Borderline Personality Disorder is an intense condition. Reflecting back upon the early days of my suffering from BPD, particularly before I was properly diagnosed but definitely suffering, this fact is quite evident.
It seemed that I was almost always in crisis. Sure, there were those periods of time when things were going smoothly, and I was able to keep my composure and keep myself together, but those times were short-lived. I didn’t have the necessary tools, or skills, to cope effectively when my emotional intensity got unmanageable, and I was unable to handle the distress. This lead to me acting out on impulsive behaviors that, while they helped me feel better in the moment, ultimately caused more long-term damage and shame.
I’ve always been an “emotionally sensitive” person. Now that I’m in recovery, I do not consider this to be a detriment. Being emotionally sensitive allows me to feel deeply, to connect with others on deeper levels, and has been the fuel for many of my creative endeavors, especially my writing. It has been the force behind my decision to be a vegetarian (borderline vegan). It has allowed me to tap into and extend immense compassion, especially once I learned the skills to release judgments. (Disclaimer: I am still working on releasing judgments.)
By learning to manage the symptoms of emotional intensity and dysregulation that come with being an emotionally sensitive person or having borderline personality disorder, we can use these aspects of ourselves in positive ways. Prior to that, though, experiencing our emotions at a level that is so intense that we become dysregulated can lead to so many problems and ultimately a downward spiral.
Before learning skills to manage my symptoms, I found myself almost always having a crisis in my life that I believed required someone else to rescue or help me. I didn’t feel whole. I felt alone and afraid. I felt disconnected and different. For lack of a better word, I honestly felt insane. Sometimes I would get so discouraged and depressed, because I believed that this was what my life was going to look like forever…and it probably would have had I not reached rock bottom and sought the help I needed.
Recovering from BPD does not mean that life will be free of pain or intense emotions. It means that we will live in confidence that we can skillfully and effectively handle these aspects of life and build a life that we consider truly worth living. As Dr. Marsha Linehan says, “Life can be worth living, even when there is pain.”
If you suffer from BPD or even suspect you do, please do not wait to get the help you need to heal and turn your life around.
Thanks for reading.
At OPI Intensive, we offer compassionate, clinically sophisticated intensive residential help for young adult men and women who suffer from borderline personality disorder or BPD traits, including genetic testing to determine the best course for medications, if needed. Rather than a sterile, hospital-like environment, we offer beautiful accommodations in luxury apartments just outside of Los Angeles. At OPI Intensive, we treat the individual, not the diagnosis. Our clinical team is made up of a diverse community of passionate, highly skilled individuals working together with you to help you find your joy and express it. For more information on OPI Intensive residential programs and our measures to help young adults with Borderline Personality Disorder, call us at 866-661-3982 or click HERE to submit an online form. We’ll be in touch promptly.