Surviving Depression and Anxiety: How It Affected Me



I struggled with depression for two years straight and am still struggling to properly heal.

Depression for me felt like a roller coaster. Highs, lows, twists, and turns. My depression felt like I was numb to emotion. I couldn’t feel a single thing. It felt like I was sinking deeper into a black hole each and every day.

My depression started becoming severe in the winter of 2017, my eighth grade year. It felt like everything was going wrong. My father was abusive, both mentally and physically, and people were coming and going. I even went from an honor roll student to a girl who was not going to be promoted to her freshman year.

As my grades started dropping, my anxiety began to worsen. My A’s went to F’s in a matter of days. Every single day I was afraid to go home to my father, especially as my grades dropped. I thought so many times about running away.

I didn’t feel like I mattered in the world; I felt I had no purpose to live. As things got worse with my abusive father, I started self-harming as well as self-medicating to “numb the pain.” As my father worked night shifts and my brother was always working, I was always alone, with nobody to talk to about what I was doing to myself. I began stealing his liquor and began getting drunk to numb the pain every single night, going to school with a massive hangover, and then doing it all over again.

Two months later, nothing had changed. If anything, I was worse. I could barely walk from the cuts going down my thigh. I was still self-medicating, and my grades were still F’s. I felt so alone.

One day I went home and I told myself I couldn’t take it any longer. I went into the pill cabinet and grabbed some random prescription pills. I went into the bathroom and tried to take all of the pills in the bottle. I took so many at the same time that, thankfully, I threw them all up. But at the time I wasn’t thankful though. I cried and screamed, asking why I couldn’t just go.

When my third-quarter grades came out, I knew if I went home things would’ve gotten really bad between my father and me. I told him I was leaving for a couple of days. He then yelled at me, telling me to never come back. He said I wasn’t allowed back into the house.

I went to live with my mother. That summer I was still depressed, and still self-harming. I started “partying” — drinking and smoking every single day for almost the whole summer. I had lost interest in everything I loved. Nothing was important to me anymore.

When I started my freshman year, of course I went in with a negative mindset. Once again, right off the bat, my grades dropped. I was severely depressed.

One day, I had a severe breakdown. I explained to my mom that I couldn’t do it anymore, that I wanted to die. I begged her to take me to the hospital because if she didn’t, I would end up hurting myself again.

She took me to the hospital that day and they put me in the mental health holding area. They had me change into blue scrubs and did a two-hour evaluation on me. The crisis therapist decided to send me to Mesilla Valley Hospital in Las Cruces for treatment.

I waited at St. Vincent’s for two days until they got me a bed at Mesilla Valley. An ambulance came to pick me up and took me to Las Cruces. By the time I got there, it was late. They did another two-hour evaluation on me, searched my things, and sent me off to my room.

The next day I met the other kids around my age who were there for similar problems. I spent a week in treatment — in groups, with therapists, with psychiatrists, getting used to the medications they gave me, and doing activities that showed me how to cope with what I was going through.

After a week they let me go home. It took some time to adjust to being back home. After a while I started feeling happier, more energetic, and feeling like myself again. But I still had a rough time trying to find the right medications that made me feel like myself.

I moved schools, started fixing my grades, and started taking care of myself. I studied harder than ever, I slept less during the day, I started having a positive mindset, and as soon as I woke up in the morning, I told myself it was going to be a good day.

It’s a year later now. I’m off my medications, focusing on school, spending time with family, working, and focusing on self love. I have finally learned how to love myself again. I haven’t harmed myself for a year now or felt suicidal for a long time.

No matter how tough things get it’s always okay to ask for help. Nobody is able to do it alone, and things will get better.