I don’t know why/when it started (before primary 6 I think) but I soiled my underwear. My brothers and sisters constantly teased me about it and I used to try and hide the underwear so my mum couldn’t find it but of course she did and she would make it such a big deal. I kept getting dragged backwards and forwards to different doctors in an attempt to try to help me. Doctors gave me two different types of medicine to take but this didn’t work so I eventually got admitted to hospital. I think i pushed my mum away as i felt that it was her fault i was in there in the first place. When i came out of the hospital and returned to school the class actually spoke to me but it didn’t last and I was soon left by myself. I hung about with children who were younger than me. It felt awful.
I was constantly excluded from everything as the smell clung to my clothes and the teachers made me feel different as they were always sending me out of class to go sort myself out. During Primary 7 we used to have swimming and I couldn’t even join in with that and when the other children had their week away I wasn’t allowed to go so I had to stay behind and spent the week with a group of younger children. The school teachers only decided at the last minute that I couldn’t go as they didn’t think it would be fair on the other children. I felt as though i had let myself down because I had this problem and couldn’t go away for the week which really upset me and I felt like I was being punished for something I couldn’t control. It was just so unfair as I really wanted to go and join in with everybody but I couldn’t go so when the others returned from this week away it was all they spoke about.
On the very first day of high school the people I went to primary school with wanted me to make new friends instead of hanging about with them. That felt horrendous and I couldn’t understand why they were pushing me away.
It was during my second year at high school that the bullying started by two girls in my year – one was meant to be my friend. So not only did i get teased at school i was teased at home as well so there was no escape for me.
I was constantly drifting between different groups of girls in high school but I couldn’t join in with the conversations as I wasn’t included when they went out at the weekends even though they would always pass my house. On Monday all they would talk about was the ice skating they had enjoyed over the weekend.
It was only when i started hanging about with another group of girls in the schools drama room that I was finally able to talk about the bullying. On one occasion i broke down in tears and the teacher told me to talk but i couldn’t and when it was only the teacher and me i was finally able to talk about the bullying. After I had opened up he told me that I shouldn’t have bottled it up and that I should have told someone. The teacher then left me by myself while he went to get another teacher and I had to then tell the other teacher what was going on. The two girls who bullied me where suspended but one of them waited at the gates for me and of course as soon as the girls returned to school the bullying continued. On another occasion i refused to go to classes as i couldn’t face the bullies so the drama teacher took me to speak to the headteacher as there were no other senior staff members about. I spoke to the headteacher and she sent me to the library to do work instead. It felt like i was wasting my time whenever i spoke to the teachers because nothing changed and i felt like i was the one being punished. In the end the bullying only stopped because the girls left school.
In third or fourth year while in class one of the girls I was in primary school with had told me that she had hated me since primary school and no one wanted me to hang about with them. I felt so bad and hearing that from someone just made me feel even worse about myself.
In my final year of high school I think I had got to breaking point as I just wished I was dead. I needed help and so I thought that I would let someone know what was going so I wrote it all down and this person went straight to the teachers about it. On this particular day I knew something was up in the morning before leaving for school as my mum told me to wait but I just wanted to get to school as I really wanted out the house. It was while I was in school that one of the teachers came looking for me and told me that my letter had been found and they said that there was a psychologist available if I wanted to speak to them. I said I did and I talked to her but I only had a few meetings and that was the end of it. This was the only time that anyone actually took notice of me. For the remainder of school I continued to feel isolated and didn’t know where or who to turn to. I just feel so alone and isolated and that no one was willing to help me.
Whenever I wanted to talk I would ask to speak to the guidance teacher but when it was just the two of us i would clam up and wouldn’t be able to say anything and I knew that I wasting her time and my own. I knew I had to talk but I just didn’t know what to say. On one occasion when I clammed up the guidance teacher told me that she had been speaking to the girls I hung about with and they said that they did talk to me but I didn’t talk to them. I broke down and left the guidance room and sat on the floor in one of the girls toilets crying. Then when I went back round to the guidance teachers room she was on the phone to my mum. I was so upset that the teacher took me home but I didn’t stay very long at home and returned to school. I was still really upset when I had to go to classes.
