Counselling For Borderline Personality in Perth
Lower functioning borderline’s, often women, feel good and happy when in a relationship because they do not have to face the feelings of isolation, depression, emptiness or worthlessness from within themselves. They often can be seen for having relationship dependency issues. Yet many pay a high price for romance, since they often elicit relationships’ that rescue them from having to take responsibility for themselves, often keeping them from growing and developing their independence. Often they become trapped in an abusive relationship with a Narcissistic partner or put up with affairs. So the kinds of relationships they seek often keep them from their own growth and many regress further, not activating themselves. According to James Masterson, they often become dependent on their partner to feel good or do things for them, so they struggle with initiating themselves or being responsible. Otherwise, they find normal responsibilities too hard, find it difficult to cope, needing to be pushed to do stuff because there is not enough back bone inside to support the self to do it, themselves. Often others have always done it for them, it is easier. Sometimes they have a tantrum or emotional meltdown, so others feel compelled to help them out. Yet, partners can get exhausted carrying them and taking responsibility for them, for things they should be able to do themselves.
Often the mother needed her child, so the mother did not have to feel her own abandonment when the child didn’t need her. These mothers often did not support the child’s emerging self, by supporting their growth and independence, because they were afraid of abandonment. So these children have a self that remains developmentally stuck, scared to activate themselves, since they were abandoned, felt bad or punished when they explored their real self . So they acquired a false self based on pleasing others and giving up their real self, to get the love they want. Many are like big kids that never grew up and still need mum to hold their hand, wanting someone there to do it for them, help or show them the way. Often they get a lot of support and help, which fosters further regression and setbacks. Often a woman will say, “my husband wants me to be his mother”. A Masterson therapist does not play into their hands, instead of getting drawn into this trap of rewarding regression, therapy with the borderline supports their real self to grow and develop so they can effectively ‘grow up’.
Lower level functioning borderlines struggle with anger issues and feel others are mean, especially when they are taking constructive feedback from their boss at work. They find responsibility difficult, feeling overwhelmed, some feel attacked or told off, and prefer to be told what to do and shown how to do it. Some focus more on being liked then the job itself, so they get told off. Some feel angry when left to their own devices to work things out, because they struggle with motivation or to initiate themselves. They often complain that others do not help or don’t care, they have too much to do. So they look at ways of doing things with less pressure or responsibility, often downgrading or getting demotion, because they don’t trust they can do it, and find it too hard. Many do jobs that are below their real potential, because they were not encouraged to push forward and not given the libidinal supplies to have trust in their self, so many feel incompetent, when they first try. So they want to give up. Many will say they never finished uni, left that job because their boss was mean, or the job was too stressful and they didn’t get enough rewards or approval for doing the work. They will say that work expects too much from them, struggling with workloads and pressure, often wanting to look for another job, leaving with anger or resentment.
Many struggle with work, relationships and so on. So they often lack the real satisfaction that comes from living a self enriched life. So they seek instant pleasure to rid them of these feelings, which can be even more destructive to them, such as addictions. They feel good, rewarded, loved or taken care of when they are sabotaging themselves. They end up with narcissistic abuse, by wanting to be taken care of. Lower functioning borderlines often stay in perpetual crisis, eliciting others to take care of them, so they get a lot support or help that enables them to not be responsible, so they stay helpless or dependent. They have low resources within themselves, and suffered a lot of abandonment and hostility from their childhood. Yet they often burn others out or get kicked out of home as result of this, so they constantly feel abandoned or rejected, feeling victimised. When the effort others make runs out, they get angry or hostile, by burning bridges with their relationships. For low functioning borderlines, many teenagers try to escape their bad feelings with impulsive self destructive behaviours such as self harm, suicide attempts. Lower functioning borderlines have more excessive aggression, so use stronger defences. Some even resort to manipulative ways of harming themselves to draw others in to see if they really care. Some will attempt suicide when a partner is leaving, to guilt him to stay to avoid abandonment or being alone. Many feel they cannot cope on their own, which is a myth. The more they engage in acting out behaviours or escaping behaviours, the worse they get. These destructive patterns do not make a relationship healthy and drive others further away.
