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Author Topic: Self harm and you - your stories. Part 2 *posts may trigger*  (Read 47860 times)
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lulu86
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« Reply #100 on: February 02, 2012, 08:10:46 AM »

 

I started to SH when I was about 15 at school. I was bullied throughout my childhood and spent all my time with my "best friend" who was a manipulative B**** and would put me down and get me into trouble a lot. I started to put myself down and would people please a lot to get people to like me. When I was about 13 this "friend" I had been so close to and had spent all my childhood years with made a new best friend in another group of girls from our form, I felt rejected and wondered what was wrong with me. In the group there were some really nasty girls who were always in trouble, I got involved in doing some terrible things with them in an attempt to get their approval. One day everything turned against me, I went into school and no one would speak to me. My group of friends had conspired against me, making up stories about me, One of the girls started shouting at me and chased me out of the classroom. I was distraught, whats wrong with me I thought? I spent the next few years alone with no social group of friends I would sit and cry during play time and when I got home I just went to bed. In my final year I became friendly with a girl who self harmed, and I guess that's where it started. I loved the rush cutting gave me and the relief from all my inner turmoil. It wasn't until a few years later at University that my self harm began to get progressively worse. I struggled again to maintain friendships in my first year at uni and would people please which got my into difficult situations. As I struggled to fit in and make friends my flatmates began to reject me and dislike me I felt like I was re living my earlier days at school and couldn't understand what was wrong with me. I also started craving affection and attention from other supportive people around me. My self harming became progressively bad. I lost a family friend to Cancer who was also my best friends dad, She couldn't cope with my destructive behaviour and all the attention I demanded from her and told me we couldn't be friends any more, I put a tool through my leg and things began to fall apart around me. As the years went by things began to improve for me, I started a relationship with a guy I had met at Uni and I started to build up new friendships with girls on my course. But as always SH still played a big part in my life, it had become my coping strategy. After 4 years away from home I was forced to return to my parents as I fell deep into mental health problems and struggled to live a normal life. The last few years have been a real struggle for me I have had many admissions to hospital and attempted suicide more than once. I am now 25 I have been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, which explains my unusual behaviour toward other people and difficulties maintain relationships. After a very difficult Christmas when I was Sh on a daily basis spending almost every night in A and E I am finally starting to turn a corner. I am getting the help I need from the NHS Crisis team and am being referred to the community mental health team for a CPN. I also got the good news yesterday that the PCT has decided to fund me for DBT treatment. I see a CBT therapist with the crisis team who wants me to go into a therapeutic community to do this. I haven't self harmed for a week now and this is really positive. I am looking forward and feeling a little more hopeful about the future.

I have found it really intresting reading everyones stories, and hope to continue to use the forum to help me cope with my on going struggles 
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inspectorsoph
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« Reply #101 on: June 04, 2012, 06:06:46 AM »

Been abused by friends and taken over 15 over doses been resuscitated couple times nearly intensive care once. Now been hospital for over year. On high risk suicide ward
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amelia_xo
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« Reply #102 on: July 26, 2012, 08:54:11 AM »

Just in case..

Well...where to start...I am 13 and i have been SH'ing for about 6/7 months now. i can't really remember how or why i started, i don't think i had never heard of SH'ing before and i don't think i really knew that i was SH'ing as such, i knew what i was doing but i didn't know much about SH'ing back then. I know that the first time i did it, was because i had an argument with my best friend. i got very upset as she was basically my only friend and so i started SH'ing. That wasn't the only reason why i was SH'ing. I SH'ed because of family problems too. They wern't major problems, just arguments with my mum and 2 brothers as such. They made me really upset and so i SH'ed. At first i wasn't cutting as such, just scrapes and scratches. But over the months things got worse so therefore did my SH'ing.

The thing is i had never been able to talk to anyone about it as i didn't have many friends at school, and the ones i did still wern't very nice to me. I only told my 'friend'... although she was in fact one of my worst 'friends'. Anyway..and my mum isn't someone i talk to alot....well to be honest i don't tell her anything. I just don't feel that she'll listen as i don't see my mum as someone i'm comfortable tallking to. I know that may seem odd because she's my mum. But that's just the way it is.

Anyway a few weeks ago my 'friend' told my form teacher about my SH'ing. she sent me down to reception and i had a talk with one of the lady's who were there. she asked me if i wanted to have a few sessions with the school counselor and i said yes, i'll give it a try. So i had a session with the counselor but only one. i didn't go to any other sessions and it was hard because it was the last week of school before the summer holidays.

