Mental Health Awareness Week – My Story

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I thought about writing this piece all week, sometimes it’s hard to talk about especially when you feel a little vulnerable so I put it off and put it off but now I feel like I can share a little with you. So I suppose I can just start from the beginning.

I think for me it all kicked off at the age of 11, so ten years ago now (man I feel old). I was picked on at school before that but this was the kick off point. A boy at school took a particular dislike to me and so he used to hit me, tell me I was a slag (I didn’t even know what that meant), kick me, punch me. My collar bone was close to being broken and one of his friends kicked me in the ankle and sprained it badly. It’s not hard to see that this was the start of my anxiety and my hatred of school.

Then I went to secondary school and at the start it seemed to calm down, but that didn’t happen for long. Little incidents of bullying got bigger and bigger. People just liked to take the piss and I assume I was just an easy target. Of course I had some friends and I met Ali but they were all in the year above me. I think my depression started at around 15, which is sad because Ali and I were only a year into our relationship. From the darkest times all I can remember is just this feeling of despair, I didn’t know what to do I just felt lost all the time. I felt like I didn’t have anything and my life was trapped in school. I’d make charts to stick to my wall every day and count down any day that I had to be in school.

The worst point was when Ali and my friends left school, for the most part I was completely alone. I’d just let myself not feel if I had to go to class but for most of the time I didn’t go to school. Even though I went to the doctors all of the time not one doctor would help me or acknowledge how much I was struggling. Luckily I had my family, my Mum knew something was wrong and so I didn’t go to school a lot and taught myself at home. Every time I went in I’d get stressed, have panic attacks and sometimes I’d just walk out because I couldn’t cope.

I managed to leave with all my GCSE’s with a good pass rate, so much so I was allowed to take an extra course when I went on to college. I was happier there but still didn’t have that many friends in my own year, instead I hung out with the year above again. So fast forward to the end of my first year and my friends had gone again, most of them to uni but I still had Ali. I was still pretty ill at this point but now had a councillor and at least one doctor who thought I had an anxiety disorder.

I still struggled with low attendance, crippling lows and panic attacks but things were a little better. I got so anxious I threw up during my A Level exam, I spent the rest of the nights hysterical and sure I wouldn’t get into uni. I did, which was honestly the highlight it was a new start and I finally had a diagnoses!

From there on I’ve still struggled I’ve had big highs and big lows but now I’m working on helping others, I have a great doctor who understands and I’m on track with my recovery. I also have my incredible mentor who helps me, Ali, my family. I still have my illness and I might have it for my entire life, who knows. This is where I am right now and I hope it improves as much as possible. I’m going to keep fighting this for as long as it takes ❀

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