49 thoughts on “Anxiety and Depression

  1. Lexi Angus

    Lexi Angus
    July 31, 2016

    This We Believe
    I believe with all of my being that no child should grow up without a father. You will fall apart at the seems with no knowledge of sewing. I grew up and had a normal life, I made friends, got good grades and learned to live without my dad. We would call each other at night and talk about our days, share jokes or just sit in silence, knowing the other was there if we needed to talk.
    At fourteen years old, I was diagnosed with major anxiety. My illness is a mental impairment, but I think it also got worse not being near my dad. I believe that something bad will happen to my father every single day. To this day, I struggle to talk to my own dad on the phone because hearing his voice hurts me deep inside, knowing that I won’t be seeing him for a while and if something were to happen to him, I’m not there to help him.
    I may be anxiety ridden and I may have anxiety attacks, but that doesn’t mean I’m not happy. When I have bad days, I know how to handle myself. I know how to breathe and meditate. I also talk to my dad more often now, and he reminds me that he’s just as tough as I am. Through experience, I conclude that no child should grow up without a father. I grew up without a father, and it sucked, but I know that he is proud that I made it to tell my story.

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    1. Cecilia Lopez

      This was a very honest, emotional essay but it shows how strong of a person you are for sharing it. I myself did not grow up with a father figure in my life and struggle with anxiety problems so i understand how that part feels. I like how you are not afraid to say how you’re feeling when it comes to tough topics such as this one.

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    2. Selines Diaz

      Hey Lexi, I agree that growing up without a father figure in your life is something really hard to battle with but I am glad you have the courage to share this and overcome your fears.

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  2. Sabrina McDuffie

    Sabrina McDuffie

    I believe in recovery.
    My life has been guided by a set of unseen and unspoken rules, all dictated by the fact that some of the neurons in my brain can’t fire correctly. In simpler terms, I live with anxiety.
    Not many people would expect that the “loud one with a lot of friends” would be burdened with pure fear at the simplest tasks, but I have come such a long way from where I once was. The stigmas along with mental illnesses are never ending: “You don’t look depressed,” or “Wow he’s crazy.” The statistic: one in five. One in five people in America will have suffered from some form of mental illness every year. The difference between stagnation and recovery is one of the most simple yet subsequently most difficult things to do – it is to speak out.
    This unbridled fear that followed me everywhere really took its handle on me when I entered high school. Every time I walked down the hall I convinced myself everybody was staring at me, the “new girl” in town, judging me, thinking I was ugly, the list goes on. I got to a point where I did not even want to leave my house, and the light at the tunnel started to shrink away from me. But the catch in my situation is that I did not let this struggle define me.
    I decided to take my pain and anxiety I was feeling and put that energy into making myself into a better person. I started taking medication, and my life started to change for the better. Instead of the young girl with bags under her eyes and the weight of the world on her shoulders, I am now the older and wiser version of myself with her head held high.
    My life struggles are one of millions upon millions that exist in the world, so frankly, I am not special, but most importantly I am not alone. Recovering from something that wounds a person so deeply may seem like a lost cause, but I have never believed so. Helping people with tribulations similar to mine is what makes me feel like I am doing something with my life that is truly immeasurable. I am willing to commit myself to helping the well-being of others, something that I have been striving to do my entire life.

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    1. Cecilia Lopez

      This was a very beautiful essay! I like how it started off dark and ended off in a positive route in which your life is headed now.

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    2. Kristina Martins

      I love how honest and upfront this essay was. I can totally relate, and your essay lets readers with anxiety know that they aren’t alone. Awesome job!

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    3. Abigail Keith

      Your essay was very eloquently written, and I love how your voice shines through. Also, I really like how you mention that anxiety can affect anyone, even those you typically would not expect.

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    4. Katherine Rivard

      To start, very well written! I cannot agree more with the stigma behind anxiety. Its something that takes a while to even understand never mind finding little tricks to help themselves cope. Thats a huge deal and makes you unbelievably strong! I feel I, and so many others, can connect so well to your essay. So yes, you are not alone! very well done.

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  3. Kathleen Walsh

    Anxiety has always made it hard for me to talk. When I struggle speaking, I plug my phone into the auxiliary cord on a car rides with my mom to play songs that can express the emotions I cannot.

    As a quiet person, there have also surprisingly been times in which I have had few friends. In those times I listen to songs from people of different ages, different countries, and different lives for connection with the human experience.

    Music helps me manage my mental illness. When I acted in school plays I was known for dancing with castmates backstage mouthing inappropriate Saturday Night Live songs rather than succumbing to worry. On the bus to swim meets I shared an earbud with a teammate, burning upbeat music into my head. Once in the water, instead of panicking I cleared my mind, racing over blue tiles to a single lyric.

