When I was really down at age 15, I didn’t know what to do and who to turn to. I soon resorted to self-harm. Others may see it as suicide attempt, but to me it’s a form of relief. There’s a calm that follows when I feel the pain of my skin opening under the blade as I cut myself. School teachers noticed the wounds and alerted the principals and I was referred to school counsellors. That was when I received help.
Due to the stigma of mental illness, I’ve never dared to seek proper support after I left my secondary school less than 2 years later. I’m forced to fight this lonely battle without support even from my own family as they simply label me as being a lunatic.
15 years down the road, the journey has not been easy. There are days wherein I feel wonderful – as if none of this has ever happened – and then there are days when I feel like I want to end it all.
I’m still afraid to seek proper help due to all the shaming that is still prevalent.
For those who are struggling: It may get worse before it gets better, but it will get better.
For those around people who are struggling: STOP telling us to “just think positive” or “snap out of it”, because it just doesn’t work that way.
I hope that people will stop judging. Start listening and empathising.