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autism <-> BPD relationship issues

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struggling32

New member
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
2
Location
canada
I am so so so confused. I don't want to leave. I want to stay committed. It's amazing when it's good. But she drives me absolutely insane with constant criticism about things that aren't quite real. Sometimes they are and I can apologise and learn and try to change. But so much of the time there is flawed logic and I can see how she's drawing these conclusions, but they really don't make sense, and then I feel a need to defend myself.

The info about being in a relationship with someone who has BPD suggests that I need to not take this personally and assume it isn't about me, and just validate whatever I can find that does make sense (like the emotion). But I don't seem to be able to do this well (although I try) because I get so triggered because it feels so unfair and I feel a need to explain my version of what's actually going on, and then she feels unheard and gets more angry and then I end up getting angry too.

Even when I can manage to do it for 10-20 minutes, she never seems to feel heard and be able to stop, she expects me to do something about it, like apologise, which I cannot do because I haven't done anything wrong. So eventually it still turns to fighting.

She thinks I'm gaslighting her by trying to make her think her reality is false. I'm just trying to help her see that whatever's actually happened isn't as bad as what she thinks. And I can see that this doesn't work and that it just makes her more angry and trust me less, but I don't know how to stop doing it because I find it so infuriating that she keeps attacking me over things that I haven't done. It's mostly just misunderstandings and projections.

Then if I try to take space to try to stop the fighting, she won't let me because she then feels abandoned. Occasionally these days she can handle giving me space for a bit, but usually it results in a panic attack/public scene if I try to take space when things aren't great between us, which is the time when I most need it.

We're both in therapy already and about to start couples therapy again. It wasn't useful last time because of cassandra complex stuff (the therapist couldn't see much of my part in the dynamic because I seemed so logical and reasonable and not obviously autistic (cos I can mask pretty well outside of my closest relationships), and focused totally on getting my partner to work on things, which just made them feel more gaslit and unsafe).

basically i want to keep working on myself and the relationship and so does she, but we're both totally exhausted by it and it feels impossible to really get anywhere.. any advice or empathy or what have you would be appreciated.
 
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MYTIMEHASCOME

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 12, 2011
Messages
710
I am so so so confused. I don't want to leave. I want to stay committed. It's amazing when it's good. But she drives me absolutely insane with constant criticism about things that aren't quite real. Sometimes they are and I can apologise and learn and try to change. But so much of the time there is flawed logic and I can see how she's drawing these conclusions, but they really don't make sense, and then I feel a need to defend myself.

The info about being in a relationship with someone who has BPD suggests that I need to not take this personally and assume it isn't about me, and just validate whatever I can find that does make sense (like the emotion). But I don't seem to be able to do this well (although I try) because I get so triggered because it feels so unfair and I feel a need to explain my version of what's actually going on, and then she feels unheard and gets more angry and then I end up getting angry too.

Even when I can manage to do it for 10-20 minutes, she never seems to feel heard and be able to stop, she expects me to do something about it, like apologise, which I cannot do because I haven't done anything wrong. So eventually it still turns to fighting.

She thinks I'm gaslighting her by trying to make her think her reality is false. I'm just trying to help her see that whatever's actually happened isn't as bad as what she thinks. And I can see that this doesn't work and that it just makes her more angry and trust me less, but I don't know how to stop doing it because I find it so infuriating that she keeps attacking me over things that I haven't done. It's mostly just misunderstandings and projections.

Then if I try to take space to try to stop the fighting, she won't let me because she then feels abandoned. Occasionally these days she can handle giving me space for a bit, but usually it results in a panic attack/public scene if I try to take space when things aren't great between us, which is the time when I most need it.

We're both in therapy already and about to start couples therapy again. It wasn't useful last time because of cassandra complex stuff (the therapist couldn't see much of my part in the dynamic because I seemed so logical and reasonable and not obviously autistic (cos I can mask pretty well outside of my closest relationships), and focused totally on getting my partner to work on things, which just made them feel more gaslit and unsafe).

