Borderline 16'' by 16''
This piece is informed from specific cases of abuse, as told and experienced by me, my friends, and family. Mental illness can often be a factor in cases of abuse and is common among those who have Borderline Personality Disorder. When making this piece I was specifically thinking about BPD and its role in the abusive situation my family member is dealing with. With BPD things are very unpredictible and fragile; a person with this illness can switch from black to white and back again and you don't know "which person" you will be dealing with on any given day.
"At least 50% of all domestic abuse and violence against men is associated with woman who have a Borderline Personality disorder." from Oregoncouseling.org
BPD is not a part of all abuse cases, but mental illness can increase the likelihood that someone will either perpetrate or experience abuse. People do not choose to have a mental illness but when diagnosed with one they CAN choose to follow or not follow their treatment plan. There are plenty of kind and gentle people working to keep their illness (BPD or other) under control so that they don't harm themselves and/or others.
Here is a good resource for friends and family of someone with mental health problems. If you think your friend or family member is in need of community mental health services you can find help in your area.
A healthy relationship is one that is free from fear and force.
If you have a friend or family member who is experiencing abuse here are some things you can do to help. The most important thing to remember is that the choice to leave or not is theirs. You can't make them leave a bad situation but you can be supportive and helpful in their choice. They will need someone they can count on when/if they do decide to end or leave the abusive relationship.