Frizzy Scissorhands

| contents under pressure: handle with care | one part daffodil, one part cold fury; mix well and stand back | intense ambivalence, as in polarization of intense emotions | inherent duality |

always, standing on the borderline ~ that place where madness seeps into lucidity. sometimes, stuck in the frozen polar wastelands, having tea and crumpets with Shackleton. sometimes, like reactor number 4 ~ in radioactive meltdown. [you know, they had to build a thick, concrete wall around reactor no. 4, to protect the world from all that radioactive toxin?] always and forever a certain pilot holds my fragile heart.

Imagine what it would feel like to have no physical skin. Painful, no doubt. Have you ever had a third-degree burn … or known someone who has? Or have you ever had a scrape or skin tear, which tore the first outer layers of skin away, revealing the raw, never-to-be-exposed flesh? The slightest friction creates immense pain and suffering, doesn’t it? Well, that’s what it feels like to be a borderline personality. You see, borderline personalities have no emotional skin. And the tricky part is, often times, these personalities appear deceptively less emotionally vulnerable than they are in actuality. Some of us borderlines are, at times, masters at masking our acute sensitivity.

I have often described myself as feeling like the emotional equivalent of the cro part of Velcro. Like, it feels as though emotions somehow stick to me. Particularly the intense ones. And, of course, I don’t just mean my own. I mean external to myself. Normal people have some sort of filtration system that helps them filter out the superfluous emotional residue which does not relate to themselves. Borderline personalities lack such a filtration system. We may feel quite bothered or disturbed by something that a normal person is not. And we also seem to lack any sort of sensor and/or regulation valve. We feel … and very acutely. extremely acutely. In fact, to the point of pain. In the lingo of the shrinks, this relates to compromised emotional modulation.

Because of the intense ambivalence, borderline personalities lack the ability to integrate the polarized emotions, and so, see the world around them in absolutes. In the heat of an intensely emotional moment, the borderline lacks the sense of time’s relatedness ~ i.e. this moment is related to other moments. Essentially what this means is that each emotion experienced, at that time, seems like infinity to the borderline personality. This, too, shall pass does not enter their mind. And, hence, their intense emotional reactions.

In relationship realm, this emotional dysregulation causes chaos. The borderline personality may be apt to interpret intense anger directed toward her as rejection. As well, such intense anger may feel so disturbing to the borderline personality that she becomes more disorganized and dysfunctional. In fact, the disorganization may deteriorate into a full-blown episode. Once this process sets itself into motion, it takes a long time for her to return to her ’emotional baseline.’ The emotions linger, and have a pervasive effect upon several cognitive processes related to activation and reactivation of emotional states.

The Borderline personality may [annoyingly] require frequent reassurances from her partner that s/he loves her, and may feel slighted if such reassurances do not occur as frequently as she requires. She frequently feels this chronic nagging emptiness inside herself. It dissipates, even goes away, when she feels herself the object of affection. Borderline personalities frequently confuse being a sexual object with being the object of affection. The Borderline personality will reach for anything external to herself if she thinks it will help eradicate the emptiness she feels. Frequently alcohol and illicit drugs do the trick. And so, many a borderline also dabbles in substance abuse, and struggles with addiction.


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