Anyway...the counselling didn't help and so i carried on SH'ing. This is where it got really bad. i don't know why but i started cutting...properly now.

Well...about a week ago a friend i knew from primary and I started talking. This was nice for me as she had been through the same as me. Well after we got talking she told me that i should talk to my mum about it. i said i can't it's too hard. Then she told me how she told her mum. Through a letter. i thought that was a great idea and so i did that too. i wrote a letter to my mum explaining everything. it was one of the hardest things i've done. I put the letter in her bag one day before school. I was worried sick about it all day through school. i couldn't stop thinking about it. Anyway, when i got home my mum and i had a chat. it went better than i thought it would. i s'pose i just over-thought it.

Well...after that my mum spoke to my older sister who lives in London. Now...My sister is definitely someone i can talk to. it wasn't until she spoke to me that i realized i should have spoke to her. Anyway i'm going up to see my sister this weekend to have a chat. i'm looking forward to it but nervous aswell. my mum asked me how i knew about SH'ing i told her i didn't know back then...when i started. she said that i must have heard or seen it somewhere. but i hadn't. All i know is i know ALOT of people who do it now. in my form..school. I have got closer to people who have SH'ed and they have been really nice and supportive to me. We may not have been through exactly the same but we know that it is..rougly:)

Anyway...that's my story. you might have noticed i put this in passed tense(i think..haha Tongue)... well its not it the past yet...i haven't done it for 2 weeks or so but that's only because my mum told me to stop and i know that if i carry on she will see the cuts. But i feel freeer now as the worst part of it all was hiding the cuts from my mum. i'm glad that's over now. all i have to do is make sure i don't cut anymore. This will be very hard for me as i don't know how i'm going to do that. My mum is trying to get help for me and hopefully that will help me stop SH'ing.

But after reading some of your other stories about why you SH i feel pretty lucky compare to you. And i think, sometimes... wow. things are much worse with them. i shouldn't be SH'ing. My problems arn't too big. They have major reasons why they do it. But i s'pose it's not all about that. Things just happen and we can't stop it.

I think this site is really good and i know i'll be back to update this and tell you all what happens next...

Thanks for reading Smiley
See ya:)
« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 09:02:36 AM by amelia_xo » Logged

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amelia_xo
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« Reply #103 on: July 26, 2012, 08:59:41 AM »

Oh and my mum asked me how i knew about SH'ing i told her i didn't know back then...when i started. she said that i must have heard or seen it somewhere. but i hadn't. All i know is i know ALOT of people who do it now. in my form..school. I have got closer to people who have SH'ed and they have been really nice and supportive to me. We may not have been through exactly the same but we know we've both SH'ed.
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nosda
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« Reply #104 on: August 20, 2012, 12:45:27 PM »

 

I am 24, and discovered the other day that I have been cutting for half of my life now. I started harming (head banging and biting) when I was 6. There have been points where I have not harmed at all, and points where I have harmed every single day. This was a major issue for me when I was a teenager, but in recent years it has become very sporadic. Although in the last few months it has become alot more frequent than it has been for a while. My coping methods have developed over time, sometimes they work and sometime they don't. One method I have found that can work sometimes, is to draw on my arm with a red pen, using enough pressure for me to feel it, but not enough to break the skin. Every day brings a new challenge for me, but knowing that I managed to stop the daily habit of harming, has in a way made me realise that even though I don't feel like it, I must have strength hidden in there somewhere.
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unheard-scream
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« Reply #105 on: August 23, 2012, 03:13:32 PM »

 
My story....
I guess everything went downhill when I turned 10, my aunt and uncle had just got divorced so I felt crushed, then my dad had a stroke, I was terrified. My mum was screaming at me to get the phone but wouldn’t tell me what was wrong with my dad…..

After that things got worse, my “dad” would make comments at my weight, or the grades I got in school. He didn’t care that I started seeing a counsellor at school, or that I was skipping 2 days a week, and loads of classes on the days I actually turned up….

And the days I turned up to school, I just got bullied a lot, then abused by numerous boyfriends and friends I trusted. I avoided being raped twice, which was the final straw for me, at 14 I got depression and self harmed for the first time. I was once a happy smily girl, but she was gone and in her place was this shell that lived in a black hoodie, headphones to drown everyone out and eyeliner. I wanted the world to leave me alone. I’d cut my friends out of my life, they all desperately wanted the old me back but she was buried under a sea of hate, depression and self loathing….

