Dear Struggling Teens,
Over 20% of young people suffer from depression aged 15 – 24.
It is thought that a teenager takes their own life every 100 minutes.
Whilst we live our lives in a world designed to test us, our age is a great misfortune. Disregarding the hormones that seem to be twisting and turning within us all, some of us are forced to live with unwanted company.
Inside the struggling, a dark feeling sleeps. Inside our heads, storm after storm continues to brew whilst multiple rocks sit in our stomachs, succeeding at dragging us down. We lie at the bottom of a pit and there does not seem to be a ladder. So we climb. We search for the surface, but when it feels close the rocks in our stomachs multiply and again drag us down. Something snaps inside of us, and all that had come together commences to fall apart.
I am certain that despair is easier than hope, but I don’t remember making that decision for myself. The cloud that hovers above me turns a darker shade of grey when I realise, this is out of my control.
At our unfortunate age, we struggle to be understood. All at once, we are expected to understand the big bad world, after spending years sheltered from it. The chemicals that doctors can stick under a microscope change us and help us grow. I am not convinced, though, that it is these hormones that seem to be eating at my heart.
This dark cloud is taking from me. And yes, that may seem dramatic, but whether I use metaphors or facts and figures, my pain remains. The struggle continues.
This dark cloud is taking from me.
Some days, it takes away the part of me that can cry. Other days, it takes away the part that enables me to stop crying. But each day, it becomes a bigger part of me. I can feel it becoming my core, from my mind to my bones; my everything.
This dark cloud is a sneaky shrew. Although I have realised that it is out of my control, and although I know that I do not equate to the rocks inside of my stomach, I still end up hating myself for my inability to cry (or, of course, my inability to stop crying; it depends on the day).
Still, there are days when the dark feeling sleeps silently. I live for those days.
I suffer from depression, and am currently being treated for it.
I am not ashamed.
I have surrounded myself with the support I need, despite the fact that I want nothing more than to be alone at times. I have learnt to forgive myself for this temporary state, because it is temporary. Everything is survivable except the last thing, and I refuse to let this dark cloud be the end of me. Nothing lasts forever, depression included.
To those who need it, I will hope for you when despair seems easier. Please do the same for me.
More teenagers than ever are effected by the dark, hovering cloud.
Be my umbrella, and I will be yours.


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