BPD, PTSD and Relationships: I Don't Miss Being Crazy in Love

September 12, 2022 Mel Bender

The Cyclone of Dysfunctional Relationships with BPD and PTSD

As someone who lives with borderline personality disorder (BPD) and complex posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), I'm engaged in a daily struggle to maintain my sanity. What impacts my sanity the most is the belief that I've said or done something to interfere with other people's sanity. I've learned that the best way to interfere with other people's sanity is to become involved with them in intimate relationships. That way, I can offer them front-row seats to witness my cyclical descent into instability and be swept up into it themselves whenever they try to bring order to my intermittently untameable internal chaos. I don't know how to stay sane, in love, or out of it. When it comes to relationships, all I seem to do is bring my partners into the eye of the storm of a woman who's lost her center and herself.

Fearing I'll Never Escape the Storm

I often feel like I'm a curse on other people's lives: my relationships never seem to end well, and they rarely last long. I also often feel like my mental illness is a curse on me: despite my desire to be close to people, the BPD and complex PTSD symptoms always seem to get in the way. I often feel like I'm cursed to be alone forever.

In my daily life, however, I play the role of someone who believes it's possible for me to have a healthy intimate relationship that could last for years or a lifetime. I wish I believed this. Wishing and believing are two different things, though.

If I believe that I'm cursed and a curse on others, it's difficult to believe that my future could ever be significantly different from my past.

Maybe Love Doesn't Have to Be 'Crazy'

Maybe BPD/PTSD relationships don't have to be so hard. What if there are no curses? Is it possible that what I call "being cursed" is a misinterpretation of my struggle to create a life worth living in the aftermath of past trauma?

It may feel like I have no control over my life and am undeserving of love, but maybe those are things I was taught to believe by people in my past. Maybe those people saw me as something of a "curse" on them. Maybe that's their problem and has nothing to do with who I am and what other people in my life think of me.

If a curse is the negative influence of people and events from the past, I suppose the only way to move forward is to release the power I give those people and events to influence me now. Feeling cursed means feeling powerless, but I'm not powerless. Maybe if I believe that I have the power to reclaim myself and my life, it will help reduce my belief that my presence is a curse on other people's lives. Heaven forbid I believe that my presence could be a blessing in other people's lives, too.

Mental illness isn't a curse. It also isn't a sin. It's an illness. I'm a good person, despite any chaos I've experienced or created. There's nothing about who I am or what I've done in my life that should preclude me from giving and receiving love.  

APA Reference
Bender, M. (2022, September 12). BPD, PTSD and Relationships: I Don't Miss Being Crazy in Love, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 17 from

Author: Mel Bender

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