Ways I’m handling my BPD during the coronavirus

Hello World 💚

For those who have been loyal followers to my blog welcome back and to anyone new: “Hi, nice to meet you, my names Leo and I have borderline personality disorder (BPD).” If you would like to know more about my Mental Health and how I tackle my BPD on a daily basis check out some of my previous posts here, here and here.

For my blog today I’m going to spend some time talking about different ways I’m handling my BPD during the coronavirus panic, to easily explain BPD check out the below diagram – I always find it difficult to explain into words my BPD.

1) Stockpiling

Honestly, I really don’t understand the whole stockpiling situation. Personally, I’m a fussy eater, I eat the same foods day in and day out and will only ever buy what I need for a few weeks, I do a two weekly food shop, always have done. So going to the shops and seeing nothing on the shelves is horrific. I can’t even begin to imagine how vulnerable so many people have become, the elderly, the disabled and even our emergency services who are working 24/7 for our health yet are unable to buy just a simple loaf of bread because of the hundreds of dickheads who have bought out the entire store and for no good reason except for their own selfish needs. The government and the supermarkets have stressed that the country has enough food IF we buy sensibly and buy just what we need. No person needs to buy 40 boxes of pasta and 100 toilet rolls – it’s different if you decide to divvy this up for vulnerable people in the local area who are unable to leave because of isolation or if you are giving items to food banks – but if you are keeping everything for yourself? Shame on you. Even today I tried to buy some eggs, completely sold out within one hour – over two thousand eggs! Like who even needs that many? I just wanted to bake a cake for Mother’s Day tomorrow. Even the whole paracetamol fiasco, luckily I was able to pick some up today, the first time in three weeks which is shocking!!

When it comes to my BPD and even before my diagnosis I have struggled with food so seeing empty shelves does make me incredibly anxious and it does leave me in constant fear of whether I can be sustained with the food that I own – I’m not just worried about myself, but for my family who I’m currently living with, will we have enough? Can we eat? Will we starve? These questions are not great for someone with anxiety – even the jokes of ‘oh this will make us skinny’ doesn’t help, especially because I have an eating disorder. Even though I can see that my fridge, freezer and cupboards are full my head just doesn’t compute it and I feel as if I need to constantly buy. Which in a way is selfish, so instead a tactic I’ve started to use is to list an item that I’ve used up and to just buy what I genuinely need in a small shop each week. That way my mind knows I’m providing nutrition but at the same time I’m not over buying for an unnecessary reason.

2) Queues

Today I personally witnessed something so shockingly abnormal, in the town where I live we have this village square and we only have the one pharmacy which is in the smallest Boots store that you can imagine – outside Boots we had a queue, not just a queue of two or three people, but a queue that went out of the store and down the entire village high street a good half a mile in length. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would see the day people queuing for hours to get their prescriptions. It just doesn’t make sense, even the photographs of people queuing to get into Costco and other supermarkets before they open are just ridiculous, its honestly unnecessary. When my local Sainsburys opened earlier just for the elderly and vulnerable at 7am – did they have elderly people at the supermarket? No. They had every car parking space filled with a long ass queue of cars waiting to park, everyone going to the supermarket were able bodied and just using it as an excuse to take more products from people who genuinely needed their basic items.

Queues are genuinely a big concern with my BPD, I cannot handle being around massive crowds of people, it makes me so anxious that I am left having panic attacks and self-harming in public. So in terms of prescriptions and other medicines, I’ve joined up with Pharmacy2U – a service that delivers my prescriptions to my door instead of having to queue and battle with the crowds for hours on end. And with my asthma, I’m considered to be a vulnerable person with underlying health issues so I shouldn’t be out in public anyway. Buying food and so forth and handling the supermarkets, again I try to go early in the day when I can and to have someone with me so if I need to escape outside, they can stay with the trolly so I don’t lose out, but its also this idea of safety in numbers and feeling protected and secure with someone who knows and understands your diagnosis that makes it just that little bit easier to tackle.

3) Unemployment

With the coronavirus and isolation impacting the labour forces and employment this is most definitely a horrific time for so many with so many questions and fears for the future. In my opinion, this had been made worse even more so with my BPD, my anxiety has gone into over drive in recent days after finding out I’m no longer being paid or even have a role at the school I was teaching at due to the school closures. How can I pay rent? How can I pay my bills? How can I survive? And I know its not just me in this predicament but there are others in worse circumstances who still need to provide for their families and pay mortgages and so forth. I’ve definitely become more obsessed with hearing the new government guidelines and I’m praying that I’ll be allowed the 80% salary paid for by the government – according to their rules I’m applicable for it, I do thank god I’m not self employed but it does make me worried and scared for so many that are. I worry about my uncle who is a self-employed mechanic, if he catches this virus what’s going to happen? If he doesn’t work he doesn’t get paid.

At the moment there isn’t much I can do until Monday and hear from my ‘employer’ and hope that I can continue to get my salary, if not I’ll have to suck it up, either sign up or join the thousands of people who are signing up to support the supermarkets and warehouses by making sure stocks are on the shelves and hospitals have their equipment. So in this sense, I have to be patient, even though its killing my inside that I don’t have any control – but there isn’t much I can do.

But just in general, a way to ease my stress and my anxiety is to use my social media platforms to connect and interact with others. Today I’ve noticed I have a sore throat and dry cough, but that’s ok, if I can survive abuse and having tables thrown at me whilst working in a school in Birmingham, I can survive the coronavirus. I’m still alive, I’m still fighting. So for right now I’m plan on spending more time working and publishing more content on my blog, not only this I’ve got a stack of books to that are just waiting for me to open and lastly I have my Disney+ subscription, I’ll finally be able to watch The Mandalorian – so in this sense, sometimes you need to find the smallest positives during the darkest of times.

During my current self-isolation, make sure to follow my socials for more content!

Love, Leo x

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