Ok. So I'm not "technically" psychic, but I, like many other people with Borderline Personality Disorder, have an interesting ability to "read " people. My therapist has clarified that this skill is actually a learned survival skill. Somehow, somewhere along the way, we unconsciously realized that if we can look a person over, sum up what they are all about, and interact with them accordingly, we would be safe. Our needs would get met.
Let me give you and example that supports this. My father was the type of person who could be loving and kind in one moment, but just the right words or actions, and you never knew what these were on any given day, and he would, without warning, become very angry and dangerously violent. As a child, I subconsciously learned how to "be" around my father. The "me" around my father behaved very differently from the "me" I was when I was with my teachers at school, or even with my mother.
I learned some to behave with my father in ways that would reduce my risk of being hurt by him. In essence, I learned to read him and then interact with and behave around him accordingly.
Evidently, this skill became somehow psychologically wired within me, and it wasn't until I started DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) that I began to see how this contributed to my lack of sense of identity. I spent all of my time reading and responding to people in a way that I believed would cause them to accept and like me, that I never really developed my own unique sense of me. I'd see glimpses of it, but if I thought I had an opinion about something, then engaged in a conversation with someone whose acceptance, love, or approval I desired, and their opinion was different from mine, I instantly adopted their point of view. The interesting thing is that I didn't even mind. It was as if it didn't matter. I had no sense of attachment to any idea or belief. I just wanted to be loved, accepted, and to feel safe. Those were my priorities, and they served me well as a child.
|Julia Roberts' character in|
"Runaway Bride" could very well
have Borderline Personality Disorder
But, as an adult, they became a hindrance. Similar to Julia Robert's character in the movie, "Runaway Bride," I changed to mirror the needs, likes, and desires of my partners over the years. There is a scene in that movie where someone asks her "So, how do you like your eggs?" her answer changed - every time - to match that of her current boyfriend or fiancé. There are other telltale signs that her character is Borderline. Perhaps you can name a few if you've seen the movie.
The egg thing really spoke to me, though. You know how, in high school, you may change your clothing style, music, and hair a number of times to fit in with friends? For some With BPD, it's as if that behavior keeps continuing into adulthood.
For me, it wasn't until I had a literal identity crisis - I woke up so tired from being everything to everyone and panicked when I realized I had no idea who I was outside of anyone else, that I realized I really needed help.
I hope this post has helped you in someway...whether you have BPD, love or care for someone who does, or if you are treating patients or clients with Borderline Personality Disorder.
Here is that eggs scene with Julia Roberts:
Thanks for reading.