Guest Blog: Looking normal and feeling 'normal'

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

My name is Imogen and I'm currently in my 2nd Year at the University of Southampton. When I was 14 years old I was diagnosed as being depressed, and at 15 anorexic. When I first came to Uni in September 2011 I thought that I was recovering. I no longer felt the need to control what I was eating. My confidence grew. To the outsider I looked normal. I felt normal. For someone that had spent 4 years in a perpetual state of sadness I was suddenly feeling amazing. I was hyperactive, excited and high. 

In February 2012 my mood changed. I began to feel depressed again, only this time I felt worse. I started to have suicidal thoughts, something that I had never experienced before. I told my friends as I felt really scared. They thought I was just attention seeking and stopped being my friend.

I spent the summer vacation feeling lonely, hopeless and worthless. I didn't want to go back to University. I didn't want to live any more. I was ready to end it all when my little brother read my diary and made me promise i wouldn't do it. This made me see the light. I wanted to get better for him.

I came back to University and started helping out with Mental Health Week, where I met lots of lovely people, some of which I now consider to be my closest friends. My confidence grew and I began to feel better about myself.

I now have a lovely group of friends that know about my illness and are always there for me when I'm down. I've been volunteering for Solent Mind which I love, and have just been appointed the new President of Southampton's Mental Wealth Group. It's hard to believe how much I struggled 7 months ago, because right now, life couldn't be better.