email our landlord and get everything situated so that I can leave at the end of the month. I said that I would leave everything (all the furniture and what not) with him... so that he can sell it and make some money off of it. At this point, I don't even care about all the money I've lost staying here, I just want to GTFO and move on with my life.

All of a sudden, he wants to talk... and work things out...

When I tell him I'm done.. and just plain exhausted, he snaps at me and says that I'm "leaving him hanging". Then, he says that I should be the one to stay and sell all the furniture. Seriously... he can just throw it away for all I care. I just thought he could use the extra money, being in all that debt.

What should I do? Should I just put myself aside and help him one last time? Should I sell the furniture for him...? Would it be selfish of me to just leave... even when he can benefit from the extra cash?

He's just being so hostile... and a part of me wants to just.. cry.

But I'm trying my best to be strong... telling myself that this pain will eventually subside... and better days are ahead.

Days where I'm not constantly wondering what kind of mood he's going to be in today... or in the next 5 minutes..

I feel like no matter what I do... he's mad at me... and that is such a terrible feeling.. and it's done a number to my once healthy self-esteem. The whole thing about saying "why are you so timid? grow a backbone!"... he's said that to me, too... only to call be a "selfish " when I started stand up for myself..

Today, I was out shopping with a friend when suddenly my nose started to bleed... This only happens to me when I'm just plain worn out... and that is what this relationship is doing to me.

I have decided to leave... now I just have to figure out how...

Any suggestions?
Okay, so.. today I got home.. and the front door was bolted. I was upset because.. I mean, I was locked out of my own home. I thought it was kind of suspicious, but he kept saying that it was an accident. Later, he tells me that he bolted it because he was about to go look through my laptop.. to look for traces of me communicating or cheating with another man. Seriously?!

Couple years ago, I was planning him a surprise birthday party. When I went to talk to his roommate for about 2 minutes to give him some of the details, he flipped out and accused me of cheating on him.

Once, I had a feeling that he had overslept for an 8am final exam... I called him so many times, only to find that he was "snoozing" all my calls. I was worried that he might miss it, so I actually got up, walked over to his place, knocked on his door, only for him to open it yelling at me... for rushing him and disturbing his roommates.
Simply D, you need to turn the focus around and away from your boyfriend, and ask yourself why you need to be a resquer. If you feel lonely and need to be needed, may be one reason, but addiction to a person may be another. Perhaps a low self esteem may be the problem lying underneath, or else you would not have stayed so long, nor would you have let others use you as a scapegoat for their problems.
Get out, before you totally lose yourself, or you will spend the rest of your life to find yourself again. You have taken in all the bad thrown out-and you have taken it all as your own-emotionally and mentally. You have weaken because of it...believed at some level (emotionally) though your mind is telling you they are not true, it is your being that is affected badly.
You heard a lot from the others-get up and go and not worry about "things", whether he sells them or leaves them on the footpath, just pick up your personal belongings and go, and don't look back. You have lost the strength to do it, reading your posts, if you are asking of people to give you a kick start or an ego kick to see that your SELF protection is missing.

Perhaps I have given you that survival kick start with this post! If you can't do it on your own, involve your parents, or even a councelor!
Don't talk about it with him any more, nor care about what his mother will think, it seems you are too scared to be thought as a bad guy and that is your problem. Don't discuss it any more, you have already done that so it is the action that is missing. Just Go!
He's using you. He's manipulating you and using you. What he's doing when he's calling you names and insulting you is putting you on the defensive. You don't stop and think "is this true? What evidence is there for this accusation?" because he's offended you, so you start defending yourself. It has taken me a couple bad relationships to pick up on these patterns. I'm a caretaker, so when I hear "please help me" it is next to impossible for me not to. I just found out my husband has been cheating for a very long time and I'm worried about him not having a place to stay, then when he got an apartment i'm worried about him not having the furniture, groceries etc Am I thinking about the fact I never sleep more than a few hours at a time, I'm working tons of overtime to pay off bills he left behind, that I'm trying to guide my son who believed he'd found a father through this intact, that I live off saltines, mt dew and multivitamins? No. I'm worried about the guy who married me, asked to adopt my son and was cheating the entire relationship. What?!? No hon, you owe him nothing. You gave him a chance after he cheated, you're being generous with the furniture. If I was you I would pack my stuff while angry and leave. Tell a few people close to you EXACTLY what he has done to you and put it to paper. Ask those people to hold you accountable for making smart decisions for yourself and if you're tempted to go back talk to them or read what you've written about all the ways he's no good for you. At the point that he's messed with your body enough that you're having blood noses and feeling so worn down you need to get out for your health. If you stay you will just sucked back in. It will never be a good time in his eyes for you to leave. There will always be a few more things you need to do for HIM. It is time to do for you. I would be always polite and respectful of him as a human being so that you have no regrets, by all means pray for him, do what you can. But leave and cut communication. Take care of you, he is not going to. My thoughts are with you, I know you have the strength to do this.
I'm worried for you, sometimes people snap when they are being left and you've been under his control for a while. Are you ok?
I hope you've figured out this answer by now....do you help him one more time?
ABSOLUTELY NOT.....with BPD people there is never ONE more time....give them an inch, they take a mile.
walk away NOW....you've gotten this far, made the decision.....move forward.
Of course he wants to talk now, they always do when they think they're losing you....it's manipulation, pure and simple. Time to put your foot down and stop allowing him to manipulate you.
I admit, I let this relationship completely take control of me... maybe I do need to be needed... or maybe I just can't say no when someone needs my help. I thought that made me a good person, but now I just feel.. weak... stupid.. taken advantage of.

