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Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
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Experience:  Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology in private practice
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Feeling intensely lonely and wondering OKMH713211

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Feeling intensely lonely and wondering if there is a way to manage it / lesson the pain. I probably have BPD and have had c. 11 years of psychoanalytical psychotherapy. I am currently seeing a psychoanalyst once a week (since Feb.) while we see if it's appropriate. The usual suggestions like voluntary work are not much good as I can't keep up with it and I can't get on with people. I can do it for a short time by pretending to be normal but doing this makes me feel more lonely not less.

Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Camille-Mod replied 12 months ago.

Hello,

I'm Camille, and I’m a moderator for this topic.

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Customer: replied 12 months ago.
Why wd I want to close my question? I haven't had a reply yet!
Expert:  Camille-Mod replied 12 months ago.

Hello,

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX continue to look for a professional to assist you. Since the professionals log in at different times, it is very difficult to predict when one will come on with your particular area of expertise. Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance while you wait.

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Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 12 months ago.

Hi! I believe I can be of help with this issue.


First, let me say I can imagine how overwhelming it must be to feel this way for so long. That you've had psychoanalysis for 11 years plus medications and still have these intense feelings of loneliness must be truly overwhelming. I say this because after all this treatment you are still feeling as though you don't have the ability to manage the loneliness and the pain. This is most often the case when there is emotional overwhelm that overtakes your "reasonable" self's efforts to find tools and techniques for a way out of the problems.

You have come to the possibility that you have Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). Therefore, you know something about BPD. That's good, because such intense emotional overwhelm for such a long time without being able to overcome it is a hallmark of BPD. So let's work from this diagnosis, because if you know what you're up against you can get the proper tools to manage this disorder.


I want you to know that I have worked with BPD sufferers from my internship on and you need to feel as though it is a disorder and as such needs to be managed so that it doesn't dominate you. So that you can dominate the disorder. Psychoanalysis is an important treatment protocol for BPD. The classic book by a patient, Get Me Out of Here by Rachel Reiland (pseudonym) gives a portrait of a successful treatment with psychoanalysis.

But since that time when the book was written, we've learned about how to include in treatment important tools other than psychoanalysis. In my experience there is a truth you need to get to if you are going to manage the disorder. That truth is that relief, your personal salvation, is not going to come through your feelings.

You're not going to FEEL your way toward feeling better. Yes, that sounds like a contradiction. But, the key for you is going to be whether you are going to be able to learn to approach life from something other than feeling. Because feelings are too overwhelming. So, life can be good for you but only if you have the patience and willingness to LEARN how to approach it from a different part of you than how you feel.

This is the key to managing BPD. To learn how to approach life from something other than feeling, the best type of therapy is Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT). DBT can work in individual therapy or group therapy. I personally like when clients use both as long as the therapists doing each are different therapists so that you are establishing two relationships. I want you to learn the skills that DBT offers. So, start with the following website put together by people who aren't psychologists but who have gone through DBT themselves. Try as many of the self-help options they have. Mindfulness is particularly important for you and a good place to start there.Here's their web address:

http://www.dbtselfhelp.com/


If you connect with DBT, then find a therapist in your area who works with DBT. Even better, find a DBT group to go along with individual therapy. If you need help finding a therapist who practices DBT, Google "DBT {your city name}" and interview some of the therapists who come up. See who you connect with and who is most experienced. And stay with them once you see they are competent even if you start feeling like the relationship is changing. Bring it up in session.

If you need more resources here's a commercial website. I don't like their therapist directory very much because its format seems a little hard sell to me. But they have a chat group that you might want to join:

http://www.borderlinepersonalitytoday.com/main/

Okay. I wish you the very, very best!

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Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5087
Experience: Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology in private practice
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