You always get told that school is meant to be really good but for me it was the worst time of my life. I wanted to leave but I didn’t and it was a really miserable experience for me.
Whenever we would go on trip with the school I would always end up sitting by myself and in p.e. I was always picked last. In some classes if I was reading I would have my head on the desk so no one could see me crying or I would be the first out of the class so that I could go straight to the toilets then no one would be able to see me.
I felt that the staff should have done more to help me, but maybe they couldn’t or didn’t want to and I just felt they had let me down and it was so hard to go through it all without my family knowing what was happening. I suppose I didn’t want to put anymore stress on my mum as she had been ill with a slipped disc in her back (January), mini stroke (June) and then she broke her leg in three places (September). I also didn’t know how to tell them or what good it would do. I would be the only one at home with my parents because my brothers and sisters were out and I was so bored. I just wanted to have friends and be out. I was such a loner. I often wish I had been like my brothers and sisters and had went to college or university and had loads of friends but I went straight out to work after I had left school and I didn’t go anywhere to socialise with other people. I used to just spend a full day in front of the computer chatting to people. But this wasn’t a proper life and I wished I was dead during this time but instead of finding support in these chat rooms I had a full group of people being really mean and kept telling me that they would send me things so that I could just finish the job and end my life.
After high school to present
I suffered with depression a few years after leaving high school and decided that I really needed help so I went to my doctor and explained how I was always really upset and hated my life. This was the first time that I was referred to a counsellor and with her help I started to feel better so I made the decision to stop going. At this point I refused medication as I didn’t want to take anything.
When I was working in a supermarket a boy started teasing me so I had to speak to one of the supervisor because I didn’t want to be bullied in the workplace I didn’t want to go through the hurt and upset again so I had to speak out. It worked and the teasing stopped.
Due to all my brother and sisters moving out or out doing their own thing I was made to look after my little brother and sister. There were times that I refused and my mum made me feel bad and told me that my gran would come over to watch them. It was just so unfair and I don’t know why my mum couldn’t have asked my brothers and sisters to help out as well. Really when I should have been out making friends I looked after my youngest brother and sister. I just wanted to have friends and be able to go out as I hated staying at home. I couldn’t wait to move out so I would have space and privacy.
I went to college to study Childcare and the girls on the course were really nice and it was the first time I had really felt like I had fitted in. One girl on the course lived really close to me and we would hang about together. For her 18th birthday she had a party and she fell for a boy and they spent every minute together and so I was pushed out and felt as if I hardly saw her. When my family were on holiday this lad and girl came to stay at mine but they only wanted to spend time together and on one occasion I got really upset and I didn’t really know why. I was treated so badly and used. They just wanted somewhere to be together and they didn’t really care where it was. The thing was I really like being out of the house because my younger sister went through a stage of hating me being about and she used to hit and scratch me but of course I was the one who got into trouble because I was older and should have known better according to my mum.
In 2009 I started to suffer really badly with depression and I think this was down to the fact that I didn’t really feel like I was part of the team. I feel like I was invisible. I sit in a block of four and it felt as though the two girls who sat together behind the screen were whispering constantly and I automatically thought they were talking about me and I felt so alone. I also felt as though they kept work from me so they would always have something to do and then they would moan that they had too much to do so if they had too much to do why couldn’t they give something to me to do so I wouldn’t be sat doing nothing. Groups of people would always go for lunch together and I would feel invisible as I would never be asked even though those round about were, this made me feel like I wasn’t good enough to be in their company. When things got too much I would spend time in the toilets crying as I thought back to when I wasn’t included in things during my school days. As a result of me being off work a few times within the a couple of weeks management began asking if everything was okay so I had to own up and tell them that I had depression and I was finding thing extremely difficult as I felt invisible and I didn’t fit in or belong anywhere. The management staff were really good about it and made a point of moving where I sat so that I would be mixing better with people. But that just caused everyone to start moaning about the fact they were being moved about and this really upset me. I continued to slip further and further down until I returned to my doctors and told them that I couldn’t continue the way I was so I was signed off work for 6 weeks returned to work but it was too much for me and I ended up being off work for another four weeks. Work were really good as they arranged for me to have more counselling and they also let me build back up to full time. Counselling this time around was a lot better and I was able to open up a lot more about past issues I had been having. I was also determined that I would sort myself out but I stopped going to this counsellor to go see someone else and that didn’t really help me as this third counsellor only had four sessions with me and she wanted to concentrate on me having a plan of action should my mood slip down and I felt bad again.
