"My Life With BPD" - Vicki


Trigger Warning: Sexual Assault, Suicide

Below is a poem I wrote whilst taking part in an 8 week residential recovery program in February and March of this year. I was admitted to acute care for 2 weeks prior to commencing the program.

The poem outlines my life on a very personal level.

My emotional invalidation as a child, the death of my father at aged 9, sexual abuse by the policeman who lived next door and then my stepfather. My rebellion and promiscuous lifestyle as a teenager. It outlines the misdiagnosis over the years.

Then the story ends with my suicide attempt and the recovery program.

My Story

An emotional child
 I was considered a sook
Retreating to the plum tree
 I would read a book

I can't remember
My mother comforting me
She was devoid of emotion
No hugs there would be

 My Dad died of cancer
When I was only nine
I remember crying
For days at a time

I was given ‘nerve’ pills
 Hidden well out of sight
Administered daily
My secret ‘plight’

 The friendly policeman
Who resided next door
Was my first perpetrator
A man of the law!

 My pre-teenage years
Were lived in desperate fear
Every time that man
Came anywhere near

He warned me often
That if I were to tell
He would start on my sister
And abuse her as well

 But we were each his victims
We were both his prey
He continued his games
Day after day

 My mother was oblivious
To our plight
As we lived our lives
In trembling fright

 My Mum soon moved on
 Marrying another man
Who I found rather creepy
I was not a fan!

 She was in hospital
With a new baby to be fed
My stepfather came creeping
Into my bed

 He was an evil predator
I was threatened once more
So I kept my silence
Just like before

 But somehow I believe
My mother suspected
But she did nothing
 I was always neglected

 I had wild mood swings
That were quite out of hand
How I could I explain them
I didn’t understand!

 I was a seventies hippy
Coloured scarves on my head
Batik skirts and halter tops
With high boots that were red

 I partied hard
Mixing alcohol with drugs
Pot smoking and sex
With a gang of thugs

I met an innocent farm boy
Who had absolutely no clue
What he was saying
When he said ‘I love you’

 Numerous breakdowns
Over the years
Would see me reclusive
Drowning in my own tears

 Imbalanced hormones
Is what the doctors proclaimed
So I walked through the years
My sanity I ‘feigned’

At last I was diagnosed
I had depression that was manic
Prozac was the answer
There was no need to panic

 My husband and I
Had many separations
My moods were not conducive
To happy marriage celebrations

 Breakdown after breakdown
I endured this pain alone
I thought that I travelled
This journey alone

 We divorced after many years
Of tumultuous pain
And another breakdown
Saw us back together again

I hit rock bottom
And ended up ‘In care’
This was five years ago
It caught me unaware

 I described my symptoms
My classic signs of distress
Borderline personality disorder!
I was relieved I confess

 At last I had a diagnosis
For my very ‘psychedelic’ life
As a daughter of this woman
And my pathway as a wife

 Living life as a borderliner
Is a journey fraught with pain
My changing emotions
Surface time and time again

 Impulsivity is rampant
My errant mind runs amuck
Irrationality and incohesiveness
I want to move but am stuck

I socialise very little
Anxiety grips my soul
I am reclusive in nature
I don’t feel whole

 The intricate web of my mind
Is slowly strangling me
Do I want to live
Or do I want to be free

 So late in January
I grabbed the bottle of wine
I swallowed some pills
I was not feeling fine

 I couldn’t work out in my head
Which way I should go
Was I brave or a chicken
To dial 000?

 I am accepting my illness
Moving away from my past
To have some peace in my life
To put me first at last! 

- Vicki