In 2012 I found the many answers I searched for, for years. It took a few visits to ER with palpitations and other heart related symptoms and numerous tests later and I was advised to see a psychologist for evaluation. I am so glad I did. With the diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder (Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder) I discovered who I was and the gaping black hole inside was finally filled. My severe Anxiety and bouts of Depression were finally explained.
The best day of my life was walking into that private room to meet my psychologist Damien, he was my second saviour. My first being my Dad. We sat and talked and questions were asked, he set me homework and got me to do some tests. It was at this point I was totally stunned by the diagnosis. It never occurred to me that I could have a mental health issue.
Living with a feeling of never fitting in or belonging, a mother who could never open her heart to me, the constant criticism, never enough, the feelings of worthlessness, the constant need to please, the emptiness that plagued much of my life. I believed I was no good. Damien taught me some fantastic skills that freed me from my crippling anxiety, today I am able to go pretty much any where and have little or no anxiety.
Being diagnosed Borderline was like coming home, to me. I finally belonged, I finally felt complete. But something niggled at me. I have always been someone who must have answers, to know the why’s and wherefores of everything. I knew there was just one missing link to my life puzzle. I had to understand why I drew certain people into my life and why I chose the men I do.
The day I walked into Damien’s office I had begun a journey I knew would take me to some painful and heartbreaking times in my life. My instinct was telling me I had to do whatever it was to find the answers.
About a week ago I saw an article in my Facebook news feed that really caught my attention. I had read several articles, etc on this particular subject because I had been drawn to it at every turn.
NARCISSISTIC MOTHER – DIVIDE AND CONQUER.
I clicked on the link and found myself reading about the very person who gave birth to me and raised me, for want of a better word. In that moment I knew my mother could never have loved me, because she was incapable of love.
Narcissists are incapable of genuine unconditional love, they act and emote solely out of selfishness and self-involvement. There are the Narcissists who are arrogant and seem to succeed in life, those who have delusions of grandeur. But the worst and most insidious of the narcissists are the ones who hate themselves and inflict pain on others, deny their victims feelings and needs all to feel superior and get off on destroying another person. They have no conscience, and are incapable of any genuine kindness or love. These narcissists wear a mask of being kind and caring and humanitarian, they are hard to spot. Charm and charisma is their weapon against their victims. And they suck their victims dry of every ounce of self-esteem, independence and energy. They are the chameleons of the human world, wearing whatever mask they need in order to get their narcissistic supply. To the outside world they seem quite genuine and will fool even the most astute person into believing the lie they live.
I could write volumes about the Narcissists of the world.
What I want to say here is, once I realised the truth about my mother, I was finally free. I knew I could never be enough for my mother but that is okay with me. I never hurt my mother or judged her, I was never cruel toward her, I loved her with all my heart and I spent so much of my life punishing myself for her sins. I don’t hate my mother because the one thing I realise is she was a very damaged and broken individual. And I forgave her.
I don’t for one second, condone her treatment of me but I understand it. We all make choices about how we live our lives and treat others. Every decision we make or action we take is a choice, and we make these choices, etc based on what we know at the time. I learned as a child to cope with my childhood, in a dysfunctional way because it worked to appease my mother. But as an adult I continued to live this way, and I couldn’t understand why my life was as it was. It is because I made choices based on my set of coping skills from my child hood. I made the choice to continue as I had always done, instead of finding a different way of being.
In the last few years I have learned and had to discover new ways of coping and living, it has been extremely hard, but it has so been worth it. My father apologised for the way my mother was, he apologised for taking the easy way when it came to dealing with my mother, but the good thing about my dad, he more than made up for it after my mother died.
Some of the surprising things I have discovered about my mother, was she had four children. I had two brothers and one sister. But none of them were to my father in spite of her passing off the brother, I knew existed, as my father’s son. My eldest cousin turned out to be my eldest brother and when he reached out to get to know me, he was stopped. The one regret I have is not getting to know him, as he died in 1994.
The brother I grew up with turned out to be a child molester as I was his first victim. Recently I was able to confront him and put his abuse squarely back on his shoulders.
Letting go of the past is cathartic, it saved my life. I don’t hate anyone, I am able to look back and realise everything that happened made me who I am today. I am the strongest person I know, and I don’t give up. I know my father loved me unconditionally and I will always love him for that. I know I was loved, and I never failed anyone or let anyone down.
Healing is key.