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Old 09-05-2009, 02:59 PM #1
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Default I need to get this out

I have been sitting with this for a couple of weeks now, without any therapeutic support (one is MIA and the other is on vacation) and I need to get it out before it consumes me entirely.

I have been diagnosed with BPD and AvPD on separate occasions. I have read a lot about both of these, trying to understand what the diagnoses mean, and trying to see how they fit me. I do have a hard time socially, but not because I fear ridicule. And I do avoid a lot of social opportunities. I often attribute this to low self-esteem and lurking depression.

As for the BPD, that was first pegged to my forehead three and a half years ago when I decompensated and ended up in the short stay unit a couple of times. The behaviours that I exhibited when 'in extremis' fit the DSM list pretty well. But I have never had a problem with anger, and I do not have unstable relationships. And under normal circumstances I don't exhibit the other behaviours.

Getting to why this is posted in this forum, in reading about those two PD's I of course encountered some information about SPD. For a while now I have been thinking maybe the right label would be BPD with SPD features. (if there is such a thing!) But recently I read the 'Self-in-Exile' page referred to in another thread here. It all sounded painfully familiar. I then got a copy of the Disorders of the Self book in which SPD is discussed at length, form the "Masterson" perspective. I had it sent halfway across the country from a university library.

So, now I have found a complete description of my internal life. In black and white, in a book. Beginnning with the conditions in whch I was raised, and going through pretty well all of my emotional development, and on into an entire adult life trying to feel connnected, being afraid of intimacy and wanting to die so many times because of the conflict between those two. Even the way I struggle in therapy is described, including the fact that my therapist is usually a lifeline for me, the only semblance of a real connection I can handle.

I know it is not a good idea to self-diagnose, but I also know that no-one knows my life, my emotions, my struggle as well as I do. Except apparently the authors of this book. And in the end it is not about getting the label right. It is about feeling like I have finally found the reason why, in spite of trying and trying and trying to fix myself by any means I could think of (including exiling myself to a BUddhist monastery for three years), nothing has ever shifted. I remain as alone as ever, and in as much pain as ever. I have a myriad of defenses against awareness of that pain. The strongest of which has always been to just blame myself. There's something wrong with me, or I'm lazy, or a coward or some kind of grinch or whatever.

Today I know that my life fits a pattern that others have experienced, that it is not my fault. I suppose there is some measure of relief in this, but mostly it is very heartbreaking. And somehow frightening, as it seems I have a long long road ahead of me. And it really is a huge disaster that the therapist I had begun to trust has been torn away from me. And I don't know how to begin to talk to any of the three non-professional people I have tenuous connections to about this. I keep ending up locked in my room with the lights out, curled up on the bed, waiting for help to arrive. I needed to get this out somewhere where someone might understand. Sorry it's such a long post. I hope it makes sense.
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Old 09-05-2009, 06:10 PM #2
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Default Re: I need to get this out

(((((ripley))))))

isn't it a relief when we find something that just speaks to us on such a personal level so well? i agree that you shouldn't self-diagnose, but i relate very strongly to having found out about certain conditions and having felt pure relief that other ppl could understand my pain.

you seem to have a fair amount of insight into your pattern of behavior - want intimacy, scared to get it, self harm through self-blame, shut yourself away from the world until you're desperate and need someone to be a lifeline and reach out to you.

yes, it may well be a long road ahead of you. but you have also been in a monastery for 3 years!! to me, that shows you have the patience, wisdom and strength to grow and get through this. and i also feel that, with appropriate support, that you should start reaping benefits a lot earlier than 3 years time. already you've identified your relief in finding this, and are starting to let go of some of your self-blame.

when is your therapist back from holiday? you can always post here for support.

i was also wondering if maybe a support group of sorts would be useful for you? it would be a supportive environment in which you would meet other ppl, but also be allowed to make 'mistakes' and such without fear of repercussion. and, it would be something you had to commit to, so you could start to break the pattern of isolation you put yourself through.
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Old 09-05-2009, 06:29 PM #3
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Default Re: I need to get this out

