Personality Disorders

The Core Wound of Abandonment in Borderline Personality Disorder



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If you've been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) awareness of the core wound of abandonment will change your life.

It is the core wound of abandonment in those who have been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) that is the source of insecure or non-existent attachment that leads to the toxic and unhealthy ruptured relationships that have at their centre emotional enmeshment and an insatiable need for love. These broken relationships, often rupture under the weight of the child-like behaviour and needs of the borderline still searching for the much-needed unconditional acceptance, validation and love of a parent as the result of unmet early childhood developmental needs.

Most, if not all, borderline behaviour is driven directly or indirectly by fear of abandonment and the fear of re-experiencing the intolerable pain of your original core wound of abandonment.

What feels like it keeps happening to you, is in fact, a triggered, dissociative, regressed re-experiencing of what initially happened to you in the very early and formative developmental years of your life.

If you have been diagnosed with BPD you are conditioned by the very pain that you are in that you do not know how to cope with, and feel that you must avoid at all costs, to continue to choose the pain and suffering. For many, if not most with BPD, this is truly what is familiar to you. It is what is known. In the absence of a known identity it feels safer to continue to abdicate your personal responsibility and re-play out your original core abandonment wound - and the helplessness associated with it.

Unfortunately, up to this choice point I am talking about, BPD, feels to those who are diagnosed with it, as if it is victimizing them. When one feels like or perceives him/herself to be a victim the awareness needed to make choices is obliterated by that distorted perception.

This central choice point is a crucial point of awareness that brings with it the possibility for the kind of understanding required in order to learn about how many unconscious and self-defeating choices you now make and how you can change those choices. Those choices need to be changed from unconscious and self-defeating to conscious, responsible and affirming ones, thereby working to turn your unmanageable suffering into manageable pain, involves surrendering to the reality that your past is your past. You did not create the circumstance in your past that caused you so much harm, before you were even two years old.

However, now, you, and you alone are responsible, as an adult, for your life, regardless of your past. When you can admit this, sit with this and understand this, you can then make new and different choices to recover from your past.
The crucial point of awareness needed by those with BPD is awareness as to the nature and scope of the anatomy of your core wound of abandonment. This is what sits at the bottom of all of your pain, fear of abandonment, abandonment depression, and/or abandonment anxiety.

It is the core wound of abandonment suffered that arrests the emotional development of a young child who is then at high risk to develop BPD because the emerging authentic self is psychologically killed by all that the very young child cannot cope with or soothe. The intolerable nature of this very young and traumatic pain leaves the infant or very young child feeling as if they are going to die, experiencing what is known as the anxiety of the death instinct as the emerging authentic self is supplanted by the creation of a protective false self. A false self that struggles with narcissism.

The primary relationship, in essence, the first love relationship of your life - the relationship with your mother - is ruptured when primary needs are not satiated. It can also be ruptured by neglect, anger, abuse, inconsistent and/or incongruent parenting. It is this ruptured relationship that impacts the pathological relating seen in and experienced and perpetuated by those with BPD that only continues to recapitulate and re-enact this most traumatic loss and the feelings of helplessness and abject terror that accompany it. This repetition compulsion of the original core wound of abandonment sees the borderline cast anyone that he/she tries to relate to into the role of the person (mother, care-taker) that generated this unresolved and traumatic pain.

It is this woundedness that has left you unable to be alone, having a lot of difficulty trying to soothe (or being absolutely unable to soothe) your pain. It is also this very woundedness that has left you without the skills necessary to attach/bond and/or relate to others in anything but toxic unhealthy ways that just continue to increase the pain of the borderline as well.

It is also this core woundedness that often leaves those with BPD re-abusing themselves. This is often the result of the crippling shame that is felt when one has experienced the core wound of abandonment. According to John Bradshaw, in his book, "Healing The Shame That Binds You," if you are or experience abandonment (emotional and/or physical) you are also shamed to the core by this experience. The young child takes on the negative feelings felt because he/she does not have any way to deal with them and doesn't have any place to put them.

If you are borderline you need to get in touch with the core wound of your abandonment that was experienced or perceived by you and that you continue to re-experience and re-live out and/or act out in any and practically all attempts to relate to others.

The core wound of your original abandonment take place before you are two years of age. Subsequently, you may have experienced on-going actual or perceived abandonment since that time. At a certain point in your life you were compelled to act out/act in and compulsively re-capitulate your original pain re-living it often daily through what are triggered dissociative regressed dysregulated emotional states.

Each re-living experience of the original core wound of abandonment is re-traumatizing and increases the unmanageable suffering of the borderline.
It is through a growing awareness of and insight into your original core wound of abandonment that you can and will choose to change your life. It is a process that is also quite painful. The pain, however, is the pain that you have needed to feel, face, soothe, grieve, and heal all of your life. It is the very pain that has controlled your life until you reach this very pivotal awareness point. You must feel this pain in order to heal it and once and for all be free of it.

Awareness and insight are needed in order for the borderline to understand how he/she is keeping him/herself trapped in the past and in all the pain of that past. However, awareness and insight, alone, do not create change. In order to create change and to recover, the borderline must choose it, and then be committed to it.

 

More about this author: A.J. Mahari

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