I really don’t like using the word ‘survive’ as it sounds like we’re just trying to keep our heads above water.
I really want you to do more than just survive – I want you to thrive in BPD relationships because I’ve been doing it for years, and teaching men and women what I know.
Leaving a BPD relationship worse off than before you entered is always a clear sign that you stuck around far too long and lost a lot of self-respect and pride. Not good.
It’s a tough truth to accept, but it is the absolute truth. This is because relationships, by definition, are about coming together and improving the quality of both you and your partner’s life.
However, if your life got worse and worse as the relationship dragged on, you weren’t actually in a relationship anymore – you were just trying to survive, clinging to bad habits that never work.
It’s with this reason that I released a free guide to the public all about the #1 mistake that causes your partner to hate you and leave you. Get it here:
I’ll send the guide to your email. Check it out after you read this article because it’s a quick read and full of advice you can put to use right now.
It’s important to understand this truth as it will show you where you’re really at on an emotional level.
The more dependent you are on your partner, the more you find yourself in emotional pain. This leads to low self-esteem, low self-worth and ultimately depression.
My goal with this article is to help you recover yourself. I’m going to explain to you why you don’t have to feel hurt. I’m going to help you recover your emotions and feelings so you can move forward with strength.
1. Your Partner Isn’t That Special
The first thing you must accept is the fact that your boyfriend or girlfriend really isn’t all that special.
Chances are, you have some grand view of your partner. You’ve convinced yourself that they have this ‘potential’ that you wish they would unlock.
Unfortunately, they never seem to unlock this ‘potential’ that you see. You stick with him or her over and over again due to this ‘potential’ that only you can see.
The truth is that all you’re doing is putting your partner on a pedestal. You are clouding the truth of the situation.
You’re doing this because you are making an excuse to stick with this person despite all the toxic behavior and abuse.
What you need to accept is the fact that your partner really isn’t all that special. They’re no better than you or anybody else out there. They’re imperfect.
And that’s okay. One of the best mindsets you can ever accept is that fact that nobody is perfect and that we’re all equal.
There are many more ‘amazing’ people just like your boyfriend or girlfriend out there waiting for someone just like you to date them.
2. Personal Responsibility Is Required
The next very important fact for you to understand is that until you accept 100% personal responsibility for the problems of the relationship, you will never be able to move on.
This is usually a very tough concept for people to accept because BPD is such an easy excuse.
Your partner behaves in all these inconsistent ways and it just seems totally obvious to you that your partner is to blame.
Well, responsibility doesn’t mean blaming anyone, including yourself. This is very important and something you need to understand.
All this means is that you accept responsibility for your current situation in life.
You tell yourself “I am responsible for this heartache and pain. I am responsible. It was my choice to remain in the relationship despite being hurt. I am responsible.”
There’s no blaming yourself, there’s no blaming your partner. It’s just accepting responsibility which is a requirement for moving forward and improving your emotional state.
It is very important that you remain in the present. Understand that who you are right now, the way you feel right now, is 100% your responsibility.
If you choose to lay in bed in pain all day long feeling sorry for yourself instead of educating yourself and improving your well-being, that is 100% your choice to do so.
Often times, you make the mistake of blaming yourself just as much as blaming others. You really want to stop doing both.
The more you blame yourself, the more you’re going to feel inadequate which lowers your self-esteem.
And the more you blame your partner for the problems of the relationship, the more you make excuses which prevents you from moving forward and improving your well-being.
So the key is to really accept responsibility, forgive yourself and then forgive your partner.
Get yourself a journal or a piece of printer paper. Write out all of the feelings you have. Write everything that pops into your head.
Once finished, read all of these things out loud to yourself. Then, forgive yourself.
This will help you start the healing process. Doing this exact exercise helped me heal my heartache in just a few days when my first BPD girlfriend broke my heart.
I am very thankful for my friend that taught me this exercise as I was sick in bed for 10 days before I did it.
3. Thinking That He / She Needs You
A common problem in BPD relationships is the belief that your partner needs you to take care of them or help them with his or her life.