Thanks deliquesce,

I see my my replacement therapist on Sept 17th. Seems like a long way off. I do have a support group that I attend, but it is around eating disorders, so I wouldn't feel comfortable talking about this stuff. But I can at least talk in general terms about how I am doing. It meets on Mondays, so again a bit of a gap due to labour day.
I think I need to stop thinking about this and find ways to distract myself. If I can find the energy to leave the house that is...
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Old 09-05-2009, 08:44 PM #4
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Default Re: I need to get this out

do you have a garden? i've found that at least sitting in the sun is better than sitting on my bed.
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Old 09-06-2009, 03:49 AM #5
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I also have looked at schizoid pretty closely. Check out "Psychotherapy of the Schizoid Process" by Gary Yontef. It's a PDF file online and is a lecture he gave @ "99. Good luck. Don't wait to reach out until there is only one tenuous line to connect with the rest of us.
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Old 09-06-2009, 10:42 AM #6
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Default Re: I need to get this out

Thanks ratanddragon

I did read that article. All I can say is "Yes, that is me" At least I know what the problem has always been now. It is pretty hard to solve a problem when one does not know what it is. Not for lack of trying though...I feel very sad for myself when I think about how long and how hard I have fought against this invisible enemy. It seems I am not a bad, failed human being after all. Just a badly hurt and damaged one. Here's to finding the help I need to heal.
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Old 09-06-2009, 01:57 PM #7
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Default Re: I need to get this out

Thanks again to the two who responded. I felt energetic enough to do some overdue cleaning this afternoon. And now I am going for a walk in the park. It is good to feel listened to.
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Old 09-06-2009, 04:45 PM #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ripley View Post
Thanks again to the two who responded. I felt energetic enough to do some overdue cleaning this afternoon. And now I am going for a walk in the park. It is good to feel listened to.
Look at it this way, if you actually are in the grips of a PD, it was a childhood coping mechanism that has outlived its usefulness and has run amok. You needed it at one time. I don't know where I fit on this stuff either, but a lot of Masterson and the "Self in Exile" patterns make sense to me viscerally.
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Old 10-23-2009, 07:06 PM #9
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Default Re: I need to get this out

Hello Ripley. I looked for the Self in Exile page and couldn't find it.

I don't think that having Schizoid P/D is so bad (but of course a schizoid would feel this way!). Just because we tend to be loners and disdainful of phony social games does not make us bad people. Indeed, I think that schizoids are really just radically authentic people who have a talent for 'being real' in a plastic society that fears honesty.

Schizoids don't have many close relationships (face-to-face anyway), but they are intensely loyal and 'deep' with the few they do manage to have.

Schizoids have a marked tendency to isolate, so watch that. I think of it as 'insolating' because I go deep within myself for long periods of time. I think that this site is perfect for schizoid people who desire 'close' yet 'safely distant' relationships. For example, if I have more than 3 physical friends in my life at any one time, I feel overwhelmed and 'trapped' in too many relationships. This site offers me a way to meet a number of really cool people (I'm still new here) and to interact with them in a distant but very deep way. I can be myself here (so far) and be accepted by people I will most likely never meet but will still grow to be fond of and concerned about.

I feel like I can be myself here and have brief but authentic and meaningful interactions with others,

Boy, aren't I talky here. Anyways, Hello. Mike
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Old 10-24-2009, 11:19 AM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cypher View Post
Hello Ripley. I looked for the Self in Exile page and couldn't find it.

I don't think that having Schizoid P/D is so bad (but of course a schizoid would feel this way!). Just because we tend to be loners and disdainful of phony social games does not make us bad people. Indeed, I think that schizoids are really just radically authentic people who have a talent for 'being real' in a plastic society that fears honesty.

Schizoids don't have many close relationships (face-to-face anyway), but they are intensely loyal and 'deep' with the few they do manage to have.

Schizoids have a marked tendency to isolate, so watch that. I think of it as 'insolating' because I go deep within myself for long periods of time. I think that this site is perfect for schizoid people who desire 'close' yet 'safely distant' relationships. For example, if I have more than 3 physical friends in my life at any one time, I feel overwhelmed and 'trapped' in too many relationships. This site offers me a way to meet a number of really cool people (I'm still new here) and to interact with them in a distant but very deep way. I can be myself here (so far) and be accepted by people I will most likely never meet but will still grow to be fond of and concerned about.

I feel like I can be myself here and have brief but authentic and meaningful interactions with others,

Boy, aren't I talky here. Anyways, Hello. Mike
The Self in Exile site is still there. I have it bookmarked and just checked. Went through something similar and couldn't find it a few months ago. Then I was able to access it a page at a time using Google's cache. The only thing missing was the quadrant diagram. Hope this helps.
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