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My name is Kate Beveridge, and I am a new blogger for the "More than Borderline" blog. I’m excited to share my personal story of living with borderline personality disorder (BPD) and tips for how to cope with the illness.
One of the most fascinating parts of dissociative identity disorder (DID) to people who don’t live with it on a daily basis is the concept of alters. Under the internal family system (IFS) theory, we all have parts of our personality that make us tick. While we may have one part that wants to eat a slice of cake, we might have another part that tells us to skip the empty calories. This isn’t so far from what people with DID experience, but on a more extreme basis.
Eating disorders are a deadly, but also, treatable mental illness. Still, in my early struggle to recover, there were many common eating disorder treatments that didn't work for me. Understand, I am not saying that they don't work for everyone. On the contrary, they work for countless people who suffer. This said, there is no one road to recovery and I write this blog in hopes of inspiring people who haven't had any luck with traditional treatments to keep going.
For the last year or so, I have been doing a lot of work to process my childhood trauma. I've been in therapy, I've been taking medication, I've been doing outside reading, my therapist and I even found a way to work one of my favorite TV shows into my trauma work. In general, I think it's going really well, except for one problem: I don't know how to avoid causing my son the same trauma that happened to me.
If you’ve never self-harmed, you probably can’t understand why anyone would do such a thing. The notion of inflicting physical pain on oneself can seem illogical and terrifying. However, self-harm can often travel with dissociation symptoms. This means the person who self-injures might feel physically numb or have no recollection of the event.
I don't talk about my anxiety a lot. Part of that, I think, is because of how mental health stigma has shaped anxiety disorder as worries or thoughts that people can't seem to get past. It's difficult to explain to those people the depth of anxiety's impact, and sometimes even for those who do have a better concept and understanding of it, it can be tough to relay exactly how it feels.
Do you wake up sometimes and know it's going to be a bad day from the outset? I do. Sometimes before I put my feet on the floor, I know it's going to be a bad day. Now, I think, for the average non-sick person, this sounds like a self-fulfilling prophecy. In other words, if you think it's going to be a bad day, then it certainly will be. This is not the reality for a person with a chronic illness, though. Sometimes we know it's going to be a bad day. If you have this feeling sometimes, here's how to handle it.
Recently, I realized the importance of both fighting and surrendering to mental illness. I was hospitalized for a horrific bipolar mixed episode I suffered through for several months. I hadn't been this sick with mental illness since my four-year-long battle with postpartum depression and have never experienced anything like it. Now that I'm out of the hospital and slowly stabilizing, I'm becoming startlingly aware of a paradox in getting through mental illness -- healing isn't possible without both fighting and surrendering.
Lately, I have experienced a few uncomfortable conversations with some of my nonaddicted friends questioning the strength and tenacity of recovering addicts. I imagine the concepts and struggles of behavioral and substance addictions seem quite confusing to those who have never fought these horrific demons firsthand. I grew up in a home with addiction, so prior to experiencing this for myself, I also had a lot of questions and confusion around the topic of addiction. However, now I can truthfully say with confidence that recovering addicts are likely some of the strongest and most capable people you will ever meet in your life.
Fall is my favorite season. It’s a very healing time of year for me and my schizoaffective disorder with the cooler weather and still sunny days. And this year, I’m appreciating fall as much as I can.

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Netty
Haley, I certainly hope you are coping with your problem. I have the same things happen to me and I tell myself that I'm moving from one parallel dimension to another. It's just been the two that I've noticed but I've been keeping a small notebook and noting the date and time I am doing things. This helps me to not worry so much about it since I too have no insurance. Hang in there.
Rizza Bermio-Gonzalez
Hi Liz,

That does not sound silly at all! This is an excellent suggestion; thank you for sharing!

All the best,
Rizza
Never Forgiven Myself
I have such empathy for all. I all of sudden recall this traumatizing memory.. I was a lustful young boy and engaged in young boy streaking and experimental touching and kissing with other boys. I feel like I was abused but can't recall an actual event. I say this because I knew too much at such a very early age 7. I have one horrible memory of thinking how I might convince a younger boy to play with me like I saw in this hard core porno magazine i found at a construction site we all played at. Although it was only a thought it has now manifested into my conviction of me being this vile man. This has never happen since then but recent PTSD and has become my obsessive shame and guilt from when I was 12 yo. Just the thought or sent me running away back then and that thought never happened again. but as a 50 plus husband and father...im plagued by this guilt shame and disgust. Im thankful nothing happened but can't forgive my self for ever thinking this act up.
Sarah Sharp
Hi, Kristina,

Thank you so much for reaching out. I'm really sorry you're going through this.

I have a feeling you did everything you could plus some, and I think admitting your son to the hospital was the wisest, most selfless decision you could've made. Your boy is exactly where he needs to be right now. As long as he's there, he's safe. He's with doctors who are experts in mental health, getting the coaching and medical attention that will enable him to be healthy again.

On this journey, please don't forget to take care of yourself. You matter, too, especially to your child.

Kindest wishes,

Sarah Sharp
AK
Please try listening to an audiobook. Though it's not a permanent fix, it will allow you to take a break from the barrage. I can listen out loud on my phone, but some may need to try it with headphones to keep out other distractions. Just make sure it's something you're actually interested in listening to so your mind doesn't wander. I do this when I'm doing things like dishes or repetitive tasks at work. Hope this helps someone.