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When I was a young woman, before my first psychotic episode, I was incredibly independent. I frequently traveled internationally to Egypt and Brazil to visit my parents, who worked overseas. I also took road trips from Seattle to as far as San Diego by myself. Those days of independence are long gone. As someone with a severe mental illness, I need to connect and rely on people more than I ever imagined, but though I have schizophrenia, I am not a burden.
The combination of confrontation and anxiety is a significant issue for me. We've all had to make that dreaded call to customer service to report an issue. Something has gone wrong, so you're already ticked off, but you do your best to proceed politely. Or, at least, I do. Most times, the issue is resolved quickly and with minimal upset. But then there's that one frustrating experience where nothing goes right, and the resolutions are unacceptable, which triggers so much anxiety that you feel you'll either explode or simply shut down.
Did you know that the most helpful treatment for borderline personality disorder (BPD) is age? According to a 16-year-long study, 88 percent of patients no longer met the "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders" criteria for BPD after eight years, while 99 percent remitted after 16 years. I just turned 30 myself, and my BPD symptoms have greatly improved over the past 12 years. This is my experience with BPD since becoming an adult.
Most of my thoughts and beliefs about recovery focus on what I can integrate into my routine to help me change harmful patterns. I practice observing my patterns, which manifest in many ways. I observe how I react to stress, how I listen and respond to others, and how I think about myself and others. This is a lot to observe and try to change, and lately, I'm narrowing my focus on my ability to show myself compassion in recovery.
With the holiday rush approaching, I sometimes catastrophize everything that can go wrong while working in retail. My anxiety makes it difficult to enjoy life. But last week, taking a much-needed vacation helped me find joy and relaxation. My mother and I took a holiday-themed bus tour to Dollywood. We didn’t have to pack food or book the hotel, as that was done by the tour company. To learn about how the trip helped me find joy, continue reading this post.
When I had nothing but my mental health struggles, I had writing. I had no answers. I had no knowledge of how to fix or stop my pain. I only had emotions simultaneously carving out and bursting from my aching chest, so I tried to put them into words. In doing so, without knowing it, I was writing my way to recovery.
Healthy coping tools like self-harm comfort audio can play a critical role in the process of getting and staying clean from nonsuicidal self-injury.
Although therapy has immensely benefited me, I've learned it is okay to take a break from therapy. There were times I did not want a break. Sometimes I counted down the days until my next appointment, feeling like it would never arrive. During my darkest days, I talked to a therapist every week, sometimes multiple times a week. However, I also experienced times when I didn't want to talk about my feelings or work through any issues at all. At times, I was not motivated to do the internal work I knew I had to do.
Ignorance is bliss. Or is it? It can be challenging to decipher the true root of ignorance. Is it the literal definition of the word, lack of knowledge or awareness? Does malicious intent fuel ignorance? Does a lack of empathy fuel ignorance? Although daunting, the truth is, understanding the root of the ignorance in question is the first step toward improvement. Regarding mental health stigma, ignorance is one of the biggest obstacles to progress. Let's unpack a few common motives behind ignorance to help gauge a path forward concerning mental health stigma.
One of my favorite memes on social media says something like, “It’s almost time for me to put away my normal anxiety and put on my fancy Christmas anxiety.” Christmas is a very anxious--even manic--time of year for many people. But I have a special reason why my anxiety skyrockets around the holidays.

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Comments

JGR
I feel more okay with myself after reading this! Thank you, I am not alone! Someone else shares my feelings and experience! Thank you for sharing and sending you love and gratitude.
Alvin
I have been divorced for 5 years now and my ex and i have 4 kids together. I try to back her up if our kiddos are getting out of line. But, recently my 12 year old got out of school suspension for pantsing another kid.
Anyway, I tried to call my son to talk to him and he just keeps hanging up on me. So as a consequence for his suspension and disrespectfully behavior. I let my ex know I was taking his cell phone and nintendo switch. She ended the call with "You're such a p***e of s***. Needles to say I lived for 16 years with her always calling me offensive names. It has caused my 12 year old to repeat his mothers words to me nonstop
Andrea Guilds
I am a bit shocked right now, but in a good way. I have heard this word so much lately and you can imagine that as someone with OCD it can throw us into a spiral. Then I stopped and asked, wait, I have a disorder that constantly makes me question reality on my own so am I the gaslighter to myself? That’s is what led to an epiphany and to this article and you are right. I have went through two rounds of ERP after going through CBT, ACT, and many different therapies and ERP is the therapy that has helped me most, but with the subtypes of OCD that I have, gaslighting is triggering and my OCD grabbed it up without hesitation. That one and Narcissism which is also everywhere. In OCD and out I feel there is unconscious gaslighting. Have I actively done it to someone else? Most likely. Have someone done it to me? Yes, but the whole point is so we just roll over and give up? No, we work to go within ourselves to resolve the issue and to work towards the best version of ourselves. Well said, I applaud you for writing this!
Yona
Hello Jay,
I would like to know how you proceeded with this. I am in a relationship with my dear boyfriend for 4 years and it's even a long distance relationship so it makes it a lot harder for me to interact and help them. My boyfriend has DID also. If you need to speak to someone who is in a similar situation as you, you can contact me on my email jonadadervishi100@gmail.com
I don't know about your partner but I am very honest and sincere with my partner, especially about his disorder and me talking to others on online platforms about this and he feels grateful and feels like I am there for him so we both might be able to help each other, if you and she wishes
Zane
I was skeptical that such a seemingly pseudoscientific technique could work but a recent systemic review of randomized clinical trials and meta-analyses found that EFT was in fact an evidence based treatment. It was published in a highly reputable peer-reviewed journal.
https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2022.951451/full

Bakker's review seem to have only one citation which is a review in favor of EFT. Such an unimpactful review makes me doubt of its relevance.