He's now sending me links about people with BPD and how they feel...

I understand. I've read about it.

But I need to put myself first.

I just can't do this anymore...

He knows exactly how to make me feel guilty.. the thing is.. I believe he means it. I believe he really is hurting... and all this manipulation is just a cry for help.... but I've accepted that I am no longer going to be the one to help him. It's taken over my life and damn it, I want it back!

and yes, I'm all right. Thank you for asking. He's stopped being hostile and resorted to being.. sad. He even said he'd let me go.. saying that he'd take responsibility for everything. I'm shocked, but I'm not even going to ask why he had the change of heart, I'm going to leave while the offer is still good.

Thanks everyone for your support and I will keep you updated as I plan my move. Bless your hearts.
it's not really a change of heart, it's more manipulation....aww he's sad, and it's just zero to 60 next time he SNAPS and starts raging.
you should know this! please read the book co-dependent no more....it helped me tremendously....I'm co-dependent and struggling with it....I'm getting better though....
you're co-dependent too....stop putting his needs above your own
You need to think of yourself. Locked out of your own home so he can snoop through your personal stuff to see if you've been cheating?!!!! :mad: What will he resort to next?

Is there any way you can take your personal stuff and leave now?

As you've seen, this cycle of abuse and manipulation is never ending, it will not get better and most likely will only get worse.

When he cries and makes you feel sorry for him, just remember that this won't last and he'll flip out again and you can't live your life like that.
He "cries" to manipulate you into feeling sorry for him, and the focus is on his tears instead of on what he's done to you to make you need to leave him. And it works great, doesn't it? Instead of being angry about the treatment he's given you, you now feel guilty about making him cry!!

Please try to see this for what it is.

PS: And I don't buy for one second that his "illness" is "making" him do these manipulative things. He's doing them because he knows he can get you to do what he wants. Nothing "ill" about that except that it's a piss-poor way to treat someone you supposedly "love".
I would actually disagree that he cries to manipulate you. I believe his tears are real. He's hurt, upset, etc. etc. People with BPD feel emotions very strongly and it isn't a manipulation. What it is though, is all about them. They aren't tears for you, they're for him. In fact, he could well soon turn those tears into anger at how you've 'hurt him' (you've made him cry, therefore you are at fault).

Yes, I'm serious. I've had those tables turned on me and I was flabbergasted. And here's another way it can happen: one time, very early in our relationship, my friend's insults brought me to tears (he was insulting something very very personal to me) and I called him on it. The next day I got an email from him basically scolding me for making him feel like a bad person. Honest to god, I'd been expecting an apology, but I got a scolding for making HIM feel bad.

What I'm trying to say is that it isn't a conscious manipulation but just another example of how everything is about them. Their only concern is what they are feeling and what their needs are. Intellectually, they understand that others have feelings and needs too, and can be quite empathetic if you tell them stories about other people, but when it comes to their relationships with others, anyone else's needs are completely insignificant to their own.

You have to leave his feelings out of it because they are so much bigger than yours (in his opinion) and do what you have to do for YOU. You will never make him happy, so you have to focus on making yourself happy.

Stay strong.
These are excellent books on the subject if you care to read, it may clear your mind of what MAY be happening!!

Hi Simplyd
You could have been describing me in your post. I am exactly like you, to the tee. I am also a caregiver and always feel it is my responsibility to take care of people. The problem is, I have been told, is that we don't take care of ourselves. I have known this man for two years. In the beginning of our relationship he tried everything to try to get me to agree for him to move in with me. He is an alcoholic (his choice of self medication!) and eventually he was telling me I had to let him move in with me so that I could keep my eye on him and make sure he didn't drink. Then he said he would move into my spare bedroom and be a 'house guest'. I know I would never have got him to leave, so I am so glad I resisted this specific manipulation. He gave up on that one eventually becouase he could see I was not going to give in on that one. He feels the need to be with me 24/7,and gets very upset and moody if I am not with him for even a few minutes. I quite like my alone time, so you can imagine how stifling and suffocated I feel. When he drinks he becomes really nasty and abusive. He has only hit me once, but swore when he sobored up that he would not do it again. I also don't know why I stay. He is destroying my life and my sanity. When I try to leave he threatens to commit suicide and I have already once found him with his wrists slit, half dead. on the floor of his apartment. (He doesn't work so he lives in one of my apartments!) I also give him money and food, so he is completely dependent on me. When I write this down it makes me see how completely crazy it sounds to even me with someone like this! I also need help desperately, so if you have any ideas or thoughts for me I would be very grateful
Stay strong we will find our way out of this.
Well.... I guess I am the only one who actually has BPD. I am also going through a rough time with my boyfriend of almost three years and was thinking that we were really starting to make some progress. Although, now, after reading all of your posts, I see that no one really has any faith in 'us'. No one thinks that we will EVER 'get better' or that things will ever 'work out'.

Thanks for all the inspiration!!!

