Mental Illness Recovery Series: Story # 55

This is the 55th story of the Mental Illness Recovery Series. Andie has been through hell and back. She has been able to find a purpose in life and is happier with who she is. This is her story:

Photo from: Andie

Andie lives in Texas, USA, and her current goal is to finish this semester and not drop out of her classes again. She said, “This will be my second semester in school, so I’m hoping that I can complete my classes this time. I wasn’t attending my classes last semester because I would feel uneasy and anxious while being there, so I ended up dropping out halfway through the semester.” In five years, she sees herself receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology degree. Andie wants to apply to graduate school and get a Master’s in Clinical Psychology.

On January 2013 a psychiatrist diagnosed her at the age of 14 with major depressive disorder after Andie tried to kill herself. Later that year Andie was experiencing depression with psychotic features, but that went away before 2014 started. She said, “I still struggle with my depression daily, but it’s (somewhat) getting better.” Her depression was caused by a breakup. Andie loved her boyfriend and considered him to be her best friend. She said, “He cheated on me, lied to me, and argued with me every day. When he cheated on me with a girl, I wanted to be her… I skipped meals, threw up my food, slit my wrists, dressed differently, etc. I tried everything to be good enough for him.” Sadly that girl demonized everyone against Andie to the point that she received anonymous messages on tumblr telling her how pathetic she was for trying to get her ex-boyfriend back and also received death threats.

Art by: Michelle Chrisitina

Andie has been sent to a mental hospital for 15 days and has been in an inpatient treatment four times and outpatient treatment three times. She sees a therapist and psychiatrist regularly and is prescribed medication. Andie’s life has been affected in many ways. She would purge, cut, cry everyday, smoke marijuana, and couldn’t keep up with her hygiene. Her thoughts took over, she said, “I told myself that I was worthless, useless, hopeless, unattractive, overweight, pathetic, unwanted, and meant to die.” It got to the point that Andie thought something else in her mind was telling her bad things. Not only that, but it also affected Andie’s next relationship and she distanced herself from her parents.

Although Andie hasn’t fully recovered she takes each day at a time by making a to-do list and just checks things off. Her family has been supportive and they try to understand her. Andie is motivated to stay strong for her little sister, niece and nephew. Andie now puts herself first, she said, “I learned that you can’t find happiness through a boy. You have to put yourself first. And no matter how much you love someone, sometimes you have to let go.” This ordeal has given Andie a new purpose in life, which is to help others with mental disorders.

This is her advice for others struggling:

“Remember that the pain is only temporary and that there is a bigger purpose for your life. I’m certain you’ll find it one day. Until that day comes, push through whatever it is you’re struggling with right now and make it to the next day.”

“If anyone needs someone to talk to or has questions, they contact me through email at andiethi.streety@gmail.com Also, I just started a blog, if people want to check it out, they can: alwaysandiethi.wordpress.com.

I am glad Andie has been able to move forward. Help me make a difference by sharing your story.

Edited by Hamad Husain

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