I want to preface this post in saying not all people with BPD experience the same things. Everyone is different and this is just the same for people with BPD. I should also say that as a Carer for someone with BPD my interpretations of what is going on for my daughter are just that..my interpretation.
My daughter has been traveling along relatively well of late though her life fe has been incredibly hectic and over the past few weeks it has become evident to me that she is spiraling down again. She admitted to self harming again (of which I kind of thought may have been the case) and I have tried very hard to see this as an unhealthy coping mechanism that I don’t like but have to accept that it is hers and just like a smoker who grabs a cigarette when their stressed, she reaches for a blade. I have to trust she will seek help if she cuts too deep and in all fairness she has always done that.
On top of her busy study and work life she chooses to go out with friends clubbing as well. Personally I think that is not the smartest choice. When she’s so tired and unwell mentally I struggle to see how staying out, drinking all night is really looking after yourself.
So when she arrived home at 5.30 am the other morning as I was just getting up to get ready for work, an argument ensued.
WHY WAS THIS WRONG?
I was sleep deprived because I lay awake half the night worrying about her, causing me me to over think things and castastophise my worries
I was frustrated that she doesn’t take my advise in how I think she should be looking after herself
She was not sober
WHAT I LEARNT
Her black and white thinking (commonly known as splitting) causes the argument to be 10 times worse.
When I am angry I accuse her of things that have little or any justification.
I really to need to accept what she says as truth….I have no reason to think she is lying to me.
Often in an argument we are so heated we think there should be winners and losers, but this is seldom the case, and it is better to hear and acknowledge the emotions the other person is feeling rather than thinking you have to be right and they are wrong.
In continuing with the right and wrong mindset all I am doing is affirming her splitting. Without demonstrating the grey in between.
*Note to self… do not try to express my opinions to my daughter when I am tired and anxious and she is drunk. WAIT, REFLECT AND PREPARE. Ensure a calm and neutral environment before pursuing what is hoped to be a calm and rational discussion.