I also felt under pressure by family to have a family and to get married which really ground me down as I wasn’t ready to have a family and although my partner was about nothing was really happening so I felt as though there was something wrong with me.
Whenever I get bored or fed up I tend to shut myself away and I use it to beat myself up. I feel like I go round in circles at times and I just don’t know how to break the cycle. Toward the end of last year/start of this year i began to feel really unhappy with myself and i used a sewing needle to scratch my arm. I was annoyed that i had got that bad and i didn’t know what else to do i just feel so alone and unsure of where i can get help and support. at times i feel so alone and worked up that i don’t think i can carry on but i don’t want to disappoint anyone.
From February 2011 to June 2012 I had even more counselling and the counsellor helped in that I could talk about things that I had been through but the she also wanted me to go out and about and try new things but I found that aspect of things really difficult as I didn’t know where I was meant to go and what I was supposed to do. I was also fearful that other people wouldn’t accept me because I am too quiet and I wouldn’t know how to include myself. I have no idea how to start a conversation or how I could join in with things. I just feel like I am on the outside of everything.
On Thursday 10th March 2011 my dad suffered a stroke while in Newcastle. My mum went to be with my dad so i took responsibility for my youngest brother and sister. I suppose looking after them really helped as i had a new focus and i wanted to be strong for them. So i found it extremely stressful trying to sort myself out, look after my brother and sister, visit my dad when he eventually got transferred to hospital closer to home, my own depression being so bad and then my partner being diagnosed. It is hard trying to help my partner as he doesn’t really know how he feels or chat about things. So i feel like I’m on the outside and like I’m not really getting anywhere. I am hoping that my partner will eventually go back to work as i don’t want him to get into a situation where he wont get paid for being off. My mum hasn’t been in the best of health so I feel unable to talk to her about how I am doing as I don’t want to cause anymore stress as I don’t want her to become ill again. My mum is also carer for my autistic brother.
There are times when my depression really does get on top of me and I get so frustrated as I never know where I should turn and who I should talk to.
I feel like I am damaged due to everything that has happened. Whenever I have tried to be friends with people I just end up being on my own because I am so stuck in talking about things I have went through and other people just don’t know how to help me. At times I feel so lost and caught up in my thoughts that I am missing out on life and I don’t want to suffer like this anymore. I want to be liked and I want to enjoy my life. I don’t want to be a nobody.
I have had depression for a few years now and at the moment I am in a really dark place as I have been feeling more and more alone and isolated which has lead to thoughts of suicide. I just feel like I am putting on an act as people don’t understand or want to listen to me. I don’t have anyone that I can talk to about how I am feeling or what is going on for me. I just want to break down in tears as I feel that no one cares. I also feel that when I do tell people things they make me feel as though I shouldn’t be feeling this way and I should be thinking about my family and my partner. I know that I shouldn’t think or feel the way I do but I do think in a negative way and I know that this is selfish, self centred and wrong.
I have had counselling earlier this year but these sessions stopped because the counsellor felt that I wasn’t getting anything out of the sessions and that I was going over the same issues. I just don’t have the determination or drive to get me out and about to try new things and meet new people. I just don’t feel comfortable out by myself and I am uncomfortable in groups of people as I don’t really know how to include myself. I just feel as though I am on the outside looking in and this plays a big part in my life as I don’t feel able to join in when my workplace has nights out.
