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What do you do when you split?


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I've been diagnosed as borderline, and lately I have noticed that after a friend confronted me about something, my whole opinion and emotion toward him has totally changed. Before I was quite idealistic about him, very much affectionate toward him. Now I can see all his faults and limits and I don't feel warm towards him at all. Iam taking it that I am where the problem lies, he confronted me in a kind way and the confrontation was necessary. I think I have 'split' him, according to what I understand of how that works, correct me if I have misunderstood.

What do I do about this way of responding? I used to consider him my best friend now I just feel very antagonistic toward him. I want to carry on being his friend because he is a good friend, I don't want to go with what I feel and just discard him like I have done with people in the past. What am I supposed to do?

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Karuna,

I think having the insight and awareness of your changed feelings towards him puts you at an advantage. 

According to what I'm learning in school, most people diagnosed with Borderline PD are oblivious to the process of loving then hating a significant person in their life. 

Seems like an ego thing...maybe he said something that hit a little too close to home, and your ego is trying to protect itself from pain by making him wrong??

This is not the best friend guy, is it?

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can you trace back through your interactions and try and find the moment(s) that caused your image of him to change?  usually, for me, a person would shift from an angel to a devil because of several interactions with that person that left a bad taste in my mouth, even if i didn't notice it at the time.  often the bad taste was guilt over my life, and a fear that they would find out what i had done/who i "really was" combined with a few things they had done.  and most of the time the things they had done hadn't been huge.  like, it wasn't like they cheated on thier SO, it would be like they were rude to a waiter, and the next time i saw them act passive agressivley towards their SO, and then the next time i withheld personal information about myself (drinking, cutting, etc.) and then the final blow would be another small thing like a rudness, etc.  but, basically, i would stop idealizing this person because the bubble of perfection was burst. 

and if they aren't perfect, well, then they must be evil, right?  how could one person be both?  how could there be shades of gray? 

for me, trying to find the things that led to knocking them off the pedastal would help me to see that they were a person with flaws, and not an angel or a demon. and, usually, i would see that there were confrontations where i bit my tongue instead of speaking out, and so let the resentment build until one day the person littering was enough for them to fall from their pedestal.

i think that knowledge of when your mind changed helps to be able to integrate the person into a whole, into a gray area. 

but, that's just what helped me. 

i hope it works out.  it's horrible to loose friends over this kind of thing.... i've done it too many times and it's really painful.

take care,

penny

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I think the fact that they have noticed a behaviour of mine and called me on it has rattled my ego a bit, it could definitely be that. This is the best friend guy, and he called me on my lack of being 'real' with him, so I guess he is now a threat to how I operate, he is wanting more from me and I don't know how to give him it and still 'protect' myself. Does that make sense? I suppose I am trying to keep an even balanced view of him, I know that this me and not him, and just don't want to be the kind of person who walks out whenever she feels slighted, you know?

eek.  i had something maybe like this happen.  basically a friend blew up at me because i was holding back a lot of myself.  i did this because i didn't want to talk about the things i was doing... not to myself, and certainly not to her. 

it turned out, sadly, that in the end what she was really asking of me is that i get "better" faster, and i couldn't do that.  for her, my withholding amounted to lying, and it didn't matter to her that i was in therapy and really trying, because it was too little too late. 

i'm going to jump out on a limb here and say that what happened between her and i was different from your life, in that (i now realize) she really would not have been able to accept all the dirty parts of me that i had kept hidden from her.  she was, to be frank, a bit of an uptight bitch. 

but it doesn't seem like your friend is this way.

the question is, what is it that you are holding back from him, and are you ready to stop doing so?  and if not, is it because you are afraid of his judgements, or because you simply aren't ready to talk about some things right now.  it's never good to shut down, and it's horrible to loose people that really matter.  i'd say to fight tooth and nail to keep him in your life, but also, that if he is asking of you something that you can't give right now, to try and explain why you can't right now, because that is a form of openness in and of itself. 

at least, that's what i'd say to do given what i know.  dynamics with friends are much to complex to explain in text... but it's an idea, i guess.

penny

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Thanks. I really care for him, I just struggle to be open about some things. I have explained this and I think he is willing to be patient with me. I think maybe I expect him to get bored and move on which is partly why I am wanting to pull back, argh,  my head is so messed up!

heh... i'll reject you before you reject me dammit?

that is one hard routine to break. gah.

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