While walking down the halls of school to my classes, I would constantly hear people saying rude things about me, like I was a ‘cutter’ or that I dressed weird.
For years and years, this beat down on my self-confidence. Even when I was with a group of friends, I felt horrible. I spent a lot of classes crying silently or running out of the room. I felt best when I was at my house, without all the drama. Then, one day I had to stay home from school I felt so happy that day. I didn’t have anyone or anything to deal with. I wanted everyday to be like this, but I couldn’t think of a way to stop going to school, except for killing myself, so I overdosed on drugs.
The college transition is tough for a lot of people, moving away from home, meeting new people, taking harder classes. I had a tougher time than most. I was always shy and kind of reserved, which held me back once I began college. I also didn’t get along with my roommates very well. They both had personalities incredibly different from mine, and I would often feel like an outsider.
I started to get kind of down on myself. I felt worse and worse every day. I came up with excuses not to hang out with friends, slacked a little on my school work and started losing a lot of weight. I planned on telling my parents when I went home for Christmas break, but I was afraid of what they would think, so it never happened.
At only 19, I have been through a lot in my life and have dealt with so many issues. Even though I’m not perfect now, I have found ways to help me deal and have overcome everything that I have been through. When I was younger, I was never really accepted by anyone, school, family, anything. I just have always felt as though I didn’t belong.
To add to the sense of not belonging, my parents split up. For about a year after that, my cousin was sexually abusing/raping me. I never felt connected enough to my parents or family to tell anyone, fearing that they wouldn’t believe me. Therefore, I kept all of this pain inside making me feel as though I was messed up, dealing with depression, anger, bitterness and hurt. I was always looking for happiness and a way out of the dark hole I was in. I started hurting myself because I just felt a sadness that would never go away. I was never liked by anyone, so I tried changing my physical appearance, by becoming prettier and “acceptable.”
...managing stress and anxiety. At some point in our lives, most of us will face times that are almost unbearable. Knowing how to use some key coping strategies can make a huge difference.
There are some specific things you can do to get through tough times, in addition to the exercising, keeping up your spirit and making sure you are getting enough sleep—and all the other self-care strategies.
People who were able to write about difficult events had better health and less depression. Writers' grades even improved, and they found jobs more quickly.
People who tried to work through problems by looking for solutions and taking control felt less depressed.
People who managed to stay positive, even when things were tough in their lives, were able to move on more easily and were less upset by difficult memories.
If the problems in your life are stopping you from functioning well or feeling good, professional help can make a big difference. And if you're having trouble, know that you are not alone. Studies have shown that a significant percentage of youth in America are living with diagnosable mental health issues. These numbers increase as young people enter the adolescence age brackets. Many don't get the help they need.
There is no substitute for sleep. Our bodies and minds need it to restore ourselves to functional levels, to grow, even to learn.
Of course, it's not easy to sleep when you're feeling overwhelmed. In fact, nearly two-thirds of Americans say they lose sleep because of stress. That's especially unfortunate because sleep combats some of the fallout of stress, and poor sleep has been linked to significant problems, including:
- greater risk of depression and anxiety
- increased risk of disease
- impaired memory
- reduced immune system functioning
- weight gain
- greater likelihood of injury due to accidents
Are You Getting Enough Rest?
Experts suggest that teens get at least nine hours of sleep a night. Do you?
Am I tired during the day?
Am I using caffeine or other stimulants to get through the day?
Do I sleep through the night?
Do I have trouble falling asleep?
Do I get drowsy in class?