NEWBIE! Mum of BPD daughter


I’m new here.

My 19 year old daughter has BPD and she has a 2 1/2 year old and they both live at home with us. Up until recently I have managed to remain fairly positive and upbeat but I think with another little person in the mix I am now feeling really down and not coping well.
I’m having to be mum to my two daughters plus my granddaughter plus working and coping with the mess and mood swings and general hostility is very difficult. I feel very trapped as I am constantly having to think of my granddaughters welfare (My granddaughter is actually doing very well and is a happy, confident little girl). My daughter doesn’t work because she suffers badly with IBS so is constantly being sick but she doesn’t manage her diet and has disordered eating and doesn’t take her meds so her situation could probably be improved. We go to Family Therapy once a month and my daughters reality is far from my own and she will describe how much she does, how much effort she puts in, how much she plays and spends time with her daughter, none of which I see. I come out of therapy feeling desperately bitter and unhappy.
If we ask her to contribute at home financially or by helping out she will usually get very aggressive or self-harm and is constantly threatening suicide, she has made a number of attempts on her life and spent 18 month in a psychiatric ward. We can’t ask her to leave as she cannot look after herself let alone her daughter plus she has nowhere to go. She has no real friends but lots of virtual ones.
I don’t want to paint a picture of a monster. She can be lovely and sweet and loving to her daughter when everything is going her way but she is completely self-absorbed, doesn’t care at all about the state of our house or any of our values.
Lately, all I can think about is how desperate I am to leave and when I’m at work i don’t want to come home. I can’t see an end to any of this. Any advice would be gratefully received.


Hi Paula, welcome to the forum.
I don’t have any experience of MH issues, but it does sound as if she is very controlling and manipulating. Of course she should contribute towards her keep! That is what her benefits are for. I’m concerned for her little girl. Are Social Services aware of her situation and providing any help?

Hi Paula
A difficult situation indeed. I think you need to think through just what you will and won’t put up with. It is your house and should be your rules, especially if she is living there rent free. She has to understands that she is no longer a child and has to start taking responsibility for herself and her actions.
However it’s no use making a rule or a threat that you then won’t follow through with.
Have you had any counselling for yourself to help you think through the situation? It would be a great help to you
Also don’t hide your feelings and thoughts in the family sessions, hiding things won’t help and in fact will be hindering progress.
I understand your concerns 're your granddaughter, but from what you say I don’t think your daughter would be allowed to keep her herself. You could discuss with your daughter’s social worker your concerns.

Time for tough love methinks, but do get counselling and support to help you implement it


I am so sorry to hear about what you are going through. I can imagine this must be a particularly difficult time for you.

It is a really positive step that your daughter is participating in Family Therapy but if this is not improving her mental or emotional health then she should consider additional sources of help. Contacting her local GP is one step, if she hasn’t already. For additional emotional support, she could call Papyrus confidentially on 0800 068 4141, a charity which helps to prevent suicide amongst young people. Here is a link to their website:

Has your daughter been in touch with any mental health organisations? Mind and Rethink provide a wealth of information and support to anyone affected by mental illness.

Alongside supporting your daughter, it is also important that you get support for yourself as well. Samaritans is available round the clock, every single day of the year for free on 116 123. You might also find it useful to have a look to see if there’s a carers centre local to you, as they can be great sources of support and help for carers. You can search to see what is available near you here: Support where you live | Carers UK
I hope you find the support that you need Paula, and also that your daughter’s health improves in time.