    Music grounds me; everyone has playlists that define portions of their life. My friends lament unfortunate clothing just hearing Hannah Montana. Songs remind us of the pain of different times; we have a tendency to romanticize the ‘old days’. When I feel myself drifting to wistful reminiscing I play old songs to realistically reflect. Old emotional playlists reminds us every year has turmoil; we should celebrate the present.

    Music spans a gap, making up for times when I could not express myself. Music fulfilled needs I could not elicit from other people. I believe music can influence and define our lives.

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    1. Liana Kelly

      I was your roommate at orientation and I also have really anxiety. I’m glad you found a way to cope with it and I hope you continue to get better. I know how hard it is to deal with especially in new situations. Anyways, great essay ! 🙂

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  4. Nikolas Anninos

    Nik Anninos
    UMass Dartmouth
    “This I Believe” Summer Assignment

    I believe in light at the end of the tunnel. I believe that no matter what you are going through and how bad your life can be, there is always hope. So many people struggle with a variety of different things in their life. My struggles have been with depression and anxiety. It started happening when I was about 13 years old and I had the first betrayal by my best friend of nine years. As I went into high school, that started to repeat constantly. One of the things that gets me through those hard times is music. Whether it is the mood or the message in the song, that started to give me hope. Another thing that lifts me up is watching WWE Wrestling. It’s athletics mixed with entertainment and I feel so connected to superstars like Dean Ambrose and Finn Balor because the storylines that they are in are similar to what I was going through at the time. Recently, I was trying to think of how to exercise to stay in shape, so I started going on walks. I walk for 40 minutes that takes me through neighborhoods and parts of downtown Plymouth. I have my iPod with me and the songs I have playing are usually mellow rock songs such as “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” by U2 and “Better Man” by Sixx: A.M.. They are usually songs that I can relate to and it gets me in that mindset of perspective and growing up. The older I get, the more careful I start to be of who I hang out with and who my friends will be. Right now I have the most loyal friends anyone could ever ask for and a family who cares about me very much and I know that I can always talk to them about anything I am struggling with. Over the years, I have learned that pain is temporary and that there are ways to get through it. Therefore, I believe in light at the end of the tunnel because we were put on this planet for a reason and that is to achieve our greatest self, live out our own purpose, and to experience great things.

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    1. Mallory Kiernan

      I love the ending of this. It left me with a happy, positive feeling. I also exercise and listen to music when I’m feeling down. I’m so happy that you found healthy ways to cope and that you now have a supportive, loyal network of friends and family.

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    2. Allison Jacome

      Reading the words “pain is temporary” spoke to me so much. I have also struggled with depression and such but i never really heard someone put it like you did. Even at the darkest times if you remember that pain really is temporary you can find that light at the end of the tunnel.

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  5. Liana Kelly

    Writing this essay was a very difficult thing for me; I wanted it to be personal and tell a story. I wrote about my experiences with depression over the past few years. I once woke up feeling very sick, and never really started feeling better. The depression kicked in a few months after I realized I wasn’t going to feel alright any time soon. Life became very hard to manage. I sought out many doctors and specialists, had every test done that could be thought of, and nothing was found. One of the first questions I was often asked was “Are you sure you’re not pregnant?” or “Maybe you’re just anorexic.” Some people even thought I was making it up for attention; needless to say, the lack of understanding really did not help the depression or my anger. I’m doing a lot better now that I’ve learned to take life day by day, it’s a much better way to take life.

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  6. Liana Kelly

    I Believe in Recovery

    Recovery is often considered a burden; a burden because it is hard work and very time consuming. But, with recovery comes strength and power. I feel that the hardest part is determining when you stopped suffering and when you actually started your journey into recovery. It is a defining moment because it gives you the chance to take a step forward and become a changed person.
    Most of my life was fairly average; I lived at home with my parents and a brother, went to highschool, and had a part-time job. Although one chilly morning in January I woke up and felt sick to my stomach. After waiting out this gut-wrenching feeling for a few days, I figured something was wrong. This sickness has costed me thousands of dollars in medical bills and medications- none of which have given me any answers nor relief. Being in the circumstances I’d been left in, I grew very depressed. Being the already anxious person I was, I could not allow myself to miss school for fear that I would fall behind in my work. Only missing four or five days out of my high school career was more than enough to drive me to get up every morning. I was already sick, I didn’t want to fail too. This pressure to get up every day drained me. I soon had to quit my part time job, stop hanging out with friends, and spent most of my time sleeping. This was the suffering.
    Although recovery usually comes after suffering, this was not exactly the case for me. The monster that lived within me fed off of my suffering, life became more and more difficult. It came to the point where I felt that my life was not one worth living. I confined in my parents the best way I could. My confession crushed them and it was a hard thing to accept but they eventually did. One night was especially bad, I couldn’t handle my predicament any longer. My parents drove me to the hospital, and I saw a psychiatrist named David in the ER. It took six hours of waiting but that final hour was when my recovery began. David told me how my issue was a difficult one, but one that I could learn to cope with. We spoke for over an hour and he shared personal knowledge that very well may have saved my life. He told me to take life day by day, that it will be hard, but that it is the hand I was dealt and I will need to learn how to play it.
    It has been two and a half years since that January morning, and it has been about 4 months since I spoke to David. Somedays are still very hard and I run low on hope. I’ve learned my depression may be something I will have to learn to live with as well as my mysterious illness. I still hope for an answer or even a cure, but for now all I need to do is think about what I am doing for the rest of the day, and then tomorrow my recovery begins again.

