Romantic Relationships and Mental Illness

We went to the theater last night with a friend of my mom’s from our old church. Her daughter had disordered eating and still struggles with severe Borderline Personality Disorder. She tried living on her own once and became non-functional. She almost died. So, her mom said she had to live at home unless she got married. She is 38 and marrying a not-previously-married doctor. There IS hope.

I asked my mom’s friend about her daughter’s relationship. I said, I know statistically, there are plenty of people living with their parents, but the situation is a little different when you still live with your parents because you’re mentally ill. She said, if her daughter can find someone, I can. In fact (I can’t believe she said this! – though, I could see my mom admitting this to someone else), she said she never thought her daughter would get married. She is picky and has many bad habits (aka BPD makes her tough to live with). She said the fiancé is non-judgmental and things were revealed over time like he didn’t learn she lived at home for a while because she met him for dates. He didn’t learn about her impulsive, self-destructive spending sprees until he asked her to share the cost of a weekend trip out of town and she didn’t have a few hundred dollars saved, even though she works full time and doesn’t pay rent. So, he helped her make a budget. It worked. Idk about current SIB, etc., but I’d bet $ that she has scars, just bc it is part of the diagnostic criteria for BPD.

Buffy_dawn cuts

 

Anyway, it makes me think there is hope!  Even more than feeling embarrassed about living at home, I worry I am too damaged for anyone to want, but she was hospitalized way more than me, used many more behaviors, and is older than I am. Her behaviors are more likely to negatively affect others, such as taking a joint credit card and spending thousands of dollars. Of course there are ways around that like not creating any joint bank accounts. She must have other behaviors and/or interpersonal issues based on her diagnosis, but Idk specifics. Maybe she is better now, but she still used behaviors earlier in their relationship. Additionally, they’re having a small wedding because they don’t want to stress her out and she only has 2 friends (sounds familiar!). So, clearly, she is not completely better.

Sometimes I feel like I have to be healthy before starting any relationship. That part of why I pull away when someone gets interested. I’m doing them a favor! At the same time, if I wait to be “normal” I might never have the chance to find someone because I’ll be waiting forever.

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Don’t Know HOW to Talk

WHAT IS NORMAL CONVERSATION?!? Is ANY of the following socially acceptable? The red text is my own additional thoughts. I wouldn’t send anything in red.

This is what I want to send to Ginny:

Barb made me laugh this afternoon. I don’t want her to leave.

 
Is Wednesday lunch still a thing? Are still we friends? Where we ever friends? Or am I just a pitiable bur on your skin? Would you care if I was no longer in your life? Most of the people we see daily won’t be a fixture in our life 10 years from now. Am I a passing ornament or do you like me as a human being? Would something be missing from your life if I was not in it. Or am I not supposed to ask stuff like that? I’m probably not supposed to ask things like that. I am confused. I’d greatly appreciate it if you’d bear with me through the ensuing awkwardness. But if you don’t want to, can you tell me so I stop trying?
Elizabeth (my boss) and Danielle (the new BCBA) are mad at me (because I talked about disapproving of Danielle’s behavior plan for John to other people). I don’t know how to address it. I’m planning on going with: pretend things are normal, until they feel normal again. I’m worried I hurt Danielle, but I don’t want to make things worse by talking. I have a tendency to do that.
 
I don’t even really want the job (Barb is FINALLY leaving. My boss is just giving me her position, bur I have less than 3 weeks notice and I don’t even know what my boss wants me to teach! Actually, now I know she wants me to teach Science and History. That takes a lot of planning.). It scares me too much. I don’t think I will be good at it and I don’t want the extra work. I thought I should take it so I can be one rung less separated from the people I eat lunch with. I am the only BA in the conference room now. I know others take it badly that I eat lunch on Wednesdays with you, Elizabeth (my boss), Danielle (the new BCBA), Iris (the O.T. therapist), and Claire (the BCaBA).

Let Me Rescind that Invitation!!

I suggested to someone that we go get coffee. What the hell?! I never initiate. I suddenly feel 100x more stupid, fat, ugly, lazy, and bad than I usually feel.paralyzed by feelings

 

It will be obvious that…  verge of nervous breakdown What did I do?! Ugh, no one should like me!

I’m afraid he is going to think: worst-person-april

 

On the off-chance he does like me a meaningful relationship requires me to let go of my eating disorder, talking about feelings in real life, and not isolate myself.nightmare

 

On one hand, I don’t think I’m ready for a relationship. On the other hand, if I never try, I’ll never get better at talking about feelings and leaving the house.

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Welcome Back to the Roller Coaster from Hell

Yesterday was not so great. I felt like I was thrown back 7 or 8 years to paralyzing fear, emotional abuse, scarring self-injury, and suicide attempts.

Today is a wash so far. I didn’t get out of bed until 5 pm.

I’m ignoring people again (I know I need to reply to some of you); I feel guilty. When I feel any negative emotion I withdraw. I realized the reason I’m not in a relationship isn’t a lack of interest or ugliness, it is because I push people away.

I also realized in order to give a relationship a chance, I need to let go of my eating disorder. The idea scared the hell out of me and I’m not so sure I’m ready to do that.

Will I be ready to let go at 114 lbs? I doubt it. I know from experience once I reach x weight, the acceptable goal weight lowers again.

Anger and sadness swirl in my heart, but right now they’re veiled by exhaustion-fueled apathy.

Ha, that reminds me, yesterday my mom said, “Are you going to be some weird hermit?” …Um…maybe, but when she asked the question I just spent a week with family and a night with high school friends.

Also, 1 hour until my law school grades are posted!