This belief is deeply rooted in codependency. Codependents cling to relationships because they believe that their partner needs them to make things better.
The reality is that this clingy behavior is exactly what pushes away your partner and causes him or her to give you the “cold shoulder.”
You feel that you’re doing the right thing. You’re being this “good” partner, always there for him or her, always willing to help.
However, the message you indirectly send is that your partner is irresponsible. You deeply believe that they are incapable of taking care of themselves.
This is the message that your boyfriend or girlfriend receives. In response, they feel disrespected and thus push you away.
You might feel that you’re just trying to help them, but understand that a healthy, non-codependent individual doesn’t take on the responsibility of others.
And this is what brings us to the main problem of codependents: they constantly feel responsible for the feelings of others.
It’s as if you can’t help feel this way. You see your partner struggling in life and you so badly want to help pull them into a better life.
However, you end up only making things worse for your partner and the relationship when you behave this way.
You become an enabler. You lack boundaries. Your partner never learned. You ultimately lose respect.
4. You’re Responsible For Your Own Happiness
One of the biggest mistakes people make when it comes to relationships is the belief that a relationship will make you a happier person.
However, this isn’t ever the case because happiness is a completely independent emotional feeling.
In fact, all feelings are independent. They are generated within you and external forces have no influence on the way you feel.
The way you feel is simply how you interpret things that occur in your environment.
If you always react to external stimuli, then you’re responsible for the way you feel due to always being reactive and letting external things affect you.
Nobody but yourself is responsible for the way you feel. No matter how abusive or hurtful your partner may be, it’s still you that reacts and feels a certain way.
Blaming your partner for making you feel sad or depressed is a common mistake most people make.
The reality is that it’s 100% your responsibility for how you feel at all times.
But this doesn’t mean that you can control how you feel all the time. Feelings come and go and it’s impossible to feel a certain way all the time.
This applies to both happiness and sadness. These feelings come and go. They are largely determined by your thoughts and inner dialogue.
They key with happiness is being genuinely happy about your own life and your own self whether you’re single or in a relationship.
Knowing this, think about your own personal life that’s separate from the relationship.
What would you like to improve about your own self that would make you happy?
The answers to this question need to become your goals, something you work on daily. This is how you become consistently happy regardless of who you’re dating.
5. Relationships Should Be About Growth
Growth is what defines a healthy relationship.
As I stated earlier, if your relationship seems to constantly be heading down hill, then that’s not a relationship.
I’ve made it a personal habit for myself that I will never involve myself in anything that doesn’t help me grow and improve.
So whether I’m dating a woman that constantly brings me down, or if I’m friends with a guy that seems to keep pulling me back, I will cut that relationship off.
This is simply an attitude adjustment and a mindset you must adopt. Going into any kind of relationship or situation with this attitude will set a strong boundary from the get-go.
If you’re hurting right now, just think about this mindset. Are you worse off now than before the relationship? Do you feel that this person has a strong hold on you emotionally?
If you answered yes to those questions, then that tells you right away that your boyfriend or girlfriend was an anchor dragging you down.
And there’s nothing you can do about it. Their behavior and actions are completely out of your control and are not your responsibility.
Understand that the more hurt you are by a break up, the more attached, and possibly obsessed, you’ve become to this person.
In a way, you’ve become your own anchor dragging yourself down due to this attachment and dependency.
The more hurt you are over a relationship is a direct reflection of your lack of independence and self-worth.
It’s very important to understand because being dependent on someone else is exactly why your partner grew distant towards you.
6. Why Do You Walk On Eggshells?
I’ve been there. My first 3 relationships in my 20’s were with women that have BPD. And I failed massively in these relationships due to my codependent nature.
I was always walking on eggshells due to the fear I had of losing the relationship.
People like to often blame the fear of abandonment on their partner. However, the truth is that it’s you with the fear of abandonment.
Why are you hurting so bad right now? Because you’ve been abandoned by your partner, the person you love.
Understand that people with BPD do not have a fear of abandonment. They instead have a fear of attachment which is different.
Codependents are actually the ones with the fear of abandonment. But people with BPD are often codependents as well.
