It's difficult to go it alone, but support is there for you
Growing up, my home life was anything but good. I would go to school, and then college as an escape. Nobody knew what my life was like at home. I was always desperate to leave, or just wished that one day it would all stop and be okay, but I never thought I’d end up being estranged with no contact, and it was incredibly hard for me to get to grips with. I mean, I don’t think I still have really, and I don’t think I ever will. Leaving home meant leaving everything behind: my sisters and my friends in
my hometown, but I knew I had to prioritise myself and my mental health.
Mourning the dream of family
During the first lockdown during Covid, the emotional abuse at home escalated. My boyfriend’s family saw the severity and let me move in, originally for 2 weeks (but I’m still there to this day thankfully!) Everything felt so much more difficult. Even though I had my boyfriend, I was alone. I had no financial support and no family. Talking helps - it always does - but most people just don’t really understand it; it’s a type of pain that I don’t think I’ll ever get rid of and that most people won’t experience. I'm not mourning a loved one, I’m mourning the dream I had of a family, of being loved by my mother and I'm left wondering what I did so wrong. I have a heavy dislike for my mum for what I was put through, but God, I cant help but miss the idea of having a family.
Admittedly, I never really realised what I was experiencing wasn’t the norm until halfway through secondary school. My mates would actually be happy to go home, or talk about what they did with their parents on the weekends and just all the cool stuff they got to do that I would never experience. It makes you realise how people around you do take everything for granted. I wish I had someone to pay for my driving lessons, a car, my phone bill and so much more but that’s just not a reality I’ll ever have. The Stand Alone bursary is genuinely a life saver for me, it usually goes into my savings for if something happens and I wouldn’t otherwise have the funds to sort it, such as dentist appointments, etc., which without the bursary, I would just ignore.
Talk to friends
I think with the lack of a family support network, I would say: talk to your friends. Even if they don’t fully understand what it is you're going through, they will always be there to help you! Take as much support as you can or need from the wellbeing services. At the end of the day, you're absolutely smashing it, no matter what, and it’s a difficult thing to do alone.