BPD, Abandonment and Accessibility

[ CW Mental Health BPD suicidal self harm ]

So I’ve been wondering what to say for #WorldMentalHealthDay it’s an odd thing I’m so open about my mental health and the intersections of issues between mental health and everything else it can be hard to know what to even talk about today. But I guess in the same way everyone talking about their mental health AT ALL is radical for them, maybe I should be open about sides of mental health I’m maybe more shy about. I wanna talk about my BPD and abandonment complex. But not in an empowering way, I just wanna vent so maybe people can understand

I’ve been struggling so much recently, as you all know I’ve gone from basically being isolated from everyone to having an actual queer family and network in relatively little time and I’m struggling with that. A lot is said about BPD folks always being afraid of people abandoning them, but no one every says how frequently these fears turn out to be true and no one says how much it hurts.

Every time I experience abandonment in some way it hurts. Not just hurts it’s a specific hurt my brain remembers and recalls every time. It’s the same intense hurt I felt the day my mother died, for those who know that bereavement recall that pain, for those who don’t try and imagine how devastating the feeling is as your mu is carried out of your house in a coffin in your teenage years. Now imagine that feeling constantly coming back, weekly and at times: Daily

Not via huge flashbacks mind, just from little interactions. The friend you thought you were getting to know suddenly being absent. Someone you’re speaking to suddenly giving you the cold shoulder. Something as small as that: The feeling comes back and it’s really THAT intense. Imagine that, imagine that life, cos that’s my life baayybbee. This is before we get into faux pas in more intimate relationships, espec with the wild west that is Polyamory where you can have a good rapport for someone and someone better then you can come along and: It’s over. The feelings comes back then and it doesn’t leave for a month, i’m supposed to pressure on with work and uni and life while feeling that. That is the worst part of BPD, to be punished so aggressively by yourself for mundane social interactions where no one’s to blame. There’s nothing to attack it from. It just is.

And like…. What am I gonna do? Tell the friends/partners in question I feel this way? And what? Get accused of emotional manipulating people as every BPD person is when they try to assert their feelings in any way shape or form? No you can’t, I learnt that fucking good and proper from my last relationship, if BPD folks stand up for themselves, your friends and partners will order ‘Walking on Eggshells’ on Amazon and weaponize your feelings against you, gaslight and abuse you. So you just have to sit on your feelings and when the self harm scars start propping up again just shrug and go “That’s the way it is”
Relationships, weather they be platonic or romantic, are not accessible for people like me

That sentence there ☝️ is how I’ve started to think about all this recently. Like it doesn’t have to be a case of suffering in silence and this be a proper I internalise and deal with myself. What if it CAN be viewed as an issue of accessibility? Then it was tackled in a similar way? I’ve been brainstorming ways to make an effort to try and advocate for myself and make my relationships more accessible. If I need accessibility is it not then a reasonable adjustment to ask someone for full disclosure on how they feel about me? Or for romance what their intention is with me?

I can already see the hurdles here. I’m autistic I already know people are gonna be sour about such an approach, espec romantically where we have a weird obsession with the ‘unsaid’ as this romantic trope. But fuck that I legit can’t deal with that and it’s fine! I’m going to make an effort to ask disclosure of people in the future, as awkward as it may be. There’s no established etiquette for this, it’s gonna be WEIRD but I wanna try it and maybe for the people I know it’ll be normalised.
That’s tough in another way, it requires both a level of trust that you have to take people’s responses at face value and believe them (So fucking hard) and a level of self assurance that you’re worth these extra adjustments when interacting with people. When you’re told you’re an other: Ugly, Grim, Undesirable, A gobshite, pyscho and ‘high maintenance’ your WHOLE LIFE it can be hard to wield that confidence. But I know it’s something I gotta do

I mean that’s kinda it honestly? I guess I just want to lay that done and say, if people with mental health issues are asking for these adjustments when speaking to you, if you care about that person just friggin do it lmao it takes so little and it means so much to us. We’re already putting ourselves at risk by subverting such a established way of being, like please help make our interacting with the world more accessible. From the autism side I’m deffo gonna start carrying meltdown cards and the like, there’s nothing wrong with asserting that the world should be more accessible for you.

Can’t Switch It Off

Oh I can’t switch it off no more
Logged off but I can’t switch it off
Hands over my ears but I can’t switch it off
No matter where I am I can’t switch it off anymore

How I supposed to switch it off now?
When every atom belong to every form of life
Is poised to guarantee my demise
They wanna see my gasping for my life
It sleeps in every god damn person alive
So why on the fuck would I ever switch it off?

