When you are embarking on your BPD Recovery and Remission there is one important aspect to keep in mind: the people in your life who have helped you create your BPD will also want to keep you stuck in it. This is often referred to as the “mobile theory”.
It goes something like this: every member of a dysfunctional family plays a certain role. The mother might be “The Martyr” the ever-sacrificing woman who does everything for her family and complains about it loudly to anyone who will listen. “The Patriarch” is probably the father: the one who sits in his chair at the dinner table and pontificates about life and tells everyone what to do. “The Good Girl” is the older sister who doesn’t cause any trouble in the family, who knows her place and never talks back. And then there is the person with BPD who has become problem child and has been forced into the position of “The Scapegoat”: the person who is blamed for all the problems in the family. This group functions like a well-oiled machine. Though this is a highly dysfunctional family unit, everyone is very accustomed to it and it very comfortable.
So, when when you try to change the “rules by which” your family operates, they will do anything to get you to “change back!” The mobile begins to shake and everyone loses their equilibrium. The family is desperate to put you back in your place because a) they need someone to blame for the family’s problems and b) you are not allowed to change. So you will be given lots of messages that what you are doing is wrong. These messages will probably be given indirectly and subtly. This is why it is important to surround yourself with people who will support your growth and encourage you to continue with it even though your family may do everything in their power to try to sabotage you.
It is important to surround yourself with people who will get on the bandwagon and support you as you begin to change your behavior and take the necessary steps toward changing your life. They will applaud every positive move you make and reinforce every advance you make in this new direction. It is important to have supportive people in your corner You only really need one cheerleader. The way you find them is by observing them as you are trying out your new behaviors. These people will, at their core, want to participate in your changes. They will reinforce what you are doing and build you up rather than tear you down. That does not mean that they won’t confront you. You don’t want to surround yourself with “yes men”.
Pay attention to how you feel when you are in the presence of your cheerleading squad. If you feel empowered and uplifted, they are most likely the right people. Do you want to be in their presence? What kind of vibe do you get when you are with them? Are they themselves positive people? Do they practice gratitude and have similar values to those you are trying to take on? If that’s the case, they are most likely your tribe, your people. Suck them into your daily life, if possible and share your journey with them.
Those people who are not on your side and who do not want to support your desire to change should either be discarded or distanced from you. Don’t get sucked into the thought that just because you are related to someone by blood that you must sacrifice yourself or your mental health for them. Family is about much more than DNA. It is about the people who cheer you on and pull for you and applaud every positive stride you make. This is tied very strongly to the lessons in self-esteem and self-love. Value yourself enough to put your BPD recovery and remission first and not allow yourself to be sidetracked by those who would sabotage you and keep you stuck.