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Dear Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)

A chalkboard sign with a message that reflects the tone of the corresponding author, whose letter to Borderline Personality Disorder was published to the Dear Diagnosis literary project.

Wow it’s been a year and you still do a great job of ruining – and making me feel terrible – almost every day of my life. Why can’t you just leave my brain and leave me alone? I guess that is too much to ask considering you are used to consuming my life no matter what.

Life with you has changed me for the better and to others for the worse. I’ve been told that you are common in lots of people, but honestly – I don’t think so. I have yet to meet another person on this planet that has to put up with you like I do. That day would be amazing! Being able to relate to someone who experiences the same things I do because of you…

I don’t exactly blame you for anything, though, because what’s the point because its not worth the energy. I do hold you responsible for most of my bad days, my incredibly painful thoughts, and my reactions during those moments that I seem to lose control. Can’t you just hide somewhere deep inside where nobody else knows and it is not obvious that you’ve got such control?? I guess you can’t…

Let’s go back about a year and a half – the first time I heard your name. I was relieved and confused to know you. Finally, figuring out it wasn’t just depression or anxiety; your diagnosis made me feel like I had more control by giving me a chance to learn and research more about you and try to find things out for myself that might help. Unfortunately, though, all of the research I’ve done to understand you hasn’t felt helpful. Most sites say things like “you’re incurable” or “BPD is a chronic illness”. Leading me to believe that I will have to suffer you forever… I don’t know who to believe (researchers or therapists) or what outcomes to expect!

All I know is that I have you in my brain 24/7 without any relief, except when I can figure out how to use my own energy to create distraction. I wish all the questions people asked me, you could answer for yourself. Why are you so tired? Why don’t you just get up and do something? Why don’t you focus on the positives instead of the negatives? Can you answer all the questions, BPD?? I didn’t think so, because you’re an illness and don’t have a voice, which is extremely sad…

To be honest, this world would be much more understanding if each mental illness had a voice to share. I often think why it had to be me out of everyone in my entire family and all the people I know. Why couldn’t it have been something else or something not at all? The fact is that I have just gotten used to feeling down, wanting to self-harm and hurt others; ball up and cry, operate with less motivation and energy, and under more and more stress/anxiety over trivial things. In daily life I might appear like I’m making it but not without great strength…

I thought you were supposed to give me some hope through this journey by at least telling me there was a cure and/or you were more common than I thought. I guess that was a naive assumption…In ways you have caused me to hate most people. You have convinced me to only trust certain people – not everyone, for the most part. I guess that’s a good thing? But, considering the pain you’d have me endure, there should be some prize I win for just putting up with you. Tell me BPD, what is the ultimate prize I have been waiting for? Is there really relief from you out there, or is that just what people believe will happen if I don’t give up??

My life has forever changed because of you. Some parts I regret and others I don’t. When do you think you can give me a break? I am beginning to think never or, at least, not anytime soon…

​All I wish is that someday you will make me realize I am not the only one; because I know that for sure, but I often feel like I am… One thing you could also do for me is to reveal yourself to the world. Advocate for those that have you living in their brains. Let others realize that you do exist and we are not just making things up. Help others understand that it’s you who messes with our brains – it’s not just us. If I had one wish that would be it! Just to be able to help others understand that you exist and those who struggle and fight against you are being real – not fake…

I am not mad at you, BPD, I don’t even hate you because you’re an illness of the brain, but daily life with you is often a struggle just like with people I have daily contact with. BPD, I thank you for at least giving me some purpose in my life – allowing me to educate others on the subject and sharing my personal experiences with them. It’s not all bad I promise. I just want you to know that even though each day is technically a new day, it isn’t with you, despite the fact that I wish it were… I thank you for shaping me into the person I am today despite what others think. That’s one thing I can say with full honesty.
​​
Female, Age 18
Borderline Personality Disorder, PTSD, ADHD, General/Social Anxiety, Major Depression

Dear Diagnosis Affirmation Key

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