Borderline Triangulates with Rescuer to Silence Pain, Abandonment Anxiety

Uploaded 3/16/2020, approx. 22 minute read

Good day to all coronavirus survivors. Those of you who are watching this video, it's a third in a series about Borderline Personality Disorder, the inner dynamics and interactions with narcissistic partners.

In the first video, titled Borderline Woman, a Dissociative Secondary Psychopath, we reviewed the current academic literature and the most recent thinking about Borderline Personality Disorder. This provoked a hailstorm of negative reactions from various self-appointed activists, self-styled experts and borderline women, of course.

We are not psychopaths, you are wrong, we don't dissociate, etc., etc., etc.

And I'm afraid this flies in the face of all the evidence we have.

Currently, the thinking is that Borderline Personality Disorder is a manifestation of psychopathy in women, it's a female manifestation of secondary psychopathy, mind you, not primary psychopathy, not the type that is described by Robert Héyer among males, but another type of psychopathy, facto two psychopathy.

Also, the current thinking is that Borderline Personality Disorder involves dissociation to such an extent that it can be safely and reliably described as a form of dissociative identity disorder or at the very least as a form of extreme dissociation.

It seems that mal lability, lack of impulse control, externalized aggression and other manifestations of borderline behavior have to do with alterations in self-states.

Borderline has a diffuse identity, it has an unregulated or dysregulated core of emotions, and so it's not quite sure about its own boundaries, it uses its intimate partner and other people, but mostly its intimate partner, to regulate her internal environment.

The Borderline's dependence on her intimate partner is similar to the co-dependence, and her terrifiedabandonment anxiety, the reason she is absolutely horrified by the mere thought of being rejected and abandoned, is because the intimate partner fulfills very critical ego functions.

The intimate partner is the Borderline's ego, in effect, and this is very similar to the narcissist.

Indeed, as any therapist will tell you, any psychologist will tell you and as many Borderline women will tell you, Borderline personality disorder involves a very pronounced dimension of grandiosity and narcissism.

So the two disorders are very much alike in some senses. For example, the Borderline also has the equivalent of a false self. In many respects, both narcissistic personality disorder, Borderline personality disorder may be forms of multiple personality disorder, as it used to be called, or dissociative identity disorder, as the current label is.

The second video that I've made had to do with the Borderline's reaction to abandonment and rejection, especially by a narcissistic partner.

The Borderline tells the narcissist, I know you're going to abandon me, I know you're going to reject me, I know you're going to abuse me, and I'm going to do this to you first. I'm going to abandon you preemptively. I'm going to reject you before you reject me. I'm going to dump you before this happens.

So this is the second video.

And today in the third video, I would like to describe in great detail the sequence, the sequence of external events and internal processes inside the Borderline and outside as she encounters or expects rejection and abuse. So stay tuned, it's going to be stormy.

It all starts when the Borderline thinks that she is about to be rejected or abandoned.

Now pay attention. A Borderline reacts to three distinct states.

She reacts to actually being abandoned and rejected when the evidence is indisputable and discernible. She reacts to behaviors of the intimate partner which she misinterprets or interprets as rejection and abandonment, even if these behaviors are utterly innocuous and innocent.

For example, the partner has to travel in business or the partner goes out with friends or the partner is not available when she wants him to be. So this is interpreted as rejection and abandonment or even abuse.

And she also reacts to anticipated abandonment and rejection even when there's no hint or sign of it, even within the love-bobbing phase.

There's always this thought circulating in her mind is going to dump me, is going to abandon me, is going to reject me, is going to abuse me, is going to hurt me.

And this is because her personal history is replete with dozens of such cases. She is simply extrapolating from her personal experience in the past into the future.

So she anticipates abuse. When her anticipation leads her to aggress against the intimate partner, for example, to abuse the intimate partner, of course, this creates a vicious cycle and the partner withdraws.

The intimate partner becomes less intimate, withdraws, isolates himself, finds alternatives, becomes an alcoholic, I don't know what, develops addictions.

And this is again perceived as rejection and abandonment.

The borderline brings on, brings about her worst fears. Her anticipatory and preemptive behaviors are the ones that bring about what she had been dreading all along.

And so if the partner is a narcissist or a psychopath, usually this will involve abuse because narcissists and psychopaths or especially psychopaths have something called reactants. They can't regulate their impulses and they are defiant and they react with extreme abuse, disproportional abuse in a way they catastrophize the abuse to the slightest frustration. So they have a very low threshold of frustration and very high aggressive response.

