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Old 09-19-2010, 12:57 PM   #41
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I've never had to disconnect from a family member. When I was young I lived close to many relatives and had a great time with my cousins. When I became an adult, I moved farther away from home with each move due to the economy. By my mid 30's I had no grandparents, aunts or uncles still living. I have no siblings or children of my own.

Fortunately, I've always had a great relationship with my momma and daddy. That will never change.

I wish I had more family members...even if they were annoying.
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Old 09-19-2010, 02:45 PM   #42
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... Borderline Personality Disorder...

Any stories to share?
Too many stories. My sympathies - dealing with Borderline is like dealing with Professor Moriarity only he's really evil, not Sherlock Holmes evil, and is only dedicated to shortening your life - no, that's wrong, the BPD person is having a miserable life, and insists that you share it.

Zero consistancy, totally unilateral, won't just go away and live their own life, and seemingly lives to share with you why everything you do is wrong and designed to cause them grief and why your manner of living is wrong and an affront to nature and the world. Hangs up on you if you try to speak but calls back over and over and can run multi-hour diatribes into your ear. Lots of screaming. It's all your fault. Brilliant mind, moments of thoughtfullness (even if the gesture isn't wanted it was thoughtfull), very sad... You could pour out your life into the sieve of the Borderline person's needy nature and it would be unapppreciated and do no good for them or for you. I'll die soon enough anyway, see no reason to shorten it through association with people that do their best to make me feel bad.

That stuff about how you are the only one responsible for your happiness and no one else is responsible for your attitude? HAH! My money is on blood on the walls within 24 hours if you put Ghandi and a BPD person in the same room for a week.
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Old 09-19-2010, 07:43 PM   #43
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I wish I had more family members...even if they were annoying.
I think we all wish we had more family members like yours!

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My money is on blood on the walls within 24 hours if you put Ghandi and a BPD person in the same room for a week.
I've served in submarines with at least two of those guys, and I'm not talking about Ghandi...
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Old 09-19-2010, 09:14 PM   #44
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Ghandi was a fierce, fearless and brave man. I admire him very much. He is one of my heroes. My favorite quote of Ghandi's, naturally, is this one:

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated."

You donít have to be an animal advocate to see the wisdom in these words. He was saying true strength and greatness is shown in how the weak are treated. Great nations protect the helpless - be it the elderly, children, or animals.
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:04 AM   #45
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Too many stories. My sympathies - dealing with Borderline is like dealing with Professor Moriarity only he's really evil, not Sherlock Holmes evil, and is only dedicated to shortening your life - no, that's wrong, the BPD person is having a miserable life, and insists that you share it.

Zero consistancy, totally unilateral, won't just go away and live their own life, and seemingly lives to share with you why everything you do is wrong and designed to cause them grief and why your manner of living is wrong and an affront to nature and the world. Hangs up on you if you try to speak but calls back over and over and can run multi-hour diatribes into your ear. Lots of screaming. It's all your fault. Brilliant mind, moments of thoughtfullness (even if the gesture isn't wanted it was thoughtfull), very sad... You could pour out your life into the sieve of the Borderline person's needy nature and it would be unapppreciated and do no good for them or for you. I'll die soon enough anyway, see no reason to shorten it through association with people that do their best to make me feel bad.

That stuff about how you are the only one responsible for your happiness and no one else is responsible for your attitude? HAH! My money is on blood on the walls within 24 hours if you put Ghandi and a BPD person in the same room for a week.
The French movie Betty Blue is perhaps the definitive portrait of a borderline woman, and the havoc she wreaks on herself, the man who loves her, and almost anyone else who comes into her line of fire. I used to fall for this type, thank God I am finally over that.

Are these people mostly women, or is it just that BPD women attract more artistic atention?

Ha
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Old 09-20-2010, 02:13 AM   #46
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Please tell me I'm not the only person on this board who likes my parents and siblings.
Most of my family is normal and we get along. One sister was borderline until she hit 30 and shaped up.
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Old 09-20-2010, 02:22 AM   #47
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Are these people mostly women, or is it just that BPD women attract more artistic atention?
I've seen statistics thrown around as high as 3:1 for women to men diagnosed with BPD. For sure, in my own life, all the sufferers have been women. I suspect that the numbers are skewed so drastically because BPD males probably end up in prison pretty early in life.

Calmloki, you've obviously been there and seen that first hand. That was about as accurate a portrait as I've seen to describe the behavior of somebody with BPD.
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:53 AM   #48
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It's easy to cut ties with your toxic family members if you have no children. On the other hand if you have children, the impact on them can make that very difficult to do. Small children are always asking about Grandpa, aunt, uncles, etc. How do you explain to young children that you want nothing to do with these toxic people? Anyone care to share how they handledl this?
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:26 AM   #49
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How do you explain to young children that you want nothing to do with these toxic people? Anyone care to share how they handledl this?
While she was growing up, our kid still got regular cards & gifts from both sets of grandparents. I kept inviting my father to travel here until he finally wrote a letter explaining that he no longer drives very far, let alone flies, so they keep in touch by snail mail.

Parents-in-law moved to Hawaii (as our rental home's tenants) when our kid was eight years old. By the time they'd been here for six years and she'd gotten to know them better, she was deep into teen-hood and no longer wanted anything to do with family anyway.