This is why people with BPD will often grow very attached to you, then quickly abandon you the next day. It goes back and forth.
It’s interesting to think about and you simply need to be aware of it.
Walking on eggshells only makes relationships work. It doesn’t matter whether your partner has BPD or not – if you aren’t communicating and keeping things inside, you’re contributing to the problems of the relationship.
Communication is a huge topic and something that I could write hundreds of pages on.
The key concept I want you to leave with is knowing that the less you speak your true feelings, the less you become true to yourself.
This obviously has a negative impact on your relationships.
Recovering From Your BPD Relationship
Moving forward, the best thing you can do is be true to yourself.
It won’t do you any good to reach out to your partner and try to explain yourself. Don’t make the mistake that so many others do by writing an email or a letter.
While letters can help you get some closure, 99% of the time you’ll write a letter incorrectly that will only make matters worse. So don’t do it.
Remember that the only reason you feel this pain is because you’re simply trying to survive. You’re not trying to thrive and build yourself up.
The more knowledge you have about BPD relationships and yourself in general, the faster you’ll recover and get back on your feet.
Remember that the more you start getting things done and improving yourself, the more you’ll feel good about yourself.
You want to learn my relationship system?
And you want to do it fast?
Hop on and head on over to here:
Hi. Just wanted to chime in after having bought your earlier package and listened to it a ton :)
I’ve learnt one simple thing and want to thank you for it.
We are responsible for our own happiness and if something isn’t working despite our best efforts, it’s time to move on.
It’s important to know when something has no future and move towards working towards building a future rather than languishing about the sorry state of affairs.
Thanks! Ultimately, life is about peace of mind. Seriously. That’s what brings happiness and all the love you’ll ever want in your life.
I just want to tell you how much I appreciate your emails. They are very insightful and true. It’s amazing that you send these kind of emails to people that aren’t paid subscribers. The way you put things is what people need to hear instead of the way most articles are where it seems they don’t want to rock the boat and tip toe around what actually needs to be said in a way most everyone can understand on a deeper level. I just wanted to let you know your an amazing person and keep up the good work I know your helping thousands of people.
Thank you so much man, I’ll keep delivering the goods :)
Great article Rick. I have always enjoyed your articles. I’ve had a couple of encounters with BPD women and I never felt like I could date them without lowering my boundaries. And I was never willing to do that. They almost are impossible to communicate with rationally. They interpreted my independence as lack of interest and I was not willing to become codependant for them so these relationships never went anywhere.
But I’ve seen BPD women in action with codependant men. I have a question for you. You’ve always said BPD relationships always start with a hot and heavy Honeymoon period. Then it gradually gets to more hot and cold behavior from the BPD. My question for you is what is the tipping point between hot and cold behavior and the BPD woman eventually dropping you permanently. The reason I ask that is normal people usually make a decision that this isn’t working out and just communicate with their partner and end it.
It doesn’t make sense for even a BPD woman to be hot for a week, then cold for a few days, then hot again and then finally going cold permanently. My main question is what in your experience is the usual tipping point between the BPD woman’s hot and cold behavior versus going permanently cold? As always, great article.
It only doesn’t make sense because you don’t understand the bigger issue – which is an attachment disorder. People with BPD fear attachment just like codependents fear abandonment. So knowing that people with BPD fear attachment, why would you try to ‘lock down’ a girl with BPD? It doesn’t make sense, right? So what I always do, even with ‘normal’ women, is that I never try to lock her down. I just date her and enjoy my time with her with no expectations. Eventually, she will decide to make me her bf – or not. Either way, the pressure isn’t on me.
I remember this girl with BPD that I dated last year. She would say she wanted me to be her bf – then change her mind the next day. But because I know about the attachment problems, I never let her wanting to bf me get to my ego. I would always respond to her with something like “Boyfriend or not, I don’t care about labels. All that matters to me is enjoying the time we have together because time is valuable and we only live one.”
That obviously made her feel so much more comfortable around me and we had a solid relationship for 6 months with no drama. Now you might say 6 months isn’t long, but how many other BPD relationships go 6 months with zero drama?
