*I will always make time for you *I love you *I care about you *You can talk to me about anything *You can always come to me for any reason *What we talk about stays between us *Is there something I can do for you right now? *Do you want to talk about your feelings? *I can hear how sad you’re feeling, so how can I help you to feel better? *What do you need right now?
I was thinking, and this popped in my head so I wrote it down. This time last year I had my suicide planned out. I had it planned even before then. And I told the people closest to me what my plan was. Some people replied, and some didn’t. I didn’t need a reply…I was just being informative.
I know that no one knows what to say when put on the spot like that. I was venting to a friend a month or so ago and she asked me “Well, what did you expect people to say?” I was perplexed. I said “Honestly, I don’t know. I didn’t want people to beg and plead with me to stay. I was just giving a heads up. But some people responded and what they chose to say in the moment really hurt me.” She told me “People don’t know what to say so you can’t get upset at what they do say when you drop something like this in their lap.”
I get it. It’s about a year and a half since I dropped the metaphorical bomb in certain people’s laps. And I won’t lie. I still struggle with certain responses and am turning to my faith to work through the hurt that I still feel. Only time will tell about that.
However, like I said, I was thinking…”What WOULD I want someone to say to me if I were in that situation again?” That’s when I came up with the sentences above. Some may seem redundant but they aren’t. We don’t want you to beg and plead. We don’t want silence as though our feelings are not valid. We don’t want you to ignore our “plan” and focus on the time we have until we pull the plug. We don’t really want to die. We want the hurt to stop. WE WANT EMPATHY. WE WANT SUPPORT. WE WANT TO NOT FEEL ALONE.
PLEASE SHARE this if you think it may help someone. And feel free to add a statement that you think a suicidal person would want to hear. Thanks for reading.
If you have BPD or you know someone who does, you probably know how difficult it can be to find the right treatment. Depending on what country you are in, you may have tried out a handful of doctors and/or therapists before finding one that fit your needs, or you may still be looking; some places may put you on a waiting list for treatment, or assign you to a mental health crisis team; some places may not help you at all because you are either too much of a risk, or not rich enough. Navigating the healthcare systems alone could make you go mad.
The sad truth is, the great majority of professionals have little to no knowledge of Borderline Personality Disorder. This is NOT a lack of experience, because with older reports claiming 1-2% and more recent studies claiming up to 5 or 6% of the population qualifying for a BPD diagnosis, these professionals have undoubtedly been approached by patients needing care at some point in their career.
Yet this population goes widely untreated or inadequately treated, resulting in a 10% suicide rate, a jaw-dropping number. A quick Google search with give you a good idea why these people are neglected: BPD patients are labeled as “manipulative,” “attention-seeking,” difficult or impossible to treat, and even dangerous. Medical professionals have a history of avoiding even just revealing the diagnosis to their patients, fearing the emotional and behavioral reactions they associate with the borderline individual.
Do they have something to fear? Maybe. The prognosis hasn’t been great since the disorder was officially observed and categorized in the 1930s. A Google search will show more than the stigma of BPD; it will show countless articles and professionals claiming there is no “cure” or medical treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder. The more updated resources will tell you that your best best is a combination of therapy and medication. If you’re really doing your research, you might hear about medications like Prozac, Wellbutrin, Olanzapine, Haloperidol, Risperidol, Lamictal, or other antidepressants, antipsychotics, and antiepileptics. In the therapy department you will hear about Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy. DBT, developed by Marsha Linehan, is the recommended therapeutic approach designed specifically for people with the BPD diagnosis. Few of your initial searches, however, will offer much hope that borderline is something you can recover from to the point of living a functional, happy, and rewarding life. Few will tell you it could be possible to manage your symptoms and change your thought habits to become self-confident, self-forgiving, self-loving, and self-controlled.
That’s why I started this business. When I finally found and began my recovery process, I reached out to the online community for support. What I discovered was a huge population of men and women just like me who were searching and failing to find the help they needed to change their lives. They had tried therapy, medications, treatment programs, specialists, courses, self-help books…. But their lives were still plagued with terrible fears of abandonment, frequent self-injury, and emotional distress. Seeing the doctor or therapist once a week or once a month wasn’t enough; they needed real-time support from people that cared and empathized with their experiences, and they needed someone to teach them when and how to use the tools they had learned over their lifetimes of searching for the solution.
I had a unique ability to provide them a service they weren’t getting elsewhere. With my background and knowledge in research and psychology, I was well-educated in the workings of mental health services and clinical empirical research. Even more importantly, I had my own story, my years of suffering and my years of recovery, to share and encourage with people to keep them going and let them know they’re not alone.
I quickly discovered what I call my purpose in life, to help people with this illness. I suffered for a reason, so I can in turn comfort others who suffer, and offer them the hope and skills I learned after finding the right treatment approach for myself. Everyone is different, not everything works the same for everybody, but I help my clients advocate for themselves in their interactions with mental health professionals and the rest of the world, in a way that creates the environment best suited for their success in their recovery goals.
If you know you need something more than what you’re doing already to recover from BPD, you can call or message me any time on social media or by email. We can talk about what’s going on in your life and what you want to change. You don’t have to suffer forever. There is hope if you are willing to do the work and not give up until you get the results. At BPD Balance, we are with you every step of the way.