I’m not ill. I don’t have a disease. I’m just rubbish. I believe things that I know are not true. How stupid is that? And, apparently, I feel emotions differently but, I think, maybe it’s just that I’m weak and too easily overwhelmed…if I was a stronger person then it wouldn’t be a problem…
From the bit of researching that I’ve done I’ve found out that people with borderline personality disorder and complex post traumatic stress disorder do tend to have brains with some different physical features, but I don’t know if that’s true. No one has ever scanned my brain so how can I know? What studies are the definitive ones? I don’t know.
I feel like a rat in a maze. The rat has two options: press buzzer 1, which provides all the nice things a rat could want or, press buzzer 2 which gives a painful electric shock and nothing else. If I’m that rat then I press both buzzers. All the time. I never learn to stop pressing buzzer 2. Press – shock! Press – shock! Press – shock! Is that illness or just stupidity? Stop pressing buzzer 2!!!
How can that be illness? I choose to do that. I don’t want an electric shock but there I am…press – shock!
Sometimes I’m so busy, just doing life, pressing buzzer 1 and tootling about in my little ratty maze that I can go a while without pressing buzzer 2. It almost ceases to exist and then, one day, I’ll notice it again. What’s this? Oh it’s the buzzer that delivers pain. Better press it!
Just why why why why?
I can understand why others struggle to get their head around my ‘illness’. A lot of the time I’m stood with them, nodding along as they wonder how making stupid choices and believing untrue things could be considered an illness. I’m with them: I should totally just stop doing those things. Agreed. Uh-huh! Ab-so-lutely!
I want to.
I really, really want to. I’m trying to learn how to and it’s hard. Way harder than you’d think. It doesn’t feel like a choice when these changes happen inside me. So often it catches me out. I’ll be feeling just fine, literally fine and then? It happens. I’m a mess again – scared of being outside, exhausted with depression and self-loathing, shaking with fear, dissociating.
It certainly doesn’t feel like a choice.
Maybe if I stick with my rat in a maze analogy then actually the bad buzzer is hidden, landmine style; I never know when I’m going to step on one of these bad buzzers. I do know that the more that I do, the more likely I am to accidentally trip one.
So I can choose to stay still, in one place, doing nothing, trapped by fear OR I can choose to tentatively start exploring my maze risking electric shocks at every turn. That doesn’t seem like much of a choice after all.