The Borderlines Aggressive Mood Swings
When the aggressive unit is pervasive, the patient experienced so much bad treatment in their childhood, that the anger cannot be tolerated inside the self, compared to the higher functioning borderline disorder who received more love. Lower Level have negative feelings overwhelm the self, so the aggression has to be split out. So the anger wants to get out because it cannot be tolerated inside. So patients with Borderline personality disorder constantly discharge their anger outside of them, causing harm to others. These feelings are so extreme they can easily spiral out of control, where the individual has to discharge these feelings, so they don’t feel as bad or not good enough. So they take out their feelings on others, being angry at their boss or partner, to rid themselves of these feelings. Otherwise they turn the anger inward towards themselves with self destructive behaviours. An inability to regulate feelings within the self, where stressful events can trigger negative feelings of self worth, can be depicted in patients with Borderline Personality Disorder. They often expect the worst to happen in situations. They lack a positive belief in themselves, not trusting their own self and capabilities. They were only wanted for pleasing others and abandoned for separation or individuation.So they give up their self, put others first, not activating their real potential in life. So they steer away from taking care of themselves because it hinders their distorted belief of getting love from giving others what they want.
Couples Counselling for Borderline Personality Disorders
In couples therapy with Borderline, these partners are quick to focus on their partners needs, not registering their own. They often feel good pleasing, since they feel loved, focusing on others needs. When they communicate their concerns, needs or worries they fear conflict will distance them from their partner, creating the perceived fear of abandonment. So they constantly re-enact situations where they do not get their needs met. They don’t go for what they need in order to help them take better control of their lives. Then they become depressed and miserable when life isn’t working for them. They then have rapid mood swings, they often blame their partner, “he destroyed my life and controlled me, it was his fault my life did not turn out”. So they switch from the loving unit of giving themselves up for love to being angry and resentful, in the aggressive unit. These are the two states of the borderline, either all loving or hating, angry that the person doesn’t care about them. They struggle to communicate and find a place in between these positions, where their healthy anger can be used as fuel to help them express their real self. They are either pushing anger down, in the loving unit, or disavowing love in the aggressive unit.
In a relationship, two borderlines become distressed couples, who can easily set each other off, blaming each other, escalating out of control when they easily fly off the handle. They struggle with impulsive rage, not being able to modulate their anger, resulting in conflict. They lack the reflective capacity to slow down and process their thoughts and feelings in a coherent way. Couples counselling with the borderline, assists them to slow down, process their emotions, instead of reacting in destructive ways to escape the bad feelings that are evoked by their partner. In essence the borderline needs to manage their feelings, not discharge them with aggression, so they can de-escalate the conflict in order to express their real needs.
Relationship with a Angry Borderline Partner
The Low functioning borderlines struggle with true intimacy. So fearful of being abandoned they often show hostility to ward off their needs for attachment, if they’re scared they’ll get rejected. They use anger to defend against deep feelings of abandonment. Often becoming hostile or abusive to the one they love. So they will hide their true feelings or needs of love, to avoid getting abandoned. Deep down they feel unlovable or unworthy, they do not feel enough for their partner. Being in love can impose the threat of getting rejected, so they are on the lookout for signs of the partner leaving or cheating, so they can avoid these fears. They can also cling on to partners because they are terrified they will leave. Often scared he will be interested in someone else, if someone else shows an interest. They can pull their partner in to get close and push them away if they fear abandonment, they are either all loving or angry. Mood swings can change rapidly and do not make sense to their partner. Often they exhibit paranoia, mistrust, jealousy, need constant re-assurance or become possessive, which can drive partners away. When dating they can get upset at a guy didn’t return her call. They want to feel wanted but not abandoned. Other times they leave relationships before they get rejected or assume he doesn’t want her if he plays sport on Saturday. Because of the feelings of unworthiness they read into things that may not be there. They often argue about the partner not wanting to spend time with her, sometimes getting abusive and attacking them. Partners usually end up getting warned out, withdraw and leave, so they feel alone and abandoned all over again. So they avoid situations of abandonment or feeling not wanted. Sometimes they will be so fearful they act like they don’t need a relationship, but will be at the pub looking for a one stand so they don’t feel alone and empty. They often have sexual encounters to ward off the fears of being rejected, some struggling to commit. Others can easily get hooked when they get attention, enforce the relationship and feel rejected when their neediness pushes them away. Sometimes they stay in relationships’ that are miserable because they don’t feel they deserve better or don’t know what they need or want. They just want a relationship, so they’re not alone or feeling worthless.
The borderline individual struggles with love and anger issues because these have not been well integrated inside. So Masterson psychotherapy works by addressing the two units, so love and anger can be well managed within them and not split apart. So they develop a stronger sense of self and form intimate relationships.
Masterson Psycho-dynamic Counsellor and Therapist in Perth