I was riddled with so much anxiety that I couldn’t speak.
I was 11 years old when the symptoms of my depression, anxiety and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder became noticeable to my classmates. Even then, I experienced hallucinations and voices, which are triggered when my anxiety is heightened.
Because I was viewed by many of my peers as different, I was pushed down a flight of stairs, thrown into a creek and punched in the face. With the popularity of social media, the bullying moved online. At one point there was an ‘I hate Chelsea’ Facebook page out there and a Twitter account that took a poll on whether or not I should kill myself.
By the time I was 12 I was experiencing suicidal ideation and started self-harming. At that point, my anxiety was getting worse every day because of bullying.
By Grade 9 I began missing a lot of school and had attempted suicide.
For the longest time my family didn’t know what was going on.
At my lowest point I was riddled with so much anxiety that I couldn’t speak. I couldn’t imagine leaving the house let alone being involved in a campaign like this. In therapy my goals for myself were to be able to be in a public space. I never imagined I’d be publicly speaking or being a central figure in an advertising campaign.
I am something I never thought I’d be. I am a success story.
My mental illness used to control my life, I couldn’t leave my house, I couldn’t attend school, every choice I made was based on whether I’d have an episode. Now four years later I have a life that I never thought was possible. I am a ‘regular’ young adult in university. I can go out with friends and I can leave my house, which is something I never thought was possible.
I encourage everyone to support Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences (Ontario Shores) because the work that they are doing is life changing. Thanks to Ontario Shores I got my life back.
It’s important to give everyone struggling the opportunity to be a success story and live a life that’s not dictated by their illness.
You can help Save The Living by supporting the programs and services at Ontario Shores that allow people to overcome their challenges and to then flourish.
Adolescent Services at Ontario Shores
The onset of most mental illnesses occur during adolescence or young adulthood and can interfere with youth as they develop independent living skills and relationships.
- Programs for youth ages 12 to 18.
- Enhanced care and programming based on their specialized needs.
- Consists of inpatient, outpatient and day treatment programs.
- Patients work in partnership with staff to learn how to manage their illness, improve their coping skills and develop the necessary tools to successfully return to the community at an optimal level of well-being.
- All services are provided in a caring and supportive environment that fosters independence, confidence and self-esteem.
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