Mental health assessment time again.

Right now, I’m waiting for a mental health assessment. London has chosen to be kind and offer me help here, so I am seizing it with both hands. I’ve had quite a nervous time getting here and I’m shattered from lack of sleep and battling through the wind and rain.

I want to ask them to fix me. Let’s hope they get the message- my personality has not caused my abuse. My abuse caused bad reactions to life. I will be telling them that.

Wish me luck folks. I have to sit in a room with two men and talk about my assault. This could be a huge trigger.

Why does it take so much time to heal after being with a Narcissist or Psychopath?

Yep, I know, second post of the day, but this is true and speaks to me on such a deep level. I understand this! It makes sense to me so well. I understand even more about my relationship with that psychopath now. This lady is amazing, what strength and courage.

Surviving a Sociopath ~ Regaining Life with a Twist of Wicked Chaos

(This topic comes from a book called Psychopath Free: Recovering from Emotionally Abusive Relationships With Narcissists, Sociopaths, & Other Toxic People)

Relationships with psychopaths take an unusually long time to recover from. Survivors often find themselves frustrated because they haven’t healed as fast as they’d like. They also end up dealing with friends & therapists who give them judgmental advice about how it’s “time to move on”.

Whether you were in a long-term marriage or a quick summer fling, the recovery process will be the same when it comes to a psychopathic encounter. It takes 12-24 months to get your heart back in a good place, and even after that, you might have tough days. I certainly do!

The important thing here is to stop blaming yourself. Stop wishing it would go faster. Stop thinking that the psychopath somehow “wins” if you’re still hurting. They are out of the…

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Please sign this and share, for the abuse survivors.

Please sign this and share, for the abuse survivors.

I’m sure a lot of you will have heard of the horrific acts the Lostprophets frontman Ian Watkins has perpetrated. He should not be allowed the money from the plays of his records, nor should he be allowed money from the record sales, I think. These children he hurt so badly deserve the money to access therapy, or at least a charity that can help them certainly does. I’ve signed, not only because of my experience with assault, but for a wonderful girl on here who survived ritual abuse, and I want those children to be able to slowly heal themselves with expert help.

I hope that there have been no more children damaged by this man, and I hope karma catches up with the sick fiend. I wish that the poor children didn’t suffer as they did, and I wish that they soon learn that not everyone in the world is as callous and cruel as their parents and this evil man.

Peace all.

BPD/EUPD, Depression, trust and raw skin.

I had a conversation with my lovely friend Y last night. She was worried about her BPD diagnosis, and she said to me that she fits the criteria and that she didn’t understand why I am so against the diagnosis of BPD/EUPD.

Because I love her, and I want her (and you all) to understand, I am going to try and explain further.

-I have a problem with one of the descriptive words of BPD/EUPD – the PERSONALITY part. I don’t believe for a second that life experiences can alter your personality, or that anyone is born with a flawed personality, like the diagnosis seems to suggest. It essentially says to women, “Hey, guess what, because your personality is disordered, you are to blame for every bad thing that has happened to you,”. That isn’t unlike a certain psychopathic ex boyfriend I once had- he told me the same thing a lot. I think it is cruel for a psychiatrist to tell someone that, because they psych in question is now taking the part of my abusive ex and telling you you are to blame. In reality, you are not. BAD PEOPLE did this to you. They have hurt you and damaged you- BUT they have NOT damaged your personality, just your REACTIONS to other people and to the way they behave.

Let me explain the difference between PERSONALITY and REACTIONS. Your personality is, to me at least, what makes you YOU. It is responsible for whether you like the colour green or blue best. It is responsible for that wrench in your stomach when you have to see a friend in pain. It dictates what music you enjoy, what art pleases you best, how outgoing or shy or funny you are. It is, I think, a constant. Personally speaking, I have been told I’m warm, funny and friendly by people I know and people I have only just met. I love the colours red, black and silver. Sunsets are my favourite time of the day. I love really cold autumn mornings. I like laughing at twists of words and stupid animals. I enjoy sitting with good friends, maybe not saying anything, but just chilling and watching a film or something. That, to me, is WHO I AM. My PERSONALITY.

