Introduction to This Blog Series
I was 27 years old when I entered into the realization that there was something wrong with me and one of the original diagnosis was Borderline Personality Disorder, BPD.
I say something wrong with me because I was just not able to manage my life on my own and somehow knew there was something wrong with my mind.
Back then, not a lot was known about this horribly stigmatized disorder because BPD patients were considered impossible to treat or wrongly diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder.
Along with BPD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) and Dissociative Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (DDNOS) were also added to my diagnostic mix.
ADHD was quickly debunked and over the past two decades most professionals leaned towards my having PTSD or a Dissociative Disorder – but something about these disorders never seemed to fit.
Add menopause to the mix and the confusion became even more confusing.
Here are past blogs I’ve written about my struggles with anxiety and what felt like PTSD or DDNOS:
- Managing Anxiety -The Space of No Mind
- Managing Anxiety and the Mind of Choice
- Anxiety – The Antithesis of Personal Connection
- Anxiety & Cannabidiol (CBD) & Exercise
- Trauma, Flashbacks and Dissociative Disorders
- AM I: In a Panic Attack or Trauma Response or Dissociation or Menopause? How Do I Tell The Difference?
As well, I have a history of alcohol addiction.
On February 17th, 2020 I began living an alcohol-free life.
My Struggles With Alcohol Can be Read in These Blogs:
- Mystic Order – Reiki Level IIIA – 21 Day Cleanse – A Miracle Has Happened
- Spiritual Discipline – My Alcohol Addiction – My Story Now
- Personal Development – Cutting the Ties That Bind – Saying Goodbye to Alcohol
- Is Too Much a Choice or Addiction?
- Personal Development – A Wild Woman’s Journey With Drinking and Hedonism While Walking the Spiritual Path
- Personal Development – A Wild Woman’s Slow Transformation Towards Her Best Self
- OYNB – One Year No Beer – This Wild Woman’s Successful Journey of the 28 Day Challenge and Beyond!
- Personal Development – A Wild Woman Walking the Spiritual Path – A Wild Woman Redefined? Absolutely!
- Personal Development – Living Alcohol Free – Musings During Day 78
- Just For Today – I Will Do My Work Honestly
- Just For Today – I Will Do My Work Honestly
- Personal Development – Living An Alcohol Free Life – Year One
At 52 years old, and after a thorough assessment by a seasoned psychiatrist – I was finally properly diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder and Histrionic Personality Disorder.
This blog series called Owning and Unraveling Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder is my way of processing and understanding these complex personality disorders and how they manifest, interfere with and enhance my life.
And, as it has been said to me from friends who have family members with Borderline Personality Disorder, perhaps I can help dispel misconceptions and stigmas associated with these mental illnesses.
As well, perhaps I can shed some light and more personal information on what living with Histrionic Personality Disorder is like, for those who are also walking this path.
First Then Last – If You Struggle With Addiction Like I Do – Beware
But, I will come to this.
Open License to Find My Own Dosage
I began taking medically prescribed CBD for anxiety.
I had open license – at a significant financial cost as medically prescribed THC and CBD is not covered under my insurance plan – to legally buy high quality THC and CBD products and have it delivered to my door.
Sounds great, ‘eh!
First, the prescription isn’t really monitored by a doctor.
The doctor signs the prescription – then informs me to find a CBD “dosage” that works for me.
This was very unnerving, as I had no idea how much to take.
And, I was told that a daily dosage for some can be as high as 1500mg a day.
Initially, I would get bi-weekly calls from the medical marijuana clinician nurse to see how I was adapting to finding my dosage.
Then, the check-in calls stopped as I seemed to be adjusting to the product without issue, but with an open invitation to call if I had any questions or concerns.
CBD Truly Helped
CBD significantly changed my life in many ways, meaning it calmed my body, my mind and my emotions.
It helped me, immensely.
My husband noticed how much calmer I was.
It truly helped our marriage as I was much calmer and not so reactive to the strong anxiety that would fill me, and then lash out in fear and anger.
As well, I began taking CBD in the spring of 2020 – when the COVID pandemic started sweeping the world.
At this time, I was just over a year of living an alcohol free life, and in hindsight, I truly believe I would have started drinking again if I hadn’t started CBD.
I would have wanted to reach for alcohol to ease my anxiety because of the global pandemic and my current living situation at that time escalated my fears.
On another note, the side effects of CBD were minimal and manageable.
If I remember correctly, the side effects back then were mainly lethargy and affected my appetite both in increasing it and decreasing it.
However, the financial burden started to weigh too heavily on my mind as my daily dosing was at around 200mg – 10, 20mg CBD oil capsules out of a 60 capsule bottle that cost $110.00 before tax.
You can do the math as to how expensive CBD is.
I introduced THC as a way to lower the cost, as THC is much cheaper than CBD.
My initial THC consumption of choice were gummies, oil capsules and sublingual strips.
