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May 17

My experience with mental health has been quite rich. I’ve experienced some low points in my life and they’ve taught me how to stay positive, be resilient, look out for myself and recognize when I need help from others. 

When I was only 12 years old I experienced a devastating loss. It was the first time I had ever had to deal with something so serious and traumatic before. Since I was so young I wasn’t able to recognize and identify my emotions, grief was a foreign concept to me. I had never learned how to reach out and ask for help so I felt alone. A lot of the time I blamed the wrong people for the way I was feeling and took my frustrations out in all the wrong places. Although I was eventually able to work through that tough time I still suffer from some emotions I never dealt with properly. 

Since then I’ve become much more educated. I’m now able to recognize when I’m feeling overly upset and understand why. I can take the necessary steps to prevent myself from experiencing too many bad days or from falling into a state of melancholy. 

Staying educated on mental illness and health has been the crucial point to all this. Having the capacity to look inward when I’m feeling upset has not only helped me stay happier but also helped me become a much more dependable and kind person. Learning about stages of grief and signs of depression is so important and will help you realize that you’re not alone. So many people have been in these same dark places and difficult situations. I promise that in reaching out you will find that you’re not alone and that the support you need is right there waiting for you.

Z.B., age 14

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Robin Fay’s personal website

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