Rick I fully understand this article and it makes perfect sense, however it’s a struggle how to ‘thrive’ when I feel so low. It’s been 4 months since he ended it yet I cannot seem to move on. Moving on from a previous ex of double the amount of time I spent with this recent one and I was not in this state of despair. As I write this I am in bed at 6pm feeling suicidal as his last words to me were to take my own life. I know it was no good, I know it was toxic but as I don’t see any happiness within myself, I am obsessing over him and if he’s moved on and how he has probably changed for her. I used to be a strong person and would never see myself in this state. I have no passion to do anything so I can’t thrive as you say it.
Well you just said the main issue: you have no passion to do anything. Only you can find that passion. My advice is you just get up and go for a walk. It’s summer time so just get outside and enjoy the fresh air. It will clear your head and get your creative juices going. The way you move on is by having purpose in life. And finding that is tough for most people – because they sit around all day. So give your head some fresh air, get outside, walk around and think about what you want to do going forward. I walk around ALL THE TIME. It’s the only way to keep my head clear so I can help you and everybody else.
Hi Rick…PLEASE HELP ME. I JUST HAD A WAKE UP CALL …..
I have been in a relationship for about 1 year and a half with this wonderful adventurer explorer man. I love him deeply.
He is BOPOLAR AND ALSO BPD,,,he admitted to me that he has a severe ANGER PROBLEM
SO , OFTEN ( he turns out this anger towards me causing seriously VERBALLY ABUSE AND ALSO PHYSICAL ABUSE )
Now that I just started reading your website 3 days ago,,,I realize my codependency and low self respect that i have for myself ….and how unhealthy is this relationtionship….
I WANT TO FIX MYSELF BECAUSE NOW I SEE THAT I AM A BIG PART OF THIS
I am a very good person who try to be lovely and very patient…but so far everything I say or do is never good enough for him , I let him put me down ….so now I have low self esteem of myself….,
I suffer a lot but I now I want to fix myself, I now understand that I have to do the work to regain my confidence and my sel esteem…because I know that I felt deeply in love with him and didn’t took care of Me and I lost myself….
BUT BECAUSE OF THE PHYSICAL ABUSE , SHOULD I JUST WALK AWAY FROM THIS RELATIONSHIP, ???????.?
I live my life with him , traveling, adventuring exploring together , we have a NOMADE LIFE , we have a different life than the normal People ,I love my life BUT THIS VIOLENCE ID NOT ACCEPTABLE….
WHAT SHOULD I DO.????? Leave him or wait and step by step ( and I am willing to do it, trying to fix myself )
I am desperate …….
Codependency isn’t about fixing the relationship – it’s about fixing yourself and finding your happiness again. It isn’t about making the relationship better. This man you’re dating is out of control. Why don’t you find a man who will respect you for who you are?
Just came across your website and wish I had stumbled upon it sooner.
My girlfriend of the last 2 years just broke up with me (again) and I believe she might have BPD. We are both in our mid-20s. She is my first girlfriend and I am her second boyfriend. This was a consistent occurrence throughout our time together. The first 5 times she broke up with me, I went crying back to her, begging to take me back. I then decided to give myself a little more self worth. The next 3 times she broke up with me, I just said okay and left it. She then came back to me and I took her back, a little easily the first 2 times. The 3rd time, we got into a massive argument and she threw the expensive bracelet I got for her into the car, slammed my car door and went home. She then called me as I was driving away and said to at least message her when I got home safe. I said no and hung up. I thought it was over then.
A week later I received a call from her best friend. My girlfriend had just been admitted to emergency. She had fractured her ankle in 3 places and was in extreme pain. She was begging for me to come. I went and spent the night with her there despite being exhausted from the day before. We tried to work things out but I had so much anger from out past arguments that I kept putting her down while her ankle was in pain. I realized what I was doing after about 2 weeks and then apologized and stopped. I became absolutely supportive of her getting better and being able to walk.