Rachel
[QUOTE=simplyD;4243918]I have boyfriend with BPD and it's very difficult for me to leave him. We argue about the same things over and over again. He's really good at pushing my buttons and saying really hurtful things to get me to react to him, only to tell me that I'm the one being hysterical.

I used to be a really outgoing and bubbly person before I met him and now I'm just depressed and exhausted all the time. When we are good, we're REALLY good... until he does something hurtful again. He's just so good at convincing me that he'll change... and because I love him, I want to believe him every time. At first, I felt that with enough love, I could open his heart.. and change him.. make him a better man. We've been together for almost two years now.. and while I have seen some improvements, he has a long way to go.

I wish I had the courage to just leave... and I wish he had the courage to let me go.

I am a good person.. and I deserve better than this...

but I also love him.... I don't know what to do...

I find it hard to tell this to people that are close to me, especially the ones that know him, too. His public persona is just so charming that everyone either thinks I'm crazy for feeling the way I do or crazy for staying with such a "nutcase".

I just really need to talk to someone about this... it's not healthy to keep it inside all the time...[/QUOTE]

I just wanted to say I had the exact same thing happen in my relationship. I loved him so much when he was good, but hated him so much when he was "bad." There was always something missing in his emotions. Like he said he loved me but I never FELT that it was really there if that makes sense.

I always focused on the good times because they were so so good. I would tell myself that the nice man was the real him. Eventually he'll get tired of screaming and just become the real him. But I had to learn, it was always the real him. The monster and the angel were both really him.
He eventually left me because he saw how much he was hurting me. I don't really believe it though. I think he was just sick of me. I don't think he will ever get better.
I just want to update everyone on my progress, and I am proud to say... I finally packed my bags and left him.. and I want to thank those of you who have helped me through much of this... letting me know that I am not alone.

I took my name off the lease, but let him keep the furniture (to sell) to help him pay the last month's rent. I didn't have to, but I didn't want to leave him hanging... even after all he's done. Needless to say, he threw a tantrum saying that I'm abandoning him and that I never do anything to help him... which is just insane. He was so hostile and and juvenile that I was glad to be rid of him.

I am home now.. with my family.. who has always been so loving and supportive. It makes me wonder why it took me so long to leave. But when I think about it, I know that it was all part of his plan. He isolated me from my family and friends.. anyone who cared about me.. and put all kinds of terrible thoughts into my head... making me feel that I wasn't pretty enough, skinny enough, or just plain worthy of his "love"... even though he was the one lying.. and cheating. In fact, he was so manipulative that I began to believe it.

Relationships like these.. are toxic, and once you get sucked in, it's incredibly hard to leave... especially if you're like me... the kind of person that wants to nurture and help. Don't be fooled by "the good times," because we all know that the "bad times" are just... not worth it... not healthy.

From this relationship, I learned that I need to pay attention to red flags at the beginning of relationships... and not let them make excuses for bad behavior. Basically, I learned that I need to respect myself enough to not let anyone treat me badly. All I can do now is try not to be bitter, and move forward with my life. I know I deserve better. I've known for a long time. I've only been away from him for ONE day... and I can already feel my real self emerging. I can already feel myself healing.. and I can tell you, I am a much better person without him.. a happier person.

For everyone out there that's going through a hard time being with a person with BPD, I know that you keep waiting for this person to change.... and this is because you are a wonderful and compassionate person.. that cares... a little too much at times. When we care about or love someone, we want to believe the best in them. We want to believe that they can be the person we need them to be, but there is a difference between loving the idea of a person... and really loving them for who they are.

Please don't throw your life away.. waiting.. because it is very unlikely that they will wake up one morning and see the light. Take care of yourselves first. Leaving might be one of the hardest things you have to do, but do it... and tell someone that loves and cares about you.. what you're going through. Tell them that you need their help.. and if you live with the person with BPD... and are afraid of that person getting violent, call the police department and ask for an officer to do a "civil stand by"... basically, if you are afraid that it can get violent, an officer will come in and make sure that you are okay while you gather your things. Whatever it takes. The sooner the better. Good luck to you all.

**Just to be clear, I am not saying that all people with BPD are hopeless. I understand that many people with this disorder struggle with themselves incredibly.. and a lot of of the hurt they inflict on others are unintentional. However, I am just sharing my experience... and in my experience, even if the pain they cause is unintentional... it is no less painful.
I am so happy for you! :D

I hope being separated from him will get you back to being the outgoing bubbly you that you mentioned.

I have only had very limited contact with my BPD 'friend' since our project finished it's first major phase and I have already started sleeping better and putting some weight back on - not that I want the weight back, lol (in fact I joke with my friends that if I ever need to lose weight, I'll resume heavy contact with him).

Anyway, being separated will certainly help you get things back in perspective and it already sounds like you know you've done the right thing.

btw, the pain they cause is more often VERY intentional because they are punishing you for the wrongs they think you have done them. it's very messed up. I still find myself feeling sorry for my BPD 'friend' when he says something ignorant to me (pretty much everything he says to me at this point), but less so as time goes on.
Hello,
I also just posted on the board and I am in a similar relationship. I know deep down it is verbally abusive, he is bi-polar, narcissictic, and I have put
up with this for 5 years. He is very charming, everyone thinks he is just wonderful, but they do not know the other side of him. I do love him too and it is so hard to break away but I know in my heart I am a good person, very kind and loving and I do not deserve to be treated this way. I am glad you are going on with your life.. no one ever deserves to be treated in this way...
[QUOTE=simplyD;4305647]I just want to update everyone on my progress, and I am proud to say... I finally packed my bags and left him.. and I want to thank those of you who have helped me through much of this... letting me know that I am not alone.