When I turned 15, things just escalated quickly, my best friend had had a boyfriend for a year now, and both were coming to me for every little problem rather than talk to each other, I’d had enough, I didn’t bother going to school for a month, I just said I was ill with the flu……but when I came back they still came to me, so I took myself out of school again for 3 weeks, I came back even more depressed. I’d attempted suicide in those 3 weeks, I tried to choke myself with my tie :/ My best friend finally saw that by coming to me for every little problem, she made me leave school for a bit…. she stopped but everyone else started questioning me about my absences, so guess what, I disappeared again but only for 2 weeks (I was running out of sick excuses)

When I came back the counsellor wanted to see me, I’d missed my last 5 appointments with her, she knew something was wrong, I showed her my scars and she stopped seeing me - great the first person to reject helping me….I started getting back into my lessons after missing so much, but in one lesson I was stuck on a table with my ex boyfriend and his 2 mates (we ended so badly), when the teacher left the room, the 2 friends grabbed me, one held my arms, the other covered my mouth. My ex came up to me with a sinister look in his eyes, picked up a piece of fresh sand paper and went to town on my arm. The teacher came back and the friends said I’d had an accident on the belt sander, I just went along with it, I got my arm cleaned up and was sent home for 2 weeks (fantastic!!)….

I was 16 when I stopped self harming, I’d just left school and all those people behind. Now to college…. my dad recovered from his stroke and started being a dad again. I got into the college I wanted and was on the course I wanted as well…. I met my class mates, and started seeing a guy on my course. We broke up after he dumped me for a dare, my depression returned. I carved my arm up again….

I made some good friends in Dan and Paige, they both went out with people on our course so I was left alone, when my tutor pulled me out to ask if I was ok (the blood had come through my jacket) I broke down and told him everything…. he got me a counsellor who wouldn’t turn their back on me, I saw her everyday till I got to once a week. Then Dan broke up with his girlfriend and Paige split up with her boyfriend, so we all grew closer, I told them about my self harming…. they agreed to help me because I was there for them (finally I had true friends)

When I turned 17 things got better for me, my counsellor had left college tho so I was being moved to another one - great I had to make a new relationship…. I got into a abusive relationship, so I went back to the tool, this time I cut deeper…. Dan found me and helped me clean up and recover….

Christmas time, I was on winter break, I missed my friends and they were the only people who could help me, I downed a bottle on pills, Dan phoned me and talked me out of it, he convinced me to throw them up….

A month before I turned 18 (April) I was at rock bottom. 3 people close to me had died…. I’d been to 7 funerals by the time I reached 17. I was depressed, so I sliced my arm up, I caught a vein and bleed a lot. Dan’s current girlfriend found me this time, she helped me and continues to help me….

I felt like I was getting better after I turned 18, I’d been to a few parties and had fun. Then I lost someone else, and my best friend turned her back on me, I couldn’t take it anymore I emptied another bottle of pills….

Then I met Marina [] I spoke to her until 2 in the morning, she talked me into throwing up my pills, I owe her everything I have. I love her to bits. We still talk now, she is my lifeline and I help her. We’ve both reached 100+ days self harm free…  Grin Cheesy

rob arrow edited out references to other website as per forum rules concerning links to graphic images and method sharing
« Last Edit: August 23, 2012, 03:33:34 PM by Rob » Logged
mowglieanne
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« Reply #106 on: September 23, 2012, 12:59:55 PM »

Hey I'm new to this site and aint quite sure What to say but here goes.

i have been self harming for the past 6 years, i started when i was 14.
when i first started i didn't know anything about it and just thought that i must have been weird or some thing but now i know that it is more common than i thought.

i think the reason why i started was because i preferred to take the anger i was feeling out on my self than anyone else.

when i was 8 years old i had to grow up fast because my mum was abusive towards my step dad and i would have to split up the fights  and look after my brother. When my mum and stepdad split up i thought that thing would be better now but they weren't mum turned her anger towards me, she has always been one for emotional blackmail .
that was when i started self harming and i have only stopped once since which was in February this year when my nan the closest person to me died of cancer i stopped because  from when i found out she had cancer to 2 weeks after her funeral i was drinking alcohol though out the day everyday but as soon as i sobered up all the emotions shut out and the self harming came back again and is getting worse.


i am trying to stop and haven't done it in 5 days its been reali hard but i have a great friend how helps also i have made an appointment to see my GP hopefully i can take back the control in my life rather than the urges being in control.

sorry about the rant
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LeahG
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« Reply #107 on: October 12, 2012, 12:05:15 AM »

