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  1. This is really a tremendously helpful book written by someone who lost control of her life due to Borderline Personality Disorder and learned to cope via good therapy. In the book she talks about how difficult it is to find the right treatment and how life changing it was for someone to give her a diagnosis and explain it to her frankly. She talks about treatment and her struggles with it. I'm don't meet the criteria for BPD, but there's a lot for me to relate to in this book. My life is a mess because I can't emotionally handle a lot of situations, and it's in a way that runs deeper than anxiety. She calls it "emotional dysregulation," and I definitely identified with that. There's very few books out there written for people *with* BPD, and fewer still that are as hopeful and encouraging as this one. https://www.amazon.com/Buddha-Borderline-Recovery-Personality-Dialectical/dp/157224710X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1471906417&sr=8-1&keywords=buddha+and+the+borderline
  2. Mine is radical acceptance. It centers me. I had a ring made, with the initials "RA" to remind me. Honourable mention to "ride the wave" and "opposite to emotion action." More reminder rings to come.
  3. Hello everyone! Where to begin... I've been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder with some avoidant traits. I have been struggling with depression and anxiety since elementary school (I am 22 now). Up til this point, I have been in and out of hospitals and treatment centers and passed around from therapist to therapist. I was heavily self- harming and abusing alcohol and other substances. A few months ago, I was sent to yet another center after a suicide attempt. Let me tell you, it changed my life. I was introduced to DBT, which has truly saved me. I am finally on the correct medication which has seriously reduced, if not stopped, my horrid intrusive thoughts and paranoia. Before, I was to the point I could hardly get out of bed, and already had to drop out of college and leave my job. Now, I have rediscovered my love for art, I am waitressing (something I would have NEVER thought possible) and- best of all- my relationship with my fiance is SO much better and we are back to planning our wedding. I am back to seeing a therapist regularly, and she is awesome. I've finally confronted issues with my toxic mother and am opening up about traumatic childhood experiences as well as working through family therapy with my father (and my mother, when he can convince her to join). The fact is, life is GOOD, I am somewhere I thought I would never be and I am incredibly grateful. I'm back here to recieve support now that I am more stable and moving forward into uncharted territory in my life. Thanks for being here and reading.
  4. I literally joined this site two minutes ago, so this is my first post. Hi. I was diagnosed with "quiet" borderline personality disorder a year and a half ago when I was inpatient. The therapist and doctor there probably came to this diagnosis after having observed my cutting and purging behavior. Fast-forward to 2015, and I ended my therapy because: a. I felt worse every time I left the office; and b. I didn't believe I had this disorder. I felt that my cutting and purging was rooted more in a trauma I had about three years earlier than it was in something I had grown up with. Anyway, I'm reflecting more on the relationships I used to have and how unstable I was (I'd also like to add that before the trauma, I had untreated cases of both schizoaffective disorder and bipolar disorder). I wonder sometimes if I do have this. Interestingly enough, only a few weeks after my last therapist's appointment, I ceased all cutting and purging. I'm learning to drive and I'm also taking college classes two weeks from now. The thing that concerns me now, is whether I should resume my dialectical behavioral therapy. I'm thinking that perhaps I didn't "match up" with my therapist, and that's why I felt so crummy after every session. The biggest reason why I would consider taking therapy up again would be because I want to major in psychology, and it wouldn't do to be a professional psychologist and have untreated borderline personality disorder. Any advice?
