I’m really hurt by this. I read often that people (without BPD) believe that borderlines are incapable of loving another human being. I find this to be completely inaccurate. I think we need to look at the definition of love which refers (per Webster) to the intense affectionate type feeling that you feel for someone.
If BPD is known for intense emotions that cover the entire span of emotions, who’s to say that the feeling of love is not included?
If you want to get biblical, the definition of love is actually a list of qualities or actions, all of which borderlines are very capable of. Yes, we exhibit a variety of behavior that go against these things at times, but so does everyone else at some point or another. We are no different than any other human being. We are just like them, but more so. We experience what they experience, just more so.
If anything, I struggle with love in the sense that it is very intense for me. Because of the hallmark of BPD, fear of abandonment, borderlines may resist love which may come out in their destructive behaviors. This isn’t because they don’t love that person, it’s because they do, and it hurts, and it’s scary. The fear overpowers the love and they go into fight or flight mode and are then only focused on trying to survive.
Remember our emotional age is rather young…very young. We do everything we do to the best of our ability, and that includes loving someone. Just because it isn’t measuring up to what you think it should be, or the level you think it should be, doesn’t mean we aren’t giving it all we’ve got, or that we are completely incapable.
I think the biggest thing that is forgotten here, is that BPD is an illness, not a choice. To say we cannot love, is like saying we are not worthy of it. Which is ironic because I believe that most, if not all, borderlines really only want one thing: to be loved.
I may not be perfect. I mess up. I unintentionally hurt those that I love when my symptoms take over, but I love; maybe even too much. I guess I’ll write this off as just another stigma or judgment against borderlines, made by people who are uneducated, unaware, dismissive, and judgmental.