I’ve visited this site several times in the past, just looking and reading when I’m having a bad day. I’m on my own this week and I initially started to type looking for support but as I’ve sat here trying to type over the last hour or so, I realised for the first time that my story is one of survival and moving on. I don’t think I’ll ever come to a stage in my life where I’ll never think of SH again but I suppose I can now deal with it- even if it is difficult at times.
As I’ve read other stories and posts I’ve also realised I’m probably quite a bit older than many of the people on here (but not all). I turned 30 this year and despite what I am writing about I am genuinely happy and have a great life- not perfect but still great. I simply hope that anyone who is finding life very difficult with SH can read this and know that many of us do go on to not only survive but have a great life.
Yes I still have times when I think about SH and sometimes trying not to SH can be as stressful as actually doing it. But I’ve not cut for almost 3 years now and I’ve not relied on SH regularly for nearly 5 years.
SH was my way of coping and having control for nearly 10 years. I spent much of that time feeling very guilty as I never really had anything terrible happen to me that caused it, I just suffered from depression and found life very difficult at times. I’ve never shared my SH with my family and the only person who really knows about it is my now fiancé. 10 years ago I had no idea why I did it or that so many others did too. I now understand my SH, I know my triggers and when I may potentially  find it difficult. This understanding and simply building a life for myself with people and things I love are what worked for me. Even although I occasionally have difficult times it doesn’t mean I’ll SH, I let myself think about it then move on. With time I have eventually thought about it less.
I eventually finished university and now work as a teacher, I have a home with someone I love and we are getting married in a few months and the best part of my life is my 2 year old daughter, being a mum has made me the best version of myself.
So I know I haven’t given any mind blowing advice on how to stop SHing but if reading this can give just one person the hope they need then I’m glad I finally wrote it.
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Mutley
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« Reply #108 on: October 28, 2012, 11:53:01 PM »

Hi everyone, am new to this site and was puzzled why a mental health professional had sent me here!  I suppose once I realized my past history of self abuse and reading self harm stories on here I now understand why.

