Disturbed Patterns of Thinking in BPD

Discourse and personal experience based on the NHS given symptom for Borderline Personality Disorder

Disturbed Patterns of Thinking in BPD
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Disclaimer: The following account of the given NHS symptom relates solely to the writer and is, in no way, a blanket generalisation of how all people think it feel. It has been shared to potentially allow more understanding, or to allow other sufferers to take comfort knowing they aren't alone.

Taken directly from the NHS website (2020):

Disturbed patterns of thinking

Different types of thoughts can affect people with BPD, including:

upsetting thoughts – such as thinking you're a terrible person or feeling you do not exist. You may not be sure of these thoughts and may seek reassurance that they're not true

brief episodes of strange experiences – such as hearing voices outside your head for minutes at a time. These may often feel like instructions to harm yourself or others. You may or may not be certain whether these are real

prolonged episodes of abnormal experiences – where you might experience both hallucinations (voices outside your head) and distressing beliefs that no one can talk you out of (such as believing your family are secretly trying to kill you)

(Source: NHS, 2020, https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/borderline-personality-disorder/symptoms/)

Following on from the previous post, we are now on the second symptom group given by the NHS for Borderline Personality Disorder. These disturbed thought patterns can get into your head and make you unsure of which way is up. It can be very upsetting and disturbing, for both yourself and others around you.

I have had the upsetting thoughts. I touched upon this in yesterday's post. Sometimes I feel like Ash is leaving me for absolutely no reason, or that I'm an awful Mum to Feena. I do seek reassurance on these. I've found it's the best way to alleviate the thoughts. I will ask Ash his opinion on things because he's very level headed. It may seem awkward and bizarre to an outsider, but I will frequently say "Are we okay?" or "Are you still happy with me?" seemingly out of nowhere. He understands, as we have discussed it at length, and will reassure. Yes, there are times he may say "Well actually I'm a bit unhappy about..." and we will discuss it. Yet it's a good thing. This base level of communication means that issues can be resolved and opens up for discussion about things we may want to change. While the upsetting thoughts are horrible and can trigger anxiety, in a way they do help as it means we can't sit on problems, letting them fester while we bottle things up, but instead have to have this simple discourse that both reassures me and keeps us going from strength to strength.

The second and third points or strange and abnormal experiences are not really something I've exhibited. I do have occasions where I depersonalise and feel like nothing is real. That feeling is similar to playing a video game. You know it's not real, it doesn't actually matter. Your actions in the game won't have any real impact. It's a little freaky but I just keep reminding myself it's all in my head. Seems to help. I have known other people who have exhibited these a lot worse.

For reference, these are my experiences with the symptoms. I would never, under any circumstance, claim that another individual does not exhibit these simply because I don't have experience with them. I will keep saying this, that Bordering Bears is a collection of my life experiences. These may be parallel with some of yours, or people you know, but it does not mean they are set in stone.

personality disorder
Ver Armstrong
Ver Armstrong
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Ver Armstrong

Ver has been working as a ghost writer since 2019 and now seeks to make a career from her passion for writing. She currently works as a freelance writer and owns Bordering Bears, a Borderline Personality Disorder experience blog & website.

See all posts by Ver Armstrong