However, the combination of CBD and THC edibles – gummies and oil capsules – proved highly ineffective as I would be taken into THC induced panic attacks that, to me, felt like psychotic episodes where I became delusional and out of control.
It was very scary.
One time landing me in the hospital.
I stopped all THC edibles after that and only took the manageable sublingual strips.
How THC Helped
Sativa gave me clarity of thought as I was able to pause and put thoughts together in a clear and articulate way, as well as have wonderful insights about myself and the world around me.
Indica relaxed my body and my thoughts.
I was totally chilled.
It was awesome!
It was like I could finally function out in the world!
And, I did not feel high and horribly paranoid – like I did when I smoked weed.
The best way to describe how I felt using this THC, is that I felt “altered”.
Building Tolerance and Wanting More
Then, over time my tolerance to THC sublingual strips increased, as well as my tolerance to CBD oil.
I tried to cut back on CBD oil, but then my use of THC sublingual strips increased.
You see where this is going….
As well, I found myself in a situation that skyrocketed my anxiety as my mental health deteriorated – increasing my use of CBD and THC to try and help me.
I kept wanting to use more and more CBD and THC – chasing for its pleasurable effects – the addiction dragon was now awake.
On top of this, the THC side effect of appetite suppression seemed to slowly increase as my THC dosing increased.
I’m an avid runner, and I still pushed myself to extreme while not giving my body any fuel.
Then I was diagnosed with BPD and HPD.
It was then that I allowed all the symptoms of my diagnoses loose so I could see my full truth.
This didn’t end well for me.
I hit a THC induced state that brought me wide open and flooded my mind and body with memories, insights and emotions that I could not handle.
Thankfully, I reached out to a trusted friend who was able to talk me through my crisis.
It was then I realized I had to stop all THC and CBD products.
I’ll never forget that day.
Because I had known for months and months that I was taking too much THC and CBD.
That I was becoming addicted to it – and always wanting more.
I was in denial of accepting this.
I was just so desperate for something to calm my body and my mind.
It was then I realized how serious my diagnoses are.
And that I have to live a completely clean life to manage it.
What blows me away is – how the hell did I manage to make it this far in my life and still be a relatively functioning adult?
That said – my entire life has been pretty much unstable with undercurrents of chaos amidst times of relative stability.
As well, I wonder what my life would have turned out like if I had the supports in place now that I did not have back then.
Because in my twenties, I was desperate for help.
I knew something was wrong with me.
But, back then, everything went sideways for me when I entered a relationship with a therapist at the recovery program I was in.
I’m going to stop here, as I am also processing a recent development – the very clinical and thorough diagnoses assessment from the psychiatrist.
I’m reeling from the entire assessment.
It is empowering, yes.
And, to me, the very clinical nature of the assessment shows the ugly side of BPD and HPD.
These lines in particular (referring to what I thought was PTSD trauma) are sticking with me:
..she instead, refers to intense, overwhelming feelings and cognitive disruption/dissociation as “trauma”. This sort of intense emotional dysregulation and dissociation is in keeping with severe borderline personality disorder that may be observed and experienced more intensely due to the overlay of Stephanie’s histrionic personality style.
Exhale and breathe…
Thank gawd I didn’t end up in the hands of a narcissistic or anti-social or sociopathic monster.
But, that is a story for another day.
I’ve friends who have daughters with BPD.
One mother buys her daughter weed because it calms her and they can have reasonable conversations together.
I know other people who smoke weed for anxiety and/or pain because it helps them.
I just cannot be one of those people who use THC and CBD to calm me because of addiction (and it is so fu%king expensive!).
As a person who has addiction in her blood – I do not have a regulatory off-button for addictive substances that calm the mind and body.
Owning and Unraveling Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder
- Forget Everything I’ve Said – I’ve Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder
- Borderline Personality Disorder – Introduction to Symptoms & Causes
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – Today’s Ramble on Identity & Calm & CBD & THC
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – Scrambled Egg Thoughts & Soaring Eagles
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – The World is Hard Work
- Borderline Personality Disorder – Emotions Borderline Style & Seeing Is Believing
- Borderline Personality Disorder – Intentional Interventions & Ah-Ha Moments
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – Anger & Lettin’ Loose & How BPD Am I?
- Borderline Personality Disorder – Mindfulness & Releasing Repressed Grief
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – The Stigma & Non-Social Acceptance
- Borderline Personality Disorder – Practicing Non-Judgement & Finding Synthesis Between Opposites
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – The Start of EMDR – Creating New Pathways to Calm
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – The Pros and Cons of Medical THC & CBD
- Histrionic Personality Disorder – This One’s Hard To Process – Gonna Be Baby Steps
- Borderline Personality Disorder & HistrionicPersonality Disorder – In Need of A Reset
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – Owning The Chaos – It Has Made My Life Interesting
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – Anxious – Ambivalent (Preoccupied) Attachment Style
- Borderline Personality Disorder & Histrionic Personality Disorder – Everyday Noticing Of What It Is Like Living With BPD & HPD