This is a true, personal account of a recent night out that turned bad, very bad and how in such a panic to get some ‘real’ help for my BPD I made an already bad situation into something even worse…
*Trigger warning* – there is discussion of self-harm attempts in this post and bad language.
Thursday was a bad day with physio on my knee at 9am, therapy session at 1.30pm and then I had a biopsy for cervical cancer at 3pm. To say I was an emotional wreck after all that is an understatement.
When I got home from the hospital my kids were waiting for my ex to pick them up to go for dinner with him and I didn’t want to end up seeing him in the state I was in because he cares ‘too much’ and his overly sympathetic, pampering would have upset me further and worse of all he would want to ‘talk’ which drives me crazy how much talking he does now, when I needed it in the past to ‘help’ our relationship I couldn’t get him to talk but since I told him I was moving out (and ever since) he talks my ears off and pushes me to talk too, even when I have nothing to say. So, I had to get away from my house, but I knew I needed to be around people so I went to the place where we all hang out – the pub.
My closest friends there were not in that day (which was not good either) it just happened the day I needed them most they were all working late shifts at work so I couldn’t see any of them. It was now about 5pm and I hadn’t really eaten anything other than a snack all day. Other friends were there but they are not so close and supportive/helpful. I started out not drinking alcohol as I wasn’t sure it was a good idea to drink in the mood I was in (low). But later one of my closer friends did come in and encouraged me to have a drink to unwind, and at first it did help. But, foolishly I kept on drinking double shots all evening.
At some point in the evening a guy I have had an on-off thing with over the past year came into the pub and as usual the chemistry between us was high – despite him trying hard to keep a distance for once.
We moved on to another late bar after the pub closed around midnight and I ended up spending about an hour chatting with this guy while still drinking.
I often felt that the emotional connection with this guy must not be strong as his changeable behaviour from wanting me to being dismissive behaviour had never been a trigger for my BPD emotions before.
The conversation was frustrating, exciting and annoying all at once, it was like talking to a mirror, I realised he was exhibiting ‘splitting’ one of my BPD traits, only whereas mine has time delays his was within seconds.
One minute he would be saying great things that made me feel he considered me an angel he adores, followed almost instantly by nasty, scathing hurtful comments that brought tears to my eyes and made me feel he hates me.
In the end I was becoming so angry I stormed off, which was a good thing, if only I hadn’t stopped outside the bar, turned round and gone back.
I ran at him and started throwing punches like some fighter from a cage fighting match (onlookers later told me I launched at him like a professional boxer!) after landing a number of punches on him that sent him flying between tables the door staff came over at which point I just held my hands up and left.
It was this that made me realise he had gotten to a part of me no-one ever has before, the deepest emotion I bury, anger, non-one has ever hurt me enough to stimulate an outburst of rage like this where I have physically attacked them! I also really felt something else too, that he has BPD too, is this why our chemistry and constant splitting has been so intense over the past year? Because we are so alike?
Once outside the bar I collapsed on the floor in tears, I have never (since I was a child) lashed out at anyone like that before. I was devastated and wanted to die, how could I hit someone!?
While curled up in a ball outside the bar some drunk yobbo decided it would be funny it sit on my head. The door staff immediately dragged the bloke away and told him to ‘leave the poor girl alone’ but it was too late, he had made me snap again, I leapt up and ran for him screaming something about him ‘being a cunt’ and ‘picking on girls’ and ‘come back here if you think you’re so hard’ the door staff blocked me getting to him and his mates (all of these being people I did not know) tried to get him in the taxi as he tried to come back for me yelling ‘oh yeah, come on then’ which just made me launch again in a fighting stance, fists tight and bellowing ‘I’ll rip your heart out and eat it in front of you weedy little scum cunt!!’ luckily people stopped us from getting at each other or who knows what damage would’ve been done. But, the police were just over the road and the door staff decided to get them to come and have a word with me.
This is when things got even worse, the police were not very nice from the start – they obviously hate dealing with drunk people, only I wasn’t as drunk as I seemed, I was more upset and distressed than anything (along with the anger).
The patronizing, rude, arrogant way they spoke to me when I was now in full on ‘hate myself, want to die’ mode just provoked me further.
I yelled at them that ‘I’m not drunk I’m mental, I have borderline personality disorder and you need to section me under the mental health act before anything worse happens’ at this I was called a ‘stupid mare’ by one officer and another told me to ‘grow-up’.
I had found a broken plastic fork on the floor where I was sat and was now slicing at my wrist with this. The police decided they had had enough of me and wanted to cart me off home; they picked me up, handcuffed me and dragged me to their van.
