Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Help where help can’t be found

I had a different topic in mind to continue from yesterday’s post, when I read an e-mail with a very familiar and recurring message:

I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder a couple years ago. I am from a small town and there is NO ONE around here who does CBT or DBT or has even really worked with Borderline Personality Disorder at all. I, being the typical borderline, have been through half a dozen therapists here, and none of them seem to have any clue what to do with me. BPD seems to get one of two reactions out of therapists: either it makes people think I’m faking something and just starving for attention, or they think I just can’t be helped so there’s no point. I do have the same psychiatrist who helps me with my medication but that’s only a 15 minute session and not real therapy. My point is that I’m really worried for my sanity and I feel like I’m out of options.

Since I’m from a small town, the closest place that offers any sort of cognitive or dialectical therapy is hours away, but my insurance doesn’t cover it. On top of that, I go to school full time, I have a full time job, and I’m a single mom. Even if I could afford it, which I can’t, I’m not capable of getting there because of my responsibilities. I’ve read books, I keep my own journal, I read memoirs and blogs, I’m trying, but it doesn’t feel like enough.

I wish there was some sort of online therapy option or more of an outreach program.

This is something I hear frequently from people all over the world. People live someplace that is too remote to get specialized treatment, people live in a country or culture that doesn’t recognize or support mental health therapy, or there’s a family stigma that makes reaching out and getting help impossible. On top of already dealing with Borderline Personality Disorder and the things life throws at people in general, it can be impossible to get help because there are no accessible interactive resources.

We need each other’s help! So let’s brainstorm!

  • On-line therapy and outreach programs? Has anyone used any, participated in any, or found one that is beneficial?
  • Are there on-line DBT courses?
  • Does anyone know of programs, clinicians, counselors, or specialists that do video chat/Skype therapy or outreach?
  • Other alternatives that you’ve found helpful?

Another option: It’s been suggested to me that it might also be beneficial to host a BPD forum from my blog here at Beyond the Borderline Personality. It wouldn’t be the same as having real DBT/CBT therapy, but it might be able to provide necessary support and resources for people when they need it.

Here’s my ambivalence (Strong feelings both ways!) I think it would be amazing for us to have a place to support each other when we need it.

However, this requires a lot of work (which I’m willing do in order to set this up), BUT, and this is a big BUT, I don’t think I am capable of dedicating the time to moderating a forum. I have a lot on my personal plate and I’m already stretched pretty thin (Recognizing my own limits here). I would need volunteers willing to actively moderate. While I would love to think everyone would treat each other with dignity and respect, we all know that emotions can run high. I’m also aware of the opinions and reaction that people without BPD, but that have been affected by those of us with BPD, have. They can often be filled with their own pain and have a lot of harsh reactions to things we express. I would like a validating environment, and one that is also respectful and constructive, where healing for both those with and without BPD, can take place, information can be exchanged, and issues can be discussed. But let’s face it, this is the internet, and it’s also full of wacko douchebags that make trolling practically a profession… so a forum would need moderation.   

I would also like to have a section dedicated to asking questions that are only answered by licensed Clinicians. I would need volunteers for that as well.

That being said, is this something that people would be interested in? 

Any and all information you can provide for those of us struggling without access to local resources, please SHARE in the comments below!

If you’d be interested in the benefits of a forum let me know. If you’d be interested in moderating let me know. If you’re a licensed clinician/therapist/psychologist/psychiatrist that wouldn’t mind popping in and answering some questions occasionally, please let me know!

There’s a lot to think about here. This is just the beginning.

Let’s help one another out. 


  1. I have heard that some people get the DBT workbooks, CDs, etc etc and try and work through it on their own. This takes some serious dedication and can be quite hard from what I have been told.

    I would try and help with moderating if needed. I know my school offers DBT for BPD patients. I could ask if they would be interested in popping in once in awhile on the forums?

    Haven, this is the person you emailed this morning the Pbe.....email.

  2. yes there ia a DBT work bookyou can do your self its called Dialectical Behaviour Therapy skills workbook and its by McKay.Wood Brantley

    its available as an e book at newharbinger.com

  3. Wow Haven...kudos for your courage (and yes) "empathy". I think your on a great track here. Ive been dating my ubpd gf for 2yrs...read atleast 12 books, countless hours online forums both non and bpd. I can honestly say you n your blog have been the most helpfull of all! I look forward to reading everyday to see what new insight and understanding will come:-). Keep up the great work...your awesome n amazing. I'll be back for more posts k.
    Respectfully LP "Make sure to get what you want, or you will be forced to like what you get" George bernard Shaw

    1. I certainly will try. If you could recommend any of those books that were helpful to you, that would be wonderful.

  4. Ooops..."make sure to get what you -LIKE-, or you will be forced to like what you get"

  5. I found a Support Site. It's not specifically for BPD but "If you are in crisis or in need of support..." which is often those of us with BPD. They even have a live chat option.

    This is the website: http://www.beautifully-damaged.com/

  6. Haven,
    I am SO GLAD that you took the time to answer this. Somehow this got lost in translation. The book mentioned above, I have it. I just don't think I have what it takes to do it completely on my own. I get into these moods where I'm ready to go. "come on, therapy, let's get sane." Then eventually it's all gone and, without anyone holding me accountable, I'm good at just stopping. I love the idea you had, I just don't know if it's feasible given the responses. Let me know if you figure anything out, I'll be reading. Thank you SO MUCH!

  7. Finding this blog brought me to tears instantly. Thank you


Leave me a comment! It makes me feel good and less paranoid about talking to myself =)

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