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  • Annie

    Hi Dermot, I just came across your thread out of chance (i didn’t even know tiny buddha had forums until a minute ago) and I felt compelled to create an account to offer my two cents.

    I know people always say things like “I’ve been through it” or “I know how you feel” and it feels like it’s not true or that they think they understand. I don’t know you or the full spectrum of your struggle, but what you said really spoke to me because I’ve dealt with similar issues and I was at a really low and dark place for many, many years. After 7th grade I started a new school and this is where the worst of it began. I was in a foreign country, I felt completely isolated, I missed being surrounded by my language and at school I was heavily bullied and tormented by all the men in my class every single day. It was really unsafe where I was living so I was never allowed to go outside or hang out with everyone. I would literally be driven to school and then back to the house when it was over. I was terrified of how dangerous it was and I could not even go out for a walk around the block. I was completely focused on my studies as it was the only thing that I had at that time. I felt so helpless, low and useless. I would spend all morning and afternoon at school being told I was worthless, that no one cared about me, etc they would also get somewhat physical at times and throw things at me so I was also constantly scared for my safety inside of school as well. I wasn’t going to parties or doing all of the stereotypical things we all assume teens are/should be doing. I would cry myself to sleep more times than I care to remember and there were periods of months at a time when I would go completely numb and just sit in class or at home completely out of it desperately hoping for the feeling to end.

    I can honestly say that I used to believe in my heart it would never end and I’d be isolated, misunderstood and alone forever. That i’d be stuck in the same headspace and desperate feeling forever. Let’s not even talk about self love because there was 0 confidence after 6 years of constant, daily verbal abuse. This all drew me to isolate myself even more. I was always quiet around strangers and I would avoid eye contact with everyone. I would rush in and out of places so I could get back to what felt like a safer place. I was so deep in my comfort zone that it’s boundaries were a small dot in the distance. It also cause my problems with overthinking to reach new heights.

    It makes me so sad to read what you are going through because I’ve felt those things too. I wish I had the solution that would fix it all instantly. I also wish I could put into words my journey and transition from that horrible place to the completely different person I am today. I don’t recognize myself at all, and that is a great thing! What i want you to take away from this is that I want you to know and to truly believe that there is hope and that you can get through this. I am almost 22 and I haven’t done any of the things you have listed but those experiences are not a measure of our worth and they don’t determine how happy we would be had we already done them. There isn’t just one thing to be done that can get us through these struggles, it’s a constant journey of daily ups and downs and focusing our energy on things we enjoy and fulfill us. I have discovered some activities I love and make me feel like myself like exercising, meditation, drawing and reading. Try to enrich yourself from within. And whatever you do, please don’t be hard on yourself for not being who you think you should be or pressure yourself for not making progress “fast enough”. You are doing the best you can, so be kind to yourself. I know it may sound silly but it’s the most important thing we can do four ourselves. Find kindness and compassion towards yourself. You are in this painful and difficult journey, yet you are carrying the heaviest of loads daily. It’s courageous to get up every day when we know the exact pain and struggle we have ahead of us. Even if you don’t see it now, i am proud of you for it and you should be too.

    I know this reply probably isn’t what you were looking for, so I’m sorry if you don’t find it useful – I just hope it can help you in some way. Know that you are not alone with this pain.
    Sending you lots of warmth.

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