I took my name off the lease, but let him keep the furniture (to sell) to help him pay the last month's rent. I didn't have to, but I didn't want to leave him hanging... even after all he's done. Needless to say, he threw a tantrum saying that I'm abandoning him and that I never do anything to help him... which is just insane. He was so hostile and and juvenile that I was glad to be rid of him.

I am home now.. with my family.. who has always been so loving and supportive. It makes me wonder why it took me so long to leave. But when I think about it, I know that it was all part of his plan. He isolated me from my family and friends.. anyone who cared about me.. and put all kinds of terrible thoughts into my head... making me feel that I wasn't pretty enough, skinny enough, or just plain worthy of his "love"... even though he was the one lying.. and cheating. In fact, he was so manipulative that I began to believe it.

Relationships like these.. are toxic, and once you get sucked in, it's incredibly hard to leave... especially if you're like me... the kind of person that wants to nurture and help. Don't be fooled by "the good times," because we all know that the "bad times" are just... not worth it... not healthy.

From this relationship, I learned that I need to pay attention to red flags at the beginning of relationships... and not let them make excuses for bad behavior. Basically, I learned that I need to respect myself enough to not let anyone treat me badly. All I can do now is try not to be bitter, and move forward with my life. I know I deserve better. I've known for a long time. I've only been away from him for ONE day... and I can already feel my real self emerging. I can already feel myself healing.. and I can tell you, I am a much better person without him.. a happier person.

For everyone out there that's going through a hard time being with a person with BPD, I know that you keep waiting for this person to change.... and this is because you are a wonderful and compassionate person.. that cares... a little too much at times. When we care about or love someone, we want to believe the best in them. We want to believe that they can be the person we need them to be, but there is a difference between loving the idea of a person... and really loving them for who they are.

Please don't throw your life away.. waiting.. because it is very unlikely that they will wake up one morning and see the light. Take care of yourselves first. Leaving might be one of the hardest things you have to do, but do it... and tell someone that loves and cares about you.. what you're going through. Tell them that you need their help.. and if you live with the person with BPD... and are afraid of that person getting violent, call the police department and ask for an officer to do a "civil stand by"... basically, if you are afraid that it can get violent, an officer will come in and make sure that you are okay while you gather your things. Whatever it takes. The sooner the better. Good luck to you all.

**Just to be clear, I am not saying that all people with BPD are hopeless. I understand that many people with this disorder struggle with themselves incredibly.. and a lot of of the hurt they inflict on others are unintentional. However, I am just sharing my experience... and in my experience, even if the pain they cause is unintentional... it is no less painful.[/QUOTE]

I'm so happy for you. You should be very proud.:D


I wasted 5 years of my life walking on eggshells around my husband just because he could be nice 75% of the time. Our split is so confusing for some people because he seemed so sweet and so charming to them. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde indeed. I now have to listen to my mother tell me that fighting is normal in a marriage and it does not need to end things.

People don't realize these individuals are not capable of normal fighting with rationality and resolution. It's sick, toxic, make you feel insane fighting.

He's been to therapy years ago, but all they did was work on his anger management. They never diagnosed a real disease. It makes me want to pull my hair out when therapists or any doctors just treat the symptoms instead of looking for an underlying issue :mad:

It's VERY important to let someone know the other side of your loved one. I never really told anyone what he could be like because I was so ashamed, confused, and almost in disbelief that he could get SO angry and irrational about seemingly unimportant things.

Nobody believes you when you tell the truth! So instead of supporting you when you end the relationship they will tell you that fighting is normal! Learn better communication! Relationships take work!

His family knew the real him. They were the only ones besides me. He only hurt the ones closest to him.


I need to promote this this this a thousand times this quote!--


[I]Relationships like these.. are toxic, and once you get sucked in, it's incredibly hard to leave... especially if you're like me... the kind of person that wants to nurture and help. Don't be fooled by "the good times," because we all know that the "bad times" are just... not worth it... not healthy. [/I]
Thank you for the advice, I hope I can do the same thing you did.. It is hard, but you get so use to someone being a certain way, you do not know what normal is anymore or how you really should be treated..
[QUOTE=loralei;4305971]I'm so happy for you. You should be very proud.:D


I wasted 5 years of my life walking on eggshells around my husband just because he could be nice 75% of the time. Our split is so confusing for some people because he seemed so sweet and so charming to them. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde indeed. I now have to listen to my mother tell me that fighting is normal in a marriage and it does not need to end things.

People don't realize these individuals are not capable of normal fighting with rationality and resolution. It's sick, toxic, make you feel insane fighting.

He's been to therapy years ago, but all they did was work on his anger management. They never diagnosed a real disease. It makes me want to pull my hair out when therapists or any doctors just treat the symptoms instead of looking for an underlying issue :mad:

It's VERY important to let someone know the other side of your loved one. I never really told anyone what he could be like because I was so ashamed, confused, and almost in disbelief that he could get SO angry and irrational about seemingly unimportant things.

Nobody believes you when you tell the truth! So instead of supporting you when you end the relationship they will tell you that fighting is normal! Learn better communication! Relationships take work!

