"i was different to other girls my age"
"I was 12 when my depression was first acknowledged. I was always aware that I was different to other girls my age.
"I was always angry and trying to make sense of life. Sometimes it felt like all these thoughts would literally become too much for me to carry and that I could not take the weight any longer.
"The nurse at school was the first person to notice I was a bit different and told my mum, which made me feel even more scared. She suggested psychotherapy but mum didn't think I needed it and I didn't want it either.
"One thing the nurse did say that stuck with me though was 'depression is like a broken arm; if you break it, you go to a doctor to fix it and then sooner or later it starts working again.'
"Depression left me exhausted even with the simplest of things, getting up in the morning seemed pointless and a painful hassle. My biggest mistake was not seeking help sooner. I just felt that nothing could ever change.
"It went on for a few years but then a truly amazing teacher realised just how bad a state I was in and urged me to get help. I went to my doctor and one of the things that was suggested was anti-depressants.
"I was really scared about taking them but with the other therapies I was doing I found they gave me breathing space and helped to make the depressed voice inside me quieter.
"I now understand that it is up to me to become all the things I used to imagine I would find in a saviour. I am my own saviour and I won't give up on myself. I used to describe my depression as constant rain in my head and now the sun has come back. It's not that it won't rain again, it's just that next time I know how to protect myself."
This story originally appeared on YoungMinds, a charity committed to improving the mental health of young people.
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