This blog is part of my recovery, and I would like it to remain a safe place for me to share parts of myself and my life that people close to me may or may not know. As a result, while I'm not going crazy with privacy settings, I do ask that if you find this on your own and suspect you may know me, please respect my privacy by checking with us before reading any further. This obviously doesn't apply if one of us has given you the link!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Diagnostic Criteria take 2

Oh look, I'm still here. ;)

I thought it was time to take a look at the diagnostic criteria for BPD again, especially now that the criterion themselves have been changed. This is mainly for myself.

A. Significant impairments in personality functioning manifest by:

1. Impairments in self functioning (a or b):
a. Identity: Markedly impoverished, poorly developed, or unstable self-image, often associated with excessive self-criticism; chronic feelings of emptiness; dissociative states under stress.
b. Self-direction: Instability in goals, aspirations, values, or career plans.


2. Impairments in interpersonal functioning (a or b):
a. Empathy: Compromised ability to recognize the feelings and needs of others associated with interpersonal hypersensitivity (i.e., prone to feel slighted or insulted); perceptions of others selectively biased toward negative attributes or vulnerabilities.

b. Intimacy: Intense, unstable, and conflicted close relationships, marked by mistrust, neediness, and anxious preoccupation with real or imagined abandonment; close relationships often viewed in extremes of idealization and devaluation and alternating between over involvement and withdrawal.

B. Pathological personality traits in the following domains:

1. Negative Affectivity, characterized by:
a. Emotional lability: Unstable emotional experiences and frequent mood changes; emotions that are easily aroused, intense, and/or out of proportion to events and circumstances.

b. Anxiousness: Intense feelings of nervousness, tenseness, or panic, often in reaction to interpersonal stresses; worry about the negative effects of past unpleasant experiences and future negative possibilities; feeling fearful, apprehensive, or threatened by uncertainty; fears of falling apart or losing control.

c. Separation insecurity: Fears of rejection by - and/or separation from - significant others, associated with fears of excessive dependency and complete loss of autonomy.

d. Depressivity: Frequent feelings of being down, miserable, and/or hopeless; difficulty recovering from such moods; pessimism about the future; pervasive shame; feeling of inferior self-worth; thoughts of suicide and suicidal behavior.

2. Disinhibition, characterized by:

a. Impulsivity: Acting on the spur of the moment in response to immediate stimuli; acting on a momentary basis without a plan or consideration of outcomes; difficulty establishing or following plans; a sense of urgency and self-harming behavior under emotional distress.

b. Risk taking: Engagement in dangerous, risky, and potentially self-damaging activities, unnecessarily and without regard to consequences; lack of concern for one's limitations and denial of the reality of personal danger.

3. Antagonism, characterized by:
a. Hostility: Persistent or frequent angry feelings; anger or irritability in response to minor slights and insults.

C. The impairments in personality functioning and the individual's personality trait expression are relatively stable across time and consistent across situations.

D. The impairments in personality functioning and the individual's personality trait expression are not better understood as normative for the individual's developmental stage or socio-cultural environment.

E. The impairments in personality functioning and the individual's personality trait expression are not solely due to the direct physiological effects of a substance (e.g., a drug of abuse, medication) or a general medical condition (e.g., severe head trauma).

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Sanguine Sunday: A Look Back On January

I have been a busy girl lately, with lots going on in my life. Some good, some bad, some neither. This is a bit of a wrap up of what's going on here at the moment, what I'm involved in & what I've been up to (with links).

Sanguine Saturday has now moved to Sanguine Sunday and evolved (yes, again) a little. I admit, the new title is slightly less impressive in its alliteration, but makes up for it by being the very end of the week, and a perfect day to look back on what I'm achieving. I think, too, that rather than being a weekly look, I'm going to make it a monthly one.

* I've worked really hard on setting a couple of new routines that, while still not solid, are beginning to improve. [Health +1]

* Made it to a friend's 30th birthday party earlier in the month. It was terrifying, but also fun, and I had lots of practice talking to strangers. [Social +1, Emotional +1]

* Coffee (well, alright. Milkshake. And not the kind you get in the UK, either. A real, proper milkshake.) with my support worker once. Nervewracking and I didn't have to even order it. Next time I suspect we're stepping it up so that I do have to order myself. [Social +1, Emotional +1]

* Since my volunteer work with Peninsula Animal Aid, the nearest animal shelter to me, hasn't worked out due to the distance (among other things), I've begun volunteering over Facebook for an entirely volunteer run organisation that helps to reunite lost animals with their owners. If you're an Australian on facebook, take a look at Lost Pet Registers in Australia to find your local LPR. At the moment I'm coordinating/helping out on several pages in Queensland and New South Wales. [Social +1, Emotional +1]

* Poor old Sid, the car, has cracked it again, and requires yet more work. The mechanic's full up with vehicles at the moment, so we're still waiting to hear what's happening with that.

* Unfortunately, because the car's broken, I had to contact the man who was supposed to be selling me my puppy (30th birthday present), and he has sold her on to someone else. (Actually, the way he replied made it seem rather suspiciously like he was already planning to sell her out from underneath us!)

