Turn Your Rage Into Power

by Ashley Nestler, MSW about a month ago in controversies

Handling Borderline Personality Disorder Rage Amidst the Murder of George Floyd

Turn Your Rage Into Power

Rage has always been the most dreaded symptom that I experience from Borderline Personality Disorder. It tends to come out the strongest when I am extremely passionate about something, and the current events involving the murder of George Floyd have really been affecting me. The George Floyd murder ignited my BPD rage, and it has been burning off and on for days. My rage has kept me fired up and has made it hard to function, but the one good thing about experiencing BPD rage is that you can use it to inspire you to act and make positive change. If you are experiencing BPD rage, or any form of rage during this time, consider the following actions to positively channel your anger. Just remember to only do what feels right to you! And please stay safe.

1) Protest (with care)

Now, if you fear that your rage may make you violent or increase your chances of becoming violent, joining a protest may not be the ideal course of action for your safety and the safety of others. However, many protests during the day have been peaceful throughout the country and joining one of these protests may be a positive way to use your anger to initiate change. Just be aware of any danger going on around you, and stay vigilant.

You can also protest from your home by supporting organizations that fight for black rights. Visit this link to discover various black rights organizations and how you can support them: https://www.diversitybestpractices.com/news-articles/20-african-american-organizations-you-need-know

2) Read (educate yourself!)

There is always so much more we can learn about racism, privilege, and power. To help with this, there are a plethora of awesome books on the market by black authors that provide great insight. I highly suggest How to Be an Anti-Racist by Ibram X. Kendi.

By educating yourself you can improve your understanding and ability to fight oppression. Being a strong and appropriate ally for black rights is the ultimate goal, and reading human rights books written by black authors is a wonderful way to increase your understanding and improve your ability to support.

Other notable books include:

- Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People by Reni Eddo-Lodge

- So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

3) Listen (podcasts are key)

We are so lucky to live in a world where just about anyone can go online and post a podcast for the world to hear – especially the ability to make the podcast unfiltered. One of my favorite podcasts is called “Pod for the Cause”. In their podcast, they discuss all aspects of civil rights, and they actively work to fight hate and bias. Listening to podcasts is another excellent way to educate yourself as well, while expanding your awareness of diverse populations.

Other notable podcasts include:

- Lynching in America: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/lynching-in-america-podcast/id1244297911

- Intersectionality Matters with Kimberle Crenshaw: https://aapf.org/podcast

- The #GroundingsPodcast: https://groundings.simplecast.com/

- Code Switch: https://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/

- Justice in America: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/justice-in-america/id1410847713

Want to take your podcast journey to the next level? Make your own podcast! You can use websites such as Anchor.fm to quickly and easily create and load your podcasts for free. Creating a podcast is a wonderful way to find your voice and fight for civil rights and increase awareness.

4) Watch (Netflix is awesome)

There are a bunch of awesome documentaries and television shows on Netflix that address privilege, oppression, and power, including Dear White People and 13th – a documentary about the unfair way that black individuals are treated by our justice system. You can easily look up civil rights documentaries online and find out what is available to watch on Netflix or other streaming services. This is a great form of media to consume that will captivate you and help you manage your rage while increasing your awareness.

5) Discuss (forums are everywhere)

The online world is an excellent place to discuss what you are feeling with others – but be careful if you come across individuals who may be belligerent or hateful. Discuss what you are feeling with care and use “I statements”. There are numerous mental health and civil rights groups on Facebook and Reddit that are good places to find support and actively discuss how we can make a change in the world. Look up these groups online to find the group that is right for you.

You can also hop onto sites such as Vocal (where you are reading this now) or Medium and post a written article in a matter of moments. Get your voice heard! The written word is so powerful.

Hang in there! Borderline Personality Disorder rage is so frustrating and hard to handle, but if you can learn how to turn that rage into positive action, it can become a welcome tool for you. Feeling intense emotions may seem like a burden a lot of the time, but they can be so powerful when addressed correctly. I believe in you! Stay safe!

Ashley Nestler, MSW
Ashley Nestler, MSW
Read next: New Mexico—It's like a State, like All the Others!
Ashley Nestler, MSW

Ashley Nestler, MSW is a Bibliotherapist and a survivor of Major Depressive Disorder, OCD, Quiet Borderline Personality, Fibromyalgia, Bulimia Nervosa, and C-PTSD. Ashley has dedicated her life to advocating for mental health and illness.

See all posts by Ashley Nestler, MSW