Please note – from a blog comment on April 15, 2012 –

Link here to book on BPD – Compassion for Annie: A Healthy Response to Mental Disorders – by Marilyn R. Dowell

at http://dowellpublications.com/


I can think of many other more pleasant things I would rather be doing right now than to sit here to write this post.  Yet as one of my sisters told me years ago, the simplest measure of ‘mental health’ is to stop immediately if there is a pebble in your shoe and take it out.  So, the fact that I think this post needs to be written will remain a pebble in my shoe today – so I might as well take the time right now to do this and then get on with my day.

This post written December 8, 2011 continues to receive comments:


Nowhere in the post to I ‘call Lawson evil’.  It is completely possible to detect evil actions that a person does and name them for what they are without ‘calling’ the person who commits those acts evil-in-their-essence.  My mother committed evil acts of horrendous abuse toward me for the 18 long years of my childhood, yet never have I ‘called’ my mother evil.  I am finally free today, at age 60, to name my mother’s actions EVIL.


I am noticing a theme seems to be appearing among many of the comments coming through on the above post in which I take very strong issue with Christine Ann Lawson’s statement in her 2004 book “Understanding the Borderline Mother” found on page 168 in her chapter on ‘Make-Believe Children about ‘The No-Good Child’ of Borderline mothers:

It is only a matter of time before the borderline’s no-good daughter becomes a borderline mother herself.


What I need to say at this moment to clear the proverbial pebble out of my shoe is that how I felt about my mother as a child is resonating with me as I read many of the comments being made to my perceptions of Lawson’s statement.

My mother was the only mother I had.  I was, as an infant and child, completely dependent for my survival upon her taking care of my basic needs.  I was not only at risk for forming a TRAUMA BOND with my mother – I DID form such a TRAUMA BOND with her.  (An online search for the term ‘trauma bond’ will bring up some interesting readings.)

BETRAYAL TRAUMA is an ongoing component, in my opinion, of ongoing trauma bond operations.  (Again, an online search using the term ‘betrayal trauma’ will bring up related pages to read on this topic.)

I believe that not only therapists, but also any ‘self-help’ writer who makes claims of being an ‘expert’ (implied or directly stated) on a subject (such as Borderline Personality Disorder) has a great responsibility to be very, very clear in their statements between what is FACT and what is the writer’s opinion.


This is an excellent book on the risks concerning the splitting of power between ‘expert’ and ‘needing client’:  Power in the Helping Professions by Adolf Guggenbühl-Craig (Feb 23, 2009)


I am sensing among the commenters to the above mentioned post that a form of TRAUMA BONDING to Lawson is operating among people who have just found in Lawson’s book some information that is extremely helpful to them.  Because there is GOOD and helpful if not vital information being found in Lawson’s book does not mean that ALL IS WELL – GOOD – RIGHT – TRUE – or not evil!

Just because my life depended upon my mother taking care of my basic needs did NOT mean that great evil was not present in her abuse of me.

Readers who are experiencing what might be a trauma bond with Lawson will not be able to identify the BETRAYAL TRAUMA that I feel is directly and clearly present in Lawson’s statement, “It is only a matter of time before the borderline’s no-good daughter becomes a borderline mother herself.

Needing to make these points was the pebble in my shoe, that has now been taken out and put into this post – so – YAY!!  I can get on with the many other far friendlier tasks of my glorious day!  Anything else that I needed to say is here:  +SHAME ON YOU CHRISTINE ANN LAWSON! YOU ARE A DANGEROUS LIAR


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  1. It makes me laugh but it makes me angry. What was done to us should never happen to children and the only positive outcome was that I was not going to be like my mother. I have two children and have always done my best to raise my children with kindness and respect and not the way my mother raised me.
    BPD is a challenging illness. Self-awareness of the condition is the beginning of finding peace. I dont believe that BPD parents have or create BPD children and you cannot fit people with BPD into only four little boxes.
    Any attention even bad seems to be good attention to the author of this book and it probably helps her sell them too. She’s written her opinion as fact and now many people who have read it just believe it as fact.
    My children are now 27 and 25. And I am very proud of them. Neither of them have BPD.

    • Is there any way you could arrange to get your review of the book onto the Amazon.com site? It is important.

  2. Wow. So if I don’t agree with you, it’s because I’m “trauma bonding” with Dr. Lawson. Or a book, anyway. In other words, you are justified, you are right, and anyone who doesn’t agree is screwed up.

    Well, this has been an instructive exercise. I needed to be reminded of how far people will go to contort themselves into being “right”. But I already lived this lesson and don’t need to anymore.

    My childhood with my witch mother was a just like this. She didn’t care who she hurt or put down to be “right”. Being “right” was more important than anything else. I learned it myself, and treated others like this too, justifying it by explaining to myself that “THE TRUTH” (and justice) were/are so important to me because everything in my childhood was a lie, and a miscarriage of justice. Which was true. But that didn’t justify my desperation to be “right”, and the lengths I was willing to go to defend my position instead of examining it honestly. That took years of practice, and will continue to take more years of practice.

    I get the feeling though, I’m wasting my breath here–just as I was when trying to talk to my mom. I appreciated finding your blog, but I think it’s already time to move on. I’m not interested in exposing how bad BPD people are. I already know. And I’m not interested in shredding Dr. Lawson as a way to make myself feel better. And I’m not interested in reading anymore of your justifications for attacking, disguised as “helping to heal”.

    Good luck to you–good luck to all of us.

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