A New Leaf

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I sat and cried in the corner, looking down at my arm to see the cut I had made.

It was spring of 2006 and the dawn of my depression. I started to really struggle in school; I was self-harming and seriously considering committing suicide. I had really low self esteem and was struggling to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

My school found out after a fellow pupil reported to a teacher having seen me harm myself. The school, as part of procedure, informed my mum of the difficulties I was having. My mum and the school decided to put me in touch with the CAMHS (Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services) unit in Cardiff.

I started seeing a psychiatrist who helped me to start to talk about my problems. He referred me to a counsellor who spoke to me on a personal level; she was brilliant and gave me methods to deal with the situations I was in.

She did role-play with me which taught me to deal with the immature people in my life who were constantly putting me down. Together we looked at the triggers that led to a ‘dip’ of depression. The doctors put me on anti-depressants which brought my moods to a healthy level. Each session I spent with my counsellor we set targets to complete before our next session.

In November 2008 I decided it was time for a fresh start. I spoke to my mum about a change of school and we decided to have a look around the local school which was closer to home and would mean I could make friends who lived near to me. In December I moved schools and was hoping for a new leaf, however rumours of the ‘old me’ got around and people avoided me.

Sadly, my counsellor moved on to another job but before she left she put me in contact with the school counsellor. After a while at my new school people got to see the ‘new me’ and forgot about the rumours and I made a lovely group of friends.

I am now in Sixth Form College studying Health and Social Care and am hoping to be a youth worker in the future, and work with young people who have the same or similar problems that I had. I hope to give something back to the profession that changed my life.

Originally written by Charlotte for CLIConline and was published 8/11/2010

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For more information on the topics dealt with in this article, click on the underlined words. You can also visit our Information section, which is there to provide young people with unbiased information to help them when they have problems, or just want answers to their questions.

If you struggle with self harm, you can contact The Amber Project for support.

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