A couple weeks later (we are now into a day ago) we got into an argument while driving to meet up with some of her cousins for a boards game night. When we got out of the car, she consistently told me to go home in public. I said no. I tried to use our secret word in the case that we must listen to the other when it comes up, and I had to use it five times before she agreed to let me walk her to the board games place. Once at the door she asked me to stay, which I did. Her cousins then took her home.
That night I ignored her texts. This was NOT on purpose as my car was having major issues and I had to sleep at a friend’s place close by because I did not feel safe driving it. The next day, I went to the dealership and added to my stress even more after seeing the quote to pay for the car. She kept messaging me apologizing. I finally responded to one of her phone calls in which I was really rude. She hung up. I then received the breakup texts a couple hours later. She called again and I answered. She was very rude and told me she never wanted to see me again.
The reason we argued a lot is because I kept bringing up all the things I did for her. I tried to white knight her as you would say. I expected her to put the same effort in for me and that is what made me angry when she wouldn’t. I see now how wrong that was on my part.
I have not yet let her go as it has only been a few days, and I would love to move on, but I just want to know something. It looks like I handled a woman with BPD terribly. If we were to somehow get back together, did I do too much damage already by trying to “get back” at her for all the pain she caused me? Or is it possible to start again fresh?
Thanks in advance for your help Rick!
There’s no such things as “starting fresh” that’s just a fantasy people have. It’s thinking in the past. Instead, you got to think about the future. So is it possible to get back together? Of course. Is it going to be the same as before? Not likely. If you don’t change your own self, then how can you expect the relationship to be any different?
Hey Rick. I recently stumbled upon your website and this article hit home for me. I have been with my girlfriend now for a total of 14 months. We went out for 8, then I broke up with her for 11 months and have since been back for 4 months. We are very much in love. When I am with her in person, we are perfect. Everything she says on how she feels about me to her random “I love you’s” to us just being lost for words and just smiling and laughing, it is perfect. I see you labeled that as the honeymoon stage but I dont think that is it. We just never lost that playfulness we had when we first met. But despite us hanging out and everything feeling good in person, the hard part is getting her to see me. Throughout our whole relationship she has never asked me to hang out. I always do it and she usually comes but has recently stopped because she has a lot of stress and family problems. She told me she likes to be alone when this happens even though she knows being with me releases all that stress and makes her happy. When I talk to my friends they say you should always see the person at least once a week no matter what and that it isnt a relationship if your not seeing each other. Theres times where I feel the relationship is one sided or that she abandons me but I know those are just negative thoughts that I just tell myself. Another guess is that she is just really indepedent. Im just in a tough spot Rick. When shes stressed or bothered she doesnt like to text, talk on the phone or see me. So instead of being the co dependent and try to “save her” I just say “okay ill let you go. Talk to you later”….its been almost two weeks since We saw each other for she still is troubled with her fam problems. I have since stopped asking her to call me or see me for I want to see her put some effort and ask me. I dont doubt her love for me Rick cuz I know when were in person its real. I am 100% sure on this. I just didnt think it was possible for someone to just not see someone they love that easily. Its a fight to not see her. Before this stage we would see each other like once a week for 3 hours or so. Maybe twice but usually only once. When we talk serious and I tell her how were constantly trying to understand one another and when we fight its from lack of understanding/communication more Than anything. Often she says, i love you for how I take her “distant” self more Than one needs and how she loves me her own special way and loves that I learn to adapt to her behavior cuz when we fight it becomes more stress and problems for her and it pushes her away. She did call me demanding in one fight for always telling her to chill but my answer would be like “cuz you never ask”. Idk Rick. We had a lot of talks and I always feel better after cuz I learn why she acts distant when shes stressed. Is this a normal relationship? Am I handling it right? What should I do? Thanks Rick.
I think being able to understand and communicate when they want to is the key. So good communication is simply saying something like “Look, I like you for who you are, I don’t have any intention of changing you at all. I love who you are.” and even if she doesn’t like herself, you’re still sending the message that you accept her for who she is. And that’s what borderlines really want. So just don’t fall into the trap of always trying to fix her or asking her what’s wrong and all that. Just talk to her like she’s your normal friend and you’ll be fine. When she’s upset, you can always ask her if she wants to talk about it. If she’s insulting you, that’s when you tell her how cute she is when she gets angry.
