Bursting the Bubble

I’ve written before about social media and the complete lack of reality of so-called recovery accounts. Of all of them, the most exasperating is a close friend of L’s. In many ways, H is a lovely young woman, but one who seems determined to be “iller” than other people. She does not have anorexia, but claims to the world she does, posting pictures of the food she eats without difficulty and telling people how hard it was. L and I speak of this often and it infuriates her, that someone would make up an eating disorder in this way. She mimics the tone of the posts, mockingly and yet when I ask her why no one calls her out on this, she says that this would be met with fury because no one wants to upset H. Most people see through it and some friends have drifted away. When I visit L she asks to look at H’s Instagram and usually I read it to her and she snarls. Last night I looked myself. There is a picture of our local psychiatric hospital and the entrance sign, naming it clearly. Underneath is this text

Visited E who has been sectioned in (Name) Hospital. Another patient set my hair on fire and a man graphically described how he would rape me. Am so determined to get better as a result. Had a great afternoon with the Year 7s helping them with their maths. I felt great.

I am open mouthed. There are two possibilities. One – this is true and a hospital has allowed a friend/acquaintance to visit someone on a secure unit and during this period they have been subject to two assaults, a patient has the means of lighting hair and no restraint was used. I know that either every rule in the book has been broken, or Option Two: This is a lie. I post a comment with care. I tell H this is outrageous and a report should be made. As I know senior staff at the hospital I will do this.

Suddenly my phone is filled with angry texts from H. Why did I interfere? She is SO annoyed with me. Who do I think I am? I assure her this is concern and she tells me the police were involved and everything is fine. She continues to send angry, abusive texts until I tell her to grow up and stop. Which she does. I have my answer it seems. Option Two: A Lie. Because my comment was so couched in concern for her, a simple Don’t Worry would suffice. But I have done what no one else would do, allow facts to burst her bubble of fantasy and delusion. But what makes me so angry is: How dare she lie and in doing so portray psychiatric patients as violent rapists and nothing more than but part players in her drama? What kind of egotist does this. L phones me – H has said they can’t be friends any more because of me. That’s sensitive of her. But L and I laugh and I say she deserves better. That H seems in league with Ed, to control and manipulate her and keep her ill, because thus makes her interesting. I didn’t mean to cause trouble, but if I’ve assisted in helping L to see how destructive her friendship is, it may well be for the best.

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7 responses to “Bursting the Bubble

  1. For goodness sake!!! As if you and L don’t have enough to deal with.

    This young person doesn’t have Ed but she certainly has behavioural issues that need to be sorted out. A totally toxic individual. I wonder how her parent(s) or carers deal with her drama queen behaviours and lies? I find it hard to imagine that they can be unaware. I am also immensely saddened they none of her friends (victims?) has felt able to challenge her in case she is upset. It almost sound as if they’ve felt threatened.

    What a weird tipsy turfy situation.

  2. things like this distress me so much. people not being truthful, telling lies that hurt and effect so many so badly. i truly hope L sees how far away from this girl she should distance herself. you don’t need toxic, self obsessed, manipulaters in your life!

  3. I think it’s great that H is ending the friendship, just be warned, with people like this it usually isn’t the end, she will be back, because to people like this there aren’t friends there are pawns to be used in her games and also audiences. I think L should block her in any way possible and be aware. Blocking her will probably be good for her too in that the ongoing frustration of watching someone like this will distract get from her own battle. She doesn’t have precious energy to waste on someone like this. Anger and hurt will keep her going back. I know because there are so many people like this online. I don’t understand it. I think studies desperately needs to be done into why it seems a growingly common feature of personality disorders is becoming the obsession with anorexia and the faking of it or the wishing they had it. Before I ever had social media and before Facebook even existed I saw this plenty of times in hospital. We shared the Ward with other psych patients including young women in with bpd mainly and other pds and it happened over and over. They’d generally have this pattern of dramatic behavior, suicidal gestures etc, whenever discharge approached they’d take an od or self harm or something again to avoid going home. While they were there they would stay hanging around watching the ed patients while we had meals and snacks and the endless hours of sitting around post meals. It would get really upsetting becauseit is harder to go through that with someone following you and staring and not even hiding it. Then they would often complain about all the attention we got. And then they would copy us. I don’t even get surprised any more. They mimic everything from how we dress to how we struggled with food. This is so bizarre, the ed patients would be trying to pretend they were doing better than they were and the pd people would be sneaking round pretending they didn’t eat anything and making a huge drama of it while eating in every because they really didn’t have an ed.
    So frustrating.
    I’m sorry for generalising is just happened SO MUCH.
    Hugs to you and L. I read silently and always keep you in my prayers.

    • i hope you don’t think this about all bpd sufferers, as it has greatly upset me to hear your comment. some of those with bpd fear abandoment to the degree that they take drastic steps to avoid this. i imagine that the hospital staff deciding they could be discharged would ignite this fear severly, leading to acts of self harm and suicide. bpd is one of the most judged disorders as the person with it is often so unstable in their sense of self that they cling to other people’s identities and personalites to try and feel like a person for a while. to see if that’s the person they think they might be. i am sorry that those with this disorder have caused you distress whilst in hospital. but please try and remember that they too are very poorly. i am not trying to attack you or devalue your experiences, i just wanted to try and offer a view from someone with bpd.

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