So when the borderline does this, when she constantly pricks, she constantly questions, she constantly abuses in small ways and big when she becomes passive aggressive, the psychopath and the narcissist reacts with extreme aggression. The aggression can wear many forms. It could be, I don't know, silent treatment, could be verbal abuse, could be even physical abuse.

At that stage, the borderline reacts with a primitive defense mechanism, which is typical to two years old or one years old. And this primitive defense mechanism, which survives only in certain mental health disorders, such as borderline and such as narcissistic.

So this defense mechanism is called splitting. Splitting is the common name. Today the clinical term is dichotomous thinking. We all come across splitting in immature or rigidly immature people. These are people who tend to divide the world into black and white. You're with me or against me. You're my enemy or my friend. You're all bad. You're all good.

And they switch, they pendulate like a pendulum between these two positions. So the same person can be all bad yesterday and the most wonderful person tomorrow.

So this is splitting. The minute the borderline perceives rejection and abandonment, she splits.

And her intimate partner, the person she loved most, the focus of her universe, the pivot around which her life revolved, at that instant of perceived rejection and abandonment, at that instant that very person becomes the embodiment or the reification of evil. He becomes a hated enemy. He becomes a villain.

And so following splitting, the borderline is faced with a series of possible strategies.

One strategy is to disengage, to detach, to move out. And many borderlines do that. They run away.

Another strategy is to triangulate, to introduce a third party into the relationship in order to revive or resuscitate the positive emotions, love, for example, via jealousy.

So another strategy is to manage the relationship with jealousy, not with intimacy, but with jealousy.

So in this case, the borderline will ostentatiously flirt with another man, or even abscond with another man, go away with him for the night, or behaving ways which will provoke the partner into extreme feats of jealousy, or as the borderline would put it, would provoke the partner to notice her. Coupled with this, coupled with this transformation of the intimate partner into a persecutory object, and coupled with strategies, dysfunctional strategies, dysfunctional attachment strategies, such as running away, such as triangulation, coupled with all this, there is an internal process of dysregulation.

Pain, anger, paranoia, which is essentially a projection of the borderline's own aggression, are all internalized.

And the borderline is overwhelmed by these emotions. She simply cannot survive these emotions. They are too much for her. She feels that she is drowning. She feels that she can't breathe. She feels that she is on the verge of doom, this imminent perception that she is about to utterly disintegrate into molecules, that she's about to die. It's the equivalent of emotional death.

Dysregulation is one of the most horrible things to experience.

And in the borderline, there is concurrent dysregulation of emotions and of moods.

So she not only reacts with pain, anger, etc., but she also becomes dysphoric. She develops the equivalent of point-like clinical depression. And she feels that she absolutely must get away from the source of her frustration, pain and rage. She must get away from that source. And that source is, of course, the erstwhile intimate partner. She must dump him. She must get away from him physically. She must abandon him before he does this to her. She must preempt the abandonment. She must reject before she's rejected.

At that point, her impulse control disintegrates. She no longer can control her impulses.

In the best of times, borderlines cannot control impulses. They are so taken over by dysregulated emotions and moods that they don't have the energy needed to control urges and drives. And their decision-making process becomes irrational and very disrupted.

It's a disruptive process.

They, for example, cannot weigh properly the consequences of their actions. They don't have an analytic mindset, which predicts the future and relates it directly to actions in the present.

So in the best of times, there's a problem with impulse control.

But when there is a question of rejection or abandonment or abuse, real or imagined, the dysregulation leads to extreme impulsivity, which involves an externalization of aggression.

The borderlines' mental resources are insufficient, even when everything goes smoothly and well, for example, during the love bombing or honeymoon phases.

But when things begin to go awry, the enormous amounts of pain and rage inside her can no longer be contained and they are externalized.

Technically, she becomes a psychopath because psychopathy or antisocial personality disorder is an externalization disorder.

So she, for example, could spot a stranger and decide that he is her solution. She would immediately adopt that stranger. She would flirt with him aggressively. She would offer him sex openly. And she would try to opt the stranger to collaborate with her in, for example, triangulate, if she chooses the triangulation strategy.

If she wants to run away, she will pick up a small bank and just board the next bus to nowhere or the next train. She doesn't know where. So whatever it is, it's going to be impulsive, it's going to be improvised. She's not going to think it true. She just has to act because acting is her palliative measure.

