More threads by Godzillas Girl

I have my own mental issues; I won't deny that. But this is about my boyfriend. I don't know how to deal with his anger issues. I suspect him to have a BPD.

He flies off the handle at the drop of a hat. One moment everything is fine the next he's out of control. Last week, he finally said he needed help and wanted to deal with it.

He was having a decent conversation with me. Then a minor something happened. I went outside to deal with it, needed his help, he got frustrated and that triggered him and he freaked out. It made him so angry that he sat in my office huffin' and puffin', pounding on my desk, crushing soda bottles, and you could see the steam rising and the blood boiling just looking at him! Suddenly, he erupted and left the building (my office is in our kennel building behind our house).

It was the first time I have to admit, that I wasn't slightly scared. I like to think it's because I have decided I'm no longer going to cater to his outbursts but it's most likely because he usually strikes out at what triggered him or at the closest thing. This time it was more of an internal rage. Generally, he's yelling about something trivial that I or one of the dogs did and I feel my heart skip and my nerves start to shake.

As I was saying, this time I simply ignored, continued what I was doing and observed him. Later when I went to walk up to the house, I tripped on something in the dark. Upon closer inspection, I realized it was a piece of a plastic adirondack chair that usually resides outside of our carport. Turns out he stomped it to pieces much like Godzilla.

Oddly enough, that vision kind of made me chuckle although I knew it wasn't necessarily funny when you think about it. I'm sure he was hurling Godzilla cries while stomping. Ok, still makes me chuckle.

He reminded me much of a child throwing a temper tantrum. I wouldn't react so it got worse? Now, in the past, I have seen him beat in dog crates, punch walls, etc etc. And usually if I react or try to stop him or calm him; he freaks out 2x worse. I'm supposed to remove that face I'm making, stop trying to get in his way, blah blah. He'll even grill me like an angry army sargeant! Nose to nose, spit hitting my face as he speaks... "Answer me when I ask you a question" "What were you thinking".

Yes, I know it's abusive but that's not really the issue I'm working on right now. I just wanted to illustrate his usual outbursts. His mother likes to describe it this way: everyday when "Godzilla" awakes the hour glass is turned over. During the day, the sand falls...until suddenly it's empty. With "Godzilla" the sand equals his control. The more tired he is, the later it is, the less control he has and the quicker to fly off the handle he is.

It is true...come 8pm he needs to be put to bed! Or he gets worse and worse and worse...

My questions:

So what is the proper way to calm him and/or deal with him when he's in a fit of rage?

What reaction should I or should not do?

Questions on his behalf:

What should his first step towards controlling his anger outbursts be? Diagnosis? Any treatments?

We do not have health insurance but I'm darn tempted to purchase it if we can get him stabilized!!
I should also note...he has more than 5 of the symptoms listed below for BPD. The only one I would mark as "if-y" is the recurring suicidal threats or self-injurious behavior. That one would depend on interpretation.

o marked mood swings with periods of intense depression, irritability, and/or anxiety lasting a few hours to a few days;
o inappropriate, intense, or uncontrolled anger;
o impulsiveness in spending, sex, substance use, shoplifting, reckless driving, or binge eating;
o recurring suicidal threats or self-injurious behavior;
o unstable, intense personal relationships with extreme, black and white views of people and experiences, sometimes alternating between "all good" idealization and "all bad" devaluation;
o marked, persistent uncertainty about self-image, long term goals, friendships, and values;
o chronic boredom or feelings of emptiness;
o frantic efforts to avoid abandonment, either real or imagined.


Welcome Godzilla's Girl,

I'm in the process of readingStop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder
By Randi Kreger and Paul Mason

It's probably best if you can get your husband to a psychiatrist or psychologist to get an accurate diagnosis. Since he has already agreed to seek help then you are one step ahead.

I think you would find this book very helpful. It is very practical from a "how to" standpoint and is written primarily for loved ones and friends of people with this disorder. You may find it in your local library and if not you can request they add it to their collection.

From the segment on out-of-control rages here are the main points:

It's important to not ignore extreme rages that are directed toward you or others as this is verbal and emotional abuse.

Sometimes they have difficulty regulating emotions and it may be difficult to distinguish a mild irritation from a furious anger as they look the same. It can help to ask the person, "On a scale from 1 to 10, how mad are you?"

Set limits.

It's best to temporarily remove yourself, children or animals from the area when an extreme rage is happening.

Be consistent and calm stating that you will not talk about this while the person is screaming or yelling at you. Give them a choice that you will listen to what they need or want if they speak calmy and respectfully. Make it clear that their actions are responsible for you leaving the area. If they continue to rage then leave. Be consistent with this day in and day out and do what you say you will do. Some suggestions are:

Retreat to a room that is off limits to anyone but you.

Call a friend and go to their house.

Call a relative and have them come to your house.

Take the kids and go to movie.

Put on headphones and listen to music.

Take a taxi home.

Turn on answering machine or unplug phone and take a hot bath.

Refuse to read the person's letter or e-mail.

Don't think that you can handle and endure abusive behaviour.m Over time it will poison the relationship and erode your self esteem.

Don't counter rage.

Seek support

There are many more details and if your husband does have this disorder then the whole book would be worth reading. The site above linked with the books title is by one of the authors who had an exhusband with borderline personality disorder. Good information for you there.

Take care of yourself, Girl.
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