I am proud of this 14 year old’s bravery to speak of her struggles.  This girl is very near to my heart.  If there is ever a time young people need us its now.  More than ever we have to evaluate the messages that are constantly being sent to them.  We need to fight for them, believe in them and pour life into them.

I am fourteen years old.
This is the first time I’ve ever been fully truthful about my life, and my struggles. I can tell you, it’s terrifying to admit some things that I’ve never told anyone else. These are my inner demons I’ve had to face, the secrets I’ve kept hidden and the regrets I have.

Ever since I was 11, I started to feel unhappy with myself. For years, every morning, I’ve looked in the mirror and hated what I saw. I would think to myself, “why can’t I be pretty like the girls on tv? Why can’t I be skinny like them, this isn’t fair.” It didn’t help when the boys in my class would call me fat. I would stay up all night, their words echoing in my mind. So I started to take things into my own hands. I started to starve myself, to steal my moms diet foods so I didn’t have to eat. I was 11 when I started this; an 11 year old who couldn’t stand looking in the mirror at herself. I was a sleep deprived, hungry and very sad little grade six girl.

Since then, through jr.high, I’ve been through hell. For the past three years I’ve been bullied, I’ve dealt with grief and have been depressed. I’ve struggled with cutting, bulimia and suicidal thoughts. I’ve struggled with my confidence, and as a result I jumped from guy to guy in the past few years. When things got overwhelming for me, I would stop eating. I’d get so anxious, that I would throw up. At night I’d think maybe things would be better if I just disappeared, then maybe I would finally feel better. But the worst hadn’t hit me yet.

I started my downhill spiral in October of 2012. I remember logging onto Facebook and reading through my newsfeed. There I found out my friend and neighbour had passed away. I remember feeling absolutely hollow and helpless. The news hit me like a semi truck, it felt like I had just ran into a brick wall. I couldn’t breathe, it hurt to much to do so. For the rest of the night I cried. I cried so hard to lose someone, this was the first person I had ever really lost. My heart was broken, I didn’t want to let her go. That week at school was the hardest for me, I would break down crying in the middle of class and have to leave to cry. My best friends would get up and follow after me and would hug me until we went back to class. Two days after I found out my friend passed on, someone very close broke a promise to me and lied to me for weeks about it. The same day, my teachers had started a rumour about me. That night I had enough. I picked up a knife, and on my left arm I started cutting. It felt so good at the time to let it out, but after I felt terrible. I felt so invisible to everyone, why was nobody understanding my hurt? That week, after I went to my friends funeral, I went to my bathroom and looked at a bottle of pills. There was a little voice inside my head saying, “take them. Take them, no-one will miss you.” The only thing that held me back at that moment was the text message my current boyfriend of 6 months sent me saying “I love you!”.

One day, I admitted to my boyfriend that I cut. He got very serious and quiet and I saw how much it hurt him. It made him sick. There I realized how much it hurt him, and I hated myself for doing that to him. That was for sure the last time I have and will ever cut. He made me swear not to do it again, and I promised myself not to do that again either.
On New Years Eve, I had received a text message saying my good friend had committed suicide. I had been closer to her than my other friend that I lost in November, and my world was crushed again. I went home after hearing this message and cried so hard, i felt numb after. I really lost all hope at that point, and my heart ached from missing these two girls. I wanted them back, I wanted to be able to tell them how much I loved them.

From October to December I would pick up the bottles of pills and have the hugest urge to swallow all of them. From October until Halfway through January of 2013, I wouldn’t eat because I never had an appetite, and I lost a lot of weight. My one true passion (dance) was an exhausting chore, I never had any motivation for it. I would wake up every morning and sit in bed thinking, “I don’t want to be awake. I don’t want to deal with today.” I just wanted the pain to go away. Every night I would pray to God asking him what I did to deserve all this, and why was all this happening to me? People started asking me why I was acting so depressed all the time, so I put on a smile to fool them into thinking I was ok. They would ask me if I could just be happy, and it would hurt me so much. I felt so alone, nobody understood my pain. My days were filled with hurt an exhaustion, for I didn’t sleep anymore because they were all nightmares. I had tried drinking to get rid of the pain, but it only hurt my friends who were around me when I did. Crying became my daily routine. I would snap at people, at any moment if they asked me anything. The thought “Is all this really worth it? I just want the pain to go away, I just want to be happy again. I wish I was gone, death is peaceful…” Echoed through my head constantly. I had no hope left for life, my heart was literally broken. I felt hollow all the time. I wasn’t sad anymore, I was just numb. I actually hated life with all my being.

Since then, I’ve gotten help. I’ve talked to a counsellor and I’ve learned healthy outlets to deal with grief. The important people in my life have been there for me. I have realized that self harming, killing myself or throwing up and starving myself is not only destructive to me but everyone around me. It’s not going to solve any problems, only create more. I still do have urges to hurt myself and fall back into old habits, but I ignore them. I regret the things I’ve done, and I’m still trying to forgive myself for doing that to me. Sometimes people forget teenagers have problems, but truth be told we have more. We have less experience, we’re not as mature as adults and we will try anything first hand to feel good. I used to cut, throw up, starve myself, drink and think of suicide. I’m only 14.