Written by a 15 year old…
People need to realize how important mental health is.
My name is Brooklyn and I am 15 years old. I suffer from severe anxiety and depression. I first started struggling with anxiety around the fifth grade, at least that’s when it got bad I’ve always been an anxious kid. I thought of the outcome in anything and everything that I did. I stressed about my grades and cried whenever I got a bad one.
By seventh grade my anxiety was horrible I hated to talk to anybody especially people who I didn’t know. By this point I started to realize that I had depression. I didn’t talk to my family often, I was failing my classes and just stayed in my room. It wasn’t that I didn’t have motivation to do things I was just worried that I would fail. I wanted to make new friends, and meet new people but I didn’t wanna go through them having to learn about me and I was worried they would reject me. I didn’t tell my parents about this until halfway through eighth grade. The anxiety and depression would manifest itself into headaches and vomiting. Whenever I had a test or a big project, or I was doing bad in a class, I would end up throwing up all day and I would have a gigantic headache. One day I had a presentation in science class, my mom said I had to go in. I threw up, came back to the kitchen, and broke down crying. I tried to tell my mom what I was feeling but it was hard. That day my mom took the day off work and she sat with me as I explained what was going on. She told my dad that night and we set up an appointment with my doctor.
About a month later the anxiety and depression had gotten worse. I didn’t talk to my friends often only at school. And I never texted them back. It was then that we decided that it was time for me to start online school. At first it didn’t help at all I was so deep into a depressive episode that I couldn’t get out of. My walls are painted gray and I didn’t hang anything on them. They were just plain and my room was basically all empty. It was at this time that I started seeing a therapist. It didn’t help as much as I hoped it would and it took me a long time to start to get better. Eventually I did and by freshman year my grades are going up.
This summer after freshman year before my sophomore was hard because Covid 19 caused me a lot of stress. Seeing as my best friend has an auto immune disorder and my sister has cystic fibrosis I was incredibly nervous that anyone I knew would get sick. So my family and my best friends family quarantine together. This meant that that whole summer I spent at least two days a week with my best friend. We also FaceTime a lot and that honestly helped my mental health greatly. Now I am in my second half of sophomore year and my grades are up to A’s and B’s. I’m not gonna lie and say that I don’t struggle. Usually I get anxious five or six times a day and sometimes when I’m feeling good all day I’ll still cry at night. Or there are just those days where you feel horrible you either feel overwhelmed with emotions or numb. I make sure to tell my therapist for my parents about those days and they help.
My parents make sure to remind me that they love me every day, and spend as much time with me as they can. You just need to remember that just because someone is young that doesn’t mean they aren’t struggling with a mental illness.
This is a picture of me when I first started having trouble with anxiety
This is a picture of me when I first started struggling with depression
This is a picture of me in the worst part of my depression
This is a picture of me now
If you look at these pictures you more than likely would assume I was a happy kid, that I wasn’t struggling with things things that you would never see. I grew up as the happy and smiley child in my family. I had curly blond hair and was always laughing. I believe this is why I felt even though my parents never said I had to, that I needed to continue to be the carefree kid in my family. So put on a smile and I fake laughed and pretended everything was OK.
I should’ve told my parents sooner because after they knew and started helping out my life came back and I smiled some more. Please make sure you talk to your kids and check up on them. They could not want to place a burden on you especially if they know that you have to deal with things. This could cause them to go really downhill with their mental health. Don’t pressure them to talk to you but make sure that they know you’re there for them.