Breaking Borderline

How to rewire your brain and fix your life

Using Mindfulness to Tolerate a Terrible Breakup

Alisa Valdes launches her new borderline recovery blog with a post about how she is working hard with Dialectical Behavioral Therapy to get through the unspeakable pain of being dumped by her fiance, in hopes of avoiding her usual self-destructive patterns. Read More

Perfect timing


As I painfully sit behind my laptop to type the dreadful words into google "how to get over a break up" I came across your blog. The "for real" break up happened about 3 days ago and since then, I have been a complete lunatic. I have been reflecting (or trying to in between my childish meltdowns with tears and screams) about how this all came to be. And just like you I have realized that it is me. My behavior, my neediness, my co-dependency issues, and my childish over reactions to just about anything. My psychologist has recommended me to go to partial hospitalization placement, which I will begin next week. It will be intensive therapy from 9:30-2:30 Mondy-Friday. As I am trying to allow myself to "function" in anyway shape or form from this, I also have to battle my Generalized Anxiety Disorder that is just getting the best of me. Not only am acting crazy with him...calling, texting, e-mailing, begging, but all my other anxieties of work, being single, living alone (which I never have and I am 29 years old) These are all things that wont let my mind stop. I feel like a crazy person. I'm hoping my intensive therapy will help, but I'm also going to look into the treatment plan that is helping you. Thank you for posting!

Just a word of support

It will get better. You sound like you're self-aware and articulate, I hope you will take care of yourself and get the best help. Life throws very hard things sometimes, and you sound very brave.

I'm in the same boat

Thank you for your honest post.
I'm in the same place as you right now.
I found out on Monday that my partner for the last year has been living a double life. And now he's done with me and moved on - without any notice.
I've had to do all the digging to discover this information.
All i want to do is take a sleeping tablet and hide in my bed.
And i am trying with all my energy to keep moving, keep working, keep functioning.
I can't wait to follow your prgoress and i hope to join you with it.

Thank you for this article. I

Thank you for this article. I went through a devastating breakup a year and a half ago with a man I dated for almost two years, and felt the unbearable pain you described. You are so brave and strong to face the facts of why your relationship ended. The breakup that I experienced was one of the most painful events of my life. Therapy was helpful because it gave me perspective about my emotions. Although it might feel like you will never feel better again, it will pass. I have been incredibly fortunate to have found someone else and fall in love again, and the pain of my past experience has made me a much better partner. I am more grateful, kind, and patient. Going through that pain will mature you, and I am even more open to loving someone than I was before, because I now know that I can handle a loss. Have self-compassion and take good care of yourself during this time. Thank you for sharing your experience.

As a non, I am impressed with

As a non, I am impressed with the strength of the author of this article and the anonymous poster of 7/16/14. It takes tremendous courage for anyone to be honestly self-critical, to examine one's self, to look inward at why certain aspects of one's life aren't working for them. Whether one has BPD or is a non, looking at one's self in the mirror and facing uncomfortable truths may be the most painful thing a person can do. FYI, it can be equally difficult for a non to honestly take responsibility for the role that he or she may have played in contributing to the dynamics of a failed borderline-non relationship, as well. It seems to me that many people in general today seem unwilling to take personal responsibility and be accountable for their choices and errors of their own making. But, now knowing what I have learned about borderline following the demise of my relationship with a BPD woman whom I loved, I can imagine how truly difficult it must be for a borderline who realizes that there is something wrong with her way of relating and wants to get better to acknowledge that she acted in a way that was abusive to a man who cared for and loved her and that she caused him intense emotional pain. Nevertheless, my post-relationship education/research about borderline and the self-introspection that I worked on in my therapy for grief about the loss of my relationship, the PTSD from the emotional abuse that I allowed myself to endure and my own co-dependency issues have helped me to try to understand and to forgive. Although my BPD ex and I no longer are in contact, she sent me an e-mail a few months ago acknowledging how the loss of me from her life affected her deeply and was the event that caused her to seek therapy for her borderline issues. When I read the article, it made me feel sorry for what my ex may have gone through after the breakup because I honestly believe that she knew that I was the most loving, kind, trustworthy, consistent, reliable and compassionate man that she had ever been with in her life. I believe that she loved me the best that she could. When I read the anonymous poster's 7/16/14 post, it made me feel much better about the possibility of hope for borderlines who want to get better and make positive choices and changes. I wish my ex had been willing to face her issues before our relationship happened because she had so many good things about her that I have found in no woman since. I also hope the anonymous poster is willing to be emotionally intimate and vulnerable with her new partner whom she loves about her borderline, if he is a compassionate, understanding, kind man, so that they can work together to have a healthy relationship. I wish the article's author and the anonymous poster of 7/16 the best, just as I do my ex. WS

Breakup Article

Would you please tell us or hint to us the pack of cards you are using? I could really use them. I used to be worse than that, and it's easy, too easy to go off the rails.

Wow. I don't suffer from BDP

Wow. I don't suffer from BDP personally, but I felt as if I could catch a glimpse of what your experience is like, and I'm so impressed by the strength of character you're showing. Please keep it up. I think you're going to help a lot of people by writing the way you do, both people who struggle with BDP and those of us who have someone afflicted with BDP in our lives. I'm definitely going to keep reading.

Niece has BPD

Alisa - For many years I have read your books and followed you on FB. I love your books and I look forward to your posts. For months now I have been reading up about BPD (Walking on Eggshells) because I have a niece that suffers from it. Although she hasn't accepted this "label" it truly fits her (all 9 behaviors). After she told me that I was the one that needed help and that I should get therapy, I did just that. My therapist told me about BPD after I described my niece's behaviors. My niece started seeing my same therapist eventually but that was short lived after the therapist got close to diagnosing the BPD. All I can say is that it is one of the most horrible things that has happened to our family. My niece has a daughter who is only 6 and we try to support her as much as we can. My heart goes out to you and your family, including Mike whom I had hoped would soon become your "husband habit." Good luck with the DBT because it appears to be the key to the future for all those with BPD. You are not your diagnosis. Get Mike a book, The Essential Family Guide to BPD - it helps to begin to understand.

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Alisa Valdes is a bestselling author, recovering journalist and budding acronym enthusiast undergoing DBT to cure her BPD.


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