I’m supposed to just switch it off?
Repress it all and happily play patty cake?
With my fellow man, when all the evidence
Points to that they can’t be reasoned with
Anecdotal, Historical, Psychological take your pick
It all shows the hands get thrown with a guarantee
The moment naïveté infects your common sense
And you get the feeling you can switch it off

How the fuck am I supposed to switch it off?
Logged off but how am I meant to switch it off?
Hands over my eyes but I can’t just switch it off!
No one like me made this far by switching it off

Behind every smile hides a killer, so hell no am I switching it off
Just so they can slug behind me under the guise of tolerance
And they decide at the drop to switch it off permanently
So never switch that shit off, take it from me
Don’t trust any fuck under any circumstances
Less you wanna add to another statistic
That spreads the melancholy to a wider range
You keep that shit switch ON. Till your days stop.

Sebastian Noël

Their Narrative (II)

I bellow and exhausted sigh
While flicking through the saved pics on my Nikon
That’s all the emotion I can muster these days
A far cry from the drunken nights slumped in alleyway

I recognise backdrops from Colchester all the way up to York
With each year since 2010 getting their spotlight
I can see old flames, lost loves and deserted comrades
Clinging to my shoulders, with me busting out the fingerguns

A heartbreak comes as no surprise anymore
Just an inevitable outcome
Of any satellite coming into orbit
A part of my cycle, till gravity dictates otherwise

Still got pictures of us all on the SD card
From posing on the London Ferry, to coming home from Mayfair
Or V-Festival; back when good people where on the roll call
I go through them all, like my final years in a nursing home

Mental illness can be a drain on merriment
You can do everything by the book
But all it takes is disturbing the precarious balance
And it’s the scapegoating that sours the whole thing

I just want to take the easy way out
Put all the blame on this psyche
Beat my personality to a bloody pulp
Until it looks like something you could love

It felt easier to just put “Abusive” on my business card
With zero critique, and call it a day
“Yes dear, even your tendency to entertain ableist ideas,
That’s my fault too” I say with a heart halfer then half

But I can’t just do it like that anymore
Out of character for me: But I’m putting value in living
That’s right! So now putting it all on the line
Just to keep you pristine, don’t feel worth it anymore

I’m mourning a severed connection tonight baby!
Not of you and I, but more with society
Yeah I’m sure it’s easy to make out you’re an isolated case
But this is rewrite number 6 of the same narrative
My reviewers are getting sick of the reprise
Oh I know, imagine how it feel living it?

Cos people like to play make believe
With my good old friend: BPD
Like he’s crawled out of the Black Lodge
Pulling my arm, planting a 44. in hand
Oh but I don’t think it’s pointing at you, oh no no
And in fact, the fingerprints would reveal something interesting

BPD isn’t the aggressor, I’ll tell you all
BPD is amassing a collections of little red flags
From the school of “Why aren’t you like sane man?”
And not running for the hills the second that quote lands
BPD is fool me 10 times, still shame on me
Just for the oft chance it’s just a phase
But you don’t like hearing that? Okay I hear you
I remember Goffman’s rules of Stigma, I get you
So I’ll admit I did put that pistol in your hands
And I gave you 4/5 odds you’d take the shot
But darling…. You didn’t have to take aim
You def didn’t have to pull the trigger
And for sure you didn’t need to hit my vitals
Now I’m on the floor bleeding for my life: That’s Borderline

I feel like the time I spent with you all was wonderful
I’ll look back on these selfies like monuments
My first. Kiss. Time. Fling. Both Mono and Poly.
They’re nodes in my timeline, like slices of Nirvana
During extended periods of solitude
But… I also make sure to keep them as reminders
A row of little Purple Hearts on my shelf
Proof of surviving the decade irregardless
And a warning for the decade to come
Of what it looks like, when your seen like a free ride

Sebastian Noël

Their Narrative (I)

(CW: Ableist Language/Slurs)

The disclosure’s taken a turn for the worst
People don’t see a declaration they see a curse
Or worse they lick their lips and see a chance
To express their neurosis guilt free at last!

Just imagine, accountability out the fucking window
You can let your empathy run at an all time low
If you feel anything, it takes sole priority
Cos your irrational supersedes any solidarity

And if they start to challenge that? Well it’s easy enough!
Just say they’re on a mad one; the stupid spasticated borderline cunt
And what if they catch wise and start to call you out on it?
Just call it abuse to your faux-victim mates on the LovedOnes Reddit

They can suppress it all they want, but it’ll never be enough
Not when you’re eyeing a free ride with your affinity bluff
With your coverted support peaking at a sorry looking glance
I can hear you now: “Ah the perks of retarded romance”

