Living on a Tightrope- Borderline Personality Disorder

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My name is Carissa Wright and I am 26 years of age. I may appear to you as a normal functioning human being. I have a job, I play sport and I have friends. But I also have a disorder. I am a sufferer and recovery of the mental illness which is borderline personalty disorder.

There are many definitions on the internet to describe this illness. I simply put it this way- its like balancing on a tight rope of emotions and pain so severe that they feel almost impossible to control. But this isn’t the case.

I have a long history of emotional and psychical abuse which started as young as two years of age. I don’t think I had the genetics for this mental health disorder, my therapist in the past has said it stems from the trauma and abuse from my childhood.

I was diagnosed at the age of 17 after my first suicide attempt. It was hard to swallow at first. I felt confused, hurt, angry and despair. I was lost and scared, and I didn’t talk about the disorder with anyone. A lot of people would not know what this disorder is as its not as common as depression and anxiety and the stigma surrounding it makes the people with BPD feel stranger to everyone around them and not consider what society labels as ‘normal’ at all.

Ive been through it all. 6 suicides attempts, heart break, failed relationships and people shunning me because I am often very misunderstood. But out of all the negatives is the positive- I am still living as best I can with a severe mental disorder so bad that sometimes I would rather wish I was peacefully dead then suffering the intense emotions my body has under went. Here is how I over came and worked to recover.

I attended DBT back in 2014. Its a behavioural therapy which changes your thought patterns and to break it down to process your emotions and feelings in a more helpful way. It opened my brain up so much and it made me more confident and strong. I can get through this. Even on the worst days I am stronger then what society views me as and what the impact of others has done to me. I am worth being here, I am as valuable as everyone around me is and I am not ashamed to have this disorder. It is a part of me but it doesn’t define me. Im also very lucky to have the support network I do. My closest friends love me for me, and thats all BPD suffers long for. To be loved and cared about, at their very worst.

I have also started a blog to help my recovery. Its an educational outlet and its helping fight the stigma surrounding this disorder and mental health. Its time to confront these issues and bring them to life. Mental health is as real as any other illness, and just because you can’t psychically see it, doesn’t mean it isn’t there. I am openly talking about one of the biggest problems in society today and I will not stop until I help people become a bit more aware of one of the most leading illness’s in the world.

Carissa

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  • Elaine Kies

    Hi,
    I am also a 26 year old female with BPD. I had been diagnosed with anxiety and depression at age 14 after a school based constable saw me punching walls and cutting myself with scissors at school.
    I felt like something was wrong with this diagnosis when i realised how much I was feeling like you were (the tightrope walking) when I was 24 and went to see another psychiatrist, thinking I may have bipolar disorder or something. No. BPD was the diagnosis. Some people I have told have accepted it when they read the description online but some haven’t. However for me personally, when my psychiatrist was describing what it was, I related to it so well I almost cried. I had a diagnosis and it fit so well to what I was feeling.
    I am on the outside, a normal person, I play sports when my knee agrees, I work as a nurse, am studying at Uni, drive a car, work out at the gym and have a reasonable social life.
    on the inside I feel as though I am fighting a war against my emotions. One minute I am happy and on a high, next second I am down in the dirt and trying hard not to burst into tears.
    I have not started DBT yet but I know I should.
    I guess I was just waiting on a sign that it would work.
    thank you for inspiring me to go ahead with it 🙂

  • Carissa Wright

    A pleasure 🙂 I am glad I could help

  • Sam

    Hi. Wonderful story. I’ve heard DBT does amazing things. I’m glad you have people that love you for you that’s so important

  • Carissa Wright

    Thank you Sam 🙂