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  7. Liana Kelly

    I Believe in Recovery

    Recovering from depression is a very difficult thing. Only after years of battling with an illness that isn’t considered real because it can’t be seen, did I relise that I wasn’t fighting my depression, I was only tolerating it. I didn’t push my self to get out of bed, but I would eventually. I wouldn’t go out with friends but I’d go to school. Over time I learned how to recover from depression, its still something I battle with but I know I won’t let it get bad again.

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  8. Sara Swanson

    Speak Up: I Believe in Recovery and Ending the Stigma on Mental Illness

    Another school day I would spend silent in the corner dreading interaction in a constant state of anxiety. “Everyone here hates you, even your teachers.” “You look horrible today they’re probably all talking about you.” “I can’t believe you just did that, stupid.” My brain would barrage me with these comments, and I’d just accept them. When the day ended and I got to go home, I was filled with pure relief. I made it through another day without an incident. Some days I wasn’t so lucky. Some days a teacher would announce a spur of the moment presentation, or someone would say something that got to me, and it would happen. Panic attacks did what my worst nightmare entailed: drawing attention to myself. I spent a lot of time hiding in bathrooms, my safe place.
    This was the majority of my high school experience, until I made the decision to look for help, which ended up being one of the best things to ever happen to me. I learned a lot about myself and others, made some incredible friends, and I was ready to face the world with more confidence. Treatment for mental illness though is just that, treatment, not a cure. I will probably always have the disorders I am diagnosed with, but I am so much stronger thanks to a lot of things and people. I believe so deeply that we should try our best to help others in need who struggle with mental illness and encourage them to be treated. There shouldn’t be stigmas that make it shameful to speak out about our issues. Something that helps me deal with my anxiety and depression is actually making others feel good about themselves, or making someone’s day better, and I put in time giving people words of encouragement and love online and in real life. It makes me really happy when people say that something I said made them feel better or smile. I know this isn’t a huge thing, but as long as I can help other people and make myself happy I think my purpose in life is being fulfilled. Spreading love, acceptance, and positivity is something I value a lot. I believe in recovery.

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    1. John Murrin

      Being able to write about your social anxiety is a really difficult thing to do, and I’m really happy you were strong enough to do so. It’s nice that you left things off with a positive message showing there’s hope for people out there!

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  9. Ryan Holland

    What I believe in is transparency, to express myself in the manner that shows who I am is. This is primarily used to avoid any confusion that comes through with miscommunication.

    This lifestyle came from a series of unfortunate blunders with my friends. These mistakes weren’t very harmful, since they were resolved, but there was something definitely learned from them. What I learned was to clarify and make sure that there wasn’t any confusion when interacting with people, because in my experience these little misinterpretations add up, and the result can be a perception of you that may be far from true. The specific hiccups come usually over text, since there are no real cues to read off of. When speaking in text form there are no body language or voice inflections. So a lot of the time you have to interpret, and sometimes things might just rub you the wrong way, even though that may have not been the intention.

    With this comes a bit of stunted clarification where either the person who had been misinterpreted may day something like “I didn’t mean it like this, I meant it this other way”, or the person who was rubbed the wrong way would say “did you mean this like that or was that just me”. With the latter more often than not will say “oh of course not” (Unless it was an argument). This can understandably be hard, confrontation isn’t easy, but it’s important, like most things.

    This is what I have learned from my own experiences, and it has helped me some situations, and this may not work for everyone, with everyone, meaning that some people may react to the idea of clarification in general, negatively, or people don’t assume the worst of you. Even so until social anxiety and self-esteem issues are within me, I will attempt to use this methodology.

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    1. Stefan Bruendl

      I agree that clarification is a problem when writing something online. I had similar problems but not always were they resolved. Sometimes people just got annoyed and seized communication because of misinterpretations of passages I wrote or sometimes even spoke.

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      1. Ryan Holland

        That was a difficulty for me, frequently with a certain person i’d say something, and then get no response because they were sick of talking to me, or found me frustrating. Even though through my perspective I wasn’t trying to be irritable or antagonizing. It’s just also important to look through others perspectives in those situations, but trying to guess what exactly you are doing that is irritable is difficult.