  5. A bit of background: I've been in some form of treatment on and off since I was 19, but it should have started way before then. My biological family was primarily emotionally abusive with some erratic bursts of violence and creepy sexual behavior sprinkled on for extra shamey flavor. As an adult I've witnessed two super fun accidents in close proximity that made me straight-up agoraphobic for a time. My diagnoses are depression NOS, BPD, PTSD, and bipolar II - that last one depending on the doctor and time of day. I'm 30 now, married, unemployed. Last year I was in partial hospitalization twice and inpatient hospitalization twice. I went from 1 med to 7 meds. This was all due to a HUGE freak-out trigger that my clumsy and unknowing inlaws stumbled into (hooray, others having kids). But since then, I feel like I'm sliding way backwards. I'm way more depressed. I'm way more suicidal. The things I used to like doing feel pointless and not at all fun. Part of this could be the meds, but part of this feels old as all of my issues. Exacerbated, potentially, because... ...DBT. I've been doing DBT for 6 months now. I know everything - I've been given the acronyms and taught the techniques in the hospital and in what I call "DBT lite" private therapy. I know how to do everything but I strongly resist doing it. It's like I'm fighting it - like a disease. I don't want to "cope". Coping feels invalidating - like if I'm not actively suffering then I'm letting go of my right to feel pain at all. And in the DBT scene it's like it's this cookie-cutter approach for everyone, and my therapist makes all these assumptions about what my needs ACTUALLY are and how what I'm doing is ineffective, or worse, "reinforcing". Like going to the hospital - it's "reinforcing" and I shouldn't do it. Okay. My needs. For instance, at this stage, I need some validation sometimes. Yes, I realize I can't be totally dependent upon it from others, but my suffering is MASSIVELY reduced with a few validating statements, and then I can move on with my day. But because he wants me to be a "strong independent woman", my therapist is doing all this secret Jedi mind trick shit and "pushing" me to the point where I feel I can't call him when I'm suicidal because he's just going to make things worse. He totally misses the mark and I feel more hopeless than when I called. "If you call for validation and not coaching, then we're not doing DBT," he says, and asks me questions that I need to say "yes" to in order to hurry up and get the phone call over with. He made some wry statements about how I surely don't want to "pay a therapist to be [my] friend", and I don't... but for reference, I DON'T CUT EVER and I wanted to self-harm so badly last week it took three (3) TIPS techniques to stop me from doing so. This freaked me out. I'm getting worse with DBT, not better. And then it's like... am I just being manipulative/difficult/willful? Sure, maybe. And then I double- and triple-think myself and have no idea which way is up anymore. I know DBT is supposed to be wildly effective. And I'm afraid of being one of the "failures" because that makes me "treatment resistant" or whatever, and maybe it's my own dumb fault that I'm fighting it. And I hear people say, "DBT works if you're not willful" or "DBT works if you want it to" and I feel so much shame and dread. Maybe I'm afraid of the hard work. Maybe I don't want to change because misery is comfortable. Maybe I want to be the exception to the rule. I suppose all of that makes rational sense. But I can't process all of this with the DBT machine screaming down my throat, COPE, COPE, COPE and ALL HAIL MARSHA LINEHAN, KNOWER OF ALL THINGS AND INCAPABLE OF DOING WRONG. If someone stabs you in the face, USE YOUR SKILLS!!! ...I feel like my choices are cope or don't, and if I'm not coping, well... I'm being a horrible burden and waste of everyone's time and I should just go away. Is it even possible that DBT isn't right for me AND I'm not a horrible human being? Jesus Christ. (And yes, LOL, splitting.) I miss Gestalt therapy when the answers seemed to come from inside me and I felt in control of my own treatment, and stronger, and I had the time to work through my trauma... but now all I can think about is whether or not that Reinforced Bad Behavior or coddled me. UGH.
  6. I've been diagnosed with anxiety and depression since I was 12. I have had it beforehand. I struggle tremendously with anhendonia, isolation, and trouble identifying feelings or what causes them. I changed counties so I had to change mental health providers. This is probably good though. After a debacle where I got all the way to the front of the waiting list, then they lost my info, so I had to wait again, I was assigned to a therapist I think will work well for me. She does DBT. I know it was developed for Borderline Personality Disorder. The problem is, I am exactly the opposite of someone with BPD. I am afraid that my inability to identify how my feelings cause my emotions will make this an ineffective therapy for me. I want CBT. There is not a lot of research about DBT besides with people with BDP. DBT works on accepting uncomfortable feelings- my problem is that I accept too many. I am just a vessel full of uncomfortable feelings that I have pushed off and avoided pretty successfully. The Eastern influence of DBT also makes me uncomfortable. Meditation makes me lose control and I think disassociate. I did tell her that. I am able to shut myself off if needed without meditation. I know its not good so I try not to do it. DBT scares me. I am really motivated to get better but I don't know if participating in a therapy developed for people who have opposite symptoms of me will help. I want to learn how to make connections and feel less isolated. I want to learn social skills. I want to learn where bad feelings come from. I want to feel like something is more pleasureful than cleaning a toilet. (In case anyone is wondering, I was tested for autism when I was a child and I do not have it. This is the way I am and I'd like to work on changing it and want to make sure I am getting the right therapy.) So my questions are, do you think it can help? Should I ask for a different kind of therapy? What kind of therapy works best for people like me?