This is how she overcomes. She self-medicates against pain and pain is intolerable and unbearable and threatens her well-being, mental and sometimes physical.

Let us continue with the scenario of the triangulation.

So she finds a stranger, she hits on him, she flirts with him, she picks him up and frequently she will do it in the presence of the intimate partner as a way to kind of provoke him into jealousy, into noticing her or even to punish him as an externalized form of aggression.

But then when she abscalls with the stranger, when she's no longer with the intimate partner, there is a feature that is unique to narcissists and borderlines and that is object inconstancy, object impermanence. Out of sight, out of mind, the minute she abandons the intimate partner, runs away, aggresses, picks up a stranger for casual sex, whatever it is, the minute she is no longer physically with the intimate partner, the intimate partner is all but gone.

She does not remember the intimate partner, nor does she recall or experience the emotions she used to have for the intimate partner.

Actually, even in the best of times, many borderlines carry with them objects, mementos, trophies of the intimate partner, to remind them of the intimate partner when they are not with him in the same room. This is a very infantile and disorganized personality.

Children have this, babies have this, object impermanence or object inconstancy. When mother leaves the room, as far as the baby is concerned, she's gone forever, she had never existed and the baby starts crying, starts crying.

It's the same with the borderline. She leaves her intimate partner and he's gone forever. That's it, he had never existed. All the emotions she had for him and all the memories they shared together, all the experiences they went through together, they're all erased.

When I say erased, I mean utterly erased, he never crosses her mind for a split second.

From that moment on, she feels alone. She feels independent. She feels free.

There's no concept of sexual exclusivity or monogamy or he's waiting for me there, I have to go back or she's out of sight, he's out of mind, he's out of existence. He had never existed.

It's a kind of rewriting of history for Mating the hard disk and she starts from zero.

She starts afresh, she starts new.

With a borderline, every day, every minute, every hour is a new beginning because she doesn't have a continuous core identity. She has a series of self-states that interchange and replace each other and so she is in flux.

The borderline is a river. You can never step into the same river twice and you can never encounter the same borderline twice.

From that moment, for example, if she had found an alternative, a substitute for an intimate apartment, another man, from that moment, that other man is her focus. He is her new source of internal stability. He regulates her internal functions, he is her new friend and he is also her new protector because borderlines go through life perceiving themselves as maidens in distress. They need rescuing.

There's always a villain somewhere, usually the intimate partner. There's always a villain somewhere and she's always looking for another man to rescue her, to protect her, to shield her, to support her, to provide her with a core, to sacrifice himself for her.

And when the man she had picked up is grandiose, when he is narcissistic, it caters to his need to be perceived as superior, as omnipotent, as godlike and so they complement each other.

Borderlines tend to pick up narcissistic men by assigning to them the role of protector and rescuer.

As the time pass, the borderline develops a zaat's immediate intimacy with that new man.

And the old intimate partner, only a few hours ago, is long forgotten, had never existed actually. She teams up with the other men and she does everything with him together. They had become a couple. This couple, this couple, this dyad, can survive for a few hours, can survive for a few days or can become a new romantic liaison.

That's in the example of triangulation. When she runs away, for example, it's the same thing. She looks for the new, she looks to the new place or new location where she's going to. She looks to people she meets there as their rescue ambience. I call it pathological narcissistic space as the place where she would be safe from her intimate partner.

It's all about the princess in the tower complex. She is in need of a knight in shining armor to kiss her on her forehead or lips preferably and to wake her up from this too poor of abandonment, rejection and abuse which she had endured in her mind, if not in reality, with a previous intimate partner.

And then, of course, it's easy for her to engage in sex with total strangers, the strangers she had just picked because she had converted him in her mind into a new intimate partner, a protector, a rescuer and so on and so forth.

Sex, generally, as far as borderlines are concerned, especially borderlines who had been abused sexually as children. So as far as borderlines are concerned, sex is pretty meaningless. It's meaningful to the man, but it's rather meaningless to the borderline.

The borderline tends to reward the man to gift him with her sex because right now he's the focus of her world. She cares about him. She's attracted to him. She's grateful to him, her rescuer. She wants to serve him as his so-called slot to make him happy, to care about his well-being. It's all about the man. She gives the man her body. The man can service himself with her body because she needs protection. She needs to be rescued.