Oh and I broke up with her the first time because I felt that she wasnt ready to committ and felt that I was giving more than I received. im thinking maybe she just shows her love in a different way like she says she does. I wish you could see us in person. You would think we were soulmates. She is a great woman and very family oriented and we have a lot in common. Same passion for helping people. Same heart and soul. I just happened to learn that we both handle stress and problems VERY differently. She likes to be alone with her fam and I like to be with her and talk it out or just be together and relieve the stress together. I was always under the impression you are there for each other for the GOOD and the BAD. But idk at this point. Let me know what you think. Hoping you can shes some light on this. Thanks Rick.
She’s just independent and needs her space. I’m the same way. I used to be very codependent and clingy. But I fixed myself and now I understand how great it is to be independent. So when she wants her space, just give it to her. Nothing wrong with that at all. It sounds to me that you’re too dependent on her. If your own happiness is influenced by the way she feels towards you, than you have too much dependency on her, and obviously that isn’t healthy.
Yeah your right Rick. Its been a few days since I posted this but I have changed a lot in these few days. Basically it got to the point where she stopped texting me for a day or two…its been almost 3 weeks since we saw each other but the space apart helped me too. I felt her being pushed away from my dependent behavior and thus made drastic changes over night. For about 3 days or so I would just say “dont worry about me..dont worry about us. Just focus on your family. Ill be here. If you need me” and then ill prob send a text later that day hefore I sleep and say “hope you had a good day. You will get through this” and basically motivate her and say im not going anywhere and say goodnight. The next morning I would wake up to a bunch of emoji and “I love you’s” and all that. I guess you can say I let her go to cut my dependency and let her heal. Not break up but I took the pressure off of our relationship on her so she can focus on her own life. Even though I cut some dependency and am happier in my own life, still have a little way to go for its a process. I still miss her and wana see her but I dont let her know that cuz i dont wana come off needy/clingy again. Im just hoping shes able to manage her stress and able to focus on us again. What should I do at this point? Thanks for all the advice. Im so thankful and grateful.
I would say to cut back on the texts you’re sending. But I try not to put a lot of weight on texts. In fact, I tell most people to avoid texting because it’s weak. It takes no effort. It’s hit the tipping point and it’s causing more problems in relationships than ever before. I only go hard on the texting in the very beginning when I’m just starting to date a girl. I never have serious convos over text anymore.
john oliveri says
I cannot thank u enough i love my bpd girlfriend but who cares about labels i enjoy being with my best friend and by the way holy cow i never thou in all my years i am codependent and it time for a change thank you rick sincerely john oliveri
I took all the missteps including the honeymoon period and fatasizing about being in love. I let her make me feel ‘special’ etc. When she suddenly pulled away after saying she was crazy about me, thinks about me all the time, etc, I freaked out. I chased and talked about my feelings, which backfired. I decided not to contact her for about 10 days. When I did, she seemed annoyed and angry and made me out to be some kind of psycho. I also texted her too much when I decided to get back in contact (although I was trying to play it cool)…She doesn’t want any contact with me whatsoever. The writing seems clearly on the wall. I feel that if I had read your articles earlier on, I could have completely avoided almost all of this. It’s hard to trust that boundaries won’t make me lose the relationship. I’m in a lot of pain but recognize that it’s my responsibility completely. Do you think there’s anyway I could get a second chance with her to do things the right way? Less than two weeks ago things seemed amazing. Either way, I need to work on becoming more independent and less needy.
I think you should work on become non-needy. Not less needy. Just don’t be needy at all. As for if this relationship can work out again, of course. But leave it in her hands to chase you and not the other way around.
