Ask Dr. Frankie: My partner has a personality disorder. It’s very stressful being with her. How can I cope? Jen, I feel for you! It’s not easy. Not even knowing what personality disorder, your partner has, it’s challenging! With a lot of these personality disorders, it’s hard for that person to UNDERSTAND how you’re feeling, as they don’t have a lot of empathy (some have no empathy).. it’s hard for them to have compassion…. so when you’re trying to reason with someone, help them understand your perspective, there is often an externalization, where it’s your fault, you’re to blame, you’re the problem….
I feel like I’m always walking on eggshells…
HOW TO COPE:
Think about this: Is this relationship for you? To be with her, you need to have really distinct boundaries and be able to really be clear what is your stuff and what is hers…and thinking, “I’m NOT taking this on…” and being very communicative about that and it may STILL blow up in your face. You may still have many, many moments of feeling [baffled]… “Wait a minute, what I did I do here because I just got hit over the head with a ton of bricks, and I have no idea where that came from…”
You need to really consider if this relationship is worth the time and energy needed. It’s very, very, very difficult to be with someone with a personality disorder and often, they will never get better and you will ALWAYS be to blame and they will never feel empathy.