His family knew the real him. They were the only ones besides me. He only hurt the ones closest to him.


I need to promote this this this a thousand times this quote!--


[I]Relationships like these.. are toxic, and once you get sucked in, it's incredibly hard to leave... especially if you're like me... the kind of person that wants to nurture and help. Don't be fooled by "the good times," because we all know that the "bad times" are just... not worth it... not healthy. [/I][/QUOTE]

I know exactly what you mean. I found myself lying about how great he is... just because I was so ashamed of what people would think of me if they knew the truth... that he treated me horribly. I know it must be hard for others to understand, but in all honesty- you don't owe them an explanation. You know that what you did was right, and I am sure that as time goes on, people will see that you are healthier and happier without him. That should be reason enough for the people that really care about you and your well being to support your decision. Congratulations on starting your new life!
[QUOTE=Ashleymichele23;4305997]Thank you for the advice, I hope I can do the same thing you did.. It is hard, but you get so use to someone being a certain way, you do not know what normal is anymore or how you really should be treated..[/QUOTE]

The reason why you don't know what's normal anymore is because you're not spending enough time with people that ARE normal. Try telling your "normal" friends and family the truth. I am 100% sure that they would be worried for you and appalled by his terrible behavior. While it is true that all couples have their problems, there is a HUGE difference between fighting over your basic right as a girlfriend (respect, honesty, etc) and fighting about... let's say... who gets to pick the movie for date night.

I understand that change can be incredibly scary and difficult. After all, we are creatures of habit. Just reading through this thread and being able to relate to me, is reason enough to know that something is very wrong. It might take weeks, months, or even years to muster up the courage to stand your ground and leave, but that's okay. You need to wait until you are good and ready. Just don't give up and accept that you cannot do anything about it.

I talked about leaving about 100 times before I actually packed my bags and left. So much, that he started to think I was bluffing.. and when I actually left, he was just in shock. The truth is, I didn't want to leave. I just wanted him to change... but they day I realized that it just wasn't going to happen, I had to do what was right for myself. I even came back once (drove 400 miles each way) to say goodbye "the right way," because I didn't like how I left things. Needless to say, that was a huge mistake and I never should have gone back. He was sweet at first... and started to make me a whole bunch of false promises (yet again)... but as soon as he felt like he had me right where he wanted, he started to get unpredictable and hostile again. I left that same day and I never looked back.

Don't give up on yourself. I know you can do it, and you know it, too. Good luck!
[QUOTE=kaighbee;4260505]Hi Simplyd
You could have been describing me in your post. I am exactly like you, to the tee. I am also a caregiver and always feel it is my responsibility to take care of people. The problem is, I have been told, is that we don't take care of ourselves. I have known this man for two years. In the beginning of our relationship he tried everything to try to get me to agree for him to move in with me. He is an alcoholic (his choice of self medication!) and eventually he was telling me I had to let him move in with me so that I could keep my eye on him and make sure he didn't drink. Then he said he would move into my spare bedroom and be a 'house guest'. I know I would never have got him to leave, so I am so glad I resisted this specific manipulation. He gave up on that one eventually becouase he could see I was not going to give in on that one. He feels the need to be with me 24/7,and gets very upset and moody if I am not with him for even a few minutes. I quite like my alone time, so you can imagine how stifling and suffocated I feel. When he drinks he becomes really nasty and abusive. He has only hit me once, but swore when he sobored up that he would not do it again. I also don't know why I stay. He is destroying my life and my sanity. When I try to leave he threatens to commit suicide and I have already once found him with his wrists slit, half dead. on the floor of his apartment. (He doesn't work so he lives in one of my apartments!) I also give him money and food, so he is completely dependent on me. When I write this down it makes me see how completely crazy it sounds to even me with someone like this! I also need help desperately, so if you have any ideas or thoughts for me I would be very grateful
Stay strong we will find our way out of this.[/QUOTE]

It really is down to the tee. I also bought him tons of stuff and paid for food and what not... and you know, when he gets mad about something, he would randomly call ME a "gold digger"! I'm like.... WHAT?! Haha.. but that's just how he is, you know? He knows how to push my buttons. He will think of the most ridiculous things to upset me.... and trust me, he has quite the imagination.

How are you doing, by the way? Please update me.

Also, a book called "Women Who Love Too Much" along with the book, "Walking on Eggshells" changed my life. The first one is about women like us. The title almost sounds kind of conceited (haha)... but seriously, if you're anything like me... and often put the needs of your significant other, before yourself, this book will speak to you. The second one is about people with Borderline Personality Disorder. In this book, people talk about their relationships with people with BPD.. and those with BPD, talk about their struggle with the disorder. Both books helped me get through it all and I hope that they can help you, too.
[QUOTE=kaighbee;4260505]Hi Simplyd
You could have been describing me in your post. I am exactly like you, to the tee. I am also a caregiver and always feel it is my responsibility to take care of people. The problem is, I have been told, is that we don't take care of ourselves. I have known this man for two years. In the beginning of our relationship he tried everything to try to get me to agree for him to move in with me. He is an alcoholic (his choice of self medication!) and eventually he was telling me I had to let him move in with me so that I could keep my eye on him and make sure he didn't drink. Then he said he would move into my spare bedroom and be a 'house guest'. I know I would never have got him to leave, so I am so glad I resisted this specific manipulation. He gave up on that one eventually becouase he could see I was not going to give in on that one. He feels the need to be with me 24/7,and gets very upset and moody if I am not with him for even a few minutes. I quite like my alone time, so you can imagine how stifling and suffocated I feel. When he drinks he becomes really nasty and abusive. He has only hit me once, but swore when he sobored up that he would not do it again. I also don't know why I stay. He is destroying my life and my sanity. When I try to leave he threatens to commit suicide and I have already once found him with his wrists slit, half dead. on the floor of his apartment. (He doesn't work so he lives in one of my apartments!) I also give him money and food, so he is completely dependent on me. When I write this down it makes me see how completely crazy it sounds to even me with someone like this! I also need help desperately, so if you have any ideas or thoughts for me I would be very grateful
Stay strong we will find our way out of this.[/QUOTE]

