I talked a little about what being supportive isn’t in my “rules for Facebook” that I posted on my Facebook info and in a blog post. But basically what I really need to know, because I have a great deal of trouble believing it, is that people (my friends) are still there, still care and aren’t leaving. As I’ve said a few times, the heart of borderline personality disorder is abandonment issues. I can take people saying they can’t deal with me easier than a perceived abandonment.
That may not make sense. To try to clarify, if someone who usually comments on my Facebook posts suddenly stops (probably because they are at a loss of what to say) I will probably notice and assume they’ve dumped me. And I will take issue with it. I have been dumped by people, some in ways that really crushed me (one said that I was exhausting – I perceived that as being dumped even though I “unfriended” her first – but what she said really crushed me and now I don’t trust her. If she tried to “refriend” me, I probably couldn’t accept unless she apologized – magic words she doesn’t seem willing to say); then one said “please don’t contact me again”. I was initially hurt, but if she tried to “refriend” me I would probably accept it. I don’t understand why she said that because she didn’t say how I offended or hurt her, but, for reasons even I don’t understand, it didn’t betray my trust.
It could be because she never said anything mean to or about me. Saying anything detrimental to me, like saying I’m exhausting, saying I’m wrong, saying I’m being foolish, saying if I would just do this I would be better, I am unable to take as anything but an attack (usually). I am very self-aware. I know that my thinking is foolish and wrong – but that doesn’t change my believing it. I know that I am difficult to take, but I don’t have the control I want over myself and it just frustrates me to no end, which turns into self-loathing, which turns into wishing I were dead. It’s all a vicious cycle that will take a long time to overcome.
So, I’m writing this because I was asked what does being supportive look like. In my new Facebook account, I have been “friending” only people that I know, pretty much, for sure will only have my best interests at heart in what they say to me. I admit I don’t, for the most part, totally trust anyone, but I try to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. So basically, if I haven’t “unfriended” you, you’re being supportive. If I ever comment saying something pithy, sarcastic, or even mean, that just means I took something you said in a way you did not intend and I’m not trying to hurt you, I’m just commenting before I process what you said and while I’m still in a bad state – something I try not to do. Usually I try to wait until I’ve processed what you’ve said before I say anything back. If, after processing, I still take it as hurtful, I will say so in a private message.
I hope that everyone believes me that when I say that anything cruel or sarcastic is really the disorder talking. I am not a cruel person and it hurts me so much when I hurt someone else unintentionally.