Your journey to recovery begins when you decide that you want to recover and do what is necessary to start that journey and then continue even when it gets hard.
Below is an example of a way to get started.
1. A good GP is where we can start. Go to your GP and let them know you have a diagnosis or that you think you have BPD and that you want a mental health plan. The GP will ask you quite a few questions which you should answer as best you can.
The GP can refer you to a ‘specialist’ a psychiatrist or psychologist or a Mental Health Service in a hospital or a Mental Health Organisation. It might be private or it can be public. If you cannot afford a private clinician, ask for a referral to the public system.
2. If you have ever felt suicidal, or if things get way out of hand, prepare a Crisis Plan (see link)
3. Avoid surfing the internet where there is some very cruel and hurtful misinformation. Do not surf the internet alone, do it with a responsible adult and only consider reputable websites.
4. It might take a week or so to get an appointment with your ‘specialist’. Make sure you get there about 10 minutes ahead of time. You can then fill out any forms that are needed. It helps to have someone you trust with you. It helps if that person has known you for a long time, and knows you well and loves you: a parent or partner/spouse.
5. From there all should plan out, but be aware of your rights. For example, you can ask for a second opinion.
be prepared for the long haul, but you also want to notice some changes;
be prepared to implement what you learn and practice and practice what you are taught (practice makes perfect);
7. You need a person to work with who you can trust and a planned approach to treatment.
8. The keys to successful structured treatment, according to the National Guidelines, are:
The therapy is based on an explicit and integrated theoretical approach, to which the therapist (and other members of the treatment team, if applicable) adheres, and which is shared with the person undergoing therapy.
The therapy is provided by a trained therapist who is suitably supported and supervised.
The therapist pays attention to the person’s emotions.
Therapy is focussed on achieving change.
There is a focus on the relationship between the person receiving treatment and the clinician.
Therapy sessions occur regularly over the planned course of treatment. At least one session per week is generally considered necessary.
Structured psychological therapies are effective when delivered as individual therapy or as group therapy.
9. Your treatment may take a few months or a couple of years. It depends on you and the people who work with you.
Recovery is more than treatment though.
Recovery is more than ‘a cure’, it is about living a full life where you can achieve your potential. Consider that following:
1. Living independently might be hard. It pays to have a job. This is important not just for the money it brings. A job gives you contact with the world. It gives you a structure to your life. It brings you the opportunity to develop relationships. It extends you and challenges you. It gives you status.
2. You might have had problems with money. You may need to get support to help you manage any debts you have and to budget. You can ask for someone to help you with this.
3. Your physical health may have suffered. You might need dental work, physiotherapy, and other allied health professional support. Ask for what you can have.
4. Accommodation might have been problematic. Do you need help in your living arrangements? Ask for it.
Are you eligible for the NDIS?
If you are, you are in control of what you need to support your recovery. Think about all that is available and make wise choices; consider the advice available to you before you decide.