Borderline Wife - My Story

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Hey there everyone.

I Found this forum a while ago, I have been lurking and reading various posts etc and have found some of the advice very helpful at various times. I have just decided to create a profile and tell my Story. The reson for telling me story, honestly, i don't know, i have no friends or family i can discuss things with so i think probably I just need to get it out there and off my chest. Please feel free to comment and advise. I live in the UK, im telling you this incase it is relevant to any info provided.

Im at the end of my tether, I feel like I'm cracking and that i am on the edge of huge turning point in my life. I shall start at the beginning and I will be 100% honest. I met my wife 12 years ago and we have currently been married for 7 of those years. I was in an unappy and loveless relationship with the mother of my first 2 children who where 3 and 7 when i met my wife, the spark was instant and the chemistry we felt was unavoidable, im not proud but an intense affair started that culminated with me leaving my partner for my now wife. We got a place together along with her 2 children who where 5 and 6 and my my 2 children came to us for half the week. I felt like i was the luckiest man alive.

Life was good, really good. Our children got on great and we became a strong happy family. During the 1st cpl of years my wife and i learnt everything about each other, we held nothing back, the sex was hot and steamy and adventurous and sooo intense. That was nothing compared to the talking though, hours and hours of it, we left no stone unturned. I discovered my wife was abandoned by her father at 6 along with her 2 younger siblings and left in the care of an emotionally abusive mother (in a side note, the mother, if diagnosed would be considered borderline). I won't go in to details but her childhood was hell, followed by bullying at high school and a series of emotionally and physically abusive relationships in her late teens and early 20's. The where a couple of suicide attempts during the teen years and she tried various counseling and antidepressants to no success. She has told me many times the only thing that kept her going once she got to 18/19 was her 2 children. She was also a major self harmer. By the time we met it seemed she had things under control. She was taking antidepressants, but there had been no "borderline" diagnosis at this point.

Im an only child and i was bought up by a good mother and granparents, no father. I was tought to work hard, respect people and be kind, im not saying i dont have my faults and I've led a sin free life but i do treat people, especially those i care about with love and respect. After learning all i learnt about my new lady (and there was a lot) i vowed I would take care of this woman, treat her like a queen and end the misery she had experienced so far in her life, so I did and as i said above life was good, she even felt she no longer needed her antidepressants, she told me I was everything to her, her love for me was very intense and at times overwhelming, there was constant text messages of love whilst i worked, i gradually replaced all my friends with her.

After a cpl of years I started noticing cracks in her, dark stages, moments of intense sadness from nowhere, not all the time just now and then. After a minor health scare, major depression took hold, months of it, sleeping all the time, neglecting certain needs of the children etc. I tried riding it out as I thought that would be best, she became parnoid when I worked and the messages of love stopped and became more questioning and acussing, i tried calming her and reassuring her but to no luck, in the end i had to confront her. This was my first taste of her anger, it was very intense, like no build up to it, she went mad screaming at me that I didn't understand her life and how can anyone after all she has been thru, i was called names and she was very verbally abusive towards me, when i tried to leave the house to calm things down she cut her self and ended up having to go to hospital for treatment. When she returned home she was calm and apologetic, she went back to doctor and was put back on antidepressants and offered councilling (she refuses any councilling due to bad experiences when younger). After a couple months things returned to normal again.

Life was going good again, and we had baby, it seemed to complete our family, i watched my wife and there was no anti natal depression. We had arguments at times and I knew she had anger and it cld be intense at times, i learnt not to push her buttons and she did managed to control it at times. Again im not perfect and as much as tried to not have my buttons pushed i did at times bite and said some horrible things back, I'm not proud of these moments but generally I was supportive of her, she has said this herself many times before. We got married and life progressed well, sure we had the same life to life crap that everyone has but generally life was ok. We had been together 7 years by this point, married for 2 of them when everything really changed, life all of sudden became hard for her, she was angry all the time, me and the kids where constantly doing something to her, family members became unsupportive etc etc. It seemed every aspect of her life made her miserable and angry.

