I apologise for the length of this post. It is a very serious subject to me and the explanation of this did not warrant abbreviating it, so do forgive me my ‘indulgence’.
(Photo credit – https://heatherstinnett.files.wordpress.com)
A comic illustration, you may, at first glance, assume. But, in this case, not so. It’s a very serious topic – a confession – very long overdue.
As you will know, I have written much of my guilt and despair over the last few months. Well, here I bare my all with much humiliation, guilt and fear – fear of being disliked, disapproved of, despised even.
I came to terms many years ago with the fact that I have Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) – it was a case of having to really – fight or flight? As much as I wish I could say that I chose the option of fight; in many ways, I found myself, at the time, thinking, “I can’t deal with this”. Therefore the possibility of flight came into play although I didn’t strictly take flight – it was more a case of burying my head in the sand like the proverbial ostrich, not wanting to admit or see the reality of the situation. Intertwined with that was my plunging my head deeply into the soil around me, my disability thrown, nonchalantly into the mix.
Now, comes the tricky bit – tough – brutally honest and extremely painful to confess. I have a condition alongside the BPD, I have DPD (Dependent Personality Disorder).
If you care to read up on the definition of DPD – https://psychcentral.com/disorders/dependent-personality-disorder-symptoms/ – it does not come across very favourably at all; in fact, quite the opposite. I’d go so far as saying even very unappealing and not worthy of any compassion.
I cannot make a simple decision without first seeking the advice of someone else, often a Carer. I will do anything it takes to ensure I am ‘cared for’ in one way or another even if that means carrying out tasks or chores that are unpleasant for me. Anything to be seen to be complying, thereby, ensuring the highest probability of my care being continued. Even, making myself seem more helpless than I am – (this is not to say that I don’t need physical assistance, I certainly do – I just need a little less of it, thereby, having not been totally honest with my Carers or anybody else either) for which I am full of remorse. As for my mental health aspect of this, that it is another but closely-linked kettle of fish which I may go into in a later post.
Often, the decisions, straightforward and obvious to most people, are difficult for me -What to have for tea? What item of clothing to wear that day? Which programme to watch on TV that evening? More important choices also, such as – Which bank shall I have my account with? How much do you think I should spend at Tesco this week? Pathetic really. Basic, simple questions with, you would think, equally simple replies. But, not for me. For me, they are excruciatingly difficult decisions.
Shame on me!! I hang my head, plunged deep into the shame and humiliation of suspecting this very strongly. If you do read up about it, it will make me sound like a selfish, greedy schoolgirl, wanting everyone to run around after her. I can assure you it’s not like that at all. It amounts to, for me at least, living a daily life of emotional pain and guilt and as I’ve said much shame.
This poem goes some way to explaining in very simple terms, partly how I feel:
If I could right the wrongs
How free my mind would be
I’m trapped inside this bell jar
And dying to be free
I long to be independent
Not twice-daily care all the time
Free from all this helplessness
Tell me, is that a crime?
Needing help with meals
But doing some preparation
To help to get it together
Without causing complication
Can I dispense with my care?
Surely I could manage with less
But, oh, my needs in other ways
No carers? I can’t say yes
Sinking into deep depression
Plunging into total despair
Not rising in the mornings
Because no-one would be there
Oh, how I’ve longed, to be honest
How I so much longed to be free
Now, no more hidden secrets
Just me as I am, just me.
So, there – my guilty, shameful and long-overdue, secret, confession. Bare, naked and vulnerable. I feel those very things right now, having finally and at length, written this post; unsure of the reaction or feelings of my readers but open to all comments be they good or bad. But, here I am, being true to myself, honest to all and if I dare to have the cheek to say it, free at last).