Alecia Fuller

@alecia-fuller | contributor
I live with borderline personality disorder.
Community Voices

But he didn’t hit me

But he didn’t hit me.

Why does that make it ok? After recently being diagnosed with complex-PTSD this question keeps tormenting my mind. Why do we live in a world where emotional and verbal abuse is so often overlooked simply because they didn’t physically hurt me?

How is it ok that I keep getting screamed at to shut up every time I show an emotion or have an emotional flashback because your screaming at me? I also have BPD and through DBT I learnt to express my emotions, to sit with them, to be ok with them. But now I’m getting told to shut the fuck up, and to just get over it, like I did my entire childhood.

How is it ok that I’ve started having panic attacks and sit in a ball in fear, with tears streaming down my face while you smash things and yell at me? How is it ok I spent my childhood hiding out or running away from the constant screaming matches, or becoming so aware of my environment I can pick up on the slightest change in tone or body language, that now I immediately go into fight or flight mode if someone speaks to me the wrong way or raises their voice?

How is it ok that I get the blame for everything? Your anger? The time you lost your wallet? That time from my childhood when mum found out something so I got the blame for telling her? Everyone saying it’s my fault because I’m mentally ill even though I’ve been in therapy for years and work hard every damn day to try and be a better person than I was yesterday, because I’ve spent my life believing everything was my fault and maybe if I was good enough it wouldn’t be my fault anymore.

Well enough is enough. It’s not ok. None of it is ok. I’ve suffered at the hands of various people my whole life, and because they made me believe it was my fault because I was mentally ill, and because I believed I wasn’t good enough from a lifetime of verbal and emotional abuse I let it happen, because I believed it’s what I deserved. But the people around me also let it happen simply because he didn’t hit me. Well I’m sorry but that’s not good enough. It’s not a good enough excuse. Emotional and verbal abuse is just as damaging, if not more because the wounds inflicted cut a lot deeper than a bruise. It’s time we stood up and said no to emotional and verbal abuse, especially as individuals with mental illness because having a mental illness doesn’t make you any less of a person, and you definitely don’t deserve to be treated any less because of it. I am good enough, and so are you.

Community Voices

Why I can’t just ‘get over things’

You hurt me. You physically hurt me.

In that moment I had never known such fear, and it was fear of you. The person who’s supposed to love me. Fear as you slammed me into the ground. Fear as pain shot through my body. Fear of the anger and hate that was coming from you.

And yet it was my fault. You said I could of avoided it, if I wasn’t a c**t.  Maybe I didn’t react the right way to being ignored, but I was reacting to something you did. And I’m not proud I react the way I do to being ignored, I know I go from 0 to 100 in a split second. I’ve tried to explain I can’t help it, it’s a trigger and a bad one and please just don’t ignore me. But no it’s still my fault, because I took your phone, so it’s somehow ok that you twisted my arm up my back, and then slammed me against the ground a couple times, ragdolling me, my head slamming against the heater on the way down. I couldn’t move because of the pain radiating through my body.

And now you just expect me to move on. It’s happened so just move on and get over it. No apology, just blame. It was my fault I got hurt. I don’t understand how any normal person is just supposed to move on from that, let alone me, an individual with #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder and c-ptsd.

I haven’t slept since it happened because I have nightmares, and I walk around during the day and it’s like this shadow of fear and #Anxiety clinging to me that I just can’t shake. Every second thought tells me I’m worthless and it’s my fault, and maybe I wouldn’t even be in this pain if I wasn’t mentally ill and made mistakes because of the cruel things you’ve said to me. I doubt every part of who I am, and why I’m even here because what’s the point when I’m in so much pain? And it isn’t just pain, it’s pain that takes over your whole body and mind and consumes me, it’s agony just to breathe. Every moment is spent in tears. It’s been a week since it happened and I’m still suicidal and feeling everything like it happened yesterday.

I can’t just simply forget things. My brain is different from yours. It’s wired different, and it takes time for me to get through anything whether it simply be a random bad day or whether it’s something more traumatic. Sometimes it can take weeks or even months for emotions to fade, and that’s really exhausting for me. I wish I could simply forget and move on, I wish more than anything I could forget this. But I can’t and it’s going to take time. And all I ask is that your patient with me while I work through all the pain I’m going through.

Community Voices

I’m just a person

I’m just a person. A person who doesn’t deserve to be treated any differently because I have a mental illness.

I came across this post, and not only was the post repulsive but the views on #BorderlinePersonalityDisorder and bipolar made me sick. It also made me feel extreme shame  and guilt simply because I have that label and at times may have done things which seemed ‘crazy’ to others, but to my brain they were logical. And the ‘crazy’ was because I got triggered, which immediately made me react in a way I had little control over and that was from trauma I had been through. But it wasn’t really crazy, if I didn’t have a label you would just think I was upset, and I was and you know what it was justified.

