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Spouses/Partners with Personality Disorders

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SI Staff posted 12/23/2017 21:08 PM

This thread can include both BPD and NPD.

[This message edited by SI Staff at 9:11 PM, December 23rd (Saturday)]

OnlyGodcanhealIT posted 12/25/2017 21:43 PM

My FWH has mild bipolar and ADHD. When he goes to the bathroom for 20 min at a time 2 times a day, plays video games for over 2 hours at a clip, seems distracted often or moody regularly, it drives me nuts. Is it the disorder? Is it the ADHD? Is he having another A? Is he just being a man?

This is a major source of insecurity while healing from an affair for me. He is doing lots to make me feel secure but also lots of the above too. Makes the roller coaster a gigacoaster. Some days I feel like this so ridiculous, all of it to handle at once. Probably for him too but also for me.

redfury posted 12/27/2017 07:16 AM

My stbxwh is diagnosed with BPD, although he does not acknowledge he has the condition. My life with him was nothing short of a psychological circus. He is an emotional manipulator. Has no sense of self but a keep awareness of others which he uses to tell you exactly what you want to hear. He constantly put me through the Idealize, Devalue, Discard cycle. He engaged in black or white thinking where I was either the greatest thing to ever walk on two legs (an impossible standard to live up to) or a worthless piece of crap. He lived a double life the entire time we were together. Our attempts at reconciliation were just him learning to lie better but he has recently admitted that he was cheating the entire time (only after I found evidence of it, he has never once admitted to something without being caught first).

The result of this relationship was a type of trauma bonding where I was looking for his nice persona, the person I believed was my soulmate, to rescue me from the abuser. As a codependent, I thought I could help him. I thought I could be loving and understanding enough to see him through his pain (because he is in immense pain). I often said on these forums that we were two broken people who were going to heal together, but the fact is he was never trying. He was lying to his IC and to the members of his SAA group. He lies to everyone all the time.

I have spent a lot of time learning about sex addiction and BPD and I am coming to understand that there may be no help for him. And certainly, being in a relationship with him will not help since it is intimate relationships that are the main trigger for BPD. I am in the process of recovery from the abuse I have suffered but it is not easy. He has fostered my dependence on him, and I find it nearly impossible to stay away. As a codependent, I am experiencing pathological loneliness without him. But the only way out is through, and the only thing to do in this type of relationship is run away.

[This message edited by redfury at 7:32 AM, December 27th (Wednesday)]

xhz700 posted 12/27/2017 09:58 AM

Finally! Thank you WOE!


Is it the disorder? Is it the ADHD? Is he having another A? Is he just being a man?

Bipolar Disorder and BPD are different things. Bipolar disorder is a brain chemistry disorder, which can be treated through medication. BPD is a personality disorder that falls within a set of symptoms.

Is your H medicated? Seeking therapy regularly?

xhz700 posted 12/27/2017 10:05 AM


I have spent a lot of time learning about sex addiction and BPD and I am coming to understand that there may be no help for him.

Unfortunately, you are right. In my opinion you can skip learning about sexual addiction. BPD is a separate creature and in my opinion is enough cause for you to leave a relationship by itself.

Truly the best that you can hope for is for the disordered person to gain some sort of perspective and acceptance of what they are. They aren't truly going to get better, ever.

As a codependent, I thought I could help him.

He has fostered my dependence on him, and I find it nearly impossible to stay away. As a codependent, I am experiencing pathological loneliness without him.

I am far too familiar with these statements. Where are you in your process? I am assuming you are still married and cohabiting? Have you read "Walking on Eggshells" or "Codependent No More"? How are you taking care of yourself?

redfury posted 12/27/2017 10:37 AM

It's been a month since the last d-day. I moved out 3 weeks ago. It's been a week since I spoke to him, 3 days since I spent time stalking him online.

I'm finding NC very hard and most of my belongings are still in his house. Going to retrieve them is just too much of a trigger. I haven't yet filed for divorce, but I need to.