For approx the next 2 years she flitted in and out of these stages, some lasting a day some a cpl of months, things got smashed up, stuff we had for years. Everybody in the house fell victim at somepoint to her rages and sporadic mood swings, one moment we was adored the next demonized, me in particular, i became the devil reincarnated. It was so confusing, it was like the same intensity she used to love me she was now being used in the complete opposite. She became positively vile towards me at times, some of the things she said to me i can't even repeat. There was a couple of times she hit me around the head. She put me in impossible situations, she made me agree to ridiculous things and had me apologising so much for things I hadn't even done. I couldn't believe someone would say and do these things to someone they claimed to love more than anything. Then She cheated on me, with someone we both knew, according to her not the full act but I did find evidence that she at least planned to do more, to this day I still suspect there is more to it than she finally confessed to, i confronted her and of course this was somehow twisted in to being my fault. I had supported her through everything and i couldn't believe what she did, i told her I was leaving, she broke, we talked and she said she needed help again, she confessed that she had been self harming and i saw the evidence of it, the thought of leaving her like that and leaving my kids broke my heart and I stayed. How can you leave someone who is sick, besides i do love her still very much. I did and still do feel great pity for her, when she calms down, she hates what she does and what she says to me when she has turned, the remorse she shows is one of the reasons I've stuck through it all for so long.

She was again prescribed another antidepressant and she again refused councilling, she asked her GP if she could be seen by a specialist mental health department but was told to try new pills again, we both explained the severity of it and the years of battles my wife has had but was told to try them and come back if things don't get better. It was again the plaster my wife needed and for 6 months things got better, but it didn't last, the abuse started again and now it was taking a toll on me, I noticed I had changed, i no longer smiled or found much joy with anything in the house, i was on constant egg shells for the next explosion, i cut myself of from friends and family, my mind was so occupied with my wife and how i can make her happy and love and respect me again, if I tried to tell her how I felt she belittled me and accused me of being a woman. On the rare occasions we got frisky I couldn't "rise" to the occasion. I felt i couldn't make her happy but abandoning her was not the answer. After one argument where she smashed most of our kitchen stuff up she agreed to go to the doctor's again and finally managed to get referred to a mental health unit.

It was here about 3 years ago she was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, she was given 2 different medications and was finally talked in to behaviour and talk therapy, we left there finally feeling like someone had listened, we both, her especially felt a huge relief. Knowing what she had meant we could both find ways of coping with it. Unfortunately that was not the case, it has been a constant battle since then and things are just getting worse. One of the pills helped a bit with the psychoticness but she couldn't take the other one as the sedative part of it messed with her to much and she ended up refusing the councilling again, she got better for a month or 2 and then back again. The past 6 months have been hell, worse than ever, she is self harming everyday, she has been mentally and physically abusive towards me alot of the time, there is no respect whatsoever, our relationship is pretty much non existent, she has no interest in anything i say or do, she shares nothing of her feelings or emotions with me at all, if i try and ignore it i end up getting accused of not caring or understanding and her screaming at me, if i try engaging her or trying to talk it ends up her screaming at me and charging towards, embarrassingly I find myself cowering away incase she lashes out. One moment she is in to the kids the next she isn't, she is isnt horrible to them, but has no patience at all and doesnt want to do anything with any of them, the youngest one is very confused.

About 2 months ago after one particular bad week where i was hit, pushed and verbally abused, some of this infront of the kids, i really thought that leaving would be best for everyone, at least the kids wont keep hearing everything, I packed my stuff, when i went to her to tell her she broke and begged me to stay, she said that she will do anything to change, again I cldnt leave her. I would feel so guilty leaving a sick woman and leaving my kids there with her, and yes surprisingly i still love her. She managed one day and then back to normal. We went back to the mental health unit the other week where i laid it all out to them completely, what she has been doing and saying, the medication and councilling etc, a new care plan was put in place but no medication change or dosage upped for the moment. Since then she has point blank told me she will not be doing the councilling as she has no faith whatsoever in it and it wont help, all she says she is on her own and that she will deal with it. We have not had a proper conversation now in 11 days, we have not touched, kissed or anything. She is angry all the time and constantly sounding off.