Living with bpd is hell. I never know what’s coming next, because at any moment any number of things can trigger me, which can send me into a downward spiral for hours, days or weeks. Maybe that’s hard for you to watch, but you don’t have to experience the pain I go through and try continue on like everything’s fine. All you have to do is give me a hug. Listen to me, if I need to talk. But you don’t feel the pain searing through your veins, making it hard to breathe, feeling like your head is going to burst. Wanting anything to stop the pain, even though in recovery I’ve learnt I have to feel the pain not numb it. Most of the time fleeting between wanting to live and die.

But having borderline has made me a better person than I ever imagined I could be. It’s made me strong and independent. It’s made me fierce yet have the most loving kindest heart you’ll ever meet, because I feel others pain, I see others pain and I just want to heal them. I don’t deserve to be judged or called the things that borderlines regularly get labelled with, especially some of the stuff in that post, because I am a better person than they will ever be for even judging a group of people based on one individual.

Alecia Fuller

Why 'Tough Love' Doesn’t Work for Trauma Survivors

I live with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and borderline personality disorder (BPD) and I’ve lived through many kinds of trauma my whole life. When you grow up with trauma from abuse, it shapes you into an entirely different person, an extremely sensitive one, because you had to be sensitive to your surroundings. You had to be sensitive to every sound, to changes in voice or body language, to anything that might tell you to run or hide so you don’t become subject to someone’s changing emotions. Your room was your safe place where you listened to the screams, but once you left that room you were vulnerable and the anxiety and fear that come with that debilitate you. And sadly, it’s always been this way. There have been periods of my life when there wasn’t abuse, but it seemed nowhere was ever safe because I always ended up in this place: hurt, vulnerable and alone. And because of what I’ve been through, my emotions are extreme. I feel everything like third-degree burns, or someone’s piercing my heart with a knife. The pain is extreme, my thoughts are extreme, and sometimes it gets too hard to cope with that, especially when the flashbacks or nightmares happen. I can never escape the hell I’ve been through. And when I’m in these situations, the worst thing is tough love. Yelling at me, putting me down, telling me to get over it and let it go, that I’m stronger than this, that I’m better than this, all while being frustrated or angry at the fact I’m upset in the first place. And yet, all of that just sends me deeper into my fear, anxiety and insecurities. They make the situation worse in every possible way because you’re triggering exactly what caused this in the first place. I need you to understand that if you want to help me. What I really need is actual love, kindness and empathy. You want to help me through my spells, and help me get through the darkness that tries to consume me whole? Just sit with me. You don’t need to talk, but if you do, only say it’s OK to be feeling what I am feeling. You may not understand it, and I don’t think you ever can, but that doesn’t mean you’re helpless. Give me a hug, if I’ll let you. Sometimes I won’t want to be touched. But just sit with me. Sit with me in the dark until I can see the light again. I promise you I will; I just need a little support because doing all this alone can get too overwhelming.

Alecia Fuller

When Anxiety Consumes You Completely

I feel like I’m sitting on the edge of a cliff. Constantly on the brink, just waiting to fall. Figuratively, below me is death, and behind me someone has a gun to my head. I can’t move, I’m frozen. If I close my eyes and breathe — just breathe — maybe it will disappear. If only for a second. But as soon as I open them, I’m back on that edge, and the anxiety comes rushing back. The panic, the racing thoughts, the knot in my chest that won’t leave. I can’t eat. I can’t sleep. I’m just stuck in this eternal hell. And I know what to do when my anxiety gets worse. I even know what’s causing it. The flashbacks, the trauma, my mind has decided to unblock. I didn’t get a choice, I don’t choose to live like this. In fact I try everything to try make it better. Meditate. Ground myself. Breathe. Allow myself to feel. It’s OK to feel, even if I fucking hate it. I just want this feeling to go away. But breathe. Allow it to be. It will pass, maybe not now, maybe not soon, but eventually it will pass. I keep reminding myself it’s OK, that I can get through this. I have before and I will now. But none of that makes it any easier. Anxiety this intense is all-consuming. It freezes my life, and takes over. I don’t feel like I have any control. I know what to do, I know how to survive, but doing this alone is hard. More than anything I need support. I kind hand, a listening ear or someone just to sit with me as I want to scream in fear. So if someone you know or love has anxiety, understand they are doing the best they can and a little support goes a long way. And if you struggle with all-consuming anxiety, be still and know you will be OK, maybe not now, but eventually it will pass and you will be able to breathe freely again.