I have read Codependent No More and I Hate You, Don't Leave Me, but not Walking on Eggshells. I have been in IC and group therapy for 9 months and felt I was making a lot of progress, but this has set me back quite a bit. I guess, if it weren't for the therapy, I wouldn't have been strong enough to leave.

eta: Right now I'm reading the Human Magnet Syndrome and am finding it to be really helpful in explaining why and how I was drawn into this relationship to begin with

[This message edited by redfury at 10:48 AM, December 27th (Wednesday)]

xhz700 posted 12/27/2017 11:05 AM


It's hard, but it does get better. I still have days that I miss the promise of what could have been. Logically, I know that it was never possible, but I think I miss the feeling of hope. The number one thing I had to give up as a codependent was blind hope. You have to understand, he does not see the world like you do, at all.

I've been separated since February. Divorce was filed in January (by her, we had discussed doing it amicably, only for her to spring papers on me accusing me of rape, abuse, and having an inappropriate sexual relationship with my daughter). She really felt like she "got me" on that one. She assaulted me, leading to the separation. Tried to lie to the police about me assaulting her, didn't work. They wouldn't arrest her because she's a woman, so I voluntarily moved out of the home that I am still paying for.

It took me about two months to get less foggy and detach from her. At about six months I started feeling like a human being again.

Keep up the IC, and more importantly the NC. If you need to get your things, call a friend, family member, or the police to escort you.

Come here any time, I plan on being very active in this thread. People in relationships like this need a special kind of triage.

Wishing you well.

OnlyGodcanhealIT posted 12/27/2017 17:22 PM

Oh my goodness! I misread BPD, thinking it was Bipolar disorder. Whoops I guess Iím in the wrong thread.

OnlyGodcanhealIT posted 12/27/2017 17:26 PM

Can this thread be for any mental instability?

xhz700 posted 12/27/2017 18:58 PM

I don't see why not. The problems are related, but different. I know a fair amount from a lot of study, but I am not a mental health professional.

OnlyGodcanhealIT posted 12/28/2017 10:34 AM

I just want to say that mental illness or instability is so insidious. I hate it. There I said it. Iím sympathetic but not sure I can be sympathetic up close or even empathetic. It makes me feel like I have a mental illness myself while dealing with it daily. Just got to do what I feel makes me joyous and also pray and take it all day by day. I refuse to allow it to bring me down even though I fall and stumble daily in dealing with it. I would love to see us be successful in this-being in a relationship with someone who has a mental illness or instability, but I just donít know. Situations are manipulated to hide the truth too often with mentally ill people. You just never know what youíre dealing with. Plus there is black and white thinking all the time, and it causes decisions that are detrimental to someoneís life, like cheating or spending too much money etc.
Still I pray for an outcome that I canít strive to get on my own. Need Godís hope peace and help.

Supernova65 posted 12/30/2017 13:27 PM

Does Aspergers fit on this thread? I went through hell with my Aspergers partner and would like to hear others experiences.

OnlyGodcanhealIT posted 12/30/2017 20:47 PM

I donít see why not to discuss Aspergers as well !

ASoCalledLife posted 12/30/2017 23:33 PM

Respectfully, Aspergerís Syndrome is not a personality disorder. Itís a different type of neurology. Itís a pervasive neurodevelopmental disability. And living in a world that is built for neurotypical people where those of us with Aspergerís donít fit at all is difficult.

Iím not exonerating anyone from bad behavior. But if there is going to be a ďcatch allĒ thread that includes us, can it have a title that isnít stigmatizing at least?

ASoCalledLife posted 12/31/2017 00:20 AM

I didnít mean for my response to come off harshly. Iím tired and stressed and subtlety isnít a strength of mine even on a good day.