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  10. Sage Wagner

    I believe in love. Being surrounded by people who love me saved my life. For years I suffered from depression. From being bullied at school, to hiding in my room from the screaming outside my door, there has never been anything more important to me than love. My older sister has Borderline Personality Disorder. Similar to Bipolar Disorder, she experiences mood swings from mania, to depression, to uncontrollable rage. Verbal and physical abuse threw me into a spiral of self-hatred, substance abuse, and suicidal ideation. Crying myself to sleep every night, I had one wish: for someone to love me. Countless visits to emergency rooms, mental hospitals, and substance abuse facilities left me resentful. However, this long battle slowly revealed the truth. Watching my family combat the hurt I caused them, I found that the only reason I was put in treatment was because they love me. No matter how much it hurt, they only wanted to help. Without them, I would have never been so resilient. There are so many people in this world who suffer from mental illness. We are not disabled, but are diagnosed as such because depression is crippling. Depression leaves you unable, not unwilling, to get out of bed in the morning. We need the support of our loved ones to get us through each day. A feeling of belonging and security can be the difference between life and death. There is nothing in this world that cannot be fixed by love. This I believe.

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    1. Selines Diaz

      I really enjoy your positivity and the fact you believe love can true brighten up and change situations in people lives.

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    2. Sara Swanson

      This is such an important thing that I wish more people understood. People who suffer from mental illnesses aren’t looking for “special treatment” because we’re lazy, we actually NEED treatment because we are sick, and sometimes all that could mean is someone being there to comfort us or show their love.

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  11. Samuel Foster

    I believe in recovery. Procrastination and shyness were the main sources of my depression. I would put off my assignments until the last minute and seek temporary happiness. My falling grades and the disappointment from my parents only made it worse. It also didn’t help that I didn’t have many friends and I would just stay in my room whenever I wasn’t at school. I was very anti social at school and I would always try my hardest to avoid talking in front of the class. During lunch I would hide in the library, when the library was closed I would hide in the bathroom or walk around the halls. This caused a lot of unnecessary stress in my life that could have been easily avoided. I didn’t see the effect it was having on my life. I didn’t care at the time. I didn’t even know I was depressed, I just thought that was my personality. I didn’t try to change, but when I joined some clubs at my school and started to socialize more it helped me to recover. I still have a habit of procrastinating, I still try to avoid being called on, and I still struggle with depression, but it has significantly improved and I am still recovering.

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  12. Armani Correia

    I believe in never giving up. I am able to write about this because I have gone to a point in my life where I thought there was nothing I can do but give up. When my life was being taken away from me in a blink of an eye.. This time in my life haunts me forever, the past continues to come back. It was when my family the ones who share the same blood as me left me in that hospital bed to die because they didn’t want to tell what really happened to me. I couldn’t do nothing at all talk, eat, walk, but all I can do is see and listen the people who are suppose to be my family surround me. The pain I went thought was telling me to give up. After trying and trying to learn how to do the simple things like talk, speak, and eat.I couldn’t because I was pushed farther back. I took the advice from the loved ones around me keep on pushing and trying. I listened but all I saw was failure. I couldn’t find nothing good in me. At this point in life I thought of giving up on myself but didn’t. There was something in me all the way in the back that kept on telling me that my time wasn’t done. Now that I look back at this time and write about it I’m glad I never gave up. Sometimes you could thrown in the biggest hole but if your able to find a way out you are truly unstoppable with nothing in your way of stopping you from achieving anything in life.

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  13. Deanna Morin

    This We Believe

    I believe in a world where people can go about their day without fear. In today’s society, people like me can’t even begin to imagine a day where you don’t get so nervous you peel off your fresh manicure. People like me can’t go out to get lunch, go to the mall, or even run errands. People like me purposely stay home, sleep late, and convince themselves a simple task is of no importance, so they don’t have to face the fear of going out. People like me, have anxiety and depression.

    Most of the time, I don’t even have to leave my house to have an anxiety attack. This one time, I had a meltdown about how messy my hair was, so I stayed home all day. Usually it takes me about an hour to get showered, dressed and ready. However, it takes me another hour or so to get mentally prepared to leave my house. Everyday, I have to have my whole day planned out – where I’m going, what time, and with who – and even then I’m a nervous wreck. Even writing this essay is making me anxious because I am afraid people will judge me on how I write. Driving makes me anxious, getting gas is a project, and going to work is a whole other story. I have to put on a fake smile everyday at work, and have ways to calm myself down quick if I feel an attack coming on. It’s exhausting.