I no longer know what I can do to help her, it feels like she is not gonna help herself and I'm just expected to put up with it because we are married. Obviously long term exposure to someone like this will cause mental issues of my own but Ive also read that partners of people with "Borderline" usually end up physically ill long before they normally would be, due to the stress i assume, these factors are in my mind when deciding what to do with my future.

Sorry for length of the post, hope it hasn't bored you, it is hard condensing 12 years down, believe me I have left alot out. Like I said above feel free to comment or ask anything you want. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
It may be worth suggesting getting an appointment with a private psychiatrist to get a second opinion.

The "borderline" diagnosis could be wrong
It's a desperately sad situation. I think, as you are already aware, it's vital to bear in mind that the priority here is the wellbeing of your children, especially your partner's (including your stepchildren).

Sadly, whatever is best (as in 'least-worst' ) for them has to be what happens. Whether that means leaving his unhappy situation WITH them, or sticking it out WITH them, I don't know. I don't think they can be 'left with' your partner - far too disturbing and distressing. Is your step-children's father involved at all? Are you on terms? Can you discuss the best interests of his children with them?

Living with someone with chronic MH is probably the hardest, hardest thing in the world.
Colin_1705 wrote:It may be worth suggesting getting an appointment with a private psychiatrist to get a second opinion.

The "borderline" diagnosis could be wrong
She has seen 2 different psychiatrists now, and both agree with each other, admittedly they both work for the same organisation.

Unfortunately the cost of private psychiatry is out of my league. I have mentioned private councilling but that is also dismissed.
For the sake of her family it would be really good for her to go to conselling theraphys take all that help but sometimes sorry to offend they become self centred at times not thinking of others or putting theirselves at the centre of it all wether they do not mean to our not. I think its best you get help for yourself .is the childrens father in their lives that could look out for childrens interest because i cant see situation changing unless you make the changes.cant live your life through worry and guilt..not fair
jenny lucas wrote:It's a desperately sad situation. I think, as you are already aware, it's vital to bear in mind that the priority here is the wellbeing of your children, especially your partner's (including your stepchildren).

Sadly, whatever is best (as in 'least-worst' ) for them has to be what happens. Whether that means leaving his unhappy situation WITH them, or sticking it out WITH them, I don't know. I don't think they can be 'left with' your partner - far too disturbing and distressing. Is your step-children's father involved at all? Are you on terms? Can you discuss the best interests of his children with them?

Living with someone with chronic MH is probably the hardest, hardest thing in the world.
Yes I agree, my children's well being is the most important thing to me, this is why im in such turmoil as to what is my best option.

My wife doesn't really do anything to the kids, other than being distant and uninterested (im the one who gets the main brunt with the abuse etc) not enough anyway that a judge would grant me soul custody, so me leaving with the kids is impossible.

I've read that sometimes by leaving the borderline it can actually help them, even though the main root cause of it is a fear of abandonment, as they fear it so much when it happens it actually causes them to snap out the stage. I dont know if this will help tho or just make her worse.

There is no way I could be refused shared custody or access to my kids if it came to a court decision, they are all old enough to decide what they wanna do anyway and I've done nothing wrong. So at times when things get really bad i think that if i go at least the kids can come to me half the week or whenever they want and escape her if things are bad, i will also be able to stop focusing so much on her and more on them.

