Is it Worth Rekindling Past Relationships (that failed) out of Loneliness?

There are a lot of nice girls I “used to know” with whom I wanted to have a relationship. Unfortunately, due to my BPD and poor social skills, these relationships either blew up in my face or never even had time to start. I kick myself every time I see a picture of a past crush enjoying their new spouse, children, and family. I tell myself, “That should have been me…” but sadly it isn’t. At my age (32) people tend to start settling down and get serious about life. The teenage years were for experimentation; the 20s for rebellion and acting out; and now the 30s, a search for stable ground.

Granted, I’m not too old yet… The clock ticks louder for women because of their natural reproductive cycle; although it’s worth noting that these days women can get pregnant at 40+ naturally or via fertility treatment methods. If I married at 40 and still wanted kids, my wife would probably have to be no older than 35 (that’s just a random guess…maybe others have opinions on this).

The thing is – mental illness or not – we prefer the familiar, the known, the concrete to the unknown. In other words, I can recall my memories of infatuation with women I’ve met because they’ve already happened, and I don’t have to invent them. If I had a different mindset, I’d embrace the future and perhaps be surprised when someone special walks into my life. This, however, is easier said than done, especially for those with BPD who tend to obsess over past partners/crushes.

So I ask myself: should I simply reintroduce myself back into the life of someone I fell for, pleading for forgiveness and promises that I have changed? There are a multitude of romantic comedies about this very subject. A man desperately seeks out an old flame, impresses her, and then rides off into the sunset happy and fulfilled. Unfortunately, romantic comedies don’t represent reality. To be completely honest, starting to write random emails, making calls, or getting back in touch with women years after our lives went different ways would be very awkward, to say the least, especially if they’re involved with someone else now.

Think about it, as a man or woman: if someone suddenly appeared back in your life, would you start over with them or call the police and get a restraining order? 🙂 My guess is the restraining order, or at least a resounding “NO” to the person that randomly appeared again, way out of place. Facebook.com is great for watching people change and grow over the years; and makes reconnecting fairly easy. The problem lies with how that other person will react to your romantic overtures. It is easy to fantasize and ruminate from afar, but when you get up close, things are different.

Do people reconcile and eventually become life partners? Sure, it’s possible and it has probably happened. Given my BPD and the status of the relationships when we fell apart, they’re probably just not interested in getting involved with me again. It’s almost like a form of jealousy. I can’t bear to see them with someone else, despite the fact that I completely destroyed the relationship years before, or never even worked up the courage to introduce myself in an appropriate time and place.

Emails out of the blue are treated as SPAM, and such emails to old crushes would likely find their way to the trash bin before the other person’s heart.

It’s just really hard to let go when you feel so alone. Sometimes it’s easier to live in the pleasant moments of the past opposed to the misty fog of the future.

Point and Counter-Point: BPD Is Selfish Evil

Point: BPD IS Selfish Evil

If I divided a paper into 2 columns and wrote down things I’ve done wrong in one column and negative things that have happened to me completely beyond my control in the other, I’d have to say the former category (my own misdeeds) would dwarf the list of random evil.

While BPD does not entirely comprise my inner-self and soul, it certainly takes up a lot of space. Many would say I’m nothing more than a wolf in sheep’s clothing. BPD is evil to the core, completely self centered, and very narcissistic. People with BPD excuse their outrageous temper tantrums with irrational logic and emotions far beyond the spectrum of the “normal” population. In this respect, it may appear to others that people with BPD are using their diagnosis of mental illness as a cop-out for their own evil behavior, always acting like a victim opposed to a victimizer.

After all, we are all ultimately responsible for our own behavior. As someone diagnosed with BPD, sometimes I see myself as a destructive force in occasional moments of clarity. I am manipulative, short tempered, moody, violent, and extremely difficult to live with. Most of all, after exhibiting these types of behaviors, I expect others to forgive me and move on, as if it is possible to forget an emotional hurricane that has destroyed all semblance of human relations.

Think about it. If you’ve been on the receiving end of a BPD tantrum, you probably walk away hysterical, angry, or some combination of both. The BPD has flipped out on you, directing all their feelings at you as if it’s your fault and your responsibility to accept. In reality, it’s not your fault, although the BPD will make it very clear through desperate acts that it is. The straw that breaks the proverbial “camel’s back” sets off a nasty chain reaction that puts you in direct aim of volatile emotional artillery.

Then, there are suicidal gestures. Someone you know and love who suffers from severe BPD has no doubt talked about – or attempted – suicide. At the very least, you’ve had to help them deal with their self mutilation, which boggles your mind because you can’t understand why the BPD is hurting themselves. You find it very selfish of them to act in this way, constantly draining the emotional reserves of other people in order to just feel “OK”.

When faced with someone with BPD, their selfish acts boil down to evil that is sometimes beyond reproach.

Counter-Point: BPD IS NOT Selfish Evil

I suffer from BPD. It is an extremely painful condition and gets in the way of every aspect of my life. My intimate relationships with people have a pock-marked history of great moments and horrible disasters which I can not explain. I get angry and very depressed and I don’t always know why. It’s as if a rabid feeling of rage comes over me and I lash out at the nearest person. I don’t mean to do it. It just happens because I feel so empty inside.

There were times in my life when I felt abused and neglected. My parents used corporal punishment – even for the most minor problems – making me fear them. Instead of looking to my parents as loving role models, I felt like I was living under authoritarian rule, where their word was law, even if they were wrong.

Other times, I was psychologically abused. People bullied and teased me in school, taking advantage of me. This destroyed my self esteem and made me come to hate myself because others saw no value in me. Is it any surprise, then, when my anger and pain boils over into a violent rage? Everyone gets mad at me, why can’t I be mad back at them? Don’t I have a right as a human being to express my emotions?

When I cut myself or suggest suicide, I’m not doing it to seek attention or upset others: I am doing it as a cry for help because I know no other way of expressing my pain. It’s not my intention to appear narcissistic or selfish. To the contrary, I act like a desperate person because I AM desperate. I fear abandonment more than anything else, and abandonment is the result of someone else’s actions, not necessarily my own.

Putting an “evil” label on my head is not fair. I have suffered at the hands of others and am permanently damaged. My expressions of emotion – however appropriate or inappropriate they are – come from an abyss inside me that needs loving, validating attention from others. This is why I seek therapy and intimate relationships, even if I blow up at my psychiatrist or partner.

Just because a car has a bad motor doesn’t mean the car is necessarily responsible for evil acts. It just means that the car needs extraordinary patience, understanding, and expert repair.

If I were truly evil, I’d choose other ways of expressing my emotions instead of BPD. BPD is the condition of a lost, deeply hurt soul. It is NOT the condition of someone who seeks to hurt others.

Point or Counter-Point: What do you think?