Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The BPD's Sister -- Family Illness?

My son saw the BPD's sister last week. He was playing soccer and his soccer team faced a team that the BPD's nephew plays on. Her sister was at the game with her husband.

They seemed like a nice couple overall, both of them having advanced degrees and a successful business that they owned. The BPD always told me that her sister's husband had large issues, and her sister grew tired of issues sometimes. Their children were very nice.

When I first started dating the BPD, she was the one that reassured the BPD that I was, in fact, a good guy. When the BPD would freak out about some issue and make something out of nothing, the BPD's sister would reassure her that her issue was minimal.

In fact, she (the BPD) told me that she would raise many issues to her entire family and get support from each of them. Strange, but I had never thought about this before. She essentially made me the object of her anxiety, tension and insecurities, then would bring the problem to her family. They would collectively judge the action and provide their verdict, through her and the family's eyes, of course.

When times were good, I was good in their eyes. As we had our issues and the BPD provided them with distorted stories, I became bad in their eyes. It was sad, but I became the bad guy. They backed her up, but I was still the bad guy. Makes me sad, looking back. I tried so hard with her, and she was able to make me bad.

Back to her sister and her family. My son said to me, "Dad, she has crazy eyes too." Thinking about it, she did.

Now, is BPD a family illness? Is the anxiety passed down through the generations? Did the BPD's mother pass her trauma on to her daughters?

Probably the anxiety was passed along, and the family dysfunction was definitely passed along. However, she probably didn't have the environment that the BPD had fostered to become borderline.

In the end, it's tough to tell. Highly dysfunctional families foster mental illness, particularly borderlines and other diseases. However, they don't pass the illness to all family members.

1 comment:

  1. Would it be possible for you to tell us more about the BPD's family? The BPD I dated had a highly dysfunctional family where the step father and biological mother both were verbally, emotionally, and physically abusive to her during her formative years...


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