April 6, 2010

Cleaning Up the Mess

Posted in recovery tagged , , , , , , , , , , , at 7:17 pm by eddejae

“A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself.” ~Jim Morrison

Last week I had particularly upsetting experience with a so-called “friend” who, after being rejected in the potential-for-romance department, ripped off the “I’m such a nice, caring guy” mask and revealed himself to be a self-centered, arrogant, and back-stabbing jerk.

Well, it happened again. Different guy, similar situation. Thankfully I wasn’t cussed out or called names this time, but his main complaint was that I only engaged in “small talk” with him and wouldn’t divulge all of my thoughts and feelings to him on a continual basis. He was puzzled by the fact that I had become “distanced.” He kept asking over and over again when we were going to hang out, why I had stopped talking to him on a regular basis, and I kept making excuses and avoiding until the truth finally came out.

Unfortunately, similar to the previous guy, he got to know me during a period where I took masks on and off as quickly and easily as I did tying and untying my shoelaces. The girl they knew was a personality specifically formed for them, who made them feel like they were her best friend in the entire world. Desperate to somehow alleviate the deep loneliness inside, I recklessly formed relationships with anyone and everyone and clung to each of them as an ultimately futile way of forming an identity.

I gravitated towards unhealthy individuals who tolerated my lack of boundaries and enjoyed their egos stroked. As I am becoming more integrated and unveiling my “true self” underneath the layers of false identities, I find myself drifting away from these people, seeing them for who they are. There are certain people I simply do not wish to have in my life anymore. They only serve to bring me down, and out of respect for myself and commitment to my recovery, I cannot allow them back in. I am now reaping the consequences of what BPD led to me to do and attempting to clean up the mess, if you will. It has not been easy or fun.

However, this time around, I was stronger. Even though, in the end, this guy “disowned” me as a friend simply because I was honest about my illness and straightforward regarding my new boundaries (which he refused to accept), I simply wasn’t as upset as the last time. I didn’t cry myself to sleep or have urges to self harm, which I was so relieved about. It just didn’t seem to be as emotionally devastating this time around, probably because I have gradually gained a better grasp my personal “Bill of Rights” (see March 28th post) and my definition of the title “friend.” In my world, a friend is someone who allows you to be yourself at all times, accepts you with all your weaknesses and imperfections,  doesn’t expect to “get” something from you, and respects (even loves) your boundaries.  To me, that is a true friend.

Anyone less than that is merely a poser, an abuser (heaven forbid), or simply someone who lacks the emotional maturity or skills to engage wholesome relationships with others.

After this experience I was overcome by a fit of “social spring cleaning” – I purged my Facebook friends list, going from 693 friends to 211. Most of those I deleted 1) I never talk to anyways; 2) probably don’t even remember who I am; or 3) have played a negative part in my life. All that remain are my family members, fellow church-goers, and my REAL friends. It was a cleansing process for me, and proof that you can take a distressing situation and use it for a good end. (*NOTE: I am not referring to the Facebook profile connected to this blog, which is merely for networking and advocacy purposes; rather, I’m referring to my personal Facebook page.*)

Speaking of Facebook… Why oh why did I have to be introduced to those horribly addictive Mindjolt games? Talk about time suck! In fact, I think I’m getting carpal tunnel playing that stupifying “Bouncing Ball” game. MindJOLT?? More like MindNUMB!!

I’ve been in a strange mood today – a little laissez-faire with a splash of awkward goofiness. I can’t say I’ve been particularly productive, but I haven’t been especially bored either. The day has flown by, but I can’t really tell you anything that I did! Am I having a brain lapse? Probably.

Lastly, I watched the movie “Girl, Interrupted” last night. My many and varied thoughts on it tomorrow… I reached the peak of my brownie-sundae-explosion-induced sugar high about five minutes ago and I will now be experiencing a crash in 3… 2… 1….

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4 Comments »

  1. Lillie said,

    Sometimes I have found out that people in my life tend to either accept that I have new boundaries and keep them, or there are some who try and break down those newly establish boundaries because they see in me a little girl unable to speak up for herself…the one who is quite vulnerable still. Its not easy. I am proud of you Edde. :o)

  2. ivypixi said,

    I don’t know about you but for me one of the most difficult things for me to deal with is when I find myself in a parallel or similar bad situation. I can’t help but think it is my fault for allowing it to happen. At the same time I know that I shouldn’t feel badly for improving myself and that if a person cannot accept the improved me then that is there issue. I tend to be left feeling ambivalent. If someone cannot accept the new you they are not worth your time. Look who I am telling. You are strong and are on the right track. I too am proud of you. Stay strong!

    • Edde said,

      I always feel like it’s my fault too… I have to fight that though because I know that, ultimately, it’s THEIR fault for not accepting the new and improved me. I pretty much feel ambivalent about everything deep down… But I try to go along with the voice in my head that speaks the truth about situations than letting the lying voice control me. Thanks for your encouragement 🙂


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