It is SO MUCH MORE than your reactions.

REACTIONS are how you are trained by your life to react to things that happen to you. For example, I had an abusive ex-boyfriend. He raped me. He called me worthless. He made me feel about a centimetre tall. So, when someone speaks or acts in the same way as he did, I become wary, hyper-vigilant, frightened and angry. Angry because he still has the power to affect me this way.

So imagine that as a small child, I was often ill, and I wasn’t able to join in with making friends and having fun with other children. Imagine I was homeschooled maybe, trapped in the house without the companionship of other children. Perhaps I just happened to live a life where my parents were so busy working that I barely ever saw them, and as a result had a stream of nannies. Wouldn’t that make you ‘frantically avoid abandonment, whether real or imagined’, in your everyday relationships as an adult? That is A REACTION to your past. It is because you never learned to trust, and you were so betrayed by the people who were supposed to teach you that. If you were sick, IT WAS NOT YOUR FAULT. How could you expect to learn to trust when you were trapped indoors? Now you have grown up, how can you be expected to trust anyone? You were never sure of it as a child.

The good news about that side of things, I think is that REACTIONS are LEARNED BEHAVIOUR. We learned, as small children, that trust didn’t exist, so we learned to rely on ourselves. That small child inside still wants to trust. He or She is aching for a simple trust-based relationship, and He or She can still have that. You learned not to trust, so you can unlearn that.

I think another problem here is that now, you have been hurt so many times, you feel like a creature without skin- a little stripped rabbit, bloodied and naked and frightened. You feel desperate and snappy because it HURTS so much to trust. I think that also, people are born like this- not snappy and frightened, but with the ability to FEEL emotion really intensely. I know I feel love, hate, fear, joy, nervousness etc much much more strongly than a lot of my friends. I get worried about things they don’t, because they grew their fur more thickly than I did. They don’t contend with the same damage as I do because they are not exposed to emotion with naked raw skin.

The next part of this is this: how do you learn to trust again with such a hurtful past and such raw skin?

It isn’t easy, I assure you, but I will try and find out more to add to my own insights.

I have decided that I over-think my relationships. I try too hard to second guess because I want to please the other person so badly. This is probably true for other people diagnosed with EUPD/BPD. My current line of thought on the matter is this: DON’T! Give yourself a break. Other people are probably not thinking about what you just said in the same way that you are. They are probably not even concerned with it! Take a step back, mentally, and take some deep breaths. Tell yourself that other people actually like you. Let yourself just accept the comment or conversation for what it is, and try not to shred it apart looking for the hint that the other person is using you or is going to hurt you. Most people in the world are good, and want to form a relationship with you based on trust. If they get it a little wrong sometimes, it is because they are human, like you. If they are worth trusting, they will see that too, and they will most likely let you know when they have slipped up. The healing part of learning that someone is worth trusting is so fantastic- it’s how I have re-built my relationship with my parents when the ex tried to destroy it. I won, and I trusted. It isn’t easy, and I still have issues, but you can do it too.

Start small. Tell a person you want to trust a small, true thing about you. See if they react well. They probably will. Try again, maybe when you feel ready, with something a little bigger. Build it up that way.

Another thing to bear in mind is the way you have been CONDITIONED to react, whether it was by someone abusive or by a lonely past. You are most likely going to try and cling on to affection in any form, regardless of whether it hurts you. That isn’t trust, nor is it affection. It is damaging you all over again. Something I have done is sit myself down and taken a long, hard look at how it would feel to be abandoned by various people I love in my life. I have gone through in my head the pain that this would involve, and then I have taken myself back out of that dark place, and I have thought of several reasons that this would never happen.

-The people I am close to love me for me. They don’t care about my flaws. They will be there until the end of time. I would literally have to kill puppies to get them to hate me, and I bet even then a couple would stick around and ask me why I did it. This is true for other people too. Trust me. Ask them.

