“It's hard being in a relationship with someone who suffers from BPD. having relationships with someone who has BPD—makes stories of intact relationships all the desperate things I try to do to stop them from leaving me. At the very core of BPD is an all-encompassing fear of abandonment real or How do I heal after ending a relationship with a person who has BPD?. Romantic relationships with someone who is suffering from However, for the BPD sufferer, there are some ways to end this cycle of behavior.
Prior to her diagnosis, her boyfriend, Thomas, used to blame himself for her hot and cold behavior. Although each person has their own unique experience, these are some common thought patterns people with BPD tend to have: I must be loved by all the important people in my life at all times or else I am worthless. Nobody cares about me as much as I care about them, so I always lose everyone I care about—despite the desperate things I try to do to stop them from leaving me. If someone treats me badly, then I become bad.
When I am alone, I become nobody and nothing. These thoughts may be completely at odds with your own perception of your partner, but it is imperative to understand that for them, they are very real, and can drive them toward extreme and seemingly irrational behavior.
Navigating through this emotional minefield can be difficult and painful for both of you, but knowing that their thoughts and behaviors are the product of intensely powerful perceptional distortions deeply rooted in their mental health disorder, rather than a reflection of your own shortcomings, can bring some comfort.
For Thomas, educating himself about BPD helped him move from self-blame to empathy and compassion: There are a lot of nuances, complexities, and lines to be read through with BPD, but mostly I see Borderline Personality Disorder as an illness about pain, fear, and struggling to cope with all of that.
But the common conception is just [that they are] crazy, which is an extraordinarily damaging misconception to those who suffer from it. For relationships to have a chance of succeeding, this is a critical piece: I can never be happy again. No one will ever love me.
How BPD Makes a Breakup Feel Like the End of the World | The Mighty
I was too sedated at that point to respond to the paramedic, but I wanted to tell her I do care about people; in fact, I care too much about other people, and that is exactly why I ended up in the back of that ambulance. I just thought no one cared about me. My time at the psychiatric hospital following the attempt was actually a turning point for me. It was a necessary wake-up call. I finally got the help I desperately needed.
I deserved to live. I deserved to be happy. I deserved to be with someone who treated me with love and respect. If you ever cared about someone, you would never treat them with such disrespect and cruelty. It takes time, therapy, the right medication and a lot of hard work. So to those with BPD going through a breakup that feels like the end of the world: If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.
Head here for a list of crisis centers around the world. We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here. There is also the possibility of counter-lawsuits from the abandoned party against which you may have to defend yourself.
Since laws vary from state to state, and country to country, and you may find conflicting advice from friends and family over these laws, give full weight to your lawyer's advice. Document as fully as you can the abusive actions of your partner!
Keep a diary of strange behavior. This will be valuable evidence in case authorities "do not believe you" or if the person with BPD makes false accusations or blames you for the breakup.
Given that BPD behavior is more commonly witnessed by the partner, while the person with BPD may act normally in front of others, you may need backup to your claims of abusive behaviors as others may not believe you. You may also find that referring to your documentation strengthens your resolve to leave.
Take all your personal posessions with you when you leave You do not want to be "held hostage" to personal items that you may want to retrieve later; you may even find them missing or destroyed.
Once again, consult a lawyer over the legal ramifications of abandoning or taking mutual property. Instead of taking everything at once, you may decide to move individual items one at a time, especially personal items, or those useful in an independent living situation or "sudden exit".
Be careful, however, not to tip off your partner of your intention of leaving by removing everything at once, or obvious items that suggest you are leaving.
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Do not prematurely tell the person with BPD that you are leaving! It will backfire as a threat due, once again, to the sometimes extreme reactions of the disorder. Because people with BPD tend to "act out" their disorder more around people they know, you will be inhibiting that behavior by having strangers around you.
Friends may volunteer their help, but you are better off paying for a moving company to aid you -- this not only makes the move happen quickly, it also furnishes strangers who can witness any bad reactions. A BPD person caught off-guard, in the presence of strangers, and during a sudden, quickly-occurring move, is safer than a BPD person who has had time to prepare their response!
Let both your workplace AND the police know about your impending departure ahead of time. As abandoned BPDs may start a "smear" campaign against you -- they may even call the police on YOU -- this helps to short-circuit that attempt.
Have your documentation of the abusive behavior at hand. Police may be puzzled why you are still in the abusive situation, and think you simply need an escort back to the premises to pick up your stuff, so make them very aware that the real danger with BPD is not so much in the staying, but the act of leaving!
Have them arrive shortly before the movers to either witness as strangers, or to talk to the BPD partner and warn them about doing anything rash. Remember, as a taxpayer, you have the right to ask for a police escort at any time.
If they are having an affair, DO NOT have an affair yourself, as you may find the reaction much greater than you anticipated especially from one who is indulging in the same behavior! Likewise, you may find any distrust of you turned into material for a "smear" campaign as listed above. Due to the nature of BPD, you may be "hoovered" at the time of leaving or afterwards. This means your partner will suddenly be on their best behavior in an attempt to suck you back into the relationship.
Keep in mind the cycle of their behavior; even when things return to "good", they will also return to "bad", and the fear of abandonment may make the "bad" even worse when it returns!
To guard against the "hoover", you may want to NOT leave a forwarding address or phone number.7 Ways a Relationship with a Narcissist or Borderline Ends
If you MUST do so, leave the number of a "neutral" third party, such as your lawyer or a mutual friend who can screen what is a reasonable and what is an abusive request.
Concentrate on the "right now" Instead of letting all the preparation overwhelm you, make a list, and follow it one step at a time. Unless there is the real threat of physical violence, you have all the time you need to prepare.
Always be aware that the time shortly before and after leaving may be the most dangerous period of all. As people with BPD are very sensitive to being abandoned, they may increase their strange or abusive behavior beforehand or afterwards, and even exhibit symptoms you have not yet seen, such as suicidal gestures or threats against your person or belongings.
These are specific actions or items to consider or do as you move out: Once again, take everything you rightfully own with you. Even if the person with BPD expresses a desire for you to leave, they may still latch upon your remaining possessions as a "hostage" in an attempt to keep you in contact.
Or, they may rage against the departure and destroy or throw away any item that reminds them of you.
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Since some people with BPD have trouble "remembering how they feel" about other people, they may show a strong unwillingness to part with items that remind them of their partner. Even people with BPD who want you to leave may be tense or, possibly, temporarily psychotic as you pack. If you can, pack and move when they are not present. If you are unsure whether they will be present or not, have strangers on hand as a means of keeping the BPD in check people with BPD who cannot control their rages in front of you may sometimes show remarkable restraint in the presence of strangers.
Once again, as a citizen you have the right to request a police escort in or out of a potentially abusive situation -- use it!
Do not linger after packing or make much of your going. This may only increase the stress of the BPD partner and thereby cause a rage or short psychotic episode. It will not do your stress any good either. As noted before, you may want to avoid leaving your new address or even phone number behind with the BPD partner. This lessens the chance of their playing upon your own ambivalence about the move and courting you back into the abusive relationship, or of venting their anger on you later.
If you must stay in contact, call them from a safe place, or leave a third party's phone number behind as the mediator. Do not meet alone, either, if you must, but have an outside observer, preferably a stranger-to-the-BPD, on hand. Those with shared children may still need to maintain some contact.
In this situation, keep the conversations strictly on the topic of the children, and if the former partner starts getting personal about your relationship, cut the conversation short. The same advice goes for e-mail; if it gets personal, send a short, concise message back, then delete the offending e-mail.