Further progress in recovering from BPD

This is me! The widow with 5 colours in her hair – yeah I have yellow, orange, red, green and violet colours in my hair now! lol Photo Credit : Sharon Howard

I haven’t posted anything I’ve written myself since September and it’s been even longer since I was writing on a regular basis but it’s not a bad thing that I haven’t been writing, honestly it’s not. I’ve not been writing because my life has continued to be on the up.

Even if (as I said in September) there are still many battles I continue to face on the whole life is continuing to move onwards and upwards.

So I thought it was time to share another progress update on the good, the bad and the ugly of how I am continuing in my recovery from BPD. Judge for yourselves if you think I am doing well! 😉

Back in September I told you about how I was struggling against triggers that were bringing down my mood and pushing me close to reacting with typical BPD responses – but that I just about managed to stay strong enough and not self-harm or commit any other crisis mode outburst.

The key problems I was facing then were – work (lack of), education (unable to do the course I wanted), finances (tax credits errors leaving me short of money) and relationships (almost getting into one with the wrong person).

Two months on and my situation has changed again, first an update on those issues from September…

The Good and Bad

Work – All the hard work trying to find a job has finally paid off 😀 I have managed to secure a role as administrative support secretary with the Clinical Genetics Service at Birmingham Women’s Hospital. I’ve been working there for a month now and love it! It’s only a six month contract while the person whose role I am doing is on secondment in another department but there’s a chance I could keep the position if she does not return and of course when you are in a job it’s always easier to find another.

So, I am still looking at other opportunities and applying for other jobs because I may not get to keep this one and also realistically I need something that pays more due to having to maintain a three-bed home off only my income. But for the time being I have a job I enjoy and it just feels so good to be back at work 😀

Education – I’m still doing my short OU course and have scrapped the idea of doing the DTLLS seeing as I was unable to get any teaching hours, it’s something I could look at again another time if my situation changes again.

Finances – The tax credits screw up finally got sorted so all is good, however having started work now means my finances are going to get all messed up again. I will be worse off for working due to having to pay more of my rent and council tax myself instead of benefits covering them and I have a massive travel bill each month getting to and from work. But, I would rather be worse off and working than not working!

The biggest financial issue I have now is dealing with a huge gas bill (when it turns up). My gas supplier SPARK ENERGY screwed up back in March and as a result I haven’t paid for any gas between then and now, almost 9 months! I tried many times to sort it out with them but their customer service is appalling and in the end I had to complain to the energy ombudsman to try and get it sorted. I have now arranged to switch supplier after the energy ombudsman sorted it out but I have still not been billed by Spark and have only received a single letter from them acknowledging the energy ombudsman’s decision :/ I wasn’t pleased that for being messed about so much, screwed over and put in a position of having a huge bill that I would not have had (cause I would have paid for my gas monthly) all I get is a £50 goodwill gesture applied to my account with Spark – heck it’s probably cost me more than that in phone calls and letters trying to sort it out! 😦 but at least it will be sorted soon and hopefully my new supplier will be better!!

Relationships – I think it was a good thing I didn’t get into that potential relationship! I have been having a great time in my ‘non-relationship’ situation with this guy I have been ‘seeing’ for about six months now, but like I say it’s not a relationship, more like a friendship with benefits, even if we spend almost every weekend together and don’t really see anyone else. There is no pressure, no commitment. We just enjoy each others company, hanging out at mine playing guitar hero and watching films, and sometimes we will go out and do other things, we’ve been go-karting and to the cinema loads. Of course doing these things makes other people put labels on it, saying we are ‘dating’ and in a ‘relationship’ but we don’t see it that way and are happy to carry on as we are and while it suits us both I don’t see any harm in it. It may not last much longer or could be the start of something much more, I don’t mind either way, I’m just enjoying it while it is happening 🙂

So good and bad in there… now for the ugly, the problems I am currently handling and the pressures these have yet again put on my coping abilities…

The Ugly

Friendships – This is where things have really gotten ugly, and the main reason for it seems to be my so-called friends (including my best mate of around 30 years) not liking my ‘non-relationship’ situation mentioned above… Anyway, it’s a long and complicated story all in all but I’ll try to summarise it.

