Eight years ago at age 25 I was at the top of my game. I was just graduating college at the top of my class, I had a beautiful baby daughter with a man I was engaged to be married to, and was setting out to become a great Chef. All of this changed for me when I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) in the same year. I hit a brick wall not only mentally and physically but I had never heard of this disorder. There was little to no information available in my area about BPD.
At that time, mental illness was still not recognized in most workplaces as a serious concern. If you had a mental illness and people knew, you were stigmatized. Of course, that still happens in many cases today, but there have been improvements. I’ve sat back the last eight years and watched Canada go through many changes when it comes to mental illness. BPD is now recognized as being just as serious as other commonly known disorders like Bipolar Disorder and Schizophrenia. I’ve changed myself; I’m now recognizing what extreme emotions are like and how to manage my feelings. It took some time and was long overdue but I’m proud of how far our country has come in the last 3 or 4 years. I call it the Borderline Revolution. Evolving as humans to understand ourselves more.
Today, information is popping up everywhere about BPD. More people are speaking out online about their stories with Borderline. Even I went out of my comfort zone after being in therapy for a while. I started to speak at local mental health groups, then reached out to other people with BPD around the country/world, and then about two years ago I created a support website for BPD. It’s based on my years of experience and hours of research and includes more about my story, videos about BPD and more of my writing. You can find it at www.mymindonborderline.com.
Today I view myself very differently than I did when I was first diagnosed. I was lost, damaged, unrecoverable. Since more information has become more widely available about BPD, I have found it a lot easier to cope with the thought of having this condition. Reaching out to others and talking about my experiences has helped my thought process. Nothing gets inside my mind now without me processing it first. No surprises, no instant panic attacks, no hell.
This took me having my own personal revolution. That I am worth it! This is only a door! It can be walked through with ease and then shut. But the door is tricky – it represents an entry into a different life, one that I didn’t expect to be living in a million years, eight years ago.
Today I have a great life with my husband and daughter. I’m expecting my second child in September. I know that a happy life is possible because I’m living it today due to better treatment and information on what I’m dealing with. Stigma is slowly moving into the dark. There still are those who are ignorant and judge. I have since talked to and made peace with those people in my life. That is what I did for myself, eliminating their negative effects on my life. This is a hard skill to attain as someone with BPD, but I am no longer at the beginning of my recovery. I’m saying I know it does get better eventually, so don’t give up 5 minutes before the miracle happens. Endurance is what we do best.
It’s important to hear that recovery is not only possible but WILL happen if you fight for it. I needed to hear this over and over as a person with BPD. I’m proud of how far we’ve come as a country to come together and solve this. Information is key! Answers are needed! I say good for us, Canada! I’ve seen a miracle revolution begin in this decade and I’m proud to be part of it!
About Natasha Sinclair
With every recovery, there's a story to be told. Especially with Mental illness. Some of the most remarkable recovery stories come from these individuals. I am one of them. I'm a successful 33 year old Pastry Chef, but I'm also diagnosed Borderline Personality Disorder, Anxiety Disorder and Addictions Disorder as of 8 years ago. I want to talk about the many aspects of recovery. For years now I have devoted myself to my BPD Website, local guest speaking and a volunteer for local Mental Health events. I would like to share information I have gathered about BPD through experience and research. Positive and hopeful information on BPD is scarce in social media today and should be brought to the forefront like other Mental Illnesses. I would like to offer information both scientifically and medically I have found through research that may clear the air a little bit on Borderline. I feel this needs to be done more. The many different facts that I have discovered relating to human emotions and behavior are mind opening, which are key components to think about when journeying into recovery.