  7. i've been "in treatment" aka going through medications (nothing's worked, or they helped a little but i had a side effect i couldn't deal with) and therapy that's doing absolutely nothing for me for 3 months. i'm pretty much shut down- i'm college age but i'm not in college, i'm too anxious to really get a job, don't talk or eat or move much, i just sit on the couch on the computer all day every day. So now, kind of as a last resort before some residential thing, pdoc is insistent on me trying dbt. There are a few reservations i have about it, aside from social anxiety/expenses/hopelessness cause nothing's worked. The first is that my problem isn't that i have uncontrollable, intense emotions. It's actually the opposite in that i can't feel, and i don't see how a program that's meant to deal with the opposite problem can cater to me when it's in a group setting. i know it's used for things other than borderline, but with an intensely numb depressed person? Pdoc also mentioned it's for chronic suicidal thoughts, which i have, but... that leads me to my second reservation. The second is that from what i've read about it, it just doesn't seem like it will really "teach" me anything. From what i've read, there are all these acronyms for various situations and how to handle them. Some of them don't even apply to me- for example, i believe one or two are about how to ask people for things or effectively communicate. i don't find that's a problem for me. Referring to the "Accepts" acronym for distressful situations, i find all of that's completely common sense. i don't see how anyone needs to be "taught" that (minus the one that says to compare your life to someone less fortunate- that only inspires guilt, and everyone else i've ever talked to about it agrees.) And the whole "mindfulness" thing sounds like some New Age yoga thing. i know how to live in the present moment, the problem is that the present moment sucks and i don't want to be there. Same goes with the common sense acronym stuff; the problem isn't that i don't know how to distract myself in a distressing situation, it's that those methods don't do anything for me. Or in the case of basic stuff like "remember to bathe regularly, avoid caffeine, be consistent with a sleep schedule," it's not that i don't know how to do that, it's that i can't bring myself to give a shit. And it doesn't seem like there's anything DBT can offer to change that. i guess what i want answered is: anyone have any experience with DBT who is locked out of their feelings/can't feel because of depression? How did it help you with that? Am i wrong about the acronyms, are they useful?
  8. I receive my counseling through my local county's mental health system. When I was hospitalized last year & the year before at a local university, they wanted me to go DBT, I brought it up with my therapist, but as I am wont to do , I weaseled my way out of it. Since I am once again, a hot mess, I have agreed to give it a try. The way they have it set up is that I will cease seeing my current therapist, as she is not trained in DBT, but get a DBT trained therapist, plus participate in the group sessions. I've done a bit of reading on it, but I"d love to hear more firsthand stories. I have some anxieties & reservations about it. But I really feel like I am at a point where I have to try everything and anything. I so need help, while I am not suicidal, it feels like do or die for me. I want to have a quality of life so I can move on & not fucking wallow all the time. 1)The whole group thing. While I am a social butterfly, I don't necessarily play well with others. Even when I go to my depression/bipolar support group meetings I get antsy waiting for my turn & sit there waiting for most people to shut up unless they have a particularly juicy story. I hate that I am selfish like that. I have been known to monopolize a conversation, especially when hypomanic. 2)Besides being selfish, one on one with people I am ok, but when there is more than two people, I get overwhelmed. 3)I am confused how I will get help with a group. I am also unsure if I will be able to share to the level I would in a one-on-one conversation with a therapist. 4)If you have done DBT, have you felt that it has helped you? If so, how? 5). I am totally open to the eastern-religion aspect of it, in fact, I think it is kind of cool. How much does it come in play? 6)Anything else. thank y'all.
  9. Does anyone have any experience with the dbt or cbt? Does it help? Can it be a realistic alternative to meds?
  10. I've posted before about starting a partial hospitalization program, and I've been in it since Wednesday. They use DBT and it's the best therapy I've ever had. It's so hands-on and solution based, and it really motivates me and challenges me. They also have a therapy dog in the program named Frankie, he's a senior Golden Retriever and has pulled me out of a couple panic attacks and just generally made me feel good. I love dogs more than anything, so seeing him every morning and getting to love on him is the best. I feel really validated and cared about by everyone in the program, like everyone is really pulling for my success. This is the best I've felt in ages, even though things aren't perfect yet (nor do I expect them to be). I have hope and goals again, and I feel like I really am worth something and can make it in life and reach my goals. I've never felt that with any other therapist, no matter how nice they were. It's like a whole world is starting to open up for me.
  11. I'm a 23-year-old female that's just recently been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. It makes a lot sense! I've dealt with bulimia, depression, and anxiety throughout my life. Last year, I met an amazing man and we hit it off right away. We fell in love fast. He has bipolar disorder and is schizoaffective. At the moment, he's suffering from a bad episode of psychosis and is completely disconnected from the world. I'm used to this from him, but this is worse than normal. His depression is very evident. Honestly, I can't handle it, for obvious reasons of I'm just a fragile, emotional person. I just started a DBT program but he actually just got kicked out of the same one. I love him so much though. I can't leave him, no way. He understands me way more than anyone else because we have such a similar mental illness. I guess my question is should I just let him go be crazy and ride it out with him from the sidelines or do I take action and help him get the help he needs? Either through going to the hospital and/or psych ward, or just finding him a therapist. The worst part about this is his parents are in denial about how bad he can get. They think he's just fine and needs to "snap out of it." He's 29, he's been dealing with these episodes for a while. But normally, they end him up homeless or in the ward with injuries, or just home alone for months on end drunk out of his mind. How do I help and keep myself in therapy and keep progressing with my own mental issues?
