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Topic: Mother has BPD and long term depression.

3 posts, 0 answered
  1. MissNAC
    MissNAC avatar
    1 posts
    15 September 2018

    Hi all,

    I am hoping to get a bit of advice, or at least reassurance that we are doing the right thing.

    My mum has been on antidepressant for 25 years for depression and diagnosed with BPD and Impulse disorder. The depression has turned into gambling, alcoholism and now I believe there may be drugs involved.

    My mum has put the family through hell and has remained adamant that she is the victim. She has attempted to commit suicide numerous times, threatened suicide constantly, lost her licence drunk driving and damaged things around her unit, just to mention a few. Most recently she set fire to her unit. She is now currently living with a man who is a bad influence and having relations with her, we believe he may be emotionally abusive to her and he is claiming to insurance that he is now her power of attorney (whether or not this is true).

    My dad is an enabler and has threatened to cut her off (they are separated since they had to sell the house due to her accumulated gambling debts). Even though they are separated, she constantly calls him up asking for money as she has spent it all - after yelling at her, he always gives in.

    Since this fire, she is in the mental health centre hospital (to be released shortly) and is adamant that she is the victim and denying anything is wrong (Even though I have text msgs and voicemails that she admitted she wanted to die), and is refusing that she needs help. She is actually pretty happy that her insurance will replace everything in her unit and couldn't care less that she could have killed someone (or her dog).

    My family have put up with a lot and we are at the end of our rope. I have young kids I need to protect and my dad already suffers from heart attacks. We have been told that unless she admits she needs help, that there's nothing we can do. Which is why we are ready to cut ties with her.

    I guess I just want some reassurance that we are doing the right thing. My mum has always guilt tripped me and I already feel guilty but I feel that my stress is affecting my health but I know, the longer I avoid/ignore her, the more I will feel guilty. I am next of kin and have copped the full brunt of this and I just can't take it anymore since it doesn't seem she will ever change. I'm scared that my dad will give in and begin enabling her again. I'm very close to my dad but I want to be strong enough to tell him that I don't want her in my life, for the sake of my health and my kids.

    Has anyone been through similar?

    1 person found this helpful
  2. Croix
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    Croix avatar
    9194 posts
    15 September 2018 in reply to MissNAC

    Dear MissNAC~

    I'm sorry, you are in an impossible situation and frankly although you would wish it I can't see any way you can help your mother. It is one of those times a person has to want and try seriously for hep before anything can be done.

    You do have tree sets of people you can help though, starting with yourself. No matter how guilty you feel (and that guilt while expected is simply not deserved) your plan of putting distance between yourself and your mother - and her boyfriend -is the only practical thing. Anything else would simply increase your feeling of frustration, powerlessness and grief.

    Shielding young children from violent or irrational people is most imortant too, To see their grandmother in extreme states I would think would be harmful.

    Your father, with his frail health is perhaps the hardest you can help. Having a tendency to give in and supply money is understandable, even if a futile gesture.It is likely your father would take notice if you talked to him, if not maybe counseling - what do you think?

    There does come a time when one has to realize that normal family support, such as one might give a mother, is no longer appropriate and will most probably do more harm than good. Do you think you will be able to step back and let her get on with it as you are considering? Affecting your health and feeling so much stress cannot go on.

    May I ask if here is anyone to support you?


  3. MsPurple
    Champion Alumni
    • Community champion volunteers who are not currently active on the forums.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    MsPurple avatar
    1621 posts
    15 September 2018 in reply to MissNAC

    HI MissNAC and welcome to the beyond blue (BB) forums. Not sure if you know this but it is a peer based forums, so I am not a professional, just your average folk like yourself.

    Now I do get confused if BPD means bipolar disorder or borederline personality disorder. I have grown up with a mum who also has bipolar disorder. Now a doctor tried to diagnose her with it before I was born, but my mum was in denial and saw a different doctor. She didn't believe she had bipolar. She ended up leaving my dad because of her mania (never got back together), spent more money than she had (never bankrupt thank god, but still struggling to get back from it at times) etc. She finally accepted she had bipolar when I was around 8 years old. She couldn't get the proper help she needed until she accepted that she had bipolar and also accepted she needed help.

    Now I am sharing this with you to let you know that people are sometimes cared to be diagnosed with a lifelong condition. Some people, like my mum, want to cling on to a diagnosis that may not be perminant (like depression).

    I think based on your story that it is ok to step back and have a break. I think you can only help someone who wants help and accepts the fact they need help. (I had an eating disorder, and I know first hand that I couldn't get better until I admitted I had a problem, and accept the process and help of others, at times I hated being force fed, but I accepted it had to happen). I have found (at least in myself) there is only so much energy you can give someone without putting too much strain on yourself. You need to look after yourself first (like on an airplane, put your oxygen mask on yourself first). It maybe good to have your mum in your life in terms of talking about her and seeing her with when you are ready and ok to do so, but I do completely understand why you may need to cut ties with her (at least for the time being). I think it maybe actually healthy to do so. It may allow her to see the impact she is having on you all and that yes, if she wants you back in her life she needs to get help. It maybe also good for your dad to stop giving her money for non-essentials. HOwever it is your dads choice and it maybe not the best to bring that up for the time being.

    I hope this has been helpful. You can only give so much and it is more than ok to have a break when someone is not willing to accept your help


    1 person found this helpful

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