I intended to write a post today about my son’s final court hearing regarding custody of his children which took place this week but I thought it appropriate, following on from last week’s post, to republish this poem because it explains so well how I feel so much of the time.
When I ‘depend’ on any given person, I become someone who moulds myself into whatever character I think that ‘given’ person wants me to be. In other words, I have become, unwittingly and unintentionally, a chameleon to fit whatever role I think is required. This is an instant response and not something that I have control over yet (although I’m working on it in therapy), and it is actually totally exhausting as I automatically become an ‘actor’, albeit an unwilling one – it’s really hard work, mentally, pleasing and fitting in with everyone (people-pleasing in a way). This is a desperate attempt to ensure that the person on whom I depend likes/loves me enough that they won’t leave me because, without them, I don’t know how or who to be and feel helpless and abandoned. I’m aware that this all sounds somewhat pathetic but, for me, it is not only a symptom of my BPD and DPD but the only way I know to survive in my world.
The biggest problem occurs if I find myself with more than one person that I know and they know me, which obviously does happen sometimes, my mind and my body (as in body language) don’t know how or who to be and I usually either end up confused, very stressed and muddled and find an excuse to leave the situation.
She is what she is … or is she, indeed?
She’s perplexed, befuddled, embroiled
Lost her mind along enmeshed journeys
She belongs, does she not to this world?
Is she real or a trickster, a fraud inside?
Not knowing her mind, too caught up in lies
Or perhaps, revealing her open wounds
You win some, you lose some, just look in her eyes
She’s not without fear though she’s scared of the thrill
The rollercoaster won’t come to an end
She writes her life’s story in ink, so black
You may wonder how her thoughts are penned
Innocence seen, and innocence gone
A fight in a nightmare; she holds her breath
The howls can be heard from far away
Will she ever return from the brink of death
You know her, you don’t, you think that you may
She’s a friend, a soldier, blood-kin
She lives or she dies; knowing the shadow side
Unknown, she wears her chameleon skin.
I’ve republished this poem with its image at the top of the page, not because I can’t be bothered to write a different post (as I will write about my son next), but because, as explained last week, this subject is playing very heavily on my mind at the moment and at times, I am very trapped by my own thoughts and need to write. Therefore, please forgive me for ‘rehashing’ a previous post, especially if you read it when I published it back in February 2016, but there is a specific reason (as explained) for doing so at this time.
A final thought: Is there a bit of a chameleon in each one of us if we look carefully enough at ourselves?
Edit: Taking the form of a chameleon is a very common aspect/symptom in people who have BPD or DPD.
9 thoughts on “CHAMELEON SKIN – TAKE 2”
I love your poem it spoke to me ellie thanks for sharing it. xx
Thank you, Carol anne. It still applies to me as much as it did when I wrote it last year. Glad it spoke to you too. Thank you for reading it again xxx
There is certainly that inside us all, Ellie. Every one of us acts that way at times, in a greater or lesser way. I think if you feel particularly vulnerable, then I imagine it must both feel as though you act that way more than you perhaps are, but also that it becomes almost a survival skill.
And the poem is excellent!
Thanks very much, Mick. It’s good to have you ‘back on board’ again.
Thanks, Ellie. Good to be back.
Hi Ellie, Sorry I haven’t commented for a while. I’ve been so busy, I’ve barely had time to go near WordPress. In fact, this is the very first blog post I’ve looked at in about a month!
I remember reading and being impressed by this poem when you posted it some time ago. I can imagine how exhausting it must be to slip into a different role depending on who you are speaking to.
Incidentally, I’m very sorry to hear about your son’s continuing custody battle. I wish him the best of luck at his court hearing.
Hi Bun. Good to have you back. Hope your time away from WordPress wasn’t too stressful. I’ve missed your posts. Thanks for your comment – it is very exhausting, never really knowing who I am. Thanks for your good wishes for Tom – The outcome of the court case wasn’t particularly good – I wrote a post about it last night.
Sorry to hear about the decision, Ellie. I just read about it. As I said in reply to the post, it just doesn’t seem fair to me.
Thanks for your comment, Bun.