self harm

I feel so alone in this battle

I tried to kill myself just about a year ago. I never intended to make it to my 19th birthday but I did and until now I still ask myself, why hadn’t I try harder that time? If I had ended everything in one go, I would have been free from all the pain and suffering. I didn’t choose to be depressed yet sometimes the people around me talk to me as if I chose to be this way. I would do anything to stop feeling like this too. I have stopped living long ago, doing just the bare minimum to survive. I now drink more than I ever used to and my self-harm behavior is getting out of control but I’m doing whatever I can to help me get through just one more day. I saw how my first ever attempt broke the people around me and this is the only reason why I’m still trying so hard to hold on. If I could die without hurting anyone around me, I would do it without a second thought. I honestly don’t know how long I can go before I attempt again and I feel so alone in this battle.

No one has to go through it alone

One day after my 18th birthday, I started self-harming. It started small, using pens or needles to slash my wrists. It hurt, and I wanted to stop, but I also felt… nothing. I did it the first time to stop crying when my father was hitting and hurling insults at me, and I didn’t want him to see me crying to prevent more beatings.


It started to get worse, of course. I used the kitchen knives in my house, and I would cut almost every now and then. I wore jackets to school so no one could tell, but at times I did take my jacket off so everyone could see. 
I didn’t really care at that point. I didn’t have friends, and I was quite used to being judged anyways.


It got better for me for a moment, until I had a fight with a friend and I tried to end my own life – overdosing on paracetamol but too scared to stab myself with the knife I had in hand. 


That was all one year ago. I still have those memories playing in my head like it was yesterday. 
I’ve gotten better at my own recovery. My self-harming has decreased and I am finding the support I need. And even though I still don’t have as many friends, I know there are people I can rely on.


For anyone suffering through their struggles, I just wish to say that I am proud of you. No one has to go through that struggle, and I know each and everyone of us going through this is strong and capable in their own way.
 I say, keep fighting. Keep fighting through every hardship and setback you face. I wish someone told me that when I first started, but now I only want to help anyone struggling through that too. 
No one has to go through it alone. 

The loneliness is grappling

Girls are toxic, well some at least, I try to fit in but they just shut me out. They pretend that I am not there and I pretend that I do not care. But when I go home all I do is cry. Cry for the friends that I never had, cry for the memories I never shared. I cry I starve I cut I swear.

Death welcomes me with open arms, it says I will be there for you no matter what. I bury myself in books, believing that they can be my companion but soon I realise that there’s no cure. For the depression stems from neglect of human interaction.

The anxiety from trying to be perfect for everyone else and forgetting myself. I hurt people around me, without intent, for I have been hardwired to survive, not to find a companion. The loneliness is grappling especially during the holidays, where everyone has someone while I find myself here…

I was abused by my father

I was abused by my father when I was younger; it lasted until I was 16. Although I came clean about it to my parents 3 years ago, they expect me to have moved on from it. My mum especially believes it is wrong of me to still hold a grudge against my dad. It is really difficult to forgive him when he does not acknowledge that what he did was unacceptable. I’ve struggled with self harm for the past 5 years. I probably suffer from PTSD too according to a counsellor I saw but I haven’t been able to afford a professional diagnosis. I’m basically alone in my recovery from the abuse because I cannot be honest with my family members about my true feelings and struggles. 

I’m in the process of internalizing that while my past is always going to be a part of me and influence my actions and perspective, it does not define me nor does it dictate my future. The hardest part, I’m pretty much alone in my recovery. I have amazingly supportive friends but it still pains me that my family is not part of my recovery process. 

Keep fighting for yourself

I grew up without a dad during my early childhood. I often thought to myself that I could never make a mistake and when I did I would “punish” myself for it. It started with rubber band flicking on my wrist and then it developed to excessive eating or starvation and then to cutting and drinking. My anxiety grew worse as my depression did. I only got help at the age of 17 and that was when I got diagnosed with severe depression, post traumatic disorder and severe anxiety. It was definitely very overwhelming for me and there were days that I would really drag myself to therapy because I kept thinking that I would never get better. 

At the age of 18 was the peak of my depression. It was the year of the most times I actually tried to end my life. I got hospitalised a couple of times and I saw the pain my family felt. I was accused for not being grateful for the life I had when it was just that I couldn’t take my own pain. Was it selfish? To an extent, maybe. Here’s the positive outtake. That same year, as much as I continuously fell down, I also kept pushing myself. Back then I won’t be able to admit that but right now, I wanted to win that battle and I did. I still get anxious now but that was because it became a habit to constantly worry. I’m handling it better now. 

So, keep fighting for yourself. Remember you deserve it and as much as you feel alone. You aren’t. Don’t end your story half way because when you overcome it, your happy ending may just help someone else.

I knew I needed help

It all began when puberty struck me and sensitivity crept into my life. In Primary school, my sensitivity got a hold of me and I started to break down almost everyday. The thought of self-harm came to mind because of how people made fun of me. There were times when I was completely normal, and times where I would become a maniac and start slashing my arm.

During Secondary school, one self-harm attempt led me to the Institute of Mental Health. It was really scary, but I knew I needed help.

I couldn’t possibly let my schoolmates see my “drama”, and my parents (my mum) be so worried about me. It also struck me how my relatives reacted to my self-harming. Especially my father who blamed me for choosing to let all this happen and also for believing in my religion.

I cannot possibly hide this matter any longer, so I’m thankful for my school counselors, teachers, church mates and my mum and relatives for truly understanding my situation; encouraging and guiding me along as I chose to seek professional help.  

