Mental Health Awareness Week

by - Monday, May 08, 2017

Good Morning!
I hope you had a wonderful weekend!

If you didn't know, this week is Mental Health Awareness Week, a week which has been created to spread awareness of everyone who suffers with Mental Health, how it can be recognised and instead of ignoring it you should be listening too it. Of course every single person has their own story, we all know this from watching 13 Reasons Why, or generally; it's common sense. Every one goes through completely different situations and we all react in a completely different way to the next person and this is where the stigma starts. Weakness. Because one person might be struggling with one challenge which the other person might have found easy; they're seen as weak. But the person doesn't actually come to think "is this person okay? Is there something wrong? What's happening in their life?"

 Now, something I always used to hide was my story. I never told anyone about what I had been through and to be quite honest, it's one of the reasons why I started my blog. I wanted to share my story with people; whether this was one person or hundreds of people; I wanted it out there and I wanted to help in one way or another. So today I'm going to be sharing part of that story with you again or I'll leave the post here for you to have a full read.

I'm not ashamed to say it, I suffer with a mental health illness and I have suffered with this since I was young. I was bullied for five years in school and then my two years at college and it was one of the hardest times of my life, if not the hardest. From being bullied I developed anxiety and depression, I felt anxious going anywhere, I never left my house. My dad's friend used to describe me as a hamster living in my ball; I never left. My attendance was horrendous at school, every single year it was below 50% and when it came to college, I didn't want to go back there either; yet with the help of my boyfriend in my second year, I managed to pull through.

While having so much going on around me, I had a boyfriend when I was in year 10. I loved him, I would have done anything for him, but the thing is; it wasn't this way the other way around. He wouldn't have done anything for me, apart from break me into a million pieces. In my final year of school not only was I suffering with anxiety, depression and stress from GCSE exams, but I didn't realise it back then, I was also suffering with emotional abuse. The four things no one should have to experience all at the same time.

Although my last year of school was difficult, it wasn't the most difficult time. My 14th birthday was the hardest and this was back in June 2011 when the bullying was at it's worst. How do you cope with being bullied for three years straight? For me the pain was numb; I no longer felt anything which led me to an overdose of paracetamol, just three days after my 14th birthday and I still remember it crystal clear. My mum made me lasagna that night for dinner, and I told her I felt sick and she didn't believe me, so I told her what I had done and then showed her all of the empty packets which I hid in the middle of my bin. Of course I then went to A&E. The first night was a complete blur, all I remember is my dad constantly stopping on the way there for me to be sick.

I remember the doctors asking if I wanted help from professionals and I was adamant that I didn't need it and how I was completely "fine". This is where I should have told the truth. I wasn't fine, at all. 

I knew from the moment I left the hospital that I'd never overdose again, but the only thing which would numb the pain internally, but give me pain on the outside was self harming. I self harmed until I finished school and I'd hide the cuts underneath hoodies even in Summer so my family couldn't see. Although I was harming myself, in that moment of time the pain I was feeling wasn't there.

The worst thing about being bullied is being told you're the bully by the people you're supposed to trust. I went to the teachers at my school and they completely ignored what was going on. They weren't interested in what I was doing, or how I was feeling. All my headteacher gave a shit about was everyone's grades and attendance and that's where she and everyone else failed.
I found this quote on Pinterest but recreated it as my own (for copyright issues), but I felt it was completely true and real. We will fall, but we will always get back up again. Whether it takes us a day, a week or even a month; we can achieve our goals as long as we believe.

On the 8th June it would have been six years since I took and overdose and it would have been two years since I left college. In them two years, I have done more than I would have ever imagined and six years ago; I never would have thought I'd be doing what I am. Of course you all know I'm in a relationship which saved me. It's made me become a better person and I'm now able to stand up for what I believe in and to get up when I fall. I've recently finished my second year of University (I never in my life wanted to go to University), so for me this is a huge achievement. And of course, we have Kimberley Jessica, my name; but also this, my blog. The biggest achievement of them all. I'm proud of my blog. I'm proud of every single second which I put into my blog and advertising and the engagement I have with my readers. My blog has done the things I wanted it to do and that's to help someone and I know I have done this in one way or another. 

If you have managed to get to the end of this post then I want you to know that you are not alone, no matter what you are going through; you have someone or even a heck load of people. You can turn to anyone and they will listen. And if no one listens, simply write a blog post about it, or write it in a journal; let everything out because the only way to begin to recover is to speak out. 

I still suffer with depression and I'd say my anxiety is getting better. It's not something which will completely go away, but it's something which I live with and I have learnt to manage so I'm able to cope without having complete break downs all of the time. People know about my story, and I'm okay with that because I hope it helps someone. I know by getting through years of bullying, an overdose, self harming and starving myself so I don't put on weight, I can do bloody anything, and I know you can too.

Set your goals and smash them! Because you can do it and don't forget to speak out.

I'll see you soon

Kimberley Jessica

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