Thereís just already so much negativity about people on the autism spectrum already. When thereís been a mass shooter, one of the first speculations is whether the shooter had Aspergerís. Weíre portrayed so stereotypically in literature and media and so many places. I guess it just struck a nerve. Call the thread whatever you all like. Iíll just stay out of it as I have bigger problems that I should focus on.

redfury posted 12/31/2017 08:50 AM

Just going to update on my interactions with BPD stbxwh. On Thursday my step-father and uncle offered to help me move some furniture out of the house. When I showed up, the security code had been changed so I had to call him because the alarm was going off. At first he said he'd just let the police come (which is especially nice since I am currently on probation for a domestic violence incident that occurred because of all of this madness). I told him I didn't care, that he is not allowed to hold my belongings hostage and finally he relented and gave me the code. I should have hung up at that point, but I got sucked into a conversation with him. It included him blaming me for everything. Saying I didn't allow him to be his true self and was trying to control him (truth. instead of maintaining my boundaries, I spent years trying to stop him cheating on me). He completly re-wrote history and had me saying the exact opposite of what I actually said in marriage counseling sessions. Then he threatened suicide. The whole thing had me so spun out that I admitted that I still love him. I do, but I shouldn't have said it. He's crying and says he needs to go because he's at work but will talk to me later. Then radio silence for a couple of days.

Yesterday, I text and say I coming to get my dogs (they had stayed at the house). I won't go over without notifying him again if it 'makes him uncomfortable'. He responds with a barrage of 'I see the truth finally' and 'I am getting help for my problem' texts. Says a lot of things that sound like truth regarding our past. But he is very good at telling people what the want to hear.

I'm worried that he reads everything I post here, as well as on other sites (which is funny because when we lived together I would just leave my journal sitting on the bedside table. I knew he wouldn't read it. Not because he respected my privacy, but because it would never occur to him to be interested in my thoughts and feelings). I know that he was logging into my facebook and fb messenger. I've changed passwords, but he knows my screen names.

[This message edited by redfury at 8:57 AM, December 31st (Sunday)]

Supernova65 posted 12/31/2017 22:31 PM

Thatís why I asked. I didnít think Aspergers belonged here but Iíve yet to see much discussion about it anywhere on these threads. I donít think of it as Aspie bashing but Iíd wager that there are many partners or spouses who may like to offer each other support. Then again, there are Aspie specific forums but they donít deal specifically with infidelity.

xhz700 posted 12/31/2017 23:17 PM


I will be blunt. You know what you are doing wrong. I can identify with how hard it is to not get sucked in, but you need to know that this stops when you stop it, and not sooner.

NC means no new hurts. What can you do to limit discussion with him? Why haven't you filed for divorce yet?

In my case I had to acknowledge my addiction to drama before I was able to detach.

ASoCalledLife posted 1/1/2018 09:13 AM

I agree there arenít many (if there are any?) places on the web dealing with aspies and infidelity.

Maybe a thread for people dealing with ďAspergerís, ADHD, & related diagnosesĒ would work? Or this thread (personality disorders) could be renamed so that it is inclusive of Aspergerís? But as it stands, neither the DSM 5 nor the ICD categorize autism spectrum disorders (which is what Aspergerís falls under) as a personality disorder. The characteristics are different; they just are.

Superesse posted 1/1/2018 10:14 AM

It is interesting to me that a new topic, expressly created for spouses and partners of PDs, is getting challenged by someone with ASD, using self-referent points to make the case against including ASD in a Spouse/Partnersí support forum after another poster had requested space to share about the pain of being married to an Aspergersí who cheated?

Characteristic in ďAspiesĒ (included with ASD now) is a relatively weak ability to perceive other peopleís realities. For someone with Aspergerís to turn the conversation into a debate about their diagnosis not fitting a ďpersonalityĒ disorder, misses the bigger picture, the clearly-stated reasons for creating this space to post: for Spouses/Partners to have more peer support after suffering from infidelity along with the mental health issues their spouse brought into the relationship.

Given that context, how important is it whether ASD is or is not a ďpersonalityĒ disorder, (and therefor shouldnít be included here, as was requested), when the focus should be helping others heal from damage done to them by someone with a mental disorder? And ASD is a diagnosed ďmental disorder.Ē

What does it do for an Aspie, if the Spouses/Partners of ASDs are excluded from receiving support here? Does that minimize the Spouseís reality and silence their pain? Sure seems like it, to me. Wouldnít it be more appropriate to try to include all who might be helped here, rather than split hairs on a technicality?

[This message edited by Superesse at 10:27 AM, January 1st (Monday)]

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