When I first started seeing this guy the girls weren’t happy, he’s 11 year younger than me and has a bit a of thing for coke. Given my problems with BPD there were concerns that getting involved, even just as friends, with someone who spends a lot of time getting high could lead to more problems for me. I can understand and accept these concerns I have been very vulnerable and it could have been an issue and yeah as I said a earlier this year I did try some, okay I did a fair bit for a while, but it never became a problem even though I continued seeing this guy (and still am).

Spending time with him did lead to me not going out as much, not sitting in the pub with the girls wasting time gossiping and playing pool every single day – this was what they didn’t like. After several times of me bailing early on an evening to go home and be with this guy rather than stay out getting pissed the girls began to get more arsey about it and started slagging me off behind my back and threatening to quit the pool team and ‘not be my friend anymore’.

It all came to a head last week when I went to the cinema with this guy rather than sit in the pub with rowing couples playing gooseberry all night and the next day I asked one of the girls who owes me a lot of money if she was gonna pay this months instalment (which she’d already said twice she was gonna and still hadn’t) and she kicked off threatening to quit the pool team yet again. Sick of it all I quit myself, I don’t do threats I act and I don’t appreciate someone thinking they can use something as a weapon against me to make me do what they want, so I took the weapon away, less than a year ago this kind of behaviour would have been a massive trigger that would send me into a spiral of self-harm and feeling suicidal but not this time, further proof of my strength and progress!

Things escalated this week when that same person wrongly assumed a facebook status was about her and like a pack of hyenas the group ganged up on me writing nasty abusive things on facebook, bullying me and then blocking & deleting me, when I had done nothing wrong. So, I have now cut the rest of that group out of my life and to be honest I feel much better for it. They were always saying how  when this guy fucks off I would be alone and friendless (basically telling me they were gonnna ditch me as a friend unless I ditched him!) but they are gone, he is still here and I still have plenty of friends – the difference being these other friends are ‘true’ friends unlike the pack of hyenas that liked to try and control and manipulate me! A lot of people have said it is apparent that the reason this group are behaving this way is that they are jealous of me, and of how my ‘non-relationship’ is better than their actual relationships – I don’t know about this, maybe it’s true maybe not, but one thing is sure they are nasty bully’s who like to try and hurt other people – who needs friends like that?

It was this situation that lead to the poem I posted on Friday because I am better off without people like that in my life! 😀

Health – You may remember back in March I mentioned about having abnormal smear test results, thankfully at that time I did not require treatment. In October I had to go back for a check-up and seeing that my cervix still looked abnormal another biopsy was taken. This time the news wasn’t so good, the abnormal cells had advanced and now required removing, so on Thursday (14th November) I went into  hospital to have these cells removed. I will get the results of tests on the cells in about two weeks time and will have to go for another check-up (and most likely another biopsy) in another 6 months regardless of the results. So, yet again I am living with the threat of cervical cancer hanging over me like a dark cloud. I’ve had to have a couple of days off work because of it, which I’ve hated seeing as I’ve only been in the job a month. Thankfully the procedure to remove the cells was not too bad so I will be back at work on Monday, and all being well I can just forget about it now until I have to go back again. But, as you can imagine having this hanging over you is scary and triggering!

As normal in my life I am dealing with so many things that could easily tip me over the edge into the pits of depression, over-active emotions, self-harm and so on but it is proof of how far I have come and how well I am doing that the worst I have had is a few tears and being a bit worried – perfectly normal reactions and responses to provocation!

Many of the tears I have shed of late have actually been of pride, because I realise how well I am handling these difficult situations without going into crisis. Even my therapist has been really proud of me and cried at our last session herself!

Have you had to ‘let go’ of a friendship because it was doing more harm than good?

What have you done lately that you are really proud of?


10 comments on “Further progress in recovering from BPD

  1. I’ve been seriously waiting to hear from you to see how you are doing. I’m so glad to hear from you and hear such positive things.

    Obviously I hope the biopsy comes back OK. That must be horrible to have hanging over your head.

    My blog says it all. Pretty darn bad. Things have gotten worse and worse but please God there are a couple of things in the works like me starting DBT with my therapist and, believe it or not, starting ECT soon to try and treat the deep depression.