and about his suicidal "cries for help," that is no reason for you to stay with him. This is not your responsibility. You need to tell his family what is going on.... or someone who cares about him. He desperately needs to get some serious counseling, and perhaps be admitted to a hospital on suicide watch if you feel like this could happen again.

My ex-boyfriend also choked me once when he was intoxicated. He has also shoved me before and verbally abused me regularly. A boyfriend should make you better and happier... not make you feel like your life and sanity is being destroyed. We both know that you deserve better and that once you leave him, you can get your own life back on track. I'm here to listen.
[QUOTE=bg0324;4249507]He's using you. He's manipulating you and using you. What he's doing when he's calling you names and insulting you is putting you on the defensive. You don't stop and think "is this true? What evidence is there for this accusation?" because he's offended you, so you start defending yourself. It has taken me a couple bad relationships to pick up on these patterns. I'm a caretaker, so when I hear "please help me" it is next to impossible for me not to. I just found out my husband has been cheating for a very long time and I'm worried about him not having a place to stay, then when he got an apartment i'm worried about him not having the furniture, groceries etc Am I thinking about the fact I never sleep more than a few hours at a time, I'm working tons of overtime to pay off bills he left behind, that I'm trying to guide my son who believed he'd found a father through this intact, that I live off saltines, mt dew and multivitamins? No. I'm worried about the guy who married me, asked to adopt my son and was cheating the entire relationship. What?!? No hon, you owe him nothing. You gave him a chance after he cheated, you're being generous with the furniture. If I was you I would pack my stuff while angry and leave. Tell a few people close to you EXACTLY what he has done to you and put it to paper. Ask those people to hold you accountable for making smart decisions for yourself and if you're tempted to go back talk to them or read what you've written about all the ways he's no good for you. At the point that he's messed with your body enough that you're having blood noses and feeling so worn down you need to get out for your health. If you stay you will just sucked back in. It will never be a good time in his eyes for you to leave. There will always be a few more things you need to do for HIM. It is time to do for you. I would be always polite and respectful of him as a human being so that you have no regrets, by all means pray for him, do what you can. But leave and cut communication. Take care of you, he is not going to. My thoughts are with you, I know you have the strength to do this.[/QUOTE]

Posts like these are what got me through this mess. Thank you x100.
if you really want to change and help yourself, I suggest reading "co-dependent no more". It changed my perspective on things. I used to meet everyones needs to the exclusion of my own (something I learned from my mother). This is the bottom line and pretty much sums up the definition of co-dependency.
Hey guys, I would just like to write my story, from the point of view of a person with BPD-traits. I'm on the other, 'bad', side of the story, and hope to show you a little of the struggle I have been going through. And that having BPD-traits doesn't make you a heartless person or means you'll always stay the same way. I strongly believe that if someone with these traits truly makes an effort, he or she can overcome a lot of it. It's a long story, but this is how it all went down.

I have inherited some nasty traits from my parents, which caused me to be basically socially incompetent and too much into drugs and doing nothing until around my 19th year of age. Turns out these traits are rather BPD-ish and ADD-ish, as my psychiatrist tells me. I don't have the full blown BPD, but there are elements of it there.

I've only really consciously discovered how bad I get once I was in my last relationship. My relationships before this one never seemed to go anywhere special, this girl is really different however and I've never felt this way about anyone before. After about 8 months this started to surface, and I started getting bouts of anger, where I would seriously attack her confidence and start yelling at her and being manipulative. Back then I couldn't make heads nor tails of what the matter was. She would always be very understanding and had a lot of patience, being a very emotionally solid person. Throughout the relationship I was able to slowly zone in on the problem, and started seeing a psychologist. At first this didn't work out, but I went back a few weeks after because the relationship was now seriously in danger. The psychologist sent me to another institute to get analyzed and treated. It would take months for me to actually be enrolled due to the institutes bureaucratic administration, months of precious time I could have used getting better. In the meantime, the relationship had it's ups and downs, but the tantrums were on the rise.

I then, after a year and 8 months, decided I didn't know how to be a father because I was scared of my symptoms and behavior, knowing her wish was to have children. I dumped her without thinking it through. A week later she let me back in and we went on for another two months, after which I did the same thing again. I freaked out after some argument we had and decided I was a broken person and wasn't able to provide the future she wanted. Again, this was sort of a fuzzy-thought, impulsive action, not contemplated beforehand.

