May 20, 2011
By Anonymous

I was sixteen when I first started breaking. I had always been a strong girl, never showing a hint of loneliness or sorrow. Other people were hurting around me, and they were more important. I was the one people came to for comfort and security. I was fine with it until I started to realize it was taking a dangerous toll on my emotions. The years of abuse from peers, from loved ones, from family and friends; it was all starting to catch up to me. My indestructible armor was quickly starting to crack.

At first it was so subtle I didn't notice it was happening. As most people with depression do, I denied anything was wrong. Slowly, I started to realize I was spending less time with my friends, making excuses so I didn't have to leave the house. I was starting to eat and sleep a lot less. I knew something was really wrong when I stopped caring about acting. I kept making excuses for myself, telling my own mind that what I was feeling was normal for an angst-filled teenager. It wasn’t until I mindlessly said to one of my friends, “I’m pretty sure if I went out into the woods and walked for miles, walked until I dropped down dead, nobody would even bother coming to look for me.” That it was pretty obvious I needed some help.

At first I was absolutely against going to a therapist. “That’s for crazy people! I’m not crazy!” I angrily protested. I had honestly never knew that it’s actually pretty normal to see a therapist, and that I shouldn’t feel like I was crazy. "Who knows," I thought to myself, "maybe this will help me."
I was incredibly nervous the first time I went into that office. I quickly snuck through the back, terrified by the thought of someone I know seeing me going into a door labeled “Mental Health Department”. It only took around 10 minutes of me being in the room to relax. The woman wasn’t intimidating at all; she was kind and thoughtful. I wasn’t scared anymore.
All of my previous illusions of how a therapist should act were quickly disproven. As much as she listened, she also gave me sound advice. She told me it was very obvious why I was feeling the way I was; there were reasons I didn’t even realize until she brought them to my attention, plain as day.

It was as if my mind was a large and spacious mansion where all the hallways and main rooms were clean and organized and lovely, but behind the closed doors there were huge messes, some of which I wasn't even aware existed. I started feeling better and better each time I left that office.

I only spent a few months in therapy, but I am eternally grateful that I made that decision. It helped me sort out so many issues that I don’t think I ever would have been able to notice or solve on my own. I recommend therapy not only for those who need psychological help, but for anyone that is confused, stressed, or lonely. It was proven to me that therapy isn’t simply for the “weak” or “crazy”. Today, I am a happy and busy high school senior. In the fall, I will be moving to New York City to go to college as a theater major in an attempt to pursue my dream of Broadway. Therapy helped me get out of my dangerous mind set and lead me towards my bright future. It has made me the confident and strong young adult I have become today.

The author's comments:
This article started out as simply a piece of creative nonfiction that I had to write for an online class I was taking. After my English teacher read it, she suggested I submit it to a website to try to get it published. I know Teen Ink is full of kids my age and younger, and the message in this story is one I think everyone should know early on growing up.

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.

Parkland Book