Being called manipulative when you have Borderline Personality Disorder is very discouraging

Many people who have BPD end up being scapegoated by their families but it is important to remember that BPD does not form in a vacuum. It tends to form in people who grow up in dysfunctional families and it forms in people who have experienced trauma early on. The person with BPD gets scapegoated and blamed for all the dysfunction that already exists in the family but which manifests in them.

BPD is a family problem, as well as an individual problem

So, in this regard, BPD is actually a family problem as well as an individual problem.People will tell you that you are manipulative and that may be true. But I say that people do not resort to “manipulative” behavior until everything else they have tried has failed. We are not born manipulative people. This kind of behavior is taught to us and learned by us. And it is our family of origin who does the teaching.

People may “reject” the “ask” for a variety of reasons

When someone tells you that you that you are being manipulative it is because, for whatever reason, they are unable to hear, understand and respond to your request. That is not your fault. But the underlying issue for YOU is that it means you have to learn new skills for communicating your needs to others.If you need a hug but instead of asking for one because you fear you  will be rejected because of the simple ask and so instead you lash out in anger, you are displacing your anger onto the other person. It is easy to turn hurt into anger but it is a self-perpetuating rejection machine when we do that. Because the anger, as most of us well know, actually chases people away thus denying us from receiving what it is we truly want.

Rather than be vulnerable to the rejection for the “ask, we get angry

It’s so much easier to reject them FIRST. But doing that doesn’t get us what we want which is the hug. How do you learn different ways to ask for what you want and need? Assertiveness training is the best way. Assertiveness is the best way to learn to ask for things. That includes even asking for things that might be “negative ” such as asking your partner to chew with his mouth closed. In this regard, it’s not so much the “ask” but also the way it is carried out.

When you practice assertiveness, it is important to remember three things:

  1. You might not get what you ask for.

  2. You have to ask for one change at a time.

  3. You have to use “I” statements.

Taking a course in assertiveness is a good start. It’s always simpler to avoid the “ask” in the first place or, if you feel rejected by them because of the “ask” to just up and run away but neither of those will get you what you want which is the hug. Once you learn Assertiveness techniques, I guarantee you will never want to go out into the world without them again.