So to my fellow students that are also struggling, please speak up for yourself and get professional help. It would really benefit you and help bring you back to who you truly are.

I was severely bullied

Since the age of 12, I have been experiencing suicidal thoughts and anxiety. I was severely bullied in Primary 6 but now I’m still recovering.

I feel like a jar, an empty jar. When everybody just takes everything inside away from you, and all you’re left with is nothing. Please stop putting labels on us, because sometimes all you’ve got to do is to understand how we feel. We are all humans.

My mental health journey hasn’t always been smooth. I’m currently in Secondary 3, so I’m seeing the school counselor. It has taken me courage to seek help and recover from it. I have cut myself many times, attempted suicide but now I’m still alive and breathing.

I choose to advocate for mental health because not many people understand how we actually feel. If you need to seek help, seek help. Don’t be ashamed of seeking help because it will be worth it in the end.

Christmas Was Not Always Merry For Me

Christmas was not always merry for me. 8 years with eating disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder and borderline personality disorder, Christmas was an awkward, depressing and lonely time to me. I didn’t know what it’s like to laugh heartily. I didn’t know what it’s like to freely enjoy food with loved ones. I had mixed feelings seeing lovers because I believed I was ‘not lovable’ and so ‘romantic relationships are not for me’. 

However, secretly, I longed for joy and to be free to enjoy food with my friends and family. I longed to love and be loved by someone special. But my fear was greater than my dreams. I didn’t date for 12 years until in 2015, I tried #Tinder and went on quite a number of dates. But attracting all the men who weren’t good for me.

My turning point was in Oct 2015 when I wrote a 40 page intention/declaration journal to myself —

“Today, I declare to the universe, that I’m resolute and committed to love Valerie more every day. I’m loving her more than anyone else, anything else. I take care of her Whole Person – body, mind, heart and spirit.
Let’s do this and enjoy this life quest – this Love Quest!
So Val, I love you! You are my favourite person. You are my best friend. Thank you for staying with me – through it all.”

And I wrote as detailed as I could what kind of relationship I was going to have with myself. Then I wrote what kind of relationship I wanted with someone special.

2015 was my first truly Merry Christmas with myself and loved ones. I was excited about 2016. And I attracted priceless gifts of life in friendships and a beloved. My life was never the same again.

Bottomline: When you truly love yourself, the choices you make for yourself will change for the best – health, friends, romance, career, money… I wish you warmth, love and joy.

Things never got easier, I just got stronger.

I’ve been struggling with self- harm for 9 years. I don’t even know if I am or was ever depressed. Because I never could afford the money to see a doctor, people said I was just seeking attention, that I’m an emotional freak.

Little did they know all the battles that I’ve fought within myself, all the pain I was trying to take away. I tried to call for help, but help never came. I just kept on putting bandaids over my wound, and all these wounds never healed.

If I could save myself, I would have. There’s still a tinge of faith within me, wanting to save and help myself. It’s been 9 years, things never got easier, I just got stronger.

Thankfully I found a way to seek help without my parents consent

When I was 10, I started hating going to school and would pretend that I was sick so my parents would bring me back home and I didn’t have to face ‘him’ anymore. All I knew, that ‘him’ was my older sister’s classmate and that he and his group of friends would always laugh and joke about the rabbit tooth that was sticking out of my mouth and that was something I felt really upset about.

I told my parents about how I felt, I was really really upset, I was embarrassed when I was made fun of in front of everyone else, I was scared to go to school. I didn’t know what I was thinking, but occasionally, the thought of suicide came once in awhile as I questioned my worth. Neither my parents nor my friends stood up for me. I was sad. But my parents brushed it off, I felt worthless.

One day, I told my form teacher in primary school about my ideations, she highlighted it to the discipline master and he called my dad. When I spoke to my dad over the phone, he immediately dismissed my feelings and told me to tell the teachers that I was just kidding and was saying things I didn’t mean.

At 11, I felt lost. It then started to become somewhat like a falling into a dark hole where nobody could see or hear me. I don’t know if I wanted to be heard, I gave up on myself. I was approached by the school counsellor, but my parents again found out that I was creating these issues again and told me that I should stop and never see her again. They felt like I didn’t need to see her. They said I had “no issues”.

Then I entered secondary school, I was happy and carefree till I met this guy that was new to my class, and I started to fall back again. That guy was mean, he commented on the way I looked and questioned about my weight almost everyday. He would use vulgarities and mean words that was never supposed to be said to another human being. He made me feel stupid. I hated him and I went back hating myself.

Due to the exposure of social media and the internet, I taught myself how to hurt myself and found harmful ways to deal with the internal pain that I was feeling. I started from metal rulers, then to staple bullets then to penknives where I eventually found the thrill when looking at blood. I knew I wasn’t myself but my parents told me I was. I got confused. I really felt like I was at the closest edge of suicide.

Again, I was alerted to the school counsellor and again, my parents were brought down to see the teachers to talk about my case and how to move forward. And again, my parents rejected and restricted my access to help. I was in their control, I didn’t know who I could go to. My parents told me I’m okay. Eventually, with them constantly telling me that I was okay and there’s nothing wrong with me, I believed them.

It came to a point where I could not recognise what pain was and everything seemed painless to me. When I hurt myself, it’s not pain. When I see blood, when I bruise, I don’t feel pain. I got confused so often that it gets very difficult for me to know what pain actually was. And if I am causing pain to other people.
I’m 18 now, and I feel okay but still broken at times.

Thankfully I found a way to seek help without my parents consent, and hope that I am getting better. It wasn’t easy and was definitely a long wait to get this far.

I’m still alive and am proud of myself.