I cried through the journey.
When we arrived at my home I wouldn’t get out of the van (they had found my address on ID in my bag). They got my son out to see if he could convince me to get out but by now I was convinced the only way to get the help I have been lacking for my BPD was if I got them to take me in and either assessed or sectioned or something.
I had now got my hands out of the handcuffs which royally pissed off the officers their comment being ‘how the fuck did you get out of those?’ and then shoving me down viciously (resulting in a grazed knee as I went down and bruised shoulder and forehead to go with the bruises on my arms where they had gripped me before) and replaced the handcuffs much tighter this time (I still attempted to get my hands out again which left them bruised and swollen as the cuffs dug in tightly).
Now mega pissed off with me they arrested me for drunk and disorderly and took me back to the station, during the whole ride I banged my head on the van in frustration and despair, which resulted in further abuse and insults from the officers and me yelling at them ‘You have no fucking idea you idiotic cunts, look up borderline personality disorder, and take some mental health awareness training, you wasters’ and repeating my request to be sectioned.
On arrival at the station, it was now about 2am I again became distraught at the officers interpretation of the events as he told the custody officer and tried to correct him, but the custody officer wouldn’t listen so I smashed my head into his desk at which point they yanked me straight into a cell and held me on the floor until all I could do was cry.
They released me once they had made me promise to just lay there. Then three female officers came in and I had to be strip searched due to now being a ‘suicide’ risk, all my clothes were taken away and I was given a padded top and shorts to wear.
They wanted me to remove my piercings and rings too but the rings wouldn’t budge due to my hands being so swollen from trying to get out of the handcuffs and I could not remove my piercings due to them being new.
I was then given a blanket and locked in the cell. A 7 by 9 foot yellow walled box, with a concrete slab bed sporting a blue plastic mattress and pillow, and a toilet in a sectioned off bit of the room, for which I could not figure out if there was a flushing mechanism when I needed to use it later.
I lay there for hours, not sleeping just wondering when I was going to see someone. Eventually the nurse came and took me for assessment, I explained about my BPD and not having any help and that was the only reason I was here rather than having been dropped home. She took notes, put a plaster on my knee and told me the doctor would see me in the morning. I was then taken back to my cell.
I had no idea of time as I lay waiting, unable to sleep or keep warm. I may have dozed briefly as I lay there but I never slept properly or for more than a few minutes.
Once in a while the slot in the door would open and I would be offered food and drink which I refused every time as I was not hungry or thirsty at all.
Sometimes I would press the button on the wall to call for attention to ask when the doctor was coming, it was a good job I didn’t need any urgent attention as it often took a very long time and many presses before someone came.
I was given another blanket at some point due to shivering so much when they asked if I wanted a drink.
Eventually the doctor came and he seemed uninterested in doing anything, he made a call to the crisis team (despite me already saying they wouldn’t do anything) and true to form they said there was nothing they could do as I’m not a patient, so it’s back to the GP again.
I laughed at him and said, well don’t expect me to speak to them cause I’ve been going to the point they are sick of seeing me and still I’m just on waiting lists as I have been since 2010 (takes the piss a bit, aren’t there supposed to be maximum waiting times on the NHS???) and I said I won’t see a GP again cause they are useless.
I was taken back to my cell and told they would speak to me shortly when the doctor had spoken to the custody sergeant.
After another long wait, I pressed the buzzer asking when I could go and this happened a number of times, each time I was told they were waiting for the doctor to call back; he was apparently trying to get something sorted for me…
Eventually I pressed the buzzer to ask if I could have my clothes back as I was so cold, at this point I was told that I could have them soon, when the female officer returned from her break and that they had just had the call from the doctor and had the crisis team number for me, so they would process me when the female officer was back and I would be released.
It must have been another half an hour before the female officer finally came with my clothes.
I was then taken through to have my DNA, fingerprints and photograph taken.
Finally at the front desk of the custody suite I was told they were issuing an £80 fixed penalty fine for drunk and disorderly, which meant I wouldn’t have a criminal record (slightly incorrect, my friend who is a PSCO said this penalty will show up on my record) and I was free to go, they would even drop me home.
I signed the penalty notice and signed for my property before being escorted out of the building where I got to have my first cigarette in 12 hours, yes, it was now 2pm.
I had been in the cell for 12 hours. Not interviewed, not questioned, no statement taken – just five minutes with a nurse and five minutes with a doctor, and for what? To leave with the number for the same crisis team that when I called them earlier this year told me to call my GP because they can only help people who are current patients!!??
I wanted help, and all I got was a goddamn fine…
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