    Lovely to hear from you. Keep us updated on everything!


    • Hi Quiet,

      I’m pleased to have been able to bring you fairly good news of how I am doing.

      I have been continuing to follow your blog (it’s actually the only one I still get direct to my inbox, lol) even tho I rarely have time to comment I do keep hoping that progress and good days come for you, its nice to see when you have a better day! I hope the DBT and ECT help a lot, it would be great to see you reaching a new level towards recovery too 😀

      I will try to keep updating a bit more often 🙂


  2. I’m so please for you that everything is unravelling and on the up.

    I love the way you write, so captivating and intriging.

    Congradulations on your new job and what a great one to have, a fantastic start 🙂

    Relationships are always tricky and when drugs are involved it is worrying. I think you made the right decision to keep things with no strings attached, that’s if you actually CAN keep things that way. I tend to want to keep things at arms length at the start but my emotions seem to latch on quickly and I sit in the chair of denial for a while! I was in this situation once, the guy was lovely, sweet and fun but was also into coke. My head was saying, we’re just friends, my heart was saying something very different but I ignored it. Sure enough we became boyfriend girlfriend and started living together, that’s when I saw the OTHER side to him, with all his ‘come downs’. The insecurities began to show, then followed jealously and shortly after that the violence. It was by far (in the end) the worst relationship I have had. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying this will be your path but drugs concern me and I am very worried about relationships that involve this.

    Changing the subject to your friends…they are not friends! How nasty and vindictive. Friends are there to support, not judge and definately not bully, that’s discusting! It could be jealously, bullies normally have their own insecurities and by belittling and picking on someone, helps them to believe they are better and more important. By looking down at someone, helps them to feel they are on some sort of peddlestool. A very negative and very sad approach. I also had something simular like this happen to me but evenually the group turned on each other and split themselves. I couldn’t be happier to have each of them out of life.

    Also with regards to your health, I have my ‘test’ for the same thing this Monday. It is a horrible thing to have in the back on your mind and two weeks can seem like a life time when its linked to something like this. All my best.

    This was a lovely inspiring blog to read, thank you…good luck


    • Hi Miss Border,

      Thank you for the lovely comments! 🙂

      Yes, I am aware of the potential risk factors in the situation with this guy, in fact we cooled it down a level this weekend and haven’t seen each other. I think the indicators that was becoming more like a ‘relationship’ made us both step back a touch, lol. I think this is a good thing as it shows we both do want to keep things with no strings. I fully intend to stay aware of the signs (good or bad) and adjust my connection with this guy accordingly to try and avoid the dangers of if things go wrong.

      Indeed, not friends at all! It is very true they are insecure, attention seeking people and the group will only collapse further now that I am out of the victim position within it – cause they will need to find a new victim from within their own circle! The only one I believe is still a friend who has just been sucked into and corrupted by the pack mentality is the girl I have known for 30 years. I think she will soon realise she has slipped into sheep mode with the wrong pack of hyenas and remember where her true loyalties and friendship belong – when she does realise she is on the wrong side of the fence now god help that little group of sad, immature bullies because my rottweiler pal will tear them down when she returns to to her rightful place by my side! 😀

      Good luck for your test results! I will be thinking of you on Monday.

      Best wishes
      Sharon xx

  3. Really hope your health situation improves as quickly as possible. You are so strong and courageous to stand up to those nasty bully bitches! You are a better person than they could ever dream of being! Best of luck with everything!

    • Thanks Janet 🙂 It has been hard to cope with both the health and being strong enough to hold my own against ‘pack mentality’ but I am proud of how well I have done with it 🙂

  4. I´m happy for you. Happy you are able to set boundaries. And good to hear, even if this relaltionship ends, you still have friends. I had the same type of relationship. We spent weekends together and he drank. Then he found a new goal, which was to go to AA and stop drinking. And he left my life as quickly as he came.

    tc Elke

    • Thanks Elke, it has been hard to learn to set boundaries, and I still struggle with them at times but each day is a new learning journey and each day I get better at dealing with things. I haven’t seen him now for over a month (he has a girlfriend), we are still friends but the break has been good for helping me detach a bit from it. It will be nice to see how I cope when I do see him again! lol

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