Ever since I was in elementary school people have always looked at me differently because I expressed myself differently than others. It started when I was in second grade and my peers would say I was ugly, fat, and weird. It hurt my feelings and i remember going home and crying to my mum because people were being mean to me. But as i got older, the other kids had advanced their words and forms of making my life hell. In about fifth grade there was a group of other students who used to follow me around and spend their time thinking of ways to make me hate myself. I remember coming back from recess one time and the teacher hadn’t returned to the classroom and those students had taped a sign to my desk that said “Beware of dog” and that made me really upset because I couldn’t figure out what they meant by it. I constantly thought about different ways of what they could have been inferring which turned out making my situation ten times worse. I became overly insecure and started to isolate myself from other people. I always felt as though people were looking at me funny and judging me for everything that I did. I would always get in trouble because I would get to class early so I could push my desk to the very back corner of the classroom so no one would notice me. But that didn’t work very well given that halfway through class my teacher would notice and yell at me for it followed by the entire class laughing at me and calling me a freak. I focused my thoughts on what I was doing to make people say these things about me. That summer I got to a point where i was always upset, everywhere I went i thought people were judging me and looking at me funny. Then in sixth grade was when social networks got really popular and of course I made an account for every one of them that i thought would help me fit in. As a result, everything got worse. I had people I didn’t even know messaging me saying how worthless I am and that no one likes me, etc. I also started making friends with people on the internet, I didn’t know them personally, half of them lived a thousand miles away. One of my online friends opened up to me saying that she is bullied and uses self-harm to calm herself. As time went on and things got worse, I reflected on my friend and I’s conversation about self-harm, and I was willing to do anything to take this stress off of my shoulders so I gave it a shot and began cutting myself. Yes, It gave me something to take my mind off of the problems I had been having, but it was VERY addictive and began to dictate my life. My life began to revolve around self harm and trying to find different ways to harm myself. I then began scratching myself, burning myself, punching myself, slamming my body into walls, doing anything i could to inflict pain on myself just to take my focus off of my problems for at least a little while. Every day at school, all I could think of is going home and grabbing my blade. Self-harm completely took over my life. My grades began to fall because I couldn’t focus in class because I felt as though I needed to harm myself in some way. I am currently in ninth grade and i am 25 days clean. Once self-harm came to the point where it wasn’t satisfying enough and i had started to have a horrifyingly high amount of suicidal thoughts and then i made my first attempt in the beginning of eighth grade, young I know. But age didn’t really matter, I felt the way I felt regardless of my age. Anyway, after several times going through those urges, I realized that I needed help so I started going to therapy and I joined a small group for teenagers who had gone through the things that I had gone through and I’m starting to head on the right path. If you are someone like me who has turned to self-harm as a way to cope, IT ISN’T WORTH IT. You are a masterpiece and nothing less. You are who you are for a reason, embrace it, be proud that you aren’t exactly like everyone else. Be PROUD to be different! You were born as an original, don’t die a copy! Most importantly, self-harm or suicide is NOT the way out, trust me. Find help, make the change that you need to do what’s best for yourself. Surround yourself with people who make you happy because that will help you so much to lead a better life. You are not alone, I’m here and I care. Stay Strong, you are worth it.