    People with anxiety and depression also tend to lose friends easily. We are seen as boring and annoying. However, if you lived a day in our shoes you would see how exhausting it is for us to do normal everyday tasks. I have lost countless friends due to this, and their reasoning was because I was no fun and lacked energy. Well, my answer to them is that my anxiety causes me to not go out and do “fun” things, and depression causes me to be tired all of the time. So, those friends who decided I was not fun enough for them, only contributed to my mental illness.
    How I deal with my anxiety and depression is by listening to music, and being with loved ones. Listening to music helps me block out how I am feeling in the real world, and transports me to a happier place for a short period of time. By being around other happy individuals who care about me, I tend to not feel anxious and depressed. Being around people, like my boyfriend, makes me feel happy, relaxed and above all, normal. When I am with loved ones, I can do anything I want.

    I believe that everyone with anxiety and depression can one day, without the help of medications, conquer their mental illnesses. All they need is love and motivation from their friends and family to finally be the happy, healthy individual they were meant to be.

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  14. Samantha

    I believe in hope and recovery. Throughout my life I have gone through many positive points in my life, and also very negative. Through these negative parts, or, “downs”, I had hope that everything would turn out alright, and here I am. Since fifth grade, I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety, and starting that year, everything had changed. It started with anxiety, which was very hard to deal with at this age. It had affected my grades a lot, but luckily I had the help of my parents and teachers to help me through it. As the years went on, my anxiety had gotten better and my grades had improved tremendously.
    Anxiety was the least of my problems when seventh grade came along. I started to feel very upset all the time, and was not sure what was going on. My mother had noticed about two months in, and then we had gotten myself some more help. This was a very tough period, at this age depression was not ideal for middle school. Soon once we had taken a few trips to the doctors, I had gotten some medicine to help. Even though I was upset, I still had hope that there was light at the end of the tunnel. A few more years went on and I had gotten better, but then my depression had hit again sophomore year. I had ended up in the hospital for a day to get more help. Although this was extremely tough, my mother was there with me to reassure that everything would be okay. Hope is something that everyone needs, because if they do not have it, recovery is impossible.

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  15. Jacob Stillman
    31 August 2016

    I Believe In Therapy/Relaxation

    I considered seeking therapy when I started learning about depression in school. I connected some of the symptoms to myself (lack of energy, anxiety, low self-esteem). After speaking with my parents, we arranged meetings with a therapist every other week after school. I am thankful for being able to talk with her about my personal problems in private.
    Growing up with Asperger’s, I had problems socializing with people while effectively managing work in and out of school. If I tried to relax, I bashed myself for being too lazy to work. I thank my therapist, Leslie, for helping me realize that I was psyching myself out, and convincing me that I am a well-meaning, determined person with certain struggles.
    Leslie always made me feel comfortable and relaxed, so I could trust her and talk with her. When I wasn’t comfortable with socializing or starting school work, she would coax me through and reassure me that my problems were normal. She recognized that I needed time to observe a conversation before joining in, and that decompressing after school was very helpful before starting homework.
    The one thing I never wanted to do as a teenager was become jaded and cynical. I think in today’s modern world, it’s important to stop action every once in awhile to relax and engage in personal reflection. And never be afraid to reflect with a psychological professional, someone who has the patience and compassion to help.

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  16. Ryan Demeulenaere

    I believe that life gets better.
    In high school I was that kid that didn’t go to parties or go to any social events. My anxiety and depression always got the best of me and made it impossible to do those things.
    As I got into my final years of high school, I began to be more social and learn to see life in a different way. Seeing how these new friends lived their lives, carefree, happy and always joking around made me realize the way life should be lived. Life shouldn’t be lived with constant anxiety and sadness. Life should be lived more jokingly then serious to me. If you treat more serious matters more jokingly you’ll be happier and not feel those emotions of sadness anymore. And I know it’s hard to change your perspective on life that easily but if you believe that you can do it you can. My friends taught and helped me learn to do it by making me realize the few things I love about myself. And then having me cling to those things as a kind of support in keeping myself happier and learning to love life and live it to its fullest. So all I’m saying is that I believe that all people deserve to find happiness no matter how bad life gets.

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  17. Agatha Macko

    “This We Believe”

    I believe no child should feel dying is better than living. I believe in depression. People say that there’s no way you can just be “unhappy.” Happiness is not brought to everyone; some people have to take pills to feel anything.
    Growing up, I knew the happiest girl in the world. Nothing could bring her down. As she grew up, she learned about this cruel world. In middle school, she let opinions of people into her head. She began cutting. She believed she was disgusting like everyone said. She became angry for being “ugly.” She was forced into therapy to “talk about feelings.” That didn’t last. Her mother believed her little girl was better. For a while, things were. She wasn’t harming herself anymore. She started feeling happy.
    Next thing, high school. The greatest four years… or so they say. She had many friends and fun throughout her years. But she began to hate herself. It was way too much for her. She hated herself so much, she grabbed medicine took it all. Her mother found her, and rushed her to the hospital. She survived.
    Overtime she was better. Then, her friend Gary passed. She felt the same again. She pushed away anyone close. Again, she started feeling better. Her grandmother passed, and she has never been the same. Trying hard to have fun. Until she realized, she was numb. She felt nothing. Till this day, she prays for happiness.
    I believe in depression, because this girl, that was so happy, only thinks of giving up. I know, because this girl is me.

