In my last post, I described some of what I experienced during my first week of mood cycling in January. It had been several months since such a severe episode. Here, I will talk a bit about the conclusion of the cycling and some of its lasting effects.
At the end of the last post, I implied that the first week was the only week, since I had started to feel more stable toward the end of the week. Well, that was a lie, I’m sorry to say. I spent a couple of days being extremely exhausted, and then my mood started cycling again. I don’t remember a whole lot of this next week. I think I didn’t have plans except with my guy, except… this is where the worst part comes in.
The worst part of this week (January 22nd) was how it affected my relationship. He wouldn’t want me to get too into this, but I want to emphasize how much damage a simple week of mood cycling can do to a healthy, functioning relationship.
It hurts me to type this. First of all, I know it wasn’t my fault, and I didn’t make any mistakes exactly. But I am the one who started it. I know it, he knows it. For the first week, he was very encouraging and supportive. He called me when I needed him, talked to me throughout the day–more than usual, which had already been a lot. He knew I was going through a hard time, and he was trying to be there for me the best he could. But I was getting so angry at the smallest things, stupid things. I think one of them was perfectly reasonable, and he respected my request about it.
But I know I kept pushing about different things. My mood was up and down, I got so irritated and angry about things. People who know me know that I don’t really get angry. I act angry in good-natured humor. I prefer talking things through before I let my blood boil. Well, during these two weeks, I was almost always angry. Angry or depressed, or pretending those two emotions didn’t even exist. Just talking to me was like playing Russian roulette.
For people with borderline personality disorder, these intense emotions tend to come out the most around the people they’re closest to. I have a friend who was seeing a girl with BPD. He’d known her for years. She was really cool, really level-headed. They got closer after a while, and she started to lose it. She would lose her cool at anything. He was always walking on eggshells with her. It was a very messy situation, but that’s an example of someone with BPD not revealing those intense emotions until they get close–until they trust you. Most people with BPD have abandonment and trust issues. So they don’t really trust anyone until they get close. I don’t trust most people except for my guy, if I can still call him that. She didn’t trust most people except my friend. As a result, they were the most likely to see our “crazy” sides. Yeah, I’ll call it that, because we get totally unhinged. Anyway.
Another weird thing for me is how my sense of time distorts during these episodes. The mood cycling only lasted two weeks, give or take a few days. When I reached the end and looked back, it felt like it’d been months. I assume that’s fairly normal for mental health episodes, but it really makes me feel even worse about what started to happen next.
My guy put up with a lot from me over these two weeks. About a week and a half in, I could feel him getting a bit fed up. If you remember, he was having his own financial issues, which are stressful enough on their own. He was in such a tight spot that he’d asked me for help. And I told myself, “He needs me. He’s been the strong one for so long. Now I need to be strong for him.” And then my mood started cycling, and I just made things harder for him. He started to pull away, to distance himself from me. I could feel it, and it threw me into a panic. I don’t know if he understands that that’s why I started to lose it more. As I said, people with BPD tend to have abandonment issues. I felt him slipping away, and I could not handle that, so I ended up just pushing him further away.
My medications all kicked in, I started to stabilize, and I got to look at the destruction I’d caused. He was spending more time with his friends than me, he spent less and less time talking to me. Now we get to the third week after mood cycling really started (January 29th). I still feel ashamed and guilty for how I was when my mood was cycling. I’ve tried to make it up to him, but he’s been talking to me less. My mood cycling has done possibly fatal damage to our relationship, and I honestly have no idea what’s going to happen now. Anything more than that is between him and me.
I wish I wasn’t sick. I hate that I am the way I am. It takes everything good away from me, if something else doesn’t first. For the past week, as a direct result of what the mood cycling has done, I have been horribly depressed. My mom is very worried about me. I am barely eating, not drinking all the water I’m supposed to drink. I haven’t showered in a week. Haven’t brushed my hair in three days. I’m deteriorating. I’m exhausted. I don’t know how I’m still recording YouTube videos except for the fact that I have a lot of experience in masking, and that takes about an hour of my time at the most. I can even quit halfway through a recording and crawl back to bed. But even then, I’m usually unable to sleep, instead stuck being tortured inside my own head, terrible images behind my eyelids. There is no way out, no escape, until I finally drift off.
Hopefully this part passes soon.