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Borderline Girlfriend

Question:

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p>This woman I was dating was a very unhealthy relationship I am finally admitting. Let me sum it up briefly. In the two months we were together she broke up with me seven times in the second month!. We would go out and spend the weekend together than by Mon I would call her up and she would tell me we have “nothing in common” and she would break-up. Three days later we would be back (it was always a different excuse). It seemed like every week she would have a different excuse. Two weeks ago, on the seventh break-up, we had dinner and made love on Fri and movie on Sat and went hiking all day on Sunday and I thought we had a great time together. On Wed she called me and said she never wanted to see me again because she had no romantic feelings for me. She said we can be great friends and that’s it. I saw her out at a night club on the following Sat night by herself and we danced two songs and she turned to look at me and she said I do not want to dance with you any more and please leave but she was mean when she said it. I had too much to drink later in the evening and I called her cell phone and left her several vile messages.I called her the next day to apologise and she said she forgave me (she said I called her a whore and crazy etc.) We talked again the following Fri by email and it was pleasant.

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p>I was told by a family friend that she has a personality disorder, possible bi-polar and suffers from manic depression. I have not called her at all and she has not attempted communication at all with me, but I find myself thinking about her all the time. I always think about the wonderful things we did and shared but it is hard. Any tips on letting go? And in your opinion do you think I will ever hear from her again?

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Answer:

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p>There is a real sadist-masochist vibe in this relationship you describe, with you in the role of the masochist.
It doesn’t sound healthly at all, frankly and I’m glad to see that you are recognizing this too. I’d say that both of you are acting addicted to the drama of this passion play. Drama makes things very interesting for a while, but it is ultimately empty of meaning. As Shakespere wrote in MacBeth, “It is a tale told by an idiot … full of sound and fury, and signifying nothing.” Keep dating this woman and you’ll end up burning your adrenal glands out (!).

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p>Here is my tip for extracting yourself from this troubling situation. Don’t call or contact this woman again, and if she calls or contacts you, don’t accept that call or contact. Avoid her from this moment on. What you may see if you pursue this avoidance stragegy is that she might start calling you frequently so as to try to reel you in again. This is called escalation, and it is typical of ambivalent relationships like the one you describe. Just continue to avoid engaging any contact she makes towards you and ultimately she will move on to a new victim.

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p>I think it makes sense for you to do some soul searching too, to try to become more aware of why you are attracted to this sort of unstable intensity in the first place. This sort of thing doesn’t make for a satisfying relationship, and the sooner you realize this, the sooner you can move on to finding a relationship that can deliver the real goods.

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Comments
  • psych student

    I feel like I am like the borderline girlfriend that this guy described because it sounds very similar to my last dating situation. Although I have not been diagnosed with borderline pesonality disorder, I feel like I have it and I am trying to deal with things more effectively. I'm not in therapy. I am writing because the way you describe being with someone like me, does not sound good at all, (telling him how he will likely end up pulling his adrenal glands out and for him to move on so she can move on to her next victim). It actually does not give me any hope at all. Does that mean that I can't have a meaningful, lasting relationship with someone? Should I avoid intimacy with others? I am divorced and feel that is one of the reasons why I am divorced, although it is not the only one. I do believe that my moods played a big part. Why do people make borderlines sound so crazy? We are not crazy. I don't think I'm crazy & people tell me that I'm not crazy, I'm just emotional, is that such a bad thing?

  • David

    I can relate to your process & what I have learned after years of therapy, the woman is an AVOIDER. I don’t like the terms bi – polar or manic – depressive. Having no contact with this woman is probably a wise decision (Anne’s comments) but what to do with the feelings that surface, as a result. I imagine you are a LOVE ADDICT (conscious fear of abandonment & an unconscious fear of intimacy). You are attracted to AVOIDERS (emotionally unavailable) who have a conscious fear of intimacy & an unconscious fear of abandonment. This woman’s process has got nothing to do with you & vice versa. Your next relationship will be with a similar woman (AVOIDER) & the secret, is to do nothing – just observe (feel) your emotions. If the feelings are particularly overwhelming (fear, pain & shame) they have nothing to do with the woman, but are feelings you have repressed from your childhood. The secret to intimacy, is to find a woman who is wiling to tell you how she is feeling, without making her wrong & vice versa! But you have to know what your feeling, first. I imagine you don’t know (what you feel) especially, if you are drinking & having sex. If you do meet another woman & you like her! Do what I suggested, but don’t kiss her on the lips or have sex for at least three months. Let the relationship evolve. I am a Christian so I don’t believe in sex before marriage, but that is something that your conscience will have to decide. I am a LOVE ADDICT & I will always be a LOVE ADDICT, but the difference between you & me, is that I have done years of therapy (inner child work) & processed my history. I wondered if a good therapist might be helpful, preferably one who has processed his/her history. One has to deal with ones history before one can have intimate & healthy relationships. From reading you comments, I imagine you have quite a lot of “stuff” to process. I hope my comments have given you some insight into your process.