Similarly, when she would go to a new environment, she would become extremely promiscuous. Her promiscuity is a way for her to engage with multiple potential rescuers and protectors until she homes in on one. And then, you know, there's a love bombing phase and temporary attachments.

The sex, the sex serves also to restore her self-esteem. She feels desire. She feels the center of attention. She feels, which is narcissistic. She feels wanted. She feels noticed. She feels de-abused. It takes away the effects of the abuse, the humiliation of the rejection and the fear of abandonment.

Now her self-esteem is restored. She's validated. She feels strong. She feels determined. And now she can break up with a previous intimate partner if she bothers to do it. Very often, they simply vanish. There's no closure, no breakup, no announcement, no nothing. Poof, they're gone.

At that stage, however, there's a very complex inner process in the borderline.

The borderline is premised, is the outcome of childhood abuse, exactly like narcissism.

But as opposed to narcissism, borderlines retain a modicum of empathy. This empathy is very functional empathy, but it's full-fledged empathy. It includes emotions, the emotional component.

So borderlines are empathy.

And as distinct from most narcissists, they also have negative emotions, which are egodystonic. In other words, negative emotions, which borderlines feel bad about.

Narcissists have negative emotions, but they're happy about these emotions. Narcissists are angry, for example. So they externalize their anger antisocially and they use it, they leverage it to get places. Narcissists are pretty happy. For example, they're envious because they're envious. They're motivated to compete.

So narcissists leverage their negative emotions in pro-social ways, actually.

The borderline has negative emotions, which are egodystonic. They are uncomfortable. For example, the borderline has fear. She has negative affectivity. She has guilt. She has shame. She has regret. Mostly she's afraid to be caught in the act. If she cheats on her intimate partner, she's afraid to be caught cheating. She's very aware of what other people think of her.

And in this sense, she's very narcissistic. Remember that she self-regulates via the gazes or the combined gazes of other people. Exactly like the narcissists, the borderline has a hive mind, an outsourced mind.

These two types outsource their minds because they have no internal environment. They don't have their identities diffused. They don't have a core.

So the borderline is very worried. What would other people think of her if she's caught in the act?

Also, it may lead to retribution. She's very paranoid. Her image is tarnished.

And she also feels very shame and very guilty for having hurt her previous intimate partner. And because she still retains some hope that maybe they could get back together.

But if the borderlines had made a decision, an internal determination that the previous intimate partner is not safe for her in the sense that he can reject her or abandon her again, forget about it.

His ghost, object in constancy and splitting. He becomes all bad and he's forgotten.

Or if he's not forgotten, he's hated and he becomes transformed or transmogrified into a bad memory, an evil memory.

So at this stage, the borderline would start to confabulate.

Don't forget that the borderline, for example, during sex dissociates. She either depersonalizes, she feels that she's on autopilot or that she's observing herself from the outside. Or she derealizes, she feels that what's happening to her is a nightmare, a movie, not real. Or she becomes much more common amnesiac.

It's called dissociative amnesia. She simply forgets things. She can forget whole stretches.

For example, there are borderlines who repeatedly forget sex scenes. All sexual encounters, they dissociate them, they cut them with imaginary mental scissors and they dump them in the wastebasket of memory.

So there's a lot of dissociation going on. These gaps, this lost time, the borderline has to compensate for. And she compensates for these segments of lost time by confabulating.

Confabulation is not like, it's not the same. Confabulation is a psychological mechanism. It's generating or creating an imaginary piece of fiction that is all the same plausible.

It's like asking the question, what could I have been thinking? What did I do reasonably? What would, what did I do probably? What did I do? How did I act plausibly?

And then the borderline says, well, okay, if that's what I had done probably, if that's how I acted plausibly, probably that's what I did. And that's of course a form of magical thinking.

What happens in your head is reality. So if you imagine what could have happened, if you imagine what was plausible, what probably you had done, I mean, that must be the truth.

So that's confabulation. It's filling in the gaps, filling in the abyss of lost memory with plausible, probable, reasonable pieces of fiction.

This is not the same like lying because lying is knowing what had happened and lying about it, altering it.

It's aborderline is not aware of what had really happened. She is trying to second guess reality.

Borderline, the borderlines, confabulations are egosyntonic. In other words, she feels comfortable with them. She feels that they are really a part of her. She owns them and they become an integral patch within the fabric of her identity.

Her confabulations are self-justifying. They are blame shifting.

So by fault, he made me do it. It's not my fault he made me do it. This is called alloplastic defense and borderlines have this a lot. They are never to blame. They're never, you know, someone, circumstances made them do it. Intimate partner made them do it.