Alecia Fuller

The Song That Perfectly Describes My Life With BPD

I’m scared to get close and I hate being alone. I long for that feeling to not feel at all. The higher I get, the lower I’ll sink. I can’t drown my demons they know how to swim. Can you feel my heart? — Bring Me to the Horizon I have these lyrics tattooed across my scars, because they explain perfectly the struggles I face with borderline personality disorder (BPD). “I’m scared to get close,” describes the walls I’ve built up over time and my irrational fear of abandonment. I’m always scared people will leave because my borderline personality disorder has always been too much for people to handle, and so they always leave. It’s isolated me and made me feel so alone. But I hate being alone, especially when I’m going through a bad patch. I fear being alone, because I fear myself. I fear my own thoughts. The thoughts of self-harm and suicide, that are so constant, to me it’s normal. But sometimes I wish someone was by my side telling me everything will be OK, on the days I don’t have the strength to convince myself that these thoughts and emotions will eventually fade. “I long for the feeling to not feel at all” describes my constant battle with unstable extreme emotions. Emotions that feel like third degree burns all over my body. That are so physically painful, I would rather hurt myself than feel them. I would rather numb myself with drugs, cutting, binging or alcohol than ever feel the intensity of them. In time and through therapy, I’ve learned to sit with them, but for a long time tearing myself to pieces was the only way I knew. “The higher I get, the lower I’ll sink” describes the lows that always follow a high. I can’t simply have a good day, or be happy for a while without it all come crashing down around me again. I can be doing everything right. Taking my medication, sleeping eight hours a night, eating regular meals, exercising, meditating and not drinking or using drugs and yet suddenly everything will get dark again, and for a while I feel like I’m being swallowed whole again. Like there’s this monster inside that never leaves, she’s just waiting in the background to f**k shit up again. And I know it will pass, and the light will start to shine through again. I just have to ride out the storm and fight everyday for what people would consider normality. “I can’t drown my demons, they know how to swim” describes the battle I’ve had over the years in learning to accept everything I am as a person who struggles and lives with borderline personality disorder. I no longer fight it, and sometimes I relapse, but I’ve accepted that I’m just a deeply feeling person in a somewhat shallow world. I know there’s a lot of people just like me, and they are beautiful people just like I am. These lyrics aren’t just lyrics, they are who I am and they allowed me to feel whole and not alone in something I always felt alone feeling.

Alecia Fuller

Chronic Illness Ignored Because of My Mental Illness

I wish I could say that society was getting better, that there was no prejudice against mental illness — but I feel it every day. Not only do I struggle with borderline personality disorder (BPD), social anxiety, eating disorders and major depressive disorder, I also live with chronic illness. Fibromyalgia, chronic migraines, colitis, gastritis and IBS which I know are all flared up by stress that my mental illnesses can cause. But how is it fair for everything to be blamed on my mental illness? I should be able to walk into the doctor or emergency and to have my physical illnesses taken seriously. Instead, I feel ashamed and judged because I live with mental illness. “Are you sure you’re not just exhausted because you’re depressed?” No. It is not normal for me to sleep all night and all day. In fact, when I’m severely depressed or going through a bad patch with borderline, I often don’t sleep that well, and I also function pretty normally. I get up and go to work, go to the gym, try to eat healthy and look after myself and try to maintain a social life. Even when passive suicidal thoughts are ailing me. In fact it’s the opposite. My physical health is making me depressed and affecting my mood because it’s preventing me from living my life. “Are you sure you don’t need to talk to someone?” No. I see someone on a regular basis, I get you’re concerned by my self-inflicted wounds, but I’m not here about that. I’m here because I’m in so much pain that I can’t breathe. And yet I get sent home without a second thought because I can’t get anyone to take me seriously because I live with mental illnesses. I’ve lived with mental illnesses for over 10 years. I’m used to the highs — although I mainly experience lows. I know how to manage them. I know to reach out if I’m at risk. Yes, occasionally I relapse and do stupid shit, but I pull myself together and keep living my life. I also live with chronic suicidal thoughts, but they are passive and I keep fighting each day and believing there’s hope for a better life. I just wish you would take me seriously when I come to you about my physical health, because honestly that is what is keeping me down and preventing me from living the life I want to live. All I want is to be taken seriously. To be treated like any other person. To have answers for why I’m so sick right now so that maybe I wouldn’t have to struggle as much as I do every day, and to never feel ashamed for living with mental illness again.