  12. Hi, I'm new here, long-term BPD & C-PTSD symptoms, and this forum introduced me to DBT. I've heard about it before, but reading some of the in-depth threads about it have given me cause to look further. I'm very excited! I'm also very excited because I had a major anxious reaction an hour or so ago and felt I had two options: 1. to dissociate by going to my addiction or 2. react in certain horrible and annoying ways. But I've been practising mindfulness and I did nothing except for come to this forum. I can feel the anxiety has lessened in intensity and now I don't feel so impulsive. It's great to see that there is another way of responding. Now that I've found DBT and I can see there are lots of resources online, I wonder if I even need a professional? Is it possible to go through the steps alone (I have good non-professional support)?
  13. Background info that may help frame why I have certain questions: I don't have an official BPD Dx and p/tdoc isn't wild about applying labels to anything. On paper, I still essentially have no Dx (not even the recurrent depression and anxiety I have meds for) even though I've been seeking professional help for nearly 8 years. And all 4 d&tdocs I have worked with for decent amounts of time have deliberately avoided putting formal Dx's in my files. I didn't ask for that, they just all went in that direction. Its not because they think nothing is wrong with me. They all say/said that professional help is appropriate. Its been made clear to me that I should not worry about them thinking I'm a hypochondriac or drug-seeker or anything. I understand the insurance crap reasons for minimizing Dx's on paper. Its just that in actual practice, its not always clear to me how to proceed with choosing and implementing recovery tools, particularly behavioral therapies. I've explicitly asked many times, including just this morning. General helpful directional avenues have been identified, but its the specific parameters of an explicit course of action that elude me. I don't expect step-by-step instructions or anything but I need *some* explicit parameters in order to objectively assess progress (or lack thereof). I am not sure of how specific a course of action is optimum. I asked today and basically got told that what I'm doing with workbooks by myself seems to be helpful. No recommendation of joining DBT groups or seeing a supplementary tdoc specifically for "programmed" therapies he doesn't do himself. I asked again because I was unsure then left still feeling not confident that I am doing the best things possible! That said..... 1. How important is it to fully and (relatively) exclusively buy into one mode (school of thought?) of therapy? I ask because I think that belief buy-in, even if temporary and conditional, can help quiet the cacophony of distracting "what if's". 2. How do you recognize what that optimal fit may be in the absence of a clear professional opinion? I am not seeking "perfect" fit, just the most optimal of currently available resources. Besides the obvious "know thyself', what else have you prioritized as decision making criteria for yourselves? 3. How important is professional guidance and structure to doing things like DBT, CBT, etc as well as possible? 4. Similarly, how rapidly did any of you with professional guidance progress (effectively) through workbooks compared to self-guided efforts? 5. Am I asking the right questions? What else should I be considering or made aware of? Am I asking too many questions and should just focus on doing what I have already started with workbooks?
  14. Hey everyone. I've been diagnosed with Bipolar I. I also have ADD and slight anxiety. I was fired from my 5 1/2 year job in Dec. First time ever in my 44 years of life being fired. In July I was fired from my new job. Collecting unemployment both times... so I am at a crossroads in my life. After being fired twice from a field I have 14 years experience in, but don't really enjoy anyway, I am wondering what career I'll pursue from here. In 2009 I began getting mental health help and was diagnosed. Following that I found myself in an abusive relationship. Shortly after that I was put into IOP (Intensive Outpatient). Also diagnosed as Codependant (or however you spell it). During that time I learned alot with CBT, group settings, and twice a week visits to monitor my meds. By summer 2010 I was on track. Since I've lost my job, I lost my insurance. No meds..... from bad to worse. I've found a place that charges based on a sliding scale according to what you earn. I just want my meds back. Now I have to go to group twice a month, see a therapist twice a month, and meet a new phsych. Who knows what meds they will give me. Anyway... They have put me in DBT groups. Not so sure I like it. I'm not BPD... these people I'm in group with are much sicker than I am.... Well, as of right now, that's where I am in my journey. Not sure how crazy I am, but I'm sure society thinks I'm a fruit loop. I do and have felt broken most of my life. Like a toy firetruck who's siren sounds like a dog barking instead of a siren.... Wondering if I can ever lead a "normal" life even with my manufacturer's defect. Miss317
  15. I have been working on DBT for one year, and I was curious about 1) What do you find the easiest component of DBT to catch on to 2) What do you struggle with the most 3) Is there any wisdom you can give to a newbie, if you have been doing DBT successful in any component for awhile.
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