Rejection and abuse and humiliation, perceived abandonment, all kinds of signs of cheating. They're very paranoid. They suspect their intimate partner of constantly cheating and constantly, you know, they're constantly jealous and they are aggressive, they have aggressive romantic jealousy. They externalize it and become very psychopathic about it.

That's why we increasingly believe that borderlines are actually psychopaths, secondary psychopaths, not the male type of psychopathy, but a female type of psychopathy.

But be it as it may, the borderlines confabulations are an integral part of her. Sometimes the confabulations are intended to restore the relationship with the previous intimate partner, to create a fluid narrative that will somehow accommodate everyone's needs. So she would say, yeah, I had sex with someone else, but I was drunk. You know, he got me drunk. Oh, he raped me. Or yeah, I went away for a few weeks because I needed my private time and space to realize how much I love you, this kind of thing. So these are confabulations. Contrabulating is intended to bridge the amnesiac gaps, but also to restore some normalcy to a situation that has been severely destabilized and damaged and disrupted by impulsivity, aggression, and defiance.

And of course, the borderline, most borderlines abuse substances, many of them are alcoholics or drug abusers or junkies and so on. And so they would very often shift the blame to the drug or to the alcohol. So they would say, I forgot, I forgot. I don't remember the sex with the other guy because I had an alcoholic blackout. Or they would say, I usually smoke weed. I don't know what happened. This must have been a special type of weed, which made me do it.

So they would shift. They would very often accuse the substances they had been abusing at the time they had misbehaved. They know they misbehave. They're fully aware of that, but they can't own it because it's too disruptive. It's too egodystonic. It would turn them apart. It would regenerate because they're not narcissists. They feel guilt. They feel shame. They feel regret.

And so if they own the misbehavior, they will be torn apart and they will be rendered asunder and rendered asunder and they cannot, they cannot accept this. Post facto, they would tend to try to revive relationships with intimate narcissists, with intimate partners. Even if the partner's a narcissist, try somehow to revive the relationship. They will keep in touch. Sometimes they would keep in touch in order to witness the intimate partner's pain and punishment. Sometimes they would keep in touch because they hope that whatever happened was a clarion call, a wake-up call and you know, now things will get better. Sometimes they are simply afraid because of their projected paranoia. They are afraid of the retribution of the intimate partner.

So they would keep tabs on the intimate partner. They would try to regulate the intimate partner's vindictive impulse by confabulating and lying so as to create a narrative where the intimate partner would not feel so hurt, would not feel so aggressive and hateful. And sometimes they keep in touch, keep in touch with the intimate partner after such a destructive episode because they resent the partner moving on. They hate it that the partner gets over them and recovers. They try to pull him back. They try to tear him apart as well.

Very often borderlines feel shame and regret what they had done. Very, very often.

Many of them have auto plastic defenses. They blame themselves. They say, you see, I'm so disordered and so disrupted and so broken and I'm so damaged. It's hopeless. My life is hopeless. About 10% of borderlines attempt to commit suicide.

And in certain sub-types of borderline, the figure is as high as 70%. For example, borderlines who are also diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder, 70% of them try to commit suicide. That's 7-0.

So this indicates an inner struggle against shame and guilt and other egodystonic emotions.

And many borderlines are actually good hearted and kind hearted and they try to provide closure. But they try to provide closure as they do all other things dysfunctionally. So they will try to provide closure by lying, for example, or confabulating or providing soothing narratives. And this would backfire. This is when the lies are exposed and the confabulations are revealed and so on.

I mean, the interpret part of it is even more hurt and humiliated and offended against.

And this massive deception and attempts to rewrite history and reality and so on and so forth, this is indicative of the borderlines in a landscape. It's a landscape of virtual alternative reality.

Borderline has no real reality. You cannot have a reality if you don't have an identity. And you cannot have an identity if you don't have self-love. And you cannot have self-love if you don't have object constancy. And you cannot have object constancy if you constantly split.

And all these are typical of borderlines and of narcissists. They just choose different solutions because borderlines are much more human than narcissists.

We can recognize in a borderline our own struggles, our own pains, our own hurt, and how we try to cope with life's crisis and tribulations.

When we look at the narcissists, we can't empathize or sympathize with the narcissists because there's nobody there. And in the worst case, the narcissist is robotic and mechanical and utterly frightening.

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