* A silver lining on not having been able to get 'my' puppy is that I was available to overnight foster a pup in an emergency situation, and it has reignited a spark in me for fostering. Without a car, getting my own dog isn't really much of an option, but some of the shelters etc here do offer transport for fostering, so after confirming with my housing guys, I've applied in several places. My first official foster dog, a Jack Russell cross Mini Foxie should arrive early next week and I'm very excited! [Social +1, Emotional +1]

* My deviantArt account, bloodawni, continues to grow, and I'm even beginning to make some friends on the site. Feel free to check it out and +watch me, fave something, or just leave a comment. If you have your own dA account, definitely share your link! [Social +1, Creativity +1]

* Since I'm participating in NaHaiWriMo, I went looking for a group collating entries together. Since there didn't appear to be such a group, I created one myself. If you're taking part, or if you just like haikus, please feel free to join or watch #NaHaiWriMo. [Social +1, Creativity +2]

* Over on From Another Angle, I've not done so well at regular photos, but I have at least made another entry, and have already worked out what to put up next week. [Social +1, Creativity +1]

(Social: 7
Emotional: 4
Health: 1
Creativity: 4)

Have a great Sunday, everyone!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Wild Weather

Here in Queensland, we're once again having some pretty wild weather, but January is definitely the month for it, so it's at least not entirely unexpected. Two years ago, the majority of the state was under water -- including our capital, Brisbane -- due to extreme flooding, and although the pollies are assuring us all that we are not facing that situation again this year, things aren't looking good.

We've an ex-tropical cyclone heading down Queensland and into NSW, and in addition to the usual havok that causes, we're actually having mini tornados appear along the coast. Yesterday, several mini tornados hit the Bundaberg area, and really that's why I'm writing my post today.

You see, when I was a kid, my dad took us kids camping on Mon Repos beach in Bundaberg (before they closed it off as a turtle sanctuary). Shortly after that, he bought a block of land in a small town known as Burnett Heads, which is about half an hour north of Bundaberg. At first he just had a tin shed on the land, but eventually he and his wife had a house built so we could all stay there on holidays, which we did so often that I have a lot of nice childhood memories of the area.

Yesterday, 2 of the 5 (or it might even have been 6) mini tornados to hit the region occured in Burnett Heads. Since I don't have contact with my father, I haven't heard whethr his holiday home was one of those destroyed/damaged or whether he was up there and is one of the injured people.

And part of me hopes so. Part of me thinks, that's karma!

It's a pretty small part, to be fair, and there's a much larger part of me that feels guilty for even thinking that way, let alone how unfair that would be for karma -- after all, what about all the other Bundy citizens who didn't deserve it? But I'd be lying by omission if I didn't admit to those thoughts.

I'm shaken by the idea that only two years after the massive destruction the floods caused, Queenslanders are in for another rough time. I'm shaken that places I know and love are suffering such damage, and that this extreme weather is so close to 'home'. In all, I think there have been 6 or 7 confirmed mini tornados over the past 24 hours, and one of them was only about half an hour away, though we were lucky not to see any damage from it here.

Mostly, I'm stirred up about my own past and my thoughts, and I feel pretty alone in it.

Friday, January 4, 2013

2013: "Connect" - goal breakdown.

This started out as a response to a blogging friend, Tracie at From Tracie, on her One Word post for 2013. I was probably halfway through my comment when I realised that I may as well take part in One Word this year myself.

But, since I'm me and can't ever seem to manage to do things quite exactly as intended ;) (you'd think I'm a trend-setting, boundary-breaking, rule-bucker or something, if I did it on purpose), I'm going to actually detail what I see my word as meaning for me and my goals this year. Don't misunderstand though -- these aren't resolutions by any means, merely goals and 'directions' for 2013.

My word for 2013, based on the goals I've been setting in place with my support worker and other personal goals I've decided on lately, will be "connect". Pretty much all of my goals fit with the word "connect" in some form, even if not in the most obvious way.

Not only do I want to grow by making connections between past experiences and current behaviours/thoughts/reactions (and then working to change them), but I want to build friendships and connections with people as much as I can this year (especially building up a local friendship base). I also want to strengthen my connection with myself, by doing things that I enjoy and that are good for me.

So, because pinning goals down makes them more achievable (for me), let's look in more concrete terms about what that all will mean for the next year, and what my goals actually are. (Plus, this way I'll be able to revisit them more easily and keep myself on track for following them!)

Social Connections:
  • Build friendships in my local area. This is one my support worker and I are working on together, and we're still ironing out the details, because it seems that meeting people isn't the problem - it's moving beyond "you're a 'stranger' I chat to" into "you're a friend".
  • Build/maintain social connections outside of the local area. This one's got several parts to it: making sure I'm using my energy wisely and connecting with the 'right' people (those who add to my life); committing more fully to blogging again (posting and replying); and building social networks in some of the places I frequent online (more on this one further down).
  • Connect with my chosen family. I would hope I strive to do this anyway, but an extra reminder to myself can't hurt. I want to get back into regular "date" activities with Bumface, exploring the local/semi-local area, and as our family grows & changes, so will the ways in which we connect.

Emotional & Health Connections:
  • Connect with the positive things in life. Not only do my blogs (and my general nature) help me do this, but Bumface and I are keeping a "2013 Positive Experiences" Jar (thanks Pinterest!). I already added my first entry. :D
  • Deal with the past, the present, the future. We're working towards getting me into DBT again, and perhaps after that maybe back into some specific sexual assault counselling.
  • Work towards sorting out my teeth.
  • Work on being able to eat in public/around people. (For those who don't know, I have a bit of a weird thing about eating in that I'm fine with complete strangers or those I know extremely well, but am usually otherwise uncomfortable to the point of avoidance.)

Creative & Self Connections:
  • Read more. I intend to read at least 110 books in 2013.
  • Add to my DeviantArt collection with works both new and old. Get back to posting to both my Photography and Creativity blogs. (Photography blog was updated yesterday, in fact.)
  • Be more creative: make more cards and experiment with old and new artforms that I enjoy.
  • Spend more time exploring things and places that inspire and uplift me.

The first two categories are the main part of my focus this year, but I certainly don't intend to neglect my "for fun" group either!

How about you, do you have any goals or resolutions for your 2013? Are you trying the One Word idea, or something totally different, or nothing at all?