  *OD, SH, SA*

My story is probably less severe than some - maybe I am more lucky and actually appreciate I am - my Dad was an alcoholic who left me when I was 2 years old, he used to severely beat my Mother and she feared for her life and that of myself and my older bro.  She kicked my Father out but then she became addicted to prescribed tranquilisers.  I love my Mother dearly but cannot tolerate her behaviour any longer and feel more at peace at the moment for not seeing her - this does not mean I don't care for her or love her still.  I find I cannot find anything positive in knowing her at this moment in time.  My school days were lonely and isolated - I hated school and remember being taunted for "not having a Dad", "being poor", and was told day in and day out I was "fat and ugly".  The bullying started at the age of 5 when I remember a girl punched me in the stomach - her sister pushed me down a steep slope into a ditch and things never improved much from there.  I did eventually become friends with the girl who punched me - she must have had issues to contend with.  I tended to befriend kids from minority groups such as disabled, gay or black.  In my eyes we were all struggling with bullies and had to stick together to retain "our sanity".  When I was 5 years old a family friend, who was around 16 or 17 lured me into his house promising me books - he had a big family and lots of unwanted books - and being a friend I wholeheartedly trusted him.  Once inside his house he pushed me physically upstairs and then pushed me forcefully on his bed, then he closed his bright, orange, satin curtains and forced his passionate kisses on me.  He did not get any further than that thankfully as my Grandmother sensed I was in danger and hammered her fists on his front door, threatening to call the Police if he did not release me.  Later on in years, I found he was sent to prison for sexual offences.  Oh, by the way, on leaving his house he scooped up a load of books and sent me on my way.  Even to this day I still panic if someone corners me and I feel "out of control" of a situation.  The bullying continued at school and at  home I felt like a "puppet" being controlled with my Mother and my Brother both pulling my strings. I spent so many years feeling desperate, isolated and felt like I didn't fit in.  At the age of 16 I took an overdose of painkillers and ended up wired up to a heart machine in intensive care for over a week.  I know my Mum felt destroyed by this but she still never seemed to understand how I felt.  I fell in love at the age of 19 and thought life would be great - but it didn't happen.  I felt insecure and jealous and felt I was going to be abandoned all over again.  I suddenly became the nasty bully - putting my partner down because of my lack of confidence.  I loved him with all my heart but could not show it in the correct way.  He left me for another.  I then had a breakdown as I felt so gutted he had left me.  This then led to a year when I had a complete breakdown.  My Mother wanted me sectioned which I fought against with the support of my fantastic Doctor.  I went to anger management, self esteem groups everything I was told to do as I had now fallen in love with a very kind man who 21 years later, is still my friend - we had 11 turbulent years together but he is my rock and I am his - we support each other emotionally - I even sorted out my jealousy problem enough to attend his wedding day a few years ago.  I was really moved and happy he had found the right woman for him and tried to hold back the tears on that day.  After I left him, for a man I met on the internet who was totally inappropriate and who held me down and forced a sex act on me - I was torn apart but thought I was so disgusting I deserved it and was being punished.  Ha Ha, nasty B**** karma has bitten you big time.  Then I met a lovely african man who I could not believe would love me - I was fat and ugly and old - 40 years old at this point and felt ugly and respulsive - after all why would a handsome, tall, beautiful man want me except for a British passport. I made it clear you love me for me and not a passport. I never gave in to his request for this.  He is now happy and living in Birmingham with "leave to remain".  After going from one night stands and bad relationships I found my "dream man" - an englishman man whose parents were born in Jamaica and he was stunning.  He was seriously ill and was having multiple epileptic fits which rendered him unconscious.  When I saw him he was upbeat, confident and motivated me from my black moods.  I felt beautiful when I was with him, he gave me confidence and I felt life was worth living and I did not relize he was so ill.  Then suddenly, on a Thursday afternoon I got the call that he had died.  An epileptic fit had led to a heart attack.  the emergency services could not revive him.  He had died at home with his Mother whom he loved dearly.  I did not know his family.  The stress of going to his funeral and seeing him lying dead in his coffin was nearly too much for me.  I had to cope with this alone and had no backup from my family.  I was told I was ridiculous for thinking I was in love with him after only 7 months - even after 7 seconds with him I knew I was in love.  I had communicated with him for over a year online but felt I was not "good enough for him".  I always felt beautiful when we were together.  When he died I felt half of me had been torn from me.  I felt suicidal for so many months.  I kept cutting my hair - I wanted to take drugs to end it all - my Doctor would not prescribe me medication to cope as I was self medicating with several bottles of vodka a week.  Four years down the line, the last time I wanted to take my life a year ago, I live near a well known suicide spot and wanted to visit it.  This time it was because I had a gay male friend I absolutely was focusing on.  This guy was my motivation to live but then he told me he had epilepsy and when he drank and took drugs I feared losing him.  Apart from all this my best friend from school died from a hit and run accident when she was 19, another school friend I loved dearly died when we were 39 and I lost family friends and family members whom I loved dearly.Also, I lost pet who I looked on as my children during my lifetime.  

Thankfully, my gay friend is still alive - he suffers depression and I am there for him whenever he needs me - he has turned up at my door at gone 2 in the morning and stayed until 6 in the morning - I am still self medicating but do not feel as much pain emotionally as I used to.  My turning point was when I sent a text saying "good bye" to my gay friend, he was mortified thinking I had died as I had not turned up for work the next day - somehow I found the strength to go to the Doctor and "ask for help".  I did not realize the absolute panic and distress I had caused.  He would not speak to me for a few weeks after that incident as he was so angry with me.  We are closer than ever now and though I still have a jealousy problem when any woman gets near him I am seeking help for that - I have no problem around his boyfriend - just feel a woman may steal him away.  I am on a road to "self improvement" this year.  I am 47 and giving myself permission at last to enjoy my life.  I still have alcohol issues but have had two lots of counselling and attend a therapy art group regularly and also tried flower arranging as a hobby this year.  I love to make jewellery and making greetings cards along with other hobbies such as knitting and sewing and renovating dolls houses.  Life is hard, it is a daily struggle but now instead of burying my head in the sand like an ostrich I am seeking solutions to my problems.  It is better to fight than to resign yourself to a living death.  My Grandmother suffered alzheimers and died in a care home - I now work in a care home on Reception where I am the "friendly face" that greets and empathises with families.  My own mental health problems help me to help others.  I still have times when I want to harm myself - and  want to overdose or even hurt my face because I feel I am so ugly that it wont make any difference to my looks.  Then I recall good comments made at work that I motivate other people when they are down and the Service Users like me and their families compliment me.  Then I know I am doing "just fine".  Being "just fine" is good for me right now and I appreciate very simple things such as having a coffee with friends.  Oh my God, I should be packaged as a "sleep aid".  After reading through this again, I actually feel like I have the right to call myself a "survivor".  Love to all - we can survive and "will survive".

 rob arrow Edit, removed a few details of harming methods to keep the post within the rules of the site - Gerard
« Last Edit: March 13, 2013, 09:05:47 PM by Gerard » Logged
Stillgoing
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« Reply #109 on: August 23, 2013, 11:51:23 PM »

*SH SA OD*

I am hoping that creating this timeline will help to integrate to two lives that I feel I have had.