-If, for some reason, someone I am close to abandons me, I have to think about it rationally. Why would they abandon me? It is NOT because I am the most wicked and horrible person around. Maybe they have their own problems to deal with, and they are being selfish. Maybe they have trust issues of their own. Most importantly, though, do you really want to cling onto someone who WOULD just drop you and leave you alone? Where is the trust there? They are not worth it if they didn’t trust you enough to hold onto you. You, and your loves and hates and sense of humour. Your appreciations, your film choices, your hairstyle. Why drop this unique person and wander off? It’s callous, and it doesn’t deserve a second of your time.

 

These are jumbled thoughts, but I hope they help you, Y, and anyone else given this stupid diagnosis. I do not believe for an instant your personality is flawed. I believe your reactions to the outside world are damaged, but that this damage can be repaired by giving yourself a chance to trust.

I’m right here if you want to ask me more. Hopefully I explained myself clearly.

Psychopaths… and dating one.

I read Sista Sertraline’s blog post about the Channel 4 programme “Psychopath Night”, and I instantly went onto 4oD and watched it for myself. I am fascinated by the human mind and always have been, and especially now I have begun to recognise my own mental health problems. I thought at least it would be illuminating for me to watch considering that I have suspected for a long while now that my ex-boyfriend was a genuine psychopath.

I was literally glued from the word go. An FBI profiler (now retired), several psychiatrists and a clinical psychologist or two were the panel of experts, with years of case histories of violent and non-violent psychopaths they had dealt with. Film clips were also used to point out the key traits of psychopathy, from such films as The Dark Knight (the Joker), We Need to Talk about Kevin (Kevin himself, from being a child), and the most obvious one, Psycho itself. Norman Bates, however, was supposedly most likely to be suffering from multiple personality disorder, which I think could be damaging for real MPD sufferers if it became widespread knowledge. I know the DID/MPD sufferers on this blog network are lovely people, as are their alters, who wouldn’t hurt a fly. Personally, I reckon there is a level of psychopathy in Norman Bates: his charm; his lack of empathy; his brutality without remorse.

Anyway, the programme listed many different traits that psychopaths display. Three of them are the ones I’ve listed above. Others include being able to lie fluently, to build truths that even the least gullible and most wise of folk would trust. They are able to switch from being charming and gracious to frightening and demanding within an instant. They have a sense of their own vital importance to the world. They are grandiose, craving to be the centre of attention. They view themselves as ‘a cat in a world of mice’, and see other people as inferior- usually in intelligence and intellectual ability. A psychopath blames others for things going wrong, regardless of whether or not it is their fault. The psychopath can never be wrong. They’re cool-headed in a crisis, mostly because they are fearless. They are narcissistic, intelligent, and determined to step on or over others to get at what they really want.

Notice any similarities, folks, to a certain ex I have written about?

I watched the rest of the programme and thought hard when it had finished. My ex displayed these qualities to their utmost in a lot of cases. He would only use emotion to blackmail me emotionally, or manipulate me into doing something he wanted. I was pressurised into the relationship to begin with because he made an overt declaration of his ‘undying love’ to me, and I replied in kind because I didn’t want to hurt his feelings. He had become special to me, but more along the lines of a friend, but his charm ensured that I was captivated by this declaration of love. I was lied to very convincingly- he made me and my friend B believe we were all angels, and it took me two years to shake off that delusion. I was charmed by him into doing things I didn’t want to, and I was emotionally abused if I said no to any of his demands. He would become frightening and violently angry, and would shout and become cruel very quickly if I didn’t do what he said. I couldn’t understand why others found him charming sometimes, but he would only charm those he wanted to get to lose their suspicions about our relationship. In circles he wanted to, he would often be the centre of attention, and a lot of his family saw him as the ‘clever’ one, the one with the high IQ, the one who was a genius and was worth praising a lot. I saw how his mother would ask his advice, as if she was the child, and he would advise her with a huge sense of his own importance.

Of course, no matter what had happened between us, he would ALWAYS blame me, whether or not it was my fault. He was always right.

There is a psychopathy scale- I took the online test out of curiosity, to see where I fell- 21%, an empathic, warm sort of person. I did the test for my ex- 82%.

There you go. I dated a psychopath.