Alecia Fuller

The Symptom of Borderline Personality Disorder You Can't See

“Just forget it,” he said. How could I simply forget the immense pain welling up in his eyes. How could I forget the pain I felt as it stabbed my heart with a knife. How could he not understand the pain he felt — as he screwed up his face and tried to hide — was the pain I felt. “Just leave your work at the door,” they said. “It’s not your problem anymore. It’s not your burden to bear.” How could they not understand I just can’t “switch off” my feelings? That I feel everything my clients feel. I feel their pain. I feel their sadness. I feel their joy. If something goes wrong, I take that home with me because my feelings can’t just be switched off. They often last longer than other peoples’. Having borderline personality disorder (BPD), combined with living through the pain I have lived through my whole life, both physical and mental. It gives you a sixth sense. I feel what you feel. I recognize pain and suffering in complete strangers. And to the people I love, their pain is my pain. I feel the intensity of their pain in my soul. It tears me apart as much as my own pain does. I often sense changes in emotion before others recognize it themselves. It’s invisible. You can’t see it, and I can’t explain what it’s like to live with it. And despite the pain it causes me, I wouldn’t change a single thing about it because it’s what makes me who I am. We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here . Getty Images photo via Grandfailure

Alecia Fuller

Why Fear of Abandonment Leads Me to Suicidality

Editor’s note: If you experience suicidal thoughts, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741. How can you not understand what you do to me? Are you really so blind every time you completely destroy me Remember when all I wanted to do was run away from you As you turned your back ignoring me, basically saying fuck you. How would you feel if every second you wanted to die And the only person you loved completely ignored you I’ve been bad lately, with a rollercoaster of emotions But nothing compares to the impulsivity that makes me want to end it. I was cautious about letting you in because of our past But I let you in despite my cautious heart Now I feel stupid and worthless because you broke my trust Not only that you broke my faith in us. Why couldn’t you just be honest and tell me the truth? Why crush me beyond an immeasurable bruise Rip my heart out and stomp on it too Why’d you even tell me you loved me When you had no plans about ever being with me I flew to a different country, I’d do anything for you But you can’t even be honest and say sorry. You’ve hurt me in more ways than I can count. But your ego’s so big, you can’t even back down. You don’t get to decide if you broke me, Aren’t you supposed to be communicating properly? Now all I’m going to do is say goodbye. From this miserable life, you made me want to die. I can’t fight anymore, not on my own. I hope you find someone that becomes your home. All I wanted was a life with you. A chance to be happy, instead of blue. It’s as simple as that. Not hard. But I know now I deserve better than you. Having borderline personality disorder (BPD) and fearing abandonment has led me to hold onto toxic relationships and abuse my whole life because I was so scared to be alone. I believed it when they made me feel worthless and that I wasn’t good enough. I believed everything was my fault, just like they told me it was. Having BPD isn’t an excuse for why I react the way I do, but it is an explanation. No one deserves to be treated or made to feel the way I have my whole life. I’m not the person they made me believe I was, and neither are you. Having a mental illness doesn’t make me or anyone any less deserving of love or kindness. I don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions, but in 2018 I’m finally letting go of all the people who belittle me or drag me down. I deserve better. I am better. And so are you. If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page. If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 , the Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386 or reach the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741. We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here . Getty Images photo via twinsterphoto

Alecia Fuller

How to Love a Borderline

Why do I feel like this isn’t real An unimportant part in a bad deal A secret you hide from your world A second choice, never a first You say you want me but you shy away From anything real, is that really OK? I’m patient and waiting, just trying to understand What goes on in your head, give me a hand. My mind second-guesses everything between us. Especially when I feel you’re hidden behind a mask. It’s hard for me when you don’t let me in. Instead keeping me away from showing me your within. You only want to be with me when you want some comfort. Within my arms, or body, or something. I want adventures, something more than this. Sometimes I’m bored, even if it’s bliss. Have we hit a wall, are we moving forward? Not stuck in this abandon, going dormant. Maybe if you just let me know what’s in your mind. Then maybe I wouldn’t feel like I’m blind. I don’t know what to do or how to feel. Because maybe it’s just my mind on a paranoia wheel. Anxiety is locking me to the ground. I want to hide and never be found. Safe in my bubble, unable to be harmed. The thoughts die down, I start to feel calm. Maybe I’m just not ready for this. But I’m not ready to give up because you I would miss. You make my world, I’d choose you every day. You make me feel safe, make my pain go away. It’s my thoughts I promise, I’m not doubting us. Sometimes it’s just hard, my mind in relationships. The above is an example of what happens to my mind as a person with borderline personality disorder (BPD) after any small conflict with a partner. My mind immediately goes into a roller coaster of thoughts full of doubt, specifically self-doubt. Am I good enough? Am I too much? What could I do to be better? Why would anyone love me? Do you love me? Are you sure you love me? Most of all, I wish I wasn’t like this and I wish you could understand. It’s not that I doubt the relationship; I just doubt anyone could ever really love me, because most run away. I want you to know that maybe I’m difficult to love, but my love is worth it. I will love more fiercely than anyone ever will, and although my incessant questions of whether you still love me may drive you “crazy,” please just answer. I understand it might be hard to reassure me of the same thing repeatedly, but it is as simple as reassuring me. It’s as simple as being open and talking to me, rather than getting angry and shutting me out. I will help you in loving me, if you help by trying to understand me. We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here . Thinkstock photo via dobok