After two weeks, she let me back in. We went on for a while, and then one night she asked me if I would never leave her, and I started asking questions in return like 'well how do you want to do this, and that' and so on, instead of just replying with a yes (which was what I really wanted, I just need so much reinforcement that there's a plan for us, where she's much more likely to take life as it comes, i.e. I'm more in need of control). After that happened she decided the next day that she couldn't be with me and that I could always call her if I was really down but that we shouldn't see each other too much for a while.

I felt really bad, was physically and mentally a wreck from the heartbreak. We had a long phone call on a Wednesday, and in the end she drove to my place and we spent the night and a part of the day. During this, she helped me confront my mother, who had also been interfering in our relationship, and for that matter had always interfered in everyone's business, always having a judgment ready, etc. I wrote a long e-mail, telling her I was through with her behavior, that she might feel happy the way she is but that I'm trying to help myself and change, and that she seriously needed to back off. My ex supplied the coherence and I supplied the story. After this I had to work and my ex went home, we had agreed not to see each other for a while but that I could still call like we had said before.

The Thursday and Friday were hell, I missed my ex like I've never missed anyone before, probably also a bit due to the fear of abandonment.

The Saturday after, I did another really BPD-ish thing: I went to a party in a really unstable emotional state and kissed another woman there, went home with her (already starting to think I was making a big mistake) but didn't have sex. I told my ex what happened the next day, and she told me that before I had told her what I had done she was planning a birthday holiday for us to go on together, that she had hoped to get back together with me after things had settled down a bit. Once again, I could only KICK MYSELF.

I had intensely hurt her, and had caused a situation that intensely hurt me too. It hurt so much, that my emotion just shut off completely. I tried to hold her and talk to her but she said everything I said sounded fake. I tried and tried but could not get to my emotions. Then it turned into an argument, and I walked out on her, to the train station. When in the train, she called me, asking if I could come back, on the condition that I would try harder to get to my feelings and be real to her. So I agreed, and went back, but there were no more trains to her place. She then picked me up at 02:00 in the night while she had to work in the morning. I think, dear readers, you can feel this one coming: I still couldn't reach my feelings that night. When we woke up, I immediately felt everything, and tried to grab her arm when she got up out of bed but she pulled loose and went straight for the shower, so I followed her, trying to hug her, pleading her to listen to me, but she didn't react so I went home.

We didn't speak for a month after that. In this month I have suffered a great deal because of my tendency to fear abandonment (BPD-trait). I texted her, called her, mailed her, but no reaction, until I stopped sending things, then she suddenly sent me a text message one morning when I was at a friends place and she had come back from some party, how she could look back on the relationship a bit positive for the first time. I replied that I was glad to hear that, and if she was ok. She relpied she was fine, and how I was doing. So I replied that I was still very sad and thought about her every minute of the day (which was true). I didn't notice her 2 replies to that until 3 hours later, the first: 'do you want me back or something?', the second: 'never mind, you don't seem to care about sending me something back, but it really doesn't matter anyway'.

Obviously she had been having a weak moment, I would much later learn why (will write it later). Upon reading the messages, I immediately phoned her, and it was a conversation that went from crying and placing blame on her part (not so strange after what I had done to her) and crying and trying to be humble on my part to us reminiscing about past times to us making a deal that we would talk in real life later and that I would text her about that the next day.

First she said she wanted to talk to me only after some weeks had passed, so she could get over me a little bit and look at things more clearly. But the next day she called me at work and asked me if I would like to watch some tv series on my birthday, which would then still be a good month away, this was in a much friendlier tone. I said yes, she told me not to have expectations, I told her I did, she didn't seem to mind.

The next day I briefly felt strange and sent a text saying that if she wanted me to let go I could maybe do that now and that things would be alright. She replied after that that she didn't want to see me anymore on my b'day because I had once again been setting the terms on things and she had wanted me to not let go and fight for her.

The week after this, I tried everything to see her, and eventually I thought well it's not working (I was doing bad, not eating or sleeping, losing weight fast..) so I will try to just see her to say goodbye normally. Of course there was an underlying feeling of hope that maybe something would change for the better when I would be standing in front of her after all this time. She invited me to say goodbye, and I went to her place. For two hours we sat there, her pouring all her anger over me and telling me all the reasons she didn't want to be with me and how she had felt better in the weeks she was ignoring me. She went to a little bit milder tone, and told me that (here it is) the night she had sent me the first text when she had come back from a party, she had kissed another guy too, and that that had probably triggered her missing me all of a sudden. After some chitchat, she kissed me, really totally out of the blue, and we ended up having sex, I had to work but came back after, we spent a few days together.

This was about one month ago. From that day on we have seen each other regularly, and I am really doing my very best to change. Therapy isn't going as planned, but that's because of the institute, the internal communication there isn't very good and things take ages to arrange. I do have a feeling of stronger control over my emotions, for the first time in my life I feel like having brakes.

The problem is, the brakes sometimes still malfunction. There have been a few incidents where I could not see what she meant when she was trying to show me I was doing something that made her insecure. I was always able to keep myself from going too crazy and hug and kiss her and try to stay calm, until two days ago. We had had an amazing weekend, totally love and peace, like it was in the beginning. She even had the courage to take me to see her bed-laden grandmother who I thought I'd never see again, and her grandmother told me she thought she would never see me again (she was always very fond of me, and I am very fond of her, she's really sweet).

