Stories on Depression: My Journey through Depression, Self-harm & Suicide

Editor’s note: If you experience suicidal thoughts, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact Suicide Stop at 0800 200 600 or Call your closest friend, family member or search for Rehab centers in Uganda and get yourself admitted.

I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t feeling sad. I hope I haven’t always been, but ever since I was little I used to think there was always something telling me I was worthless and ugly; I thought my brain was broken.

When I grew up my brother was going through a hard time and he took it out on me by hitting me very hard. He would call me fat, ugly, worthless, terrible; it shaped how I still think of myself to this day. Since he was seven years older than me and I was very young it affected me badly.

My mother and father would ignore me when I was angry or upset. I became older and it seemed like the world was crashing down on me. I hated my life so badly but I also hated that I was ungrateful; I knew others were in worst positions than me so I shoved my feelings down. Occasionally I would just lie on my floor, barely able to breathe, so angry and miserable that I would cry for long periods of time, staring in the mirror and hating myself.

I remember when I started to self-harm; the way it stung right before it bled made me feel better. It was like I was releasing pain from my body. When my mother found out about it she hit me and screamed. I started to hurt myself around my ribs and on my side to hide the marks, I couldn’t stop.

During this time, I made a lot of friends who made me behave badly. I started to become very sexual, thinking that if boys wanted me it meant I was beautiful. I was too young to think like this, but my best friend was doing it, so I decided to. I did things I regret so much that I still stay up thinking about them. I worry that more people will find out, and I actually fear that I will be in a lot of trouble, not just with my family.

Somehow I felt like someone was taking over my body and making me hate myself and helping me make bad decisions. I started therapy and I hated it, at first. I felt too vulnerable like I wasn’t strong and I was so mentally unstable that I deserved to be in an institution. I realize I was wrong now, I was very strong. I cried a lot and got very angry at myself when I did, I learned later that this was because my parents have shamed me for crying growing up. My therapist seemed threatening to me and I never fully got comfortable.  The lowest point was when I wrote suicide notes.

I thought that I was meant to be the girl who killed herself, I didn’t think I had a future.

I started to take medicine for my depression and it helped. Fighting with my parents became worse, and I was still making horrible decisions with boys at such a young age. My mother made me feel worthless, my father ignored when she would strike me.

Eventually, the sadness ebbed away, my irritability started to lessen, I ignored my bad temptations. I was still depressed but I could handle it. After many different medicines and large upward and downward spikes in my mental health, I became stable. I got closer with friends, I stayed away from relationships until I loved myself, I stopped wanting to hurt.

My story is not very well written because I am still ashamed and will not write out the details. I want the readers to know that I am still struggling, that every day is a battle, but I learned how to cope. This is not exactly a happy ending since I am lonely and still being bullied and harassed for my old behavior. Life doesn’t give you happy endings but you can make the best of it.  Having a mental illness is not a bad thing, and if you have one you’re allowed to feel and exist, you are not a burden.

Don’t stay in that place of self-hate, it’s going to take time to change what you think about yourself but it’s possible.

Story by Anonymous

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