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  18. Derek Williams

    Ever since I can remember, I knew my life wasn’t the same compared to other kids my age. I had to see a therapist twice a week. I wouldn’t even talk to him. Other kids were happy and full of life, yet I wasn’t. Sure I had plenty of friends and I seemed happy. However nobody knew what I was going through at home.
    My parents had divorced when I was about 8 years old. I lived with my mom while my dad moved about a 30 minute drive away. My mother at the time was the CEO of multiple hospitals. She was always working, I’d never even see her. I had a full time baby sitter. I longed for her attention. My ADD disorder intensified this and because I never received it, I felt lost, confused, and just plain sad. Growing up without my father was also hard for me. Dads should be there, being a role model. There was no doubt that I was depressed, and it continued on for years. However I found support and comfort in the people I surrounded myself with in middle school and high school. Today I am the happiest I have ever been, and am confident in my abilities. I believe that the road to recovery is a rough and bumpy one, and one cannot do it by oneself. You must ask for help.

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  19. Janelle Herchen

    Janelle Herchen
    This I Believe
    Sometimes I believe my world is imploding; a silent, painful explosion barely being restrained to only exist inwardly. As the resounding force of pressure causes my hands to tremble, my chest to tighten, and my heart beat to accelerate. I believe the doomsday-bringer living inside my mind is triggered by seemingly small situations or problems, which is endlessly frustrating because this unleashes a string of “ this is ridiculous, I am being ridiculous”. I believe I survive each and everyone of these end of the world experiences because I keep pushing forward, and only look back when all that is remaining is the ashes. Whenever these life disruptions occur, I feel like someone has pressed the rewind button on the my life, and the memory of what caused the mini meltdown and how I reacted is played on an endless loop in front of me; mockingly asking “ what were you so afraid of? Why did you react that way? Why do you always act this way?” A thick fog of smoke always seems to surround me when I feel unprepared to the deal with the situation triggering an issue; it’s like an out of body experience because I am trying to run away mentally, but unfortunately I have to remain physically. However, I believe one day I will no longer have imploding universes, no longer struggle with wanting to run away, or continue to berate myself for what I did in the past. I believe in myself and will just keep moving forward.

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  20. Samantha DuVally

    I believe that anxiety doesn’t define who you, it is living with this disease that makes you stronger. Since I was a child I have experienced many symptoms of anxiety, but yet I always found a way for it to go unnoticed. I didn’t want people knowing due to everyone always saying that anxiety wasn’t a real thing and that it was all in my head.
    My anxiety started out as a fear of reading out loud in front of others. I had a stutter and I constantly was fearing that other children in the classroom were making fun of me behind my back. Then when I entered middle school my anxiety developed into a fear of not being good enough. I would stress over the smallest assignment and always needed to have my homework done perfectly, even if it wasn’t being graded.
    As I got older I realized that there was no way for my anxiety to go away no matter how hard I tried or how often I ignored it. My anxiety was a real thing. And along with anxiety depression followed. Again I didn’t want help, I didn’t want anyone to know. So I hid it. But by hiding it I became more frustrated at that fact that nobody ever understood my feelings. When I was experiencing anxiety all I wanted was someone to comfort me, but nobody knew what was actually going on. So how could someone help me if no one had any idea.
    I realized that I had lied to my doctor, my parents and my friends about my mental illness. I overestimated my ability to be able to help myself.
    No one should ever feel that having a mental illness makes them lesser than others. I believe it makes people stronger.

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  21. Logan Maher

    I believe in failing forward

    I believe that when we fail there is always some good to come out of it. This notion has helped me in recent years because I am the type of person who hates to not succeed in something and will constantly think about the mistakes I’ve made and constantly regret choices that I’ve made. It doesn’t help that mistakes that I’ve made have ended friendships and have hurt the people I care about. Because of this I continuously felt guilty over any mistake I made. Even the little stuff like bumping into another person in the hallway made me feel horrible. Every day I would come home with regret over anything I did by mistake a]or anything I failed at because I felt that in someway the regret was going to help me though it turned into self loathing. I felt I could do nothing right and at some point felt I was a burden to everyone I met. It eventually got to the point where I couldn’t take it anymore and asked if I could see someone to help me through as it was to the point where I couldn’t bring myself to get out of bed in the morning. So I went and despite what you hear about how therapy its not as bad as people make it out to be. For the most part it was good advice but what really stuck out to me was the phrase failing forward which the therapist used often. It made me realize that my mistakes were natural and that they would be able to benefit me in the end because I could learn from them. I still do look back on my mistakes and at times cringe at them and do feel guilt for them I now look at them as a way to improve myself and become a better person for the future.