Sebastian Noël

Monster

I just wanted this to go like a theme park film roll
Snapshots of red cheeks, red berry slush in hand, golden rays dropping down
But then I had to go try putting you on the throne
Treating you like you got my six, not like the number 66, heading up Highwoods
For a picnic and walk under the canopies, oh please caress me under the trees
Take me for a meal, have me like mac and cheese, in front of the bees
Oh yes that’s how it were meant to be, but I started to think you my destiny
Oh that didn’t go down very well you see

Like cramming a cylinder in a square pocket
It started going wrong immediately
What do you mean you don’t fit in someone else shoes?
You mean to say not anyone can slide in comfortably?
Especially when your more Buttercup then Blossom
And your a stranger in Ballamory, but a local in Gotham

If only it stops right there
The reactive squirm after your nostrils hit that curdled milk
But when you tend to an open wound with another round of booze
I suddenly start to feel like I’m sharing the room with a Dybbuk

1 year, 2 year, 5 years isn’t enough apparently
To stop suspecting I’m on a receiving end of a coup
The moment you stop acting like a mirror I get suspect
“You’ll never trust anyone” you cried, and love, you might be right

I’ve role-played this night a million times
But I always play impostor with my feminine side
I think it could result in my Christabell
With an image of a poor young thing stuck in hell
I thought it might garner me some sympathy
Maybe people would start listening to me
Instead their disgust triggers my mania
All thanks to this cursed genitalia

But I’m seeing that I don’t deserve it, to be fair
Now when I’m on the receiving end of a terrified stare
Hand clutched to my phone, finding anyway to not be here any longer
I dunno how I’m looking to you guys, but to her I’m a clear monster
I’ve treated standing my ground like dropping an atom bomb
When a simple enquiry would’ve gotten the job done

Now it’s a matter of time till your gone
Till you’ve found a laid back yokel in Beeston
And when it’s 2024 and I’m down the community hall
With my new flame, who can take care of me no matter the fall
I’ll be pining for the low stake weekend away
Wild nights in the hostel restroom, by the end of the day
And when we stumble in two hours late for the poetry due
What’s the bet I’ll start getting them to wear your old shoes?

Sebastian Noël

FP

You’re
sick of hearing about it
I’m sick of thinking about it
Like a prefix, a disclaimer
Painting a context over everything
Everything I say, think or feel
Getting nostalgic doesn’t even feel good no more

I just
remember the plan; buzzwords spiking my drink
Being treated like an asset, an elixir, a cure
Like your pleasure, isn’t my pain
Like your familiar, isn’t my nightmare
So when people politely suggest to me, like Eureka
As if they’ve clocked on why the raven’s like the writing desk
That I just forget them, take my mind off ‘em, quick snap
Jesus Christ, as I jump out of my chair, Einstein walks among us!
But common sense and logic doesn’t have a stake in this conundrum
People gotta think I’m nursing a cocktail as the sun goes down
Time travelling to 2010 with comforting sigh
As if it’s welcome, as if it’s not involuntary
As if it doesn’t intrude at the worst of times
Times when I should be basking in the wealth of the present
But it’s logical too me, like I left a part of me behind
I’m shivering, the draft’s going through a hole in my soul
It’s that estrangement feeling, like a kid yearning for its parents
It’s that logical, that ingrained, it’s an auto-pilot feeling
When I’m back in control of course I steer away
It’s why I fear the idle thoughts like the bogeyman
Cos do you think I’d feel any better if that void got filled?
I didn’t forget the toxic shit that used to be there
The way it’d twist my mind, it’d leave my feelings behind
The way it made me feel ugly, the way it turned me into a freak
Filled to the brim the prose they used to whisper in my ear
Like “I regret dating a spastic like you”, straight out of
Shakespeare

I know
you’re sick of hearing it
I know you’re sick of them coming back like a bad sequel
I’m sick of it, sicker than I’ve ever been
So please just set aside a little prayer for me about it
Cos I wanna stop thinking about it too
But I can’t escape my favourite of all time
Cos when the anniversary creek’s it ugly head
On the 29th of the year’s tail end
I start thinking about my favourite person
But thinking about ’em’s my least favourite thing

Sebastian Noël

Empathetic Generation

Another landlord slam’s the door on my face
Kindly introduces my arse to the public domain dirt
Only after digging around my files
Following an uncomfortable interrogation?
“I hear Borderline’s are mental, are you mental?
Will you go ape and wreck the whole house?
I worked with people who had it you know”
“Hang on, my question first: Who told you?”
Nothing to report there, keeping the mole anonymous
Just gotta take it on the chin I spose

But I know we’ve hit the empathic generation
When I regurgitate that tale in passing
And it’s left to weigh down the room
Back with a look of disgust

No contesting:
“Oh yeah? That didn’t actually happen”
No gaslighting:
“You sure you got that right mate?”
Just a “That sucks man.” With a swig of the brew
That’s enough empathy to make a grown man cry

– Sebastian Noël