This blog and your personal insights have changed my life. Thanks so much for all that you do. People with an open mind are finding a TON of value in the material that’s being provided. If you’re ever out in Los Angeles, feel free to look me up. I at least owe you a nice dinner for all of this free content that you’re providing…
Just broke up with my live-in BPD girlfriend about 1 month ago. I’m 29 and she was 23. Throughout my 20’s, I’ve dated a multitude of women. This one was different though. She was smart as a whip and incredibly gorgeous. We had an immediate connection. Went on a multitude of trips, experienced a variety of events, and shared many adventures together. Set pretty simple boundaries, did my own thing, and “played to win.” Really thought we could go places, but she just couldn’t overcome her fear of abandonment. Long story short, she needed CONSTANT affirmation. I simply didn’t have the time or energy to give this to her. This led to her disrespectful raging outbursts to increase in frequency over time. I don’t need this type of behavior in my life, so I cut ties with her and moved on. Taking some time to myself, but I love women… I don’t fear rejection and realize that I’ve got the ability to get going with a plethora of women in LA.
Question: Do you think that I need to be dating older women (25-30) because they tend to be more established and mature? Or, do you think my previous relationship conundrum was more of an anomaly? Everyone’s different after all. Some people just aren’t met for each other permanently. Your advice would be greatly appreciated.
No because women of ALL ages can be crazy, lol. I dated a woman who was 36 and she is just as bat shit crazy as some of the 20 year olds I’ve dated. To me, age is just a number. Focus on dating women who you find beautiful and have a connection with. Don’t worry about the age.
Geoffrey Papsco says
Writing to seek information on recovering myself from a 20 year marriage to my wife who was undiagnosed with BPD. Rick – I’m going to be straight with you. Although I’m divorced, I’m not at all myself yet. Those 20 years of mind bending bizarre behaviors just wrecked me mentally and emotionally and I’m grasping at straws at the moment trying to sort out which way is up. I’m OK. Job is solid, have a very nice place, future looks bright, but I’m feeling awful – like its PTSD or something. Started exercising which is helping, but man – I need a path forward! A road map to realign my thinking away from about what happened, how hard I worked at it, the truckloads of sacrifices I made and how little it all seemed to matter in the end. I’d like to instead begin to feel HOPE. I’d like to find a direction and a purpose, regain my confidence and enjoy whats ahead. Instead, at the moment, I feel used, manipulated and broken inside. I’m shaking with fear at times. BPD is so confusing and disorienting, and frankly, scary to those of us who had NO IDEA their partner has BPD. Can you send me some information that will give me some direction so that I can begin my journey back to me again? Thanks Rick.
It actually is a form of PTSD. A man is nothing without purpose. You need a mission in life. Make it your goal going forward to have a mission, whatever it may be. Get on my email newsletter as I talk about this very often!
Love your site. It’s better than good as it starts within the individual. i.e. ourselves. Feedback: I believe I’ve read all your articles online (non member), good stuff. I recommend having a more articles similar to Geoffrey’s scenario above (married scenarios). i.e. it’s one thing to cut bait while dating. Same concepts apply when married yet there’s more vested interests. It’s not about losing a home, money and such from vested time due to a divorce. But it changes the effect / approach when you have kids, and one doesn’t want to be alienated from their kids via a distortion campaign thru divorce. I’ve experienced the distortion campaigns. That was easy when we had no children. That’s a different feeling / experience with kids.
I’ve been married 14 years to a BPD (undiagnosed but was randomly diagnosed as bi-polar by a shrink 10 years ago: long story but I don’t think she has bi-polar). My marriage was on life support @ day 1. I called off the marriage after my bachelor party; she came running back. After 2 years of marriage, I “stepped out” via separation. She drained $50k out of the account. Long story there too but got the money back due to a kick ass counselor and a life threatening surgery. 15 years later, we’re still together. I learned of BPD by chance of reading online about walking on egg shells 12 years ago. I tied the learnings back to what my counselor used to say in passing. I now shut down the verbal abuse head on by saying stop the emotional bleeding or take it elsewhere. Not perfect, but works almost every time when we are 1×1. Results: no screaming, no name calling, etc. If she starts triangulation / miss leading, I’ll use those terms and say I won’t enable either. She doesn’t like that but it does slow the conversation down big time as she knows deep down what those terms mean.
