Heavily bandaged, shrapnel in my side, the shell calls me again. The shell. The self. The shell. The self. Where does one end and the other begin? The barbed-wire baton is passed back and forth quicker than the eye can see. No reflection. All reflections. Introspection. Contradiction. Why cannot I maintain who I am?
I know that I recently said that I was done with administering forums, and that they offered little objective value once they became full-fledged echo chambers. Well, I changed my mind again. I’ve listed the reasons why “recovery” sites with their discussion boards tend to be shitholes, but I think that the jury may still be out on whether analogous sites for those being accused of inflicted damage are without merit. Thinking specifically of Lovefraud and PsychopathFree, whose websites I will not link to in this post, I can imagine the frustration of those that are constantly being thrown under the bus, rightly or wrongly. There needs to be an outlet for the forsaken, though the effectiveness of that outlet can only be determined by those that participate. With this in mind, I have decided to spin up a new site, separate from this blog, dedicated to this need. In the spirit of throwing sand in the eyes of my enemies, I have named it Psychopath Tree.
A Borderline resorts to emotional manipulation. The narcissist steals the light from his acquaintances. The antisocial deliberately harms. At what point do you pack your bags and leave? The victims of Cluster B disorders have the ultimate say in any interpersonal relationship they share with the damned. The Borderline pushes and pulls and puts up a disguise that everything will be different “this time.” The narcissist plays so long as his ego as fed. The antisocial is looking for an outlet for sadism. The intentions of each Cluster B disorder I mention are inherently clear. It is not their fault when someone else puts their hand on the stove, knowing full and well that only pain will come when interacting with these hell-bringers. Maybe instead of faulting the individual with BPD, NPD, or ASPD, we should fault those foolish enough to take a lethal dose of bad behavior.
Sometimes I have to eat crow. A mess of personality disorders, it seems that whatever lies at the core of this person often has its words drowned out by the maelstrom going on upstairs. The comorbidity of psychopathy and Borderline Personality Disorder is well documented in the literature and results in a person that can be quite unpleasant to deal with. Sprinkle on organic illness, manifested within myself by Bipolar Disorder, and I can be a demon in the playground of angels. My intellectual self may often be drowned by competing disorders, but occasionally she cries out, trying to stop the madness. I know that in order to continue my own recovery (from Borderline Personality Disorder in particular), I have to own my disorders and – gasp – take responsibility for my actions. Personality disorders can never be an excuse for bad behavior, no matter how well they model such unappealing traits.
The image in the mirror is distorted. I can vaguely make out that the reflection before me is, in fact, me. I have changed in many ways since I began psychotherapy four years ago. The creature that only went to session as a means of placating her husband has grown into one that actively seeks ways to better herself. What started as a journey to understand one’s depression turned into much more, and the bigger picture had to be revealed for any progress on any front (intrapersonal or interpersonal) to be had. All of that said, there are demons that cannot be shaken and all progress is relative. The only cure-all is the realization that the individual can ultimately create change. All of us have the capacity to change, though it would be a lie to state that we can expect total change in any form.