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  22. Jack D'Agostino

    Jack D’Agostino
    What I Believe

    Anxiety is something that affects all of us on different levels from a day to day basis.
    Whether you’re talking in front of your peers or simply purchasing something from a store. Anxiety is something that we all suffer from and we all have some way of dealing with it. And as we all enter into college, our anxiety climbs dramatically for some people and not as much for others. But the reality of the situation is that all of us are really in the same boat. All of us more or less, don’t know what we’re doing when we’re here. Having pretty bad anxiety all my life, this topic is pretty hard for me to talk about. But when you really think it over, college isn’t really as bad as I originally thought it was.
    One of the hardest things for me is that you have to leave where you came from; you have to leave your family. For some of us, leaving our families was the toughest part about college and for others, leaving where you came from and leaving your family was something you’ve been waiting for for a while now. Mostly everyone here don’t really know what they’re doing. But the fact of that matter is, is that everyone are all the same in terms of where they are in their lives and we all have a new family that we live with. You might find someone that’s like a sister or brother to you. You might find someone that you really don’t get along with. But in the end, we are all family and we are all here to help and support one another through the hard times and the good times. Just like a family would do for you.

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  23. Lily Shepley

    I believe in the importance of self care. Society teaches us to always look out for others, to put other people first, to never be selfish. Obviously it’s not a bad thing to be helpful and selfless however there is a line where it can begin to affect someone’s physical and mental health. We’re so afraid to do things that will make us happy because we’re all terrified of being labeled selfish. We push ourselves and push ourselves to the point that we break. We skip meals, work for hours on end, and have sleepless nights. We stress ourselves out so much trying to comply to what is being expected of us that we forget to take care of ourselves. This self destructive behavior needs to stop. We as a society need to realize that sometimes you have to be selfish. You have to put yourself first. You can not efficiently help someone else without squaring away your own problems first. It’s okay to cut negative people out of your life even if you’ve been “friends” since you were six. It’s okay to splurge on yourself. It’s okay to walk away from that paper that’s due in a few days and just breathe. All other aspects of your life end up suffering if you aren’t taking the time to do things that make you happy and healthy. So go ahead sleep in a little. Eat a good meal. Get dressed up for yourself. Nourish your mind, body, and soul. Be the person that builds yourself up again. Show yourself the same kindness that you would for others.

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  24. Rachel Cabral

    I believe in happiness and better days. Ever since I could remember I’ve had anxiety which ultimately led to depression later on. I feel like my life has been on one big roller coaster with extreme ups and downs that are never ending. The bad events that occurred during my childhood still affects me today, it’s something I could just never forget, it made me who I am today. I get anxious about pretty much everything and sometimes I can’t even talk to people or go out to have fun. And then sometimes I’m so depressed I sit in the corner and cry all day, it’s like my thoughts take over and I think of things that make me upset without even wanting to. But with all the bad times in my life so far and the depression episodes that happen so often, there are good days. Good days when I’m happy and everything goes great, is something I look forward to. Sometimes I don’t want to get out of bed, I want to sleep all day and just be alone and it’s such a horrid feeling to just not be able to control your emotions. But then the days where I meet new friends, or an adorable baby smiles at me, I feel so great and happy and I feel normal. No matter how bad things can get a simple smile, or gesture could brighten your day. I believe we should all hold hope in our hearts for those days because happiness is just around the corner no matter what.

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  25. Madelyne Windle

    I believe in not giving up. As the butt of many jokes throughout my life and schooling career, I for a very long time believed that the reason these things were happening and others seemed determined to drive me to ruins, was something about myself. Was I rude? Mean? Too thin? Too fat? To short? To tall? To trusting? Gullible? The list of questions and self-doubts continues on and on. As time went on, I just felt hollow. I would go home after some days and just cry. Others, I would put on a brave face and act like nothing was wrong at all, and I got very good at hiding behind that mask. Every once in awhile that mask would crack, but I would tape and glue it back together, thinking that if I didn’t react as I did, if I didn’t give any satisfaction and show that things were bothering me, they would stop.

    But they didn’t. Words are cruel things in the right hands. On many occasions, it felt as if everyone was just telling me to give up. I almost did, and I almost did something I would regret. But I didn’t. A little voice in the back of my head went- “No. Prove them wrong.” And I did. I kept at what I was doing. I was me, and I’d be damned if I let other people change me to something I didn’t want to be. You’re telling me I can’t do this? Doing it- and I will do it well.