An amazing weekend it was. Monday evening she phones me, sounded ok at first, talked a bit about how my grandfather had asked me for her number so he could call her, which she found funny. But then I heard a shiver in her voice, asking me why my facebook relationship status wasn't visible to her. She had removed me from facebook, and still hasn't added me because she's scared of seeing messages from other women, that in reality aren't there but Also, she had asked me to change my single status back to relationship. I guess that's how insecure I've made her. So I looked, and saw that I could simply see it there, not realizing it's visibility was set to friends only. So I said, well must be some kind of facebook error. Then she started getting upset, and said she just wanted me to fix it. I tried to look at other things and then came to the visibility setting. I told her it was on friends only. She agitatedly asked why, and I said that I had everything on friends only, for privacy. She said I still didn't understand her insecure feelings and reactions to things, and that she just wanted it to be visible to everyone. She then said I'm going to hang up now, sounding sad and tired. I was a bit flabberghasted and didn't know what to say. She then said angered, 'don't you have anything to say? I'm hanging up' and she hung up.

I called her back and told her I just didn't understand wat the problem was at first, and she told me I never understood her, and that she had already been on the crossreads and was very close to breaking everything off again because I wasn't there for her, and (she had said this before) that if I wanted her back I should expect at least a few months of her being unreasonable instead of me, because that's how insecure I made her and that I had to make that better by just being there and putting her on a pedestal, like she had put me before.

This is where my brakes failed, because instead of telling her everything would be alright and that I had already changed the status for everyone to see, I let a tiny nibble of frustration surface, which soon turned my whole behavior around to what I thought up to that point to have conquered. I started the yelling, manipulating and belittling. We really fell out and after I tried to get the conversation a bit back to baseline but she wouldn't have it. She had told me she had to wake up and see that I wasn't going to change and that I said I was doing my best as if I wasn't prepared to do even more. That she thought this argument had been an example of that, that I didn't love her because I wouldn't treat her that way if I did. I told her I really am doing my best, that this was a slip up, that things had been going really smooth compared to before for the last few weeks and that improving yourself never goes straight to the finish-line but that there will be a few setbacks along the way. She agreed but said she had been waiting for me to change for two years and was tired of the discussions and the arguments and wanted to be left alone and get over this. I felt cornered, didn't know what to say, said something along the lines of have it your way and we hung up.

Yesterday she called me in the afternoon, in her lunchbreak. I missed the call but immediately called back, 4 times to no avail. I called her in the evening, in my break (I work evenings), she picked up. I asked her 'you called this afternoon?', she said yes but why didn't you call back? I said I did, 4 times. Apparently a network error. Didn't cause any arguments, and she sounded a bit distanced but otherwise alright. We were silent for 5 seconds and then I confessed to her that I felt really bad about what happened, that I hurt her with it again and that I had disappointed myself and that it had scared me because I thought I was a bit further along than this. She said she knew and she explained really relaxed how she didn't think she could trust me if I would keep saying I would get better, only to throw a tantrum (even though this was no. 1 'real tantrum' after we started seeing each other again).

Basically, I told her I wanted to come yesterday night after work, so we could talk face to face instead of through the phone, the reception of which had caused translation errors more than once, and that I would make this better no matter what and that I would keep working at it and eventually things would be right between us again. She told me she didn't want to talk to me and she didn't want me to come. I had to work again so I told her I'd call her later.

Later that night, I called her again, and we had a little fuss, and she basically told me 'well if you would've really wanted to talk this over you would've come here after work, but you haven't, which is typical, it always has to suit your plan..', and so on. I told her that was ridiculous because she had told me in every way that she did not want to see me. She replied by saying that I should know her by now and that I should have decided to really go for it against all odds for once but that it didn't matter anymore. I told her I would come tonight, or tomorrow night. She told me it wouldn't matter because it wouldn't be my idea anymore (i.e. she had to suggest me coming against all odds), so I told her that every time she says she doesn't want me to do something, she says afterward she wanted it, and that I'll be there tonight or tomorrow night.

So this is where I stand now. Firmly believing I can conquer this, partially by teaching myself to keep my cool, which I have partially succeeded at, the only emotion I couldn't seem to slow down yet Monday night was irritation/frustration. Which turns out is the one thing I'll need to do in order to handle her insecurity and the behavior it brings.

I am going to her place tonight, I'm feeling tense right now, I hope for the reconciliation we always have once we can really talk and hug each other, but also know I can expect her to simply take her house keys back and send me home, resulting in me not seeing her for months and maybe forever.

I know I've become a lot better than before in a mere two month period simply by giving it conscious effort and working to modify my reactions and identify my emotions before I act, she knows it too. I am confident that things will get better yet, maybe not along a linear path and it will take a while, but have certainly made a giant change in my way of handling things and emotions. The thing is, she had said she's so close to the edge that I really have no space to err. And of course Monday night was the error.

So I hope I may once again beat all odds tonight and look forward to better days together, although I understand the chance is slim after everything that has happened and all the chances she's given me over the months. Also, I have doubts that what I'm doing by reeling her in is fair to her, am I wasting her time, making her wait for me getting better? Am I putting her through too much pain even though I'm really confident? She is going to be 30 years old next year. It just seems that every time I decide to back off, she tells me I shouldn't have done that, and to fight for her.

Wish me luck..





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