I have tried various medications (citalopram, venlafaxine, sertraline and mirtazapine) and they tend to work for a while and then I slip back and end up in a black hole and feeling really low so I have now been prescribed duloxetine which my doctor has decided to increase recently. I just don’t feel like myself and I am finding every day a real battle to get to work and carry out my role to the best of my ability but this is getting harder and harder to do. I manage to get to work but finding it difficult to focus on the tasks which I need to do and I would rather be at home. I also don’t know who I am meant to turn to as I don’t feel able to talk to my family about how I am feeling and I don’t think that people at work would really understand. So really I don’t have anyone who I can really talk to which I feel I really need at the moment. I did phone my doctors surgery on Monday night but as I was travelling home I missed their call and I have been unable to phone them yet.
Work know of my depression but I am unsure as to how they can assist me anymore than they have already done. I just don’t feel like there is anyone that is really approachable and I am unsure of how to talk about what is going on for me. work is getting harder and harder to concentrate on and I feel like I am isolating myself from colleagues and if there are any nights out I find that I want to go but then at the last minute I decide I don’t want to go as I don’t know how to include myself and I don’t want to be on the outside looking in at things. As soon as I get to work I just want to go home as I don’t feel that I can properly do what I need to do. I am unhappy with my current job as it doesn’t challenge me anymore and although I have been looking for a new job I just cant seem to find anything.
Over the last few years I have seen a psychiatrist a few times and when I was there on 6 September the psychiatrist phoned the psychology department to chase up the appointment but I still haven’t heard anything. I have also seen the local community mental health team but they were unsure if they wanted to help me as I was already seeing the psychiatrist, having counselling , CMHT decided that I should wait for the psychologist appointment and told me they didn’t want to work with me as they didn’t really wish to introduce me to anyone else.
On Tuesday night (6th) once I had got home from work I was extremely upset and I wanted to talk to someone so I decided to call the work support line and Breathing Space and I was able to talk to someone but I was getting myself more and more upset and I ended up cutting the person off. So I now feel really bad as I feel I wasted their time and I am annoyed with myself for not talking more to them as I really needed to talk. I am now really unsure of what I should do.
On Friday (9th) I decided to see my doctor and she phoned to see when my next psychiatrist appointment will be and it is the 14th December. The doctor also contacted psychology department but had to leave a message as she couldn’t get through to anyone. Then the doctor phone the community mental health team to see if there was anyone available to talk to me so I ended up there on Friday. After carrying out an assessment the person I seen decided that I didn’t need work over the weekend as I didn’t have any plans to end my life. The person I seen also provided me with her phone number and numbers for the Samaritans and Breathing space. she also provided me with a relaxation cd and a booklet on dealing with stress. The person I seen at CMHT had also contacted the psychology department and they told her that I had been discharged from them as I hadn’t attended their appointment which really annoyed me as I always attend appointments and if I cant go then I would have rearranged it.
I have had to make another call to my doctor as I am still feeling really bad. I just don’t feel I am coping and I really need some other assistance to help me stop all the negative thoughts and feelings. The doctor I spoke to on 19th is going to send a letter to get someone to speak to me and work with me so I need to wait and see what happens there.
Every day I need to battle with my thoughts and feelings and the majority of the time I just want to hide away from the world but if I am not at work then I am not sure if I will get paid or not so I have to fight with myself to get up and out the door and even when I get out I just want to go home. Some days I feel so bad that I don’t talk to anyone and it makes for such a long and boring day. I just close myself down and it is so isolating for me.
At the moment there are more bad days than there are good. I just wish everything would disappear and I was ‘normal’. I hate feeling so bad that I just want to escape from it all. I constantly want to cry as I hate my life and I am hurting so badly as I am thinking negatively all the time. I am totally shutting myself off from people as I don’t really communicate with people in at work. Just wish I could get over whatever it is that holds me back.
any advice would be greatly appreciated