I do really love my wife so much I want nothing more than to make her better and happy but i just dont know if i can or if she is even capable of it anymore. Does it get worse with age?
stacey _1705 wrote:For the sake of her family it would be really good for her to go to conselling theraphys take all that help but sometimes sorry to offend they become self centred at times not thinking of others or putting theirselves at the centre of it all wether they do not mean to our not. I think its best you get help for yourself .is the childrens father in their lives that could look out for childrens interest because i cant see situation changing unless you make the changes.cant live your life through worry and guilt..not fair
No offence taken, i agree, they can become very self centered and consumed with them selves.

There is no one else for the children except me.
I agree. I think it might be wise for you contacting your gp seeing if you can get help with an organisations that specilaise with familys looking after someone with mental health. It will affect your health.i know you love your wife wish for the person back before she became ill but you need to start thinking of yourself too. It may be you need counselling to open your eyes up to what you can do gettting empowerment and stuff rather than the focus being on her and things staying the same or getting worse.
Are social workers etc involved with the children? They are the main focus of my concern - even if your wife is not 'doing anything' to them, they are growing up in a hellish atmosphere, and as Stacey points out, those with MH are very often totally oblivious to what they are doing to others -they become entirely and solely focussed on their own ills, and their own misery.

Even if you pointed out to her that the bitter irony is that SHE is now doing to HER children what was done to her when achild, that she's become 'the mother from hell' herself - even if its caused by her 'pain' rather than any deliberate neglect/emotional cruelty etc, she probably would be oblivious of that.

I say this cautiously, for I am well aware that having myself been raised by a mother with substantial and long-term MH issues, that the experience has made me very 'hostile' - even 'ruthless' maybe - about those with MH, but it does seem that she is incapable of thinking about ANYONE other than herself. Her MH is making her selfish, cruel, unfeeling, unsympathetic and quite frankly a bad mother and a bad wife and bad 'person'.

Getting someone with MH to 'accept responsibility' not for what was done to them when they were vulnerable children, but for what they do NOW to 'move on' and 'heal' and so on, is very, very difficult. Until she does accept responsibility for her behaviour (responsibility is NOT the same things as 'fault'!), then I don't think there is any hope in continuing to stay with her.

As I say, I know that errs on the side of ruthless, but, quite frankly, dreadful things happen to people - it's all too common - and what your wife has been through has been bad, yes, no doubt of that, but she is NOT the only person in the world who has experienced hell on earth, and quite frankly, again, that is something she should take on board. She does have responsibilities to others - she has an OVERRIDING responsibility to her children, and that, alone should make it absolutely unconditional that she does EVERYTHIGN she can to 'heal' herself, and be a good mother to them - so she doesn't screw them up as she was screwed up.

Thank goodness the children have you....

I know I sound unsympathetic, and indeed, I probably am (!), and yes, I do feel sorry for her, and yes, some of what she now is may be very, very hard for her to 'control' so to speak, and she may have 'lost faith' in the MH services etc etc, but she has to face up to what she has become.

I found it interesting that when you actually were prepared to walk out, the Angry Person disappeared, and the Helpless Person appeared - I don't in the slightest think this is 'deliberate' or even 'conscious' but it IS, nevertheless, a method of controlling you. Yes, it can be caused by a chronic fear of abandonment, but nevertheless, it has a 'malign' impact on you, your children, and herself.

Elsewhere on the forum you will see copious references to the need not for 'tough love' for those with many types of MH, but 'firm love'. You have to set boundaries, and if they are breached, then they have to take the consequences. It's about getting them to accept responsibility for themselves, and their behaviours.

That isn't easy. It CAN be done - those with personality disorders CAN 'emerge' from them, but she has to be constantly at least attempting to moderate her extreme behaviours etc etc.

Or her marriage will be over, and her children will have to be 'protected' from her.

All this is 'just me' and as you can tell, comes strongly slanted, so I apologise in advance for that, but there you go. I had a loving, loving mum - but it was like living on the edge of a volcano. Emotional sensitivity to her children was NOT her key skill set!

Wishing you what happiness you, your children and your wife can find.