Still not perfect as one gets tired with the craziness / manipulation. Found out she took some gold out of the house to pay off unknown debts, and I dropped my guard with only having a “talk”. Bad move on my part. 1 month ago she was transferring family money without transparency to pay off credit cards without discussion. I cut off the bank accounts and made her beneficiary only on the prime account. Result: the ice queen has arrived and in parallel we are in counseling about boundaries and she knows I’ve been in touch with divorce attorneys.
No fun, but I’ll be fine. Have more articles for married people bc what Geoffrey describes is real, and one can become off balance completely during the period of years. Dating and being married carry totally different outcomes (kids). Or, in my case; I’ve seen myself wane a few times here and there due to either I’m tired or I find myself concerned about what the kids are observing. i.e. Daddy isn’t the nice one at times and comes across emotionally detached with mom. Yet mom is the hero (I will say she is a great mom).
These girls are usually messed up due to daddy issues. It’s why they go behind your back, don’t trust men, etc. It’s a deep subconscious pain. But, I really like how you are facing things head on and not walking on eggshells. A fact that most guys don’t realize is that ALL women are turned off by men who walk on eggshells. Women friend-zone/cheat on guys who walk on eggshells, who treat her too highly, who are too polite, who put her on a pedestal, etc. All the same thing basically. So keep at it. Women are NOT special just because they have a vagina. They have their flaws just like anybody else, and you MUST knock them down and confront them on that, as you are doing. Keep it up!
I fear I have completely blown my relationship with my suspected BPD ex (didn’t know she was when we were together) because I was codependent.
We were together for seven wonderful months with only three issues arising when we were drinking when she would turn into a different person. I couldn’t stand it on the last night and I completely lost my cool. We discussed it the next day and she has never been more affectionate towards me. I came back to aus and she went to Colombia where I suppose to go and meet her before us both returning to live with each other.
She messaged me out of the blue a month and a half ago and said she needed space because she though I was lying to her, only telling her what she wanted to hear etc. I didn’t know where she was coming from so I did everything to get her to change her mind. I pushed her too far and she broke up with me.
She completely cut me off when I contacted her sister because I was worried about her being sick and stressed (cold) and I thought her sister could help her. She saw it as a complete abuse of trust and betrayal (even though (apart from me) her sister is the only person she confides in).
After extensive loving emails trying to get her back she finally contacted me telling me she had nothing she wanted to say and didn’t want to get back together.
I overreacted and sent her an email outlining that I think she is an emotionally distant person because of the way she was able to close me off so easily.
She finally responded and told me that she thought I showed her my true colours the night of the argument and I have been trying to manipulate her. She told me she wouldn’t respond to anymore of my emails.
I of course sent another email outlining that i did genuinely care for her but of course I didn’t get a response.
I know I need to work on myself and I definitely will be doing everything I can to rid myself of this codependency but do you think there is any chance she will contact me again considering how we left things?
Just stop trying to reach out to her. You guys need to stop putting your girls on a pedestal. It makes no sense emailing back and forth. I know you’re trying to prove your worth, but that mentality alone is why these girls push you away. Got to work on your mentality bro. Got to fix it!
the best article I´ve ever read from you. Can´t believe how detailed you described absolutely everything what I am going through now, how sick I am lying in bed feeling sorry for myself, blaming BPD illness for all, reading all the mistakes I´ve just made .. Can´t start to live my life and can´t forgive myself, him and his parents. After all what I have been doing for our relationship to save I ended up abandoned as the worst person on this planet in eyes of his parents which is the hardest fact for me to accept now as they are the ones who are scared of him to say a word as he admitted suicide for 3x. They only can see me to blame for splitting up again and again and said to me today – stop coming here. I lost the last self-respect and pride today. I´m ashamed of myself and thank you so much for this article as I know now I am not alone feeling like rubbish. Without you I would probably lost what only left- my job and my daughter. Thank you again. I will read this article every day again and again till my brain gets it and my heart stops to feel for them because they don’t deserve me in their lives. Pavla
Best thing you can do is to move forward and find yourself a man who respects you and appreciates you. I promise that once you find someone like this, you’ll quickly move your feelings from the ex to the new boyfriend :)