But there’s a hope that’s waiting for you in the dark / You should know you’re beautiful just the way you are / And you don’t have to change a thing, the world could change its heart / No scars to your beautiful, we’re stars and we’re beautiful – Alessia Cara “Scars to your Beautiful”
Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!
Ok warning, This post is very deep and involves talk about mental illnesses.
This post is something I have wanted to post for a while, I am sure most of you have heard “Scars to your beautiful” by Alessia Cara. If not here is the link to the song – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Em7vc8NWUNY
Mental Illnesses, are close to impossible to avoid for us teens one way or another. Whether we have close friends who are struggling with anxiety, depression, cutting, anorexia or any of the number of others that we want to help them through. It exposes us to the issues which are often terribly confronting. Whether you struggle yourself, know someone who does or have seen the scars.
This song “Scars to your beautiful” by Alessia Cara came out in late July this year and at one stage was even 13th on the US Billboard top 100. The song is basically about mental illnesses and body shape, girls embracing who they are and finally feeling loved and that they can love themselves. That us girls today have an image in our heads of what’s pretty and that we need to look like that and that we shouldn’t need to change in order to feel or be pretty but the worlds outlook. It’s pretty brave to include cutting, tears and starving in a song.
But even though it is such a huge, giant issue people are afraid to talk about it. In so many places it is never mentioned and it is almost always misunderstood! That is why this song is amazing, it actually speaks out about these issues publicly!
Currently this song has been a bit like an anthem to me. At the end of this year my group was a disaster with one girl who became suicidal, a few others started cutting, eating next to nothing, they had depression or anxiety or both. My group was a mess and being in this somewhat toxic environment impacted on me. I have always been one to compare myself to others, rate myself against them. I have never been a naturally super skinny person I am definitely not over weight but I didn’t feel good enough. I felt terrible at pool parties always worried people were judging me when I wore my bikini. I was worried whenever I wore anything, even the school uniform. So unintentionally I started to avoid food. It was only a bit at first, my way to control something in my life where I felt like I could never do enough to help my friends. So at first I might just have not eaten my snacks that I had packed but still eating the rest. Until everything with my friends was getting worse which made me worse too. I will never forget when I saw the cuts on one of my closest friends wrists. How when she realised I had seen and had started sobbing uncontrollably. I flipped. Instead of only not eating eg. a muesli bar, that would be all I would eat for the whole day at school. Even though I was still dancing and playing sport and was studying like crazy for exams. I would only really eat a little bit of breakfast and then my proper dinner, I would just ask for a little less when it was being served saying “I wasn’t really hungry.”
Then my group split up and all went to different groups. I was out of that toxic environment but I was still struggling to understand everything. I had become a confidant for quite a few people while I was still in my old group and what they told me and what I saw haunted me. It got a little better with this new group though, who were loud and had a good happy vibe. I started eating maybe a second snack instead of just one. It was a step in the right direction. When the Christmas Holidays came I could no longer dispose of my lunch or give it to others. I was at home so I couldn’t not eat or someone would have noticed, asked questions. Luckily I was eating ok out of school hours and on the weekends that I didn’t actually become ridiculously skinny. So I started eating again but I was very hesitant, I didn’t want to be fat/look fat. I would hear voices in my head when I picked up food. “Don’t eat that, it will make you fat, you are fat, you need to be skinnier, it will make you uglier, don’t you want to be pretty?” These little voices made me feel bad about myself. terrible, like I wasn’t good enough. A three letter word that I never would have considered could have caused so many terrible things. I’m still not happy completely happy within myself but I am almost always eating Breakfast, lunch and dinner which is way better than before. I also started a workout again so that would also help me look better because all I wanted was to look pretty, admired, to turn a few heads but also feel happy within myself.
Whenever I would wash my hands and just look at my scar free wrists I would remember my friends. It’s at a point where I had a meltdown. My netball coach (Lets call her Country Coach, C.C) had been over for dinner, she and Honey (for first time readers – my best friend who lives a long way away – not her real name so this stays anonymous) were the only ones who I had confided in. Told them what was happening but I brushed it off with both of them but C.C especially. We had been talking about C.C’s panic attacks and it reminded me of the girl who I was closest to in my old group who I mentioned before. My eyes felt like they were burning, I felt the tears coming so I went to the bathroom where I splashed my face the ran my hands under the water. I looked at my wrists and I just could no longer contain the emotions I had been bottling up for ages and they all came spilling out all at once like a tsunami born from the pit of my stomach. That’s when I finally told my Mum found what had happened.
It was actually the greatest thing for me to finally talk about it. I had been listening to my friends talk and cry and tell me about what they were going through without realising that it was impacting me to. Talking to my Mum and C.C was the best thing I could have done. They were so supportive and it felt like a load had been lifted from my shoulders. But, I couldn’t bring myself to talk about food. I still have no idea how to tell my Mum so maybe I will get her to read this.
If you are struggling, please, talk to someone. It is incredible how much it can not only help, but take the burden off your shoulders. Yeah it is super scary. Opening up after you have put so much work into keeping it buried deep below the surface. I am not saying you have to talk to a professional. I’m not, but have considered it for the new year. You can talk to me if you want I will do my best to respond as soon as I can. Email me through the form on the contact me page. I promise I will listen and I will do my best to help!
Talk to the friend you trust most, a sport coach, teacher, friends parent, you parents. Someone you trust.
Even though this was extremely difficult to write and I have almost burst into tears several times writing this, I feel better for doing it. I hope someone reads this and realises they aren’t alone. If you have a friend who you feel this could help please pass it on!
Do you have a mental illness? Do you know someone that does or are you the person they talk to? Do you have any tricks or tips for overcoming mental illnesses? For telling parents? Any Questions? I would love to hear them down in the comments section below! Feel free to stay anonymous and make up a name or even enter anonymous! I hope I can answer your questions or maybe another reader!
For anyone that actually read the whole post, thank you, it means more than you can imagine.
P.S today I chose this instead of a teenage post. It seemed more appropriate. It’s from www.healthyplace.com