Around the age of 8 or 9 she also began to notice the differences between my FIL's idyllic stories of Mom's growing years vs Mom's version of the same events.

My PILs cling to a number of "casually racist" 1940s attitudes which take a while to appear, but when they inevitably did my daughter busted them on it. She was polite about it but she pointed out that they'd get nowhere around here with that lack of cultural sensitivity. Pretty soon after that they decided they'd rather live on the Mainland after all.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:38 AM   #50
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We had to handle our situation with being upfront about everything that was going on. My son was 7 (3 yrs ago) when the bad stuff started happening, initially, you want to shelter your child from it. As time went on, being involved in multiple lawsuits and criminal acts with the police involved, it was very difficult to shelter him from all the stories. So we just let him know what was happening, since there's great potential that the problem sibling may show up on our doorstep one day and he may possibly be home alone. He knows to call 911 if that happens.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:38 AM   #51
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I just bought a book: "Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder" by Mason and Kreger. Up until a month ago, I never even heard of BPD.

I have a very close relationship with my siblings and mother, even some cousins.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:41 AM   #52
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My personal opinion:

Infrequent short visits with the children- like a couple hours max. Plan an activity such as visiting the local zoo. Never ever leave the company of your child if you believe they may have contact with a dysfunctional family member. A parent's obligation is to protect their children from harm.

The kids won't get a good understanding until they are in their teens. Think through an age appropriate explanation if the child senses conflict or craziness, or even asks about why you don't visit.

The comment about the dysfunctional family member showing up on your doorstep is excellent once a child might be home alone. My sister is a problem to my brother & I, each of us moved into a building that is like Fort Knox. She can't sweet-talk or bully her way past the desk.
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:09 PM   #53
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I just bought a book: "Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder" by Mason and Kreger. Up until a month ago, I never even heard of BPD.

I have a very close relationship with my siblings and mother, even some cousins.
OK, you don't buy a book like this because you happened to hear the term borderline personality disorder. Come up and whack you on the head?

I strongly recommend that anyone who is struggling with a female example of this genre rent the French film Betty Blue. And prepare to get a bad stomach ache, and a bad headache too. And maybe a little diarrhea to cement the point.

Ha
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:42 PM   #54
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I'm not sure I have to rent the movie, I think I may have lived it!
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:51 PM   #55
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OK, you don't buy a book like this because you happened to hear the term borderline personality disorder. Come up and whack you on the head?

I strongly recommend that anyone who is struggling with a female example of this genre rent the French Betty Blue. And prepare to get a bad stomach ache, and a bad headache too. And maybe a little diarrhea to cement the point.

Ha
I saw Betty Blue years ago. I remember it well. It's an excellent film even though the story is very depressing. I second Ha's recommendation to see this film.

In reading though these posts, I have come to the conclusion that one of my former co-workers probably had BPD. I looked up the symptoms and her behavior was a textbook case. I'm happy to be away from her and thankful no one in my family has this condition.

My heart goes out to those with dysfunctional family members. My older brother had some bad problems years ago. He was always broke, couldn’t keep a job, and went through a series of disastrous relationships. It was very stressful (not to mention expensive) to DH, mom and I since we love him dearly.

He met a good woman who got him squared away. My mom and I joke about how he now does everything we begged him to do like save money and take care of his health. Just shows you love can work wonders! I adore her and am so grateful for what she's done for him. He's now financially secure and very happy. BTW, he really helped her too. When they met, she was a sales clerk at Sears. He supported her while she got her degree in accounting. She passed the CPA exam on the first try and now makes big bucks.
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:12 PM   #56
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Very nice story Purron. I am glad it worked out so well for both of them, and for your entire family.

As for myself, I have determined that the only antidote to these people is iron boundaries. For a man dealing with a BPD woman, the biggest problem is not getting seduced, because these women seem to have sex down really well.

I went to a therapist. She said you need better boundaries. I said, sorry, I don't know what you mean. And that started my recovery. I am still kind of an idiot, but not quite so bad.

Ha
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Old 09-20-2010, 02:01 PM   #57
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Man.... I am glad I am like one of the earlier posts and do not have to deal with this in my family... we get along very well except for a brother who has decided to live on his own for whatever reason... (truefully, we do not know why he stopped coming to visit etc., and has even slowed down the calls to mother.... sad...)..
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Old 09-20-2010, 02:27 PM   #58
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Thanks all for responding to my question on how to deal with toxic family members when you have children. I have some downright crazies in my family who I try very hard to stay away from but I feel so guilty when I go back to my home town and I have to keep the children away. I've actually had situations where my mother would actually bad mouth me to my own little children; mostly telling them that I don't care about her.
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Old 09-20-2010, 02:47 PM   #59
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IMHO set limits. Remind her that you control her access to your children, that if she bad mouths ANYONE in the presence of your kids she can't see them. If you hear her doing that leave. Don't feel guilty, you are protecting your children. If you get the "I'm sorry" consider saying that the two of you will discuss it later, then do that.
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Old 09-20-2010, 03:06 PM   #60
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I strongly recommend that anyone who is struggling with a female example of this genre rent the French Betty Blue. And prepare to get a bad stomach ache, and a bad headache too. And maybe a little diarrhea to cement the point.

Ha
I had "Betty" as a roommate during my first year of graduate school.
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