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The typical Non Borderline spends an inordinate amount of time and energy trying to rescue the person with Borderline Personality Disorder in his or her life. Rescuing a person with BPD is an illusion. It is a fantasy. It can be a way of trying to meet your own needs through this attempting to rescue the borderline. This is often the non borderline half of the codependent nature of this toxic relationship dynamic. The reality that non borderlines have a difficult time with this sees them continue, against all odds (in most cases) to try to rescue the borderline because it is a way of avoiding one's own pain, impending or already sustained loss and grief.

Family members, loved ones, (ex) relationship partners – non borderlines – in any form of relationship with or to someone with Borderline Personality Disorder cannot rescue the borderline from him or herself or from Borderline Personality Disorder.



Why then, do so many continue to try? That's the question. If you have a loved one in your life who has BPD have you or are you perhaps still trying to rescue them? Have you asked yourself why, lately? Do you think that your rescue efforts are working or will work?


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Have you ever asked yourself what issues of your own you are avoiding by over-focusing on trying to rescue the borderline? Do you realize that it is your very focus on the borderline that makes you even more invisible than the invisibility to the wants and needs of the borderline you have already been hurt by?


You can watch A.J.'s Latest Video – Non Borderline Illusions of Rescuing a Borderline" on YouTube  and join A.J.'s  non borderline website's Message Forum to discuss this topic with A.J. and others.


I have been there, in that "borderline" place – when I had BPD – where so many people tried to rescued me – they couldn't and they didn't. My recovery is the result of my own choices, my own hard work and some dedicated and skilled professionals I was blessed to work with.

Fullcirclecover1 I have been there done that – tried to rescue others with BPD – since my recovery – namely, my parents, and a person I had a relationship with who has BPD/NPD. I ended that relationship and all contact. I write about this experience of mine in my ebook Full Circle – Lessons for Non Borderlines

This relationship was the most eye-opening and sacred growth experience of my life. It was also one of the most painful things I have ever experienced. As a person who had recovered from BPD – I recovered six years prior to this train-wreck of a toxic relationship in which I was the non borderline – suddenly there I was on On the Other Side of BPD in the very pain I had caused others in my past. I tried to rescue her and failed. What a full circle experience.


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As someone who had 2 parents with BPD - my father died over 10 years ago now, but my mother is still alive and still borderline as ever – I know firsthand how painful, how futile, how enmeshing and how toxic trying to rescue someone with BPD really is.

I also know how crazy-making it is, how trapping it is. I also know that trying to rescue someone with BPD is a way that we, non borderlines, abandon ourselves at a time when we need all the energy, self-care, self-compassion, nurture, and self-kindness that we can give to ourselves.

As I talk about in my Audio Program, Breaking Free From the BPD Maze – Non Borderline Recovery every effort to rescue a borderline is one that negates, more often than not, your own well-being. I also talk about why it is such a trap to try to rescue someone with BPD. 

People with BPD can change. I am living proof of that. But, whether or not they will actually get professional help and stick with it and change and recover is up to them.

Really, you cannot rescue a borderline. It is, as I talk about in my latest video, linked above, an illusion to think that you have that kind of power. Each and every person truly only has the power to create change in his or her own life – nothing more and nothing less.

Non borderlines need to know, if you are one that isn't sure yet, that the change you may be so desperately trying to effect in the borderline in your life is really less about them – it is much more about the change that you need to create in your own life.

© A.J. Mahari, August 17, 2008 – All rights reserved.


A.J. Mahari is a Life Coach who, among other things, specializes in working with those with those who are non borderlines. A.J. has 5 years experience as a life coach and has worked with hundreds of clients from all over the world.


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Non Borderline Illusions of Rescuing a Borderline