Whilst I must stress the test is only for informative/amusement purposes, the questions asked were the same as those posed to two people who were featured as being high on the psychopathic spectrum in the TV programme. I am aware that they were tested by the psychologist, and he identified them as being high on the spectrum.

Says an awful lot about my ex. He was a psychopath, pure and simple.

This is a weirdly comforting thing for me. It means that when I felt like the world’s worst girl, I was being manipulated by a master liar. When I was being emotionally manipulated, I was collateral damage in his path to getting what he wanted. When I was crying and hurt and feeling so alone, it was because he wanted me there, because that made him the centre of my attention in his threats to leave me.

I was innocent. I am still innocent. I wasn’t myself, because I was in the thrall of a psychopath.

I feel like I’ve reached an important point here in realising that I am not to blame, but now I also know WHY I am not to blame. I have always been the sort of person who wants legitimate answers to my questions, and now I have them.

For anyone else who has read this and found themselves linking the psychopathic traits I have mentioned to someone they know, or are in a relationship with- I would recommend the following:

GET.OUT.

Get out, because it is not your fault, and you are not to blame. You do not deserve the abuse and manipulation you are receiving. You do not deserve this cruelty, and this agony. I can empathise and I can understand.

Please make a plan to leave. Pack a bag with basic essentials such as money, phone, overnight clothes and underwear. Make sure you make plans to go somewhere safe, even if it has to be the police station or the hospital. Do it when you know the person in question will be out for a while. If you have children with you, it’s doubly important to go as soon as you can, but plan where you can go first of all. There are websites out there for refuge shelters which can teach you to erase your search history so the person abusing you doesn’t know where you’re going, and so you can be safe. DuckDuckGo is a search engine which doesn’t record a history of what you have searched either, so try using that.

I hope this post is illuminating and I hope it helps. I’ll post the link to the psychopathic spectrum test below, and I will post a link to other sites that are connected with this/might be useful.

For me, I feel more at peace with myself, and I realise now that I wasn’t EVER to blame.

 

http://www.channel4.com/programmes/psychopath-night/4od

https://duckduckgo.com/

http://www.channel4.com/programmes/psychopath-night?intcmp=brandabout

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http://www.thesurvivorstrust.org/

Manipulative? Ugh, please, YOU are the manipulative one, Mr Shrink.

I’m once again researching BPD/EUPD and I am once again filled with disgust about it. It is nothing but an ugly sham.

The website I gleaned the link below from purports to be ‘helpful’ to BPD/EUPD sufferers, and the link is supposed to be to get people to ‘think twice’ about calling someone with BPD/EUPD ‘manipulative’ or ‘demanding’. Unfortunately, it’s worded in such a way that it just reinforces these preconceptions.

Take, for instance, this:

Manipulative

Dictionary definition: “To manage or influence skillfully, esp. in an unfair manner: to manipulate people’s feelings”

This is a very harsh comment to make about someone that is using the best skills they have available. Try to imagine what someone with a personality disorder has gone through, and then think about what extremes you would go to protect yourself. Isn’t it true that life is a fight for survival or would it be seen that way through the eyes of someone with a personality disorder?

Now hold it right there, folks. This is cleverly written. I think I was taken in at first glance- I thought that there was another medical professional out there willing to think. Now I’ve re-read it, that isn’t the case. The words ‘the best skills they have available’ makes out that a BPD/EUPD sufferer is literally incapable of normal interaction at all. Moreover, it’s still saying in a roundabout way that sufferers are actually manipulative. Apparently it’s because ‘we are lacking in skills to function normally’.

I call bullshit on that one.

I have said many times I don’t believe it should be recognised as a disorder, but to actually go as far as to say that one of the ‘symptoms’ of this ‘personality disorder’ is manipulation actually blows my mind. To say that if you have suffered so badly from abuse, the only tool left to you is manipulation is utterly demeaning.

I was raped. I was emotionally and sexually abused. I was laughed at, humiliated publicly, and, to cap it all off, I was manipulated.