basically i want to keep working on myself and the relationship and so does she, but we're both totally exhausted by it and it feels impossible to really get anywhere.. any advice or empathy or what have you would be appreciated.
Hello! sorry to hear you’re having a hard time, and I respect you for attempting to make it work because I know from past experience how hard living with people with our condition can be, like a lot of us don’t even like ourselves, don’t get me wrong we’re not bad people but because of the way our brains process things and because of how intense we feel emotions you’re going to get the rough end of the stick (unfair I know) but let’s put yourself in her shoes Just for the sake of the following example let’s say you make a comment or do something that’s not a massive deal to you let’s say for example she says something hurtful and rather than stand there and be berated and made to feel worthless you say something like I don’t have to take this I’m leaving and slam the door (this is a situation that happens at least once in every relationship and usually couples will talk take part of the blame or we) if you did that to me as a person with bpd my brain would automatically goes he hates me now, he’s left me and I’ve got no one, I loved him and he broke my heart... how could he do this to me when he says he loves me ... he doesnt love me At all I hate him and I never want to speak to him again Like I’m not saying this is how it works for everyone or every time but as you can see this is a situation that’s happened to me I’ve gone from idealising the person I love catastophizing and then devaluing the person it’s black and white thinking the person was good Because they loved me and now they’re bad because they hurt me and abandoned me. There is no reasoning or a grey area where the person with BPD goes oh well we just had an argument and I shouldn’t have said this but he shouldn’t have done that. And this Clearly is unfair because you’re made to feel bad / worthless / you’re having to bite your tongue, let me explain I don’t say that how people with bpd deal with situations are good or normal or healthy they’re not but they’re as instinctive to us as flinching when someone pretends to throw something at you, if someone swam in a tank with a great white shark would you blame the shark for eating him? Or would you say it’s In the sharks nature To eat things they’re an apex predator ... to you the things your loved one is doing is unfair / hurtful to her its You that’s being those things even though in all probability your not. You say she says your gaslighting her and you probably aren’t in the normal sense but to a person with bpd little things can trigger you so in her world you are.

you say when it’s good it’s amazing this is because people with bpd feel emotions x 1000 so when we love we love with everything you may find that the sex is amazing because we try and please but there’s a flip side ... when you slight us ... which Doesn’t take much because we feel everything x1000 then be prepared for a whole heap of trouble, this is incredibly unfair but it is what it is, people with BPD are also said to have a heightened sense of emotional empathy which means if your feeling sad she’ll pick up on it if your angry she’ll pick up on it.

sounds pretty hopeless situation right? ... wrong ... what she needs is DBT to help her I’m not saying it will work definitely but if you’re expecting her behaviour to change without therapy it won’t I don’t go to therapy and I’ve had the behaviours you describe for 15 years ... why don’t I go to therapy my psychiatric nurse said something to me about how I was feeling it hurt me and I discharged myself and never went back.

so she really needs some sort of intervention with regards to her bpd - dbt ideally.

oh and in case your wondering what happened to the girl I loved and fell out with i removed her from everything, left and I never spoke to her again - and I look back and I feel nothing for her now, which is bad because she never really did anything wrong but once we argued and I decided she hated me and I hated her (bpd defense mechanism) and it was the end for her.

so my advice would be

1- try and get her to see someone for her bpd not for relationship because until you’ve started bpd treatment you’re not going to see the results you want.
2- if you do have an argument whatever you do don’t roll your eyes etc we pick up on stuff like that also try and stay neutral as hard as that is when someone’s berating you and picking you apart systematically but we can feel like negative emotions and to us it’s like x10 never say you’re leaving or say anything that’s going to make her think you’re gone ... that will trigger her massively.

obviosuly the stuff I’m saying is incredibly unfair and you shouldn’t have to do it but until she gets treatment you’re not going to see the situation get any better, and you’ll end up feeling bitter and resentful.

also be wary of bpd rage ... like there’s been a couple of times in an argument with someone I love where I’ve felt criticised and put on the spot and literally red mist has come down and literally I’ve not felt anything I’ve just felt really angry and like spaced out my vision Narrowed it was mental I didn’t even care I just felt like I needed to hurt the person who hurt me.

sorry This post is so long and I’m just typing as I think I know I make people with bpd sound bad and we’re not but like living with an emotional magnifier times 1000 makes hurtful things really hurtful honestly it’s not a happy life I hate myself I’m miserable I constantly feel like I’m on fire inside, I have no idea who I am I don’t know what I want to be, I am always lonely and bored which is why I need love ... and then someone says something and I get triggered and I lash out and the person I love leaves and I’m alone again abandoned and the person I kept telling myself was going to leave coz how could anyone love me is gone ... and then I think no it’s not me it’s them and it happens again, so I know it’s hard to have empathy with her but honestly as hurtful as she is to you and I know it’s a lot she feels it as well which is why she needs help. And if she doesn’t get help Dr Marsha linehan (I think that’s her name) who had bpd and created dbt had a quote for BPD “they love without measure people they will inevitably hate for no reason”

watch this video It may help you and your gf



I’d just like to say people with bpd aren’t bad we’re just broken and our reactions and how we deal with stuff ain’t healthy, we’ve also got a higher than average sucicide rate - because a lot of us get fed up with the pain we feel constantly.

