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Question
Posted by: worried Girlfriend | 2004/03/01

Borderline personality disorder

Hi there I am really worried after reading the article on borderline personality disorder!
My boyfriend lives with his father who has a mental illness. When his father went to mental hospitals to get treatment my boyfriend was raped frequently by his uncle. He was also forced to give blow jobs to his uncle if he wanted a lift to school or to see friends.( I am the only person he has ever told about this.) His dad is a bit better now-he hasn't relapsed in a long time but he still hates his dad-he gave up going to school because it was too much to handle-he ended up being a father to his father. His father even comes & asks him for advice all the time which irritates him because he can't ask his dad what a son needs to ask his father-about relationships, marriage (hes been married 4 times!) As a result my boyfriend says he is never getting married. He is always accusing me of cheating, when he gets angry he totally flips & won't stop breaking things until his hands are bleeding. He has difficulty holding down relationships-we have broken up 4 times & gotten back together 4 times in 3 years! He is very sexual & If I am not in the mood he shouts at me & tells me its because I am cheating! Just this morning he called me to come over & visit him (At 7:00 in the morning after i had just worked night shift form 10pm-6am) I asked why he phoned so early & he went off at me saying "you have someone with you don't you? I know you don't want to see me & thats fine" & then he hung up! He has a very low self esteem-to the point where he won't take his shirt off in front of me because he says I think he is fat! I've never said any such thing to him in the whole time we have been going out! When I asked him why he accuses me & puts words in my mouth he says "because I know thats what you are thinking/doing"! He can't hold down a job, he is totally irrational in his thinking patterns & he is irressponsibly spontaneious (I mean I will go to visit him & he won't be at home & I will call his cell phone & he will say he has hitched to Joburg to visit a friend!!) He says he loves me & if I ever try to leave it will just prove he is a -|- up & he will have to kill himself. If he fights with me (calling me names) & I try to walk out to give him time to calm down he says you walk out on me and I'll break up with you! When I ask him why he calls me names he says it makes him feel better about himself & he knows its wrong but he can't change it. He is VERY depressed. He iether hardly sleeps or he sleeps for 18 hours & he iether eats alot or nothing at all. He also has a drinking problem (Only when he drinks brandy though-we call it "karate juice" because He gets very violent & argumentative) & he smokes dope from the time he wakes up till the time he goes to bed-every time the "high" goes away.
I love him & I know he needs serious help but he won't go because since he was a small child his father would say that if he goes to a psychologist or has to take medication then he is as -|- ed up as his dad! I've told him its not true but he won't listen! How do I get him to go for help?????

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Dear WG,
There's no easy solution to persuading someone to seek help. And this sounds like a really complex personality problem, made wose by the drinking and the dope. It does not sound like the sort of problem his father had, though the genes he inherited from his dad probably don't help much.
If he accepted that he had a problem, and sincerely wanted hel-p with it, he could surely be helped by seeing a shrink. Maybe the point to work on, perhaps by discussing yo0ur own problems, or those of someone else, is this idea that it's a sign of defeat or weakness to get and take necessary help. Is someone to be admired because they have a bad headache, but refuse to take an aspirin ? Or are they some sort of sissy if they do take aspirin ?
If someone's car is giving serious troubles, is he -|- ed up if he takes it to a garage to see an expert emchanic to have it put right ? Or manly and brave because he drives the car until it grinds to a halt ?

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