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Blog - Dolly Sen

Collaborative contribution to ‘How not to receive a diagnosis of ‘personality disorder’ / 24 November 2015

A blue leaflet with the following text: 1) Try not to be female (for BPD). 2) Do not argue your point of view with the professionals. 3) You cannot be seen to like some staff members more than others (this is SPLITTING behavior). 4) Do not under any circumstances harm yourself. (This will more than likely be seen as a) manipulative b) attention seeking c) a communication of your distress caused by your underlying PD. 5) Do not make statements, which can be interpreted as black and white thinking. For example, the nurses all hate me. Try instead to make unrealistic, robot like, rational statements such as 'Enid, Mary, Silvia, John, Mark and Boteng have all shown epic distain at my presence on the ward, but an agency nurse once smiled at me in 1992.' 6) Do not admire or pin any hope to a professional who appears to understand the social context of you distress (this is idealisation my dear). 7) Do not complain about anything. Ever. 8) Try to avoid working with professional who look a bit tired. If they eventually go off sick you will inevitably be blamed for this. (Of course because you are a difficult patient). 9) Things you can talk about: how medication is helping you, mood swings (BUT only extreme ones that last long enough to fit within a diagnosis of bipolar, that's an ok one as Stephen fry made it a bit edgy), Do talk about how much the system is helping you, be eternally grateful to every professional you meet, tip your hat slightly to the side and say the words 'thanking you kindly for your 'help sir'. 10) Things you should not talk about: Abuse - of any kind, patterns in your relationships because of this abuse, existential dilemmas, perceived flaws in the system or anything to do with individual staff members. 11) You never ever; over/under eat, drink, exercise, and are never impulsive with sex, shopping, driving and you LOVE being alone. 12) If you are from cultures seen as "traditional", never say you even think about sex unless you are in a proper family approved heterosexual marriage. 13) To avoid BPD diagnosis you must not point out that the psychiatric teams are blaming you for their own inadequacies, their 'externalised locus of control' and 'refusal to take responsibility'. 14) Do not tell the psychiatrist you think you may have PTSD. (Don't be stupid now, everyone knows only soldiers can get this, are you a soldier?). 15) They are addicted to using PRN medication to relieve their anxiety, instead of more 'adaptive' coping strategies. Only problem is, YOU have to take it. 16) Talk with enthusiasm at the idea of being abandoned. Relish the idea whether it’s real and/or imagined. 17) If you attempt suicide make sure you are successful or it will be deemed attention seeking. 18) If you do by chance happen to self harm, make sure it is a life threatening, Stephen King style canyon of a gash, anything less than this will be clinically defined as 'superficial' adding to the likely hood of the PD label being applied. 19) BPD diagnosis is a mirror to professional’s behavior, described as the personal characteristics of the service user. 20) Never phone the crisis team and say you'd like another visit (tick box dependency issues). 21) Hide any teddy bears or such like when they come round to visit (“too childish”). 22) Never refer to your psychiatrist's affection for the DSM as 'ideas of reference'... 23) When they suggest cutting back on support, appointments etc, pause and think and then say, "yes, that's good, I feel I am ready to be more independent". 24) Be attractive but not 'coquettish'. 25) Do not at any point mention that you sometimes question who you are. You should know exactly who you are, be definite, unchanging about this (only people with PD ever question their identity). 26) Do not change your hair color too frequently. This will be interpreted as evidence of the above. 27) Always repeat when questioned that your attachment with your mother & father was always loving and supportive. 28) All depression, voice hearing and suicidality is ‘pseudo’ so please ensure the death certificate is recorded as ‘pseudo death’ and according to Joel Paris MD it was a ‘career’ so make sure your CV is updated posthumously. 29) Remember that inequality does not exist; it is your perception that is flawed. 30) Never, if you can manage it, express anger to MH professionals. Even when it’s understandable, genuine and valid! 31) The appropriate response following an OD to the question 'how much did you take' is ‘clearly not enough'. This is also likely to get you sectioned. 32) Never become a 'skilled' Service User. Understanding the games that nurse’s play will only get you described as 'playing games'. 33) Your mental health team believes in its adequacy, despite all evidence. Do not do or say anything that threatens professionals' fixed delusional beliefs, they may 'decompensate', becoming either coldly punitive and violent or weirdly smiley and dissociative, forcing you to have too much 'service' and then none at all. 34) Don’t ever ask a MH prof to ‘see you all the time and kiss your cuts better’ (as stated by a PD expert). 35) Act dumb as intelligence is viewed as a facet of PD (unlike psychosis where its assumed you’re less intelligent). 36) Failure to respond to medication or recover (or the CMHT needs to reduce numbers with discharges) means reclassification to PD. Disclaimer: unfortunately our suggestions above are not fool proof and we’re not encouraging… Recovery In The Bin™

Guide to not receiving a diagnosis of personality disorder

Here is another guide, this time most of it not written by me, but a collaborative endeavour from Recovery in the Bin. My contribution was turning it into a leaflet, and adding the extra text and images. There isn’t room to show the whole leaftlet, but here are the first 4 pages.

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Alan Morrison

Margaret/ 28 November 2015

So brilliant and true loved this and good recommendations.


I LOVE this!! Would love to offer myself up for a collaboration!

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