I genuinely hope your gf gets better and you live happy together, I also apologise to anyone with bpd who thinks I was misrepresenting Us or making us out to be bad I’m sorry I got serious love for everyone and I’d never intentionally try and upset anyone - if you disagree with what I’ve said that’s fine it’s only how I feel and I’m wrong a lot so

:hug:
 
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MYTIMEHASCOME

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 12, 2011
Messages
710
Sorry I didn’t even address the autism part - do you have autism? If so that makes it harder because you have you’re own problems as well but not impossible, sorry if I scared you I was trying to help, I shouldn’t have wrote this I’m going to offend people :(
 
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Nukelavee

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 17, 2019
Messages
2,923
Location
London, ON
I feel like your partner is using BPD to justify the way she acts. As an excuse, it only goes so far, it's on her to learn to avoid those traits.
 
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struggling32

New member
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
2
Location
canada
mytimehascome, thanks so much for sharing. I feel like I have a greater sense of understanding hearing your perspective on this..
and thanks fairy lucretia.. and nukelavee, no I don't think so..
We actually had a bit of a breakthrough the day I wrote this post. I also cried a lot and did a lot of research about BPD that day. And I think I'm just feeling a sense of greater understanding and acceptance and am thus more able to respond well..
I realised as well that I had been judging her for not being able to be more together/more rational, etc. and that that was coming through in the way that I was talking to her, which was making her feel more alone and abandoned, and thus making her act more intensely..
Things are changing slowly as my responses are changing..
 
M

MYTIMEHASCOME

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 12, 2011
Messages
710
mytimehascome, thanks so much for sharing. I feel like I have a greater sense of understanding hearing your perspective on this..
and thanks fairy lucretia.. and nukelavee, no I don't think so..
We actually had a bit of a breakthrough the day I wrote this post. I also cried a lot and did a lot of research about BPD that day. And I think I'm just feeling a sense of greater understanding and acceptance and am thus more able to respond well..
I realised as well that I had been judging her for not being able to be more together/more rational, etc. and that that was coming through in the way that I was talking to her, which was making her feel more alone and abandoned, and thus making her act more intensely..
Things are changing slowly as my responses are changing..
Hello 🤗 glad I helped a little bit I mean I’m totally with you when you say it’s unfair it definitely is and it’s hard for people to stand their and be berated by someone they love! I’m not defending my actions when I do this but it comes from a place of fear and worry not strength. I spoke with this about my brother and his gf is bpd and they had a chat about breaking up and once it was done she said oh I feel much better now I can finally carry on with this this and this as if they hadn’t been together for 20 years.

honestly look up DBT or emotional regulation therapy these would help I believe, and it’s good that you got a better perspective on it and being understanding etc is great she still needs to address her BPD though because even if you’re the most understanding person in the world eventually it will wear you down.

I wish you both all the best 🌈🤗❤ and I like the others on here will defo help if you have any further questions or support everyone here is so nice... and knowledgeable - take care!
 
HLon99

HLon99

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
320
Location
London, UK
Dear struggling32

Never apply logic to a love. Arguments between couples usually are not about the subject in hand but rather about the balance of power in the relationship, fuelled by intense and often conflicting emotions. My advice for you is that you stop reading about BPD relationships online and start to learn how to gauge your girlfriends moods yourself and learn coping strategies. Treat every person as an individual; it is virtually impossible to paint everyone with the same brush. Everyone has their own emotional minefield within them, including yourself as you admitted, which can go off at any point if you take a wrong turn. You have to just learn all her ins and outs and work your way around that. Therapy can help but it the end of the day it is in your hands. This goes the same for her, she has to pull her weight in this too.

If after all this you are still unable to get on the same page, I think its time for you to step outside and take an objective look at your relationships. Put aside desire and lust and think about whether this relationship is good for both of you. Although I do not know you or your girlfriend in person and will not pretend to understand your situation in detail, my intuition tells me that you that some space between you right now is just what the doctor ordered. It just seems to me like there is total miscommunication between you two, as if you are just unable to find a common language. You rush to overanalyse and try to 'fix' her problems when she just needs some careful emotional support and diffusing. She belligerently criticises you for well intentioned, although poorly executed efforts when you need to feel validated and respected for your attempts to help her. You cannot keep playing this seesaw act without it taking a serious toll on your well being. You need to think about what's best for yourselves as individuals and as a couple. You either find lasting common ground or you part ways and save yourselves a lot of pain in the long run.

Hope this helps and if you have any questions shoot.

-H
 
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