Now I’m intimate with the horrors of emotional blackmail, so you would think I might be the least bit capable of recognising it in myself. Guess what, shrink- manipulation is a zero here. I have asked countless friends and family members to tell me if I am, and they have said no, not at all. I haven’t seen its ugly claws in me, and I know I would lose so many friends if I really was manipulative. Bullshit.

So I will keep demanding that this archaic, misogynistic diagnosis is ended. It seems to me the epitome of manipulation for a shrink to convince everyone who knows you that you are a horrible bitch who brought this on yourself for having a “disordered personality”. Isn’t that true manipulation?

It feels to me how I used to feel with the ex- like no-one would believe me, like I was a crazy bitch, a drama queen, and I needed to keep my mouth shut.

All you other BPD/EUPD girls out there, I believe you. You are not this label, and you are not manipulative. This label should not have been given to you, and it should not exist.

Come join me in defiance. It’s a really good feeling.

(PS: Sista, I’m talking to you too. I believe you have PTSD, like me. We’re in this together. x)

Time to shake things up.

I went to my hearing voices group yesterday. One of the topics of conversation that came up was “does schizophrenia exist,” i.e. Should it exist as a diagnosis or not?

It was an intense debate. Several of the members of our group have it as their diagnosis and all have very conflicting beliefs on it. One person is convinced it is a medical label for the disease they suffer. Another says that it is partly the illness, and partly down to other spiritual entities that they hear voices. Yet another believes that they are hearing the spirits of the dead.

I decided I would put my half-penneth’s worth in. I told the group I believed that there is a line I draw in the sand depending on the feelings I experience between seeing ghosts and hallucinations. My ghosts are always calm and non-threatening, whereas the hallucinations terrify me. They have an element of personal threat, and I feel physically vulnerable and often frightened for my own life. I said I felt like by drawing this line, I am able to differentiate a hallucenogenic experience and a supernatural one, and it’s therefore easier to tell when I’m ill.

The group received this well, I think. It made room for everyone’s beliefs and also I hope it will help them draw their own lines in the sand.

Anyway, I was struck by the bold statement of “schizophrenia does not exist.” It made me think. If people diagnosed with the condition are reluctant to believe the veracity of their diagnosis, then what does this say about psychiatry? Moreover, what does this say about BPD/EUPD?

My feelings on the subject are pretty clear- I believe that a lot of women are thrown into the “crazy place” when they are given this diagnosis, simply for not fitting one simple diagnosis/ pissing off their therapist/ being a woman with bad life experiences. We are effectively told that we were to blame for every single last bit of the horrific trauma we suffered, for all the horrible people who hurt us, and for not being a more stable person. I believe that EUPD/BPD should be changed from a personality disorder, and reclassified as a part of PTSD- face it guys, I was abused by my ex and that has caused my problems, NOT the other way round. I think the whole damaging label should be discredited as hogswill- seriously, people used to be burned at the stake for hearing voices, so why persist with this chauvinistic and medieval label?

I went to see one of the psychiatric nurses who help run the group at the end and I told her of my grievances. Brilliantly, she agreed completely with me. She thinks that I’m right, and she is working in the system!! I was so pleased to talk to her on the subject and hear that another person in the mental health profession thinks that this diagnosis is wrong for so many women. She agreed with me that there isn’t enough research done, that the real questions are not answered (such as why in the hell are we not addressing the people causing the abuse? Why are psychiatrists blaming the victim for her problems?) and that she also believes it is a form of PTSD.

Good. That pleases me.

I think it is about time we people diagnosed with this archaic and demeaning “disorder” spoke out. I think it is time for us to stand together, demand PROPER help, and demand to be listened to. We know the insides of our own heads better than anyone, and we know that being listened to, as a normal human being, really helps us.

I think I am going to be raising awareness of this fallacy, and I won’t stop until I have made some serious noise. The medical profession HAS to start seeing things our way.

(Also, in a completely weird side note, when I went to the doctor recently, I discovered that the psychiatrist wrote “diagnosis unknown” down, despite telling me I had EUPD. What the hell!? Yet another instance of tell your patient one thing and write down another. Lack of bloody transparency. )

I’m here with you, people. Let’s get this started. Time to shake things up.