From Chaos to Champion Through DBT

The biggest lesson I learned was Be Careful What You Wish For. I learned this in September 2005 after I took a near-fatal overdose. You see my husband had been dying very slowly of lung cancer. My world was coming unglued completely and my BPD was triggered massively because of the impending death. I was finally being abandoned in the worst way but in point of fact it was not because he was leaving ME but because he had no choice. Still, I couldn’t handle it at all. I became very depressed and just dissociated completely. I wanted to die first so I wouldn’t be left behind to pick up the pieces of my life.

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Do you really want to run away?

I see the sentiment “I just want to run away” in the various BPD groups to which I belong. Oh,yeah, I totally get it. I spent years trying to “run away” from my life and myself, my fears and anxieties. When I couldn’t run away physically, I would do it emotionally through distance, dissociation and suicide attempts. I would feel frantic by my situation, trapped, hopeless and helpless and wanted nothing

more than to get away from it -- all the pain and anguish and just down-right suffering.

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How the Check The Facts DBT skill keeps you out of emotional trouble

Most of us with BPD can relate to this: you are out with a friend and she says something about your hairstyle which insults you and before you know it, you are off to the races, loaded for bear. One thing leads to another and in no time at all the friendship has blown up in your face and she goes from being a friend and close confidante to a sworn enemy. You are left bewildered and wondering, “How in the world did this happen?”

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Getting past my anger toward my former partner

My former partner broke up with me or perhaps I should say that I broke up with HIM after he assaulted me. We had been on what I had hoped would be a wonderfully romantic holiday in Hawaii. Did we have a fight? Well, if you mean a screaming and yelling at one another kind of fight, the answer is no, we did not. We had words but there was no screaming or  yelling. His assault came completely out of the blue. In fact, it was the LAST thing I EVER expected him to do. Ever.


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Why a BPD Diagnosis is so Stigmatizing

Many of us find ourselves receiving a BPD diagnosis following a hospitalization because of a suicide attempt. In most cases, the diagnosis won’t be troublesome until we go searching for a psychiatrist. Often when the new psychiatrist reads through the chart we soon discover that we have become radioactive. Sometimes the new psychiatrist will refuse to take on a new BPD patient entirely or give the patient so many conditions for treatment that the chances of forming a therapeutic alliance are next to nil. Why is this the case?

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How using the DBT skill called DEAR MAN set me free

In the late 1980s, a psychologist named Dr. Marsha Linehan began her seminal work on a treatment protocol called Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT). The treatment is now recognized as the gold standard treatment protocol for people who have BPD because it teaches us how to regulate our emotions. The core fundamental practice of DBT is something called mindfulness. For me, the most important part of DBT was learning how to manage my interpersonal relationships, something most of us have great difficulty with.

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