Becky Beyond Blue

Hi! Thanks for stumbling across my blog :) My name is Becky, I'm 21 and I live in Brighton, UK. I love cats, music and chocolate and I'm one of the unfortunate people to have been struck with Severe Clinical Depression and Anxiety Disorder. In this blog I write about my common struggles of coping with this illness and what I'm attempting to do to recover. If you read my posts you'll gain an insight into living with Depression and maybe find some advice on how to cope.

Sunday 8 May 2016

My Story


My name's Becky. I'm 21 years old and I live in Brighton, UK. I've been considering starting up a blog for the last couple of years and decided today's the day! My story is pretty complicated so bare with me while I'm trying to explain the basics!

My parents have been divorced since I was around 10 years old and I have lived with an alcoholic mother. My Dad has always worked abroad so has pretty much been absent, although supporting me financially. I went to an all girls boarding school for secondary school which I pretty much hated, but recently found out from my Dad that I was only there because he wanted me to be away from my mother's drinking habits as much as possible. I've always been a fairly academic student but decided, as I much better relate to and get on with boys, that I wanted to move to the state school down the road where lots of my friends were. My Dad was really hesitant so made a compromise and let let me go to a nearby mixed private school. I also hated this school but at least I was able to have male school friends. I was so persistent on my Dad allowing me to give up boarding and he eventually obliged, leaving me with living with my alcoholic mum. She was a nurse and was constantly working nights so would hardly ever be there, and when she was, she would be drinking and leaving me to pick up all of the pieces. 

When I was 15 I was diagnosed with severe clinical depression and severe generalised anxiety disorder. I was put on anti-depressants. This was mainly due to the fact I had a very traumatic sexual experience when I went on holiday in Turkey with my Dad, stepmother and stepbrother. My GCSE years at school I was in one of the most fragile states of my life with a huge mix up from my experience abroad that got spread around through rumours at school to make me look like the bad guy. I was too weak to fight back, so ended up getting bullied because of what people thought of me. I didn't attend school for quite some time as i was too unstable. Eventually, I forced myself to go back, keep my head down, and get through my exams. By some miracle I ended up getting fairly decent results, not as well as I hoped seeing as I am an A student, but hey ho. 

Going to college was great for me as I didn't go to a private 6th form and was able to go to a state college with all of my real friends. It was a fresh start for me and I was surrounded by people who knew me for me and not any stupid rumours that spread in secondary school like wildfire. However, I was still living with my Mum who was consistently making me pick her up off the floor with her drinking habits. I couldn't cope and about two thirds of my way through college I had a huge breakdown and had to drop out. I was self-harming and in a pretty much catatonic state. After a few months away from college my Mum felt guilty for being one of the main causes for my breakdown and got me an opportunity to work as a Production Assistant on a reality TV show in LA (Her best friends', daughters boyfriend worked there). And considering it was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I could really do with the time away from my Mum and home life, I decided that i'd go. Two weeks later I was on an 11 hour flight to LA.

When I got there I met with my mum's best friend's daughter, Dora, who immediately made an effort to make me feel unwelcome. I have always disliked my mums best friend as she was an enabler. She also had an impression of me that I was a druggie, college drop out teenager. Ok so yes, I smoked weed, and yes, I dropped out of college. But I was in no way the stereotype that that judgement suggests. But she made sure her daughter and boyfriend thought that of me.  Being in LA was good, I had a lot of time by myself to reflect, and went on jogs beside the LA river in the gorgeous weather on days where I wasn't working. On days I was working, I was really busy and in a great environment where I made some really good friends with my colleagues and got an insight into the Hollywood TV industry which was CRAZY. The time I was at Dora's house though, her and her boyfriend were so rude and judgemental and cold towards me which made me leave LA at the end wanting to cut contact with them as well as my mums best friend. 

Me in LA with a few of my colleagues :)

I was so glad to be back with my friends and the guy I was seeing at the time (who, going strong for 5 years, is still my boyfriend and complete support system). I actually applied to return to college on special circumstances and made it through with two Distinctions and a B. Although I hadn't been able to plan further than that, so made an impromptu decision to go to Brighton Film School seeing as Adam, my boyfriend, chose to move there for uni, and I was accepted unconditionally. 

Again, it was a fresh start from me. It meant I could move away from my home town and be completely independent without worrying about being my mum's carer. It also meant I could be in an exciting new town, meet new people, be at a new school (uni) and just start again, to some extent. I've now been in Brighton for nearly 3 years. It's also had it's ups and downs and I'm now in the position where, having another huge suicidal mental breakdown a few months ago, am hiding from the world, on a really high dose of anti-depressants, seeing a therapist twice a week and the majority of the time too scared to leave the house. It's a constant daily struggle to keep my shit together enough to even remember to eat and sleep. Since September, I have had to drop out of university, as I just can't deal with having to write a dissertation in this state. I was attaining Distinctions at Uni and doing so well academically, and being a perfectionist I feel so humiliated and angry at myself for being in this state. I know it's not my fault, it's this stupid debilitating illness, but it just fucking sucks.

I want to be able to at least feel confident enough to hold down a part-time job to get some structure back in my life but I just can't. Instead I'm constantly trying to find therapeutic ways to get my life back on track. I have so many goals and ambitions and it is beyond frustrating trying to even begin to move towards them. So I spend most of my days at home, trying to work out what to do with myself, most of the time just trying to find ways to waste time before going back to bed. 

I love making music. It is something that I just have never had the time to sit down and work on. So this is what I have been trying to do. To channel my thoughts, feelings and emotions into a creative piece of work without having to speak. Like art. I now have the time to do that. Yes, it is still extremely difficult to find the motivation, but every now and then, i'll get a sudden burst of inspiration and create something I am proud of. It is a way of changing my perfectionist thinking patterns because I don't have to present my work, I don't have any deadlines, I don't have anyone breathing down my neck telling me to do things a certain way or that I'm doing it wrong. It completely takes the pressure away and lets me focus on things at my own pace completely. It has given me hope again that my future isn't going to be shit. 

I also love writing, and I have thought for a long time that it would be therapeutic to write all the shit that runs through my head down. I have never had the confidence to really get it out in the open though, but I see this as taking a step towards my recovery. I know there are so many people out there, in a similar situation to me, who will completely understand what it's like.

I would love to hear your stories too.

Thank you so much for reading this!

And if you are currently going through similar shit, then you are not alone and if you need to chat or anything, pop me a message or leave a comment :)

Peace x 

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