Mood Swings – Criteria 6 / Instability of mood

Criteria 6: affective instability due to a marked reactivity of mood (e.g., intense episodic dysphoria, irritability, or anxiety usually lasting a few hours and only rarely more than a few days).

Duh. That’s really all I want to say to this one but that wouldn’t be very informative now would it. The important thing here is to understand WHY the moods of a borderline are so unstable. The problem is, it’s going to be different for everyone so I’ll just have to stick with why they’re so difficult for me.
I’m major depressive so my base set mood is mildly depressed. The best I can hope for on an average day is to just feel nothing; not happy, not sad, just a sort of blankness that doesn’t swing me in either direction. Of course it’s wonderful to feel happy. Merely talking to a friend, connecting with a loved one, will do this. This feeling rarely stays though because eventually people have to have their own lives or return to work. Resume normal everyday behavior. But to me it’s like I lose my hold, my connection to them. Having been happy while talking to them, now I slip from being happy to being left with only the thoughts in my own head and not knowing when I’ll be able to have that connection again; alone. I slip from happy, to alone, empty, spiraling down. In the space that was filled with that connection to a loved one, I’m now left with a hollow void where they’re gone and my thoughts can race and ruminate. This bleeds back to being alone, abandoned. It’s not rational, but it feels like something that was there is now gone. Being a thinking creature I can’t know for sure when it will be back. That uncertainty is maddening.
Anxiety is a big one. The smallest things seem to set me off, spike my anxiety and it feels like my world will crash in on itself. Especially if it’s something I’ve planned just so. I try to arrange things to bring about the most comfortable, stable environment for me. Calm. To feel secure in my surroundings I plan every detail to create the perfect scenerio. That house of comfort is built on a foundation of cards that even the smallest suggestion of change adds a weight, a pressure to, that can send it toppling to the ground. I have an incredibly difficult time getting through the fact that any change will not rock my foundation and will not wreak havoc on my plans because it feels like it does.
Lack of control of my environment means a lack of control of myself, my life. If I can’t even control my own life than what control can I possibly have in an ever changing world.
When a change attacks my plans it’s like an attack on my character. My plans weren’t good enough, that they had to be changed, an attack on me, my judgement when someone suggests I do something differently. They don’t want to accept my idea and therefore don’t accept me by extension. Of course this is not true, but that’s how it feels. Understanding how to make the emotional connection to the logical occurrence of this being not true is what’s difficult. For me there is a complete disconnect between what I logically know to be true and what I feel, if I feel at all.

Disappointment. I read disappointment into your reaction/suggestion because you wanted more than I thought to provide which translates to disappointment in myself because I couldn’t guess what it was that you would have wanted best. Or worse, that you don’t want what I want and I begin to fear that this one instance extends into the entire friendship, relationship, etc. What I’ve done isn’t good enough, I wasn’t good enough, it’s only a matter of time before you realize I’ll never be perfect and you’ll seek company elsewhere. Leave…  

On the other hand, if things go well, if I can do something that makes someone happy this also validates who I am. That I am someone good and worthy of being loved or cared for. If I can do something to show I care, and it’s appreciated, I can physically represent that I am an important aspect of someone’s life. Knowing this, in the moment, it’s euphoric. My simply being there isn’t enough, I must be able to SHOW it. If I can’t show it, how could they SEE it. I have a very difficult time believing that if I’m not immediately in someone’s presence that they can remember the care I hold for them (more on this later). Contrariwise, if it’s something I do isn’t appreciated I’m left with
Advertisements