Hello beautiful, my name is Brooke. I am twenty years old and am from Melbourne, Australia. Firstly I want to say that I know I am more than a label. I am more than my diagnosis. It does not define me. Yet I want to tell you that I am diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, Depression, Anxiety and Psychosis. 

I tell you this not so you'll feel sorry for me, but that perhaps you can relate. It's tough having a mental illness like Depression, but I know from experience that it helps to know that you are not alone. There are others going through similarthings as you, and they got help, so you can too! Here's a little bit of my story, that will hopefully give you hope...

I've been sad and anxious all my life, but it was manageable. That was until 2013. I grew up as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints aka the Mormon church. After completing a course called Seminary (for youth aged 14-18), I began to drift from the church. I don't know if that's what triggered my decline but I'm guessing it was. I began being very depressed. 

I started to manage a retail store and the pressure got to me. I was constantly stressed and sad. Eventually it got too much and I decided I needed to find a way to cope. The only way I knew how to cope was through one thing: cutting. I began to cut myself daily as it released endorphin's that made me feel better for a little while. This continued on for months. 

My parents found out, and so I began to see a counselor and was put on anti-depressants. But despite receiving help I decided to do something unfortunate. I decided I wanted to die (now please understand I'm not trying to be a sob story, again, I just want to put my story out there for those who want to recover). So in October 2013 I took an overdose. My mother found me and took me to the doctors right away, which then sent me to hospital. I was in the psych ward for 5 days. 

I was well taken care of and was overwhelmed at the love and support I received from friends, family and church leaders. I began doing well. I was starting to smile again. But then January came around. I began being suicidal again and was once more very depressed. My self image was horrible, I had gained weight from my anti-depressants and everyone knew it! I was up and down a lot until in March someone very close to me passed away which sent me over the edge again. I was suicidal, anxious, wouldn't leave the house unless I had to and continues self harming. I also resorted to disordered eating habits to cope. By July I lost someone else I knew, to deaths sting. The pain of losing 2 people close to me in a matter of months was all too much and I developed Psychosis. I tried to take my life once again from a psychotic episode. Once again I was hospitalized and received wonderful treatment, and love from family and friends. That was in September 2014. 

Things were up and down in 2015. I completed a Sports Nutrition course, but my feelings were all over the place. I tried to take my life a few times but was always well taken care of. 

Now it's 2016. I have recently been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder and wow did that explain a lot! Things are still up and down but I am SO much happier than I used to be. 

Things do get better and you should be alive to see it.
Suicide doesn't end the chances of life getting worse, it eliminates the possibility of them ever getting better.

Something that I also want to share is, I believe in God, Jesus Christ and The Holy Ghost. They have helped me so much in my through out my journey and I could never deny them, nor the power they hold, in blessing the lives of not only myself, but others. 

God is real. He listens to our prayers. Many times I was angry at God for "what he'd done to me" but I realized that it wasn't Him doing it to me, he was silently helping me. 

"If you're going through a hard time and wondering where God is, remember the teacher is always quiet during the test."

I know God has a plan for me, and I hope that through my trials I will be able to help someone going through something similar. 

I hope you know, you, reading this, that you can contact me anytime you need! You can find my e-mail in the 'CONTACT' section and I will get back to you within a day. 

Sending all my love to you. Remember, recovery is possible, happiness is possible, and joy is the purpose of our existence, so God will not deny us that privilege, we just have to be willing to take the steps to get there.

Much love,

Brooke Cowan x