Between the ages of 9 and 12 I was SAed regularly by a sporting trainer, however, at this time I did not self harm. Despite being petrified and in constant fear I took comfort in the fact that I was doing exceptionally well at my horse riding and I think almost convinced myself that the SA was a price I had to pay. As a child I couldn't actually see that I had a real talent for horses, I thought the perpetrator was responsible for my success. When he moved country and the abuse stopped everything fell apart. I lost confidence and began to feel worthless and unwanted. At 12 the SH began to take over my life and my ability to ride fluctuated with my mood. No one knew for a couple of years but by 13 my school became very suspicious as I suddenly fell from top of the class to near enough bottom and my behaviour significantly deteriorated.

At 14 I confided in a teacher at school about my SH and she became one of the most positive and inspirational relationships I have had. She supported me as much as she could: referred me to CAMHS, gave me space to express myself and my feelings constructively at school, cared about my feelings and most of all had faith that I could get back to the A* student I knew I could be. Don't get me wrong I gave her hell and I thank her massively for sticking by me, even after I left school at 16.

CAMHS was really helpful when it came to the SH and the reduction programme I engaged with worked really well. After two years with my therapist I finally felt able to disclose my SA and my treatment then began to focus on PTSD rather than anxiety, depression and SH. After I initially disclosed the SA my SH was relentless and I was even hospitalised after a failed attempt on my life. Revealing my experiences made me feel out of control and it was something that took a lot to work through. I remained at CAMHS until I was 18 and although I never stopped the SH in this time, the amount that I SHed and the severity reduced dramatically by the time I left. I had not finished my treatment for PTSD and CAMHS requested an instant referral to adult psychological services for further therapeutic work. This did not happen and once CAMHS were completely out of the picture and the transition was complete, the adult mental health services referred me to a psychiatrist who simply gave me labels and medication rather the support and therapy that had been working so well.

Needless to say my SH increased again, my academic work (A-Levels) continued to be dramatically affected and I lost all chances of getting into university. Medication wasn't working and I once again felt out of control after opening the SA box and not being supported properly to put it away in a constructive and manageable way. I tried many medications and only became meds free 5 years later. After failing my A-Levels and having no chance of gaining a place at university that year, with the support of my old school teacher, I re-enrolled for the following year to retake my exams and also started private psychological therapy (as recommended by CAMHS). This worked well and within that year (age 18-19) I managed to stop my SH and begin to manage my emotions a little better. I was still, and am still, tainted with my memories and the subsequent anxiety and depression that plagues my life but I realised that these things do not need to define my life. I passed my A-levels that year (not nearly what I should have achieved, but enough with an appeal to get into a good university).

My life changed at university and I find it so hard to look back and think that the pre-age 19 person is the same person that then went on to complete her degree. I remained SH free ever since starting university and the whole experience was very empowering especially considering I finally I achieved the top grades which I should have been achieving in my GCSE's and A-Levels. I completed my degree last year and spent this past year qualifying as a teacher (I guess my teacher in school had a HUGE impact on not only my life but my career choices as well; it's nice to know she is still there for me now and that I have made her very proud. I am now a fully qualified teacher - although it hasn't really sunk in and I feel like the last four years have been a bit of a blurr. I am still plagued with horrible thoughts at times and depression is something which I feel I will need to live with and manage for the rest of my life. I am determined to remain SH free despite the fact that I regularly have thoughts about it and have many times nearly fallen back on my old coping mechanisms. PTSD is difficult to live with but I have realised that not all days are bad and it has ultimately made me a stronger and more determined person. It's funny - I'm kind of at a time in my life where I think for the first time I can say I wouldn't change what happened to me because it has made me the person I am. I certainly don't think I would have chosen to teach had it not been for education saving my life and taking me away from SH, drugs and alcohol. Education made me understand a little better what happened to me and I'm sure that by helping other students to overcome  their own difficulties I will continue to have the same positive outlook on life despite everything.

This has been really helpful but I have found that there is no way you can capture an entire timeline in one post. I hope this story can show others that there is light at the end of the tunnel sometimes. 
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