I planned today to sort of recap everything but I think I am going to condense even that. Basically I observed my mothers suicide attempt at age 4 and that led to borderline personality and a lifetime of pain. Some great successes always meet by monumental failures. It ain't been fun or pretty. I started this blog in Sept 2014 to try and give a real time look at a 47 year old guy being diagnosed with a serious MH diagnosis.
Originally I held out hope that I could be a voice. Make a real difference. Be a big fish in a little pond, of note (And its true even if funny) I had Narcissistic Personality Disorder added shortly after the Borderline. I tried to hold true to the daily peeks, wherever I was at any given time. The highs, lows, failures and pain. I've discussed at length my belief in individualized treatment. There are some really great things about DBT but I see it presented in ways that I don't believe Dr. Linehan intended it to be. Frankly, the uneducated/newly educated field tends to jump to it so strong that if it doesn't work for someone it can leave a message that there is no hope, that you are a failure.
My life has been wrought with some real lonely moments. Some real moments of abandonment that just reinforce the nastiness of what I am afraid will happen. My entire professional career was a train wreck, always a strong performer but just unable to have healthy interpersonal relationships. In many ways my picture could fit next to most borderline traits...like exactly.
Things finally made sense. Answers we had stopped seeking were revealed. But it was (is) so painful. My whole life I never knew who I was, I was always trying to be what I thought others thought I should be. I would use my ability to communicate to overwhelm a situation. I was...the proverbial bull in a china shop...heard that many times in my life. My strong work ethic allowed me to float from job to job, always a huge hit early on....but it never lasted. As I got older each failure piled up and became a burden for me and my family. I have 4 kids. Ranging from 6-24.
Things were always rough at home when I worked FT. I would isolate a lot, yell a lot. Weird thing was when I wasn't working things were much better at home. In my therapy I learned that for borderlines it is something you can "hide" at work...for me though the breaking point always came...sooner or later. I've stated that if you talk to everyone I ever worked with 1/2 would say I never saw it but the other 1/2 the ones who really knew me would say "ahhhh....now I get it."
The disability process has been hard. Shaming. The process is designed to do two things
1) Outlast you by denials. This means you are limited in what you can make ($800/month ish) and the process averages 18-30 months. You have to make it on that limited income or you won't qualify
2) Part and parcel to #1 the process BEGINS WITH AN ASSUMPTION that you are being dishonest.
Let's look at #2. I was denied a week ago and the consequences are devastating to my family. The judges comments were far from objective. There were numerous insinuations I was dishonest. There were statements (Written mind you...never stated during the hearing) like
"You weren't hospitalized"
Ok...isn't that great? Did you know 2x I almost was? Once my therapist talked me down, once my Psych did. I don't want to dedicate too much to this lets just say that was an example of many.
I also have a torn hip labrum and 3 blown discs. Kansas opted out of Medicaid Expansion. My wife was working 27 hours a week at $9.50/hour. Sept. 1st we were cancelled and called over income (Max in KS for a family of 4 is $790 and that is not a misprint)
So....7 weeks before my hearing my medical insurance was cancelled. The judge said "There is no evidence you were turned away from treatment." Really? Well they told me they wouldn't see me w/out a $61 down payment. They surely were not going to perform surgery on me.
It goes on and on......
I've talked a lot about my faith throughout this. About times I know God was with me. Miracles I have seen. In my own life and others. I have also talked about being angry with God. I've tried to be both honest to the story and to the power of God. I have and will always struggle with Christians that feel like "All you need is God and you will be delivered" because while that is true to some extent it also insinuates that somehow that was why you now are in turmoil. I disagree. I think God USES these times to draw us closer. I think its very dangerous to portray Christianity as the only answer.
Of course all things in life are better with God. I don't believe God "did" these things to me as much as I believe in the universality of free will.
I still have my faith. I still believe God has bigger and better things in store for me. I know I have basically no shot at disability at this point. I have to move forward and that takes a lot of faith
So....I venture out with God and $1.97 to remake me.