A friend of mine recently wrote a post about this and I thought I’d share my own thoughts into it. Indentity and the lack of it within BPD. Everyone changes their image now and then, hair colour, dress sense, whatever but it never really steers too far away what what was started with. There seems to be a set boundary of what the person likes and what they don’t.
The difference with identity disturbance is the constant change, the boredom of one look and wanting to reinvent yourself into something more interesting to catch the eye or in down time, something more normal to fit in. It’s difficult to keep a good enough wardrobe when you impulsively throw things out and change completely only to dislike it again the next day. I know I am still young so naturally my styles and looks will be changing as I find myself but I’ve noticed that my image has changed drastically and frequently and this hasn’t happened with other people around me.
My image has gone from Gothic to girly to eccentric to girly and in the end just ended in a bit of a mixture and mess of them all. I find it hard to have different looks in my clothes, I feel I need to have one kind of look and that is me but it doesn’t seem to work like that. I think a lot of the reasons I let go of the Gothic look was that I was growing up and was afraid of embarrassment or being made fun of when I’d probably quite enjoy the look still. It’s easy to wear what you want when you’re a kid. It’s expected of you. Sometimes I like to have bright hair and show my tattoos and the next minute I’m a brunette wearing knee length dresses and headbands. I don’t think I will really have one set look, I wish I did but then it has never been that simple.
Images through the years (bear in mind this is all within 4 years)
The worrying thing is that most of these photos were actually taken in the last 6 months (all the pictures with the thick rimmed glasses). I’ve changed my hair about 10 times, having black, blue, orange, pink, brown, blonde and red hair. A lot of the drastic changes have come from leaving home, I have the freedom now to create myself, I just need to learn fight the impulses of changing my whole image every other day. It may seem fun but it can be exhausting and upsetting, I’m never satisfied with how I look, maybe for the first day I feel good and then I’m bored and need a change again. At the moment, I have a natural hair colour and I’m wearing feminine clothes, I don’t know how long this will last and when I will get sick of it, I just know this is my most acceptable adult look. I have many more pictures that look completely different but I’d be here forever loading them. A lot of outside influence can affect this, It’s not all about what I think, if I feel someone close to me doesn’t like my look I will try and encourage myself to keep it only to cave in eventually to a more “normal” look so I’m not an embarrassment. The first time I started to truely dress feminine was when I became Jordan’s girlfriend. I was to be the perfect girly girl for him, now It doesn’t matter if I sit around in my pjs all day. I wanted to be something for someone else which, I had never really had to do. I do think about Jordan when I change my image but I also decide that no matter how I look it has to be my choice overall and he loves me regardless.
To treat yourself and make yourself feel good is something that can become rare with BPD because we often don’t feel worthy of feeling good or looking good so these time of change and when we are desperately trying to feel good about ourselves but as you can see from the constant change, it’s not easy to stay satisfied with how we look or feel. Both my parents and Jordan have expressed how I am never satisfied with things. I really need something one minute and the next I’m uninterested making it difficult for people around me to understand what I really want or who I really am. It’s never enough but I hope one day, something can be enough to make me feel confident about myself and safe in my surroundings.
I think to start creating a fixed identity, it’s good to focus on the things that have always stayed with you as interests or looks.
I have always loved reading, since I can remember I have always had books around me.
I enjoy writing. I have always written stories and my aunt even has some stories I wrote as a child on her computer.
I love the Phantom of the Opera. Although the obsession isn’t as strong as it used to be, it has been a love of mine since I was 14 and most of my interests don’t stick around for long but this has stayed with me.
I love animals. I have always had pets, In my lifetime 3 cats, 2 gerbils and a hamster. I currently have 2 cats, 2 gerbils and the hamster but the cats live with my parents. Animals give you the unconditional love and comfort sometimes humans can’t give us.
My favourite band are nightwish. Like with Phantom, nightwish have stayed with me since my early teens and they are still my favourite band.
If something stays with me that long, then it has to be part of my identity, otherwise it wouldn’t stick around.
It’s the things that stick around that help me piece together who I am in the long run.
So to describe myself without using things that will probably fade in the next few months and years.
I am Simone Goodfellow, I want to write novels. I enjoy reading and writing and my favourite band are Nightwish. I am an animal lover and a musical fan, with Phantom of the Opera being my all time favourite show. Other than that you’ll just have to see what I’m obsessing about this week (probably Chuck Palahniuk novels- it probably won’t last).