  • David

    You are not crazy & it’s OK to have your feelings. The secret is learning how to process what you are feeling. I imagine your moods (feelings) surface uninvited & the secret is to do nothing. Just observe your process. Most people, when they feel fear, pain etc, ACT OUT (sex, drugs, alcohol, etc) & get temporary relief, but the DEMONS (feelings) are very patient & they will surface again, usually at 3am. I suggest you see a therapist (inner child work) who will help you process your history (feelings, etc). One learns how to be intimate in RELATIONSHIP the feelings that surface in a relationship (if they are overwhelming) are usually from ones childhood. That is how one has a RELATIONSHIP, by expressing ones feelings, without making ones partner, WRONG. Your process is never about your partner, but from your childhood. I hope my comments have been helpful.

  • Chelcey

    I think Im a borderline kind of girlfriend.Im only 13 but Im very involved in life.I have this boyfriend that I love very much.But I have a lot of relationships with a lot of guys.They never last long.Two months is my longest.Sometimes I feel like I dont wanna be with him but I kno I do and if me and him break up then Ill regret it a lot.Im in therapy and I already have many disorders but my boyfriend said I should see if Im bi polar or something.I always get mad and everything over absolutely nothing and I tell him its because I like to kno he cares.But I dont kno why I hang up on him and do things so mean when I love him. I dont know what to do anymore.We got in a fight a couple of days ago and when he called me he said "I need to kno what we are cuz I cant do this anymore" because I just all of a sudden said "I dont think this is gonna work" and then hung up.I cried really hard then.Im afraid Im going to drive him away and never be able to be with anyone. Im at my limit and I hate being this way. Im on the phone with him as I type this but I wont tell him what Im doing. I need to kno what to do...he wont always be there.

  • Kate

    It's okay! It can be very hard to be in a relationship with a borderline person. I'm 16 and I found out that I have BPD. The reason behind the breaking up incident (or incidents) is because in a borderline person, they have a tendency to distance themselves from people who care about them because they fear losing that person. So, a borderline person may, such as in this case, break-up with a loved one because they fear rejection and they don't want to have a chance to get hurt. All I can say is reassure your love for her and hope for the best.

  • Anonymous-1

    i think bipolar is very loosely used and many people don't have any idea what it really is, so people describe anyone who gets upset and angry easily as bipolar. unfortunately this is not the case. bipolar is a rare and serious disease. have your boyfriend educated about this before he makes silly, ignorant judgements. most likely, he if he knew what bipolar was, he would not be quick to say that you are bipolar. people usually say bipolar whenever someone has moodiness and that is inaccurate. most people just have no idea what bipolar is and just hear it over word of mouth and then label anyone in their sight that is moody as bipolar. people who are bipolar often have no underlying reason towards their moodswings, and people who do have underlying reasons towards their moodiness often have emotional trouble and most likely not bipolar but something else. once you can get to those underlying emotions and feelings, that can help moodiness. bipolar cannot be helped without medication. i doubt you are bipolar.

  • suzan

    im very confused about my ex partner,basically we have been best friends sice the age of 16, after years 5years we confessed to each other that we had feelings for each other.we got into a relationship,it was very intenses she becoame crazy about me,she couldnt go 5 minutes without calling me and saying i love you.Now when she calls she stills tells me that she loves me deep inside,however when we get together she always ends the relationship after a few weeks saying thats its to much for her... i know she has some kind of mental disorder,i love her alot but i dont understand why she does this to me... can someone help ?

  • Anonymous-2

    the info in this question and some of the comments really cleared up some things about a relationship i had to walk away from recently... it hurt more than any break up i have had and have been struggling with it since.. i can say i do love her but the destructive behavior isent good for anyone.. i miss her sh exhibbets signs of bipolar and said she had been diagnosed years ago but refused treatment.. i know that for the most part the emotional roller coaster is from the dissorder.. that being said i also realize there is no excuse for certian behaviors and there is still a factor of personal responsibility to herself and me.. i know she loved me deeply.. but there is no hope for any relationship with anyone if treatment for these issues is not an option for her.. i feel for anyone whom has had a simmilar experiance.. she may be sick but i know shes capable of the love we shared.. i pray that people can get the help they so desperatly need so they can find a pieceful and tranqul life.. good luck to all

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