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  26. Nina Cambece

    This We Believe
    I believe in self acceptance. Growing up, I wasn’t aware of how different I was. I figured my brain and emotions were just like everyone else. But as my early teen years approached, I realized something was off. It felt like everyone else surrounding me had no problem moving through their daily functions and responsibilities while I struggled with every part of my day. Some days I would be the happiest girl on earth, running around and talking so fast and loud that I could barely feel the words leaving my mouth. Then other days, or sometimes weeks, I couldn’t bring myself out of bed. Everything had a gloomy film over it and I couldn’t climb out of the dark hole my mind had dug. For years I had listened to endless diagnoses such as BPD, depression, anxiety, and anything else that could make sense of these so called “flaws” in my brain’s functions. The medications were the worst part. Mood stabilizers and antipsychotics turned me into a shell of the girl I used to be. I was a zombie. Sure, they lessened my bouts of depression, but what about my manic episodes? What if the surge of happy chemicals in my brain wasn’t an illness, but a gift? Since my sophomore year of highschool, I’ve come off of all of my medications. I have accepted that my brain is unique, not broken. None of us are born the same and it’s up to us to utilize and celebrate our flaws, differences, and anything else that brings excitement to our lives. Teaching myself to use my BPD to my advantage is something I take pride in.

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  27. Raymond Chen

    Anxiety and depression are rarely seen. Due to the fact that very few people other than the one suffering from it notice it depression and anxiety may go untreated. Often times people will question why you do not do something or why all of a sudden when the moment comes you lock up and you just can not do it.

    Anxiety and depression pose many obstacles. They are also rarely considered as the root of an issue. I believe that more attention should be drawn towards this very important issue.

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  28. Shontell Remy

    I believe social anxiety is real. That many people, myself included struggle with everyday. Social anxiety is way deeper than people may believe. I feel as though people with social anxiety are just labeled as losers, or lame by people who don’t understand it. As a kid, I was very social, and outgoing but as I got older, that seemed to change dramatically. Social Anxiety is basically a fear of social situations. Situations that may be so terrifying, you’ll go to great lengths just to avoid it. Social Anxiety triggers can be public speaking, being the center of attention, being watched while doing something, being called on in class, speaking up, meeting new people, going to parties or other social gatherings. Things I face everyday. I’m very reserved and shy and new people make me very uncomfortable. Because of this, people questioned how I would survive in college. My friends and family were so worried I would just lock myself in my dorm room and not interact with anyone. Because college is about finding yourself, putting yourself out there and meeting new people. I envy the people that don’t have to think twice about things I worry about. But I won’t let my social anxiety define me, because I know so many other people go through what I go through. But I’m lucky enough to have the most amazing support system to help me get out of my comfort zone and do things I would never do on my own.

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  29. Anastasia Murphy

    I grip my mothers’ hand as we walk up a series of large and spacious stairs to a classroom on the top. The classroom is large with a few desks in the front. Little kids are scattered across the room.
    My mother talks to the teacher, Ms. Olson, whom tells me to go sit down. Nervously I let go of my mothers’ hand and do what I am told. When I look up my mother is coming over.
    “I’m leaving. Have fun!” She says and exits the room. I sit on the ridged, brown rug with my legs as close to my body as possible.
    “Please choose a book from the shelf and partner up.” Ms. Olson says. I am frozen to my spot on the rug. Not a minute after a little girl comes to me with a book and begins to read. I can only listen.
    Ms. Olson comes over and kneeling down asks me to read. I remain silent feeling tears in my eyes. She keeps asking me to read the word she points to. The more she talks the more my chest feels trapped and I begin to cry. As she continues to talk I sit there crying.
    Soon Ms. Olsen picks up the phone and makes a call which lasts several minutes. My mother walks in to the room and tells me that we are leaving. I stand up and grab her hand, squeezing it hard again and we head off.

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  30. Anastasia Murphy

    Anxiety is a problem that affects many people in the world. But for me, it has been a problem from day one. At a very young age I was taken out of my home and put into an orphanage surrounded by people who mistreated me. This is when my anxiety began to rise. I learned to coupe by rocking myself to sleep and banging my heading against the wall. At age seven I was adopted and moved to a new country.
    On my first day of school I did not know what to expect, but when the day started, my anxiety began to rise again. I wasn’t use to this situation and my heart began to beat extremely fast cause me to cry and break down into an episode of rocking back and forth.
    One evening when I was asleep, I had a nightmare about wolves because of my experience in the past. I suddenly woke up gasping for air and once again my heart was beating very quickly.
    Even though I have learned to control my anxiety both on and off medication, it still continues and affects my life. I have trouble talking to people because I’m afraid. I also often talk to myself to help me feel calm. I believe in anxiety because not only do I know people who experienced it, I have it myself and its not going anywhere. I have to deal with this problem for my while life and I’m thankful for friends and family who are there to support me.

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