We Are Strays: My Experiences with Chronic Emptiness

When I feel empty… I feel my face blur in and out of focus. You prop me up but I fall down. The passing of time doesn’t change me. I am a failure, the only one I notice.




I feel like calling it quits, giving in to all my urges. Telling them: Just come to Mummy. Right where they belong, overwhelming me,

undermining me, chipping away at who I am in bits and pieces. Limbs splayed, I allow you to harvest my soul.







Out of shame, I hide away. I think: No one can see me now. But I don’t realise the chinks in my armour. Soft flesh poking out from jutted ribs and pointy hips – make me oh so vulnerable.





Guilt piles up and overwhelms me. What can I do? Shame the type of which I know only how to run right into.







Shops long vacated, piping dry and flaking. Where did I come from?

How can I get home?





More on the symptomatology of ‘chronic emptiness’ in Borderline Personality Disorder and other Mental Illnesses

“Most people find satisfying answers inside and outside themselves. [But] the majority finds them outside and has the impression that this is stable enough. Job, relationship, kids, friends, pets and such things. Just listening to other people reveals that many find it difficult to find meaning inside.

People with BPD have deep experiences that outside answers do not not last. They are more aware of the instability of life than most people are. Because of this they seem to be in constant crisis and pain/emptiness while others only experience this at specific events in life. Death of family members, losing jobs, losing friends, breakups of relationships and such. You might say they live (at least at times) like they have already lost their lost ones and in constant awareness that things might be over any time. This causes them to seek confirmation that loved ones will stay, that things remain the same and at the same time do things that might push people close to them away.

Just imagine that your father/mother/child/best friend just died and imagine the feelings that are present. Now imagine that you have these feelings/emotions very frequent without clear cause because they are not linked to real event but to (sub)conscious thoughts of what might happen. And you have no mechanism to sufficiently control those emotions, they are always meeting you full force. Would be a painful and empty experience, wouldn’t it?”




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