An Anonymous Personal Struggle with Mental Health

Below is an anonymous writer’s journey with anxiety, depression, and how they manage their mental health today:


Mental health is certainly a buzz word now, but it wasn’t always. Today, as a society, we are very open to talking about struggles with mental health. Specifically, I suffer from severe anxiety and depression.

When I was growing up, anxiety and depression were not something that people discussed or even thought that a child would be struggling with something like this. However, looking back, I have had anxiety and depression my whole life.


When I was under ten years old the thought of walking into a restaurant and talking to someone to order my food, going new places, being rejected, and so much more made me sick to my stomach. Everyone assumed that I just had a weak stomach, and it was aggravating for anyone that was with me. I went to doctors to try to figure out why I was always nauseous and getting sick. Hindsight, I had anxiety, and no one knew.


By the time I was about 13 or 14 depression entered the picture. I was being bullied at school, lost friends and a grandparent all at the same time, and still struggled with what no one had ever actually called anxiety. To a teenager, being rejected by peers and being called names is quite literally the “end of the world.” The first time I ever truly felt that I didn’t want to be alive anymore was in seventh grade when my best friend at the time told lies about me and turned everyone against me. She relentlessly harassed and belittled me. My family was scared and honestly, so was I. I wasn’t allowed to lock my bedroom or bathroom door. I had never felt that I wanted to give up before that. Looking back as an adult, a child thinking about that is horrifying to me. I was practically a baby, and I was dealing with these grown-up emotions that I had no outlet for. As my middle school and high school years went on, I continued to struggle with still, what no one ever called anxiety or depression. However, I vividly remember being terrified that I felt these things and held them so deep down that no one would ever know. But my family of course knew.


When I was 18, I had my first panic attack in Disney World. The actual happiest place on earth. I was on my senior trip after graduating with my 4 closest friends, my mom, and grandma. I should have been having the time of my life, but I was a mess. I didn’t want to do anything while we were there because I was so scared that something awful would happen. I didn’t enjoy my time and I ruined everyone else’s time on what was an incredible trip. About halfway through our trip we are going to go to Magic Kingdom and watch the night parade and fireworks show. Everyone was excited and we got a great spot right on Main Street. But then, I started to feel my heart race so fast I was sure it would beat right out of my chest, I was hyperventilating and hysterically crying. Flat out, I truly felt like I was going to die in that moment. That was my first panic attack and when I finally decided I needed help.


Therapy became a huge part of my life after that. As many people with mental health struggles know, finding a therapist is not a one and done kind of deal. I went through three therapists that blamed my mom, blamed my family, and said, “Hmm, that’s strange,” at everything I said. Eventually I found my person and she completely, totally, whole-heartedly, and amazingly saved my life. Because anxiety and depression are extremely common now, knowing others that struggle, love someone that struggles, or are recovering makes me feel more normal and less alone. Medication and therapy are not something to be ashamed of because they saved my life and countless others lives. I of course deal with the everyday battle of anxiety and depression, but as my dad always says when I slip up and feel consumed by my anxiety and depression, forget my strategies, or let it take over, its progress, not perfection.


Remember to be kind to yourself, you deserve to prioritize your mental health. Negative thoughts and feelings are only temporary, with a little guidance and support, you can get back to feeling like you! If you need help identifying the signs and symptoms of someone dealing with mental illness, view our blog regarding the signs and symptoms.

If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available 24/7

Bucks County Mental Health Crisis Line: 800-499-7455

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call or text 988 or chat

National de Prevencion del Suicidio: 888-628-9454

The Trevor Lifeline: 866-488-7386

The Trans Lifeline: 877-565-8860

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