My cousins son is struggling right now and I have just written him a letter. I think its somehting I want to share.
I’ve been talking to your mum and she tells me that you have been struggling a lot lately. I know it sounds trite but sometimes life is a little like that. We all have days/weeks where it feels like there’s no point but please don’t think that this is all there is. Every person, every being on this planet has worth. You are young, you haven’t found your path yet but trust me, it’s out there and when you find it everything will change.
That doesn’t mean that there won’t be bad days. It just means that there will be way more good days than bad.
Let me tell you a little story. Bear with me, it’s going to be a little wordy, and it’s going to be brutally honest, and it’s probably going to say some things that you won’t want to hear or won’t make sense.
21 years ago my brother took his own life.
The day he did that he broke something inside me and all the rest of my family that will never be repaired.
The family immediately fractured. He had 2 daughters, one who I have never met. The other came back into my life this year. They never got to know him. They barely even know what he looked like. Their mother removed all traces of him from her world. They refer to him as Peter. He was never Peter. He was Pete and he was dad.
Do I still cry for him? You betcha I do. Even after 21 years it just takes a song on the radio and I am back to that day. I must look like a mad lady, driving down the road with tears streaming down my face.
Do I still go to ring him every time something happens? No I don’t. That finally stopped happening about 10 years ago. Nowa days I just look up and ask out loud if he saw that. You see, even after all this time I still want to share the stuff that makes up my world with him. That has never gone away and it still hurts that I can’t.
You see XXXX that boy took a part of me with him that is never coming back. When he ended his life he told me that my love for him wasn’t enough and since that day I have never trusted that it will ever be. I no longer have a best friend, or even really friends. I tend to keep to myself outside of work and my immediate family. I consider a successful weekend to be one where I have managed to not leave the house. Very few people know terribly much about me. I smile a lot and I talk a lot and because of that people think I share a lot but most people have absolutely no idea what’s going on in my world at all. I’m a bit of a magician like that haha
I have huge anxiety because I am always worried about letting everyone down. Sometimes this leads to panic attacks. I had to leave a wedding in a hurry just a couple of months ago because I freaked out.
There is loads more but those are pretty much the high lights. Right now I am going to beg you not to do this to your family. Not to do this to your sisters. Don’t let them live with the pain and heartache that I have lived the majority of my life with. It doesn’t go away for them, they don’t get over it.
Now we are going to turn this around and move away from the sad.
Life is good honey, and it’s a better world with you in it. Sometimes we forget that people love us while we are hurting and I promise you, you are loved.
The teen’s are the worst of it. Actually they suck great assmonkey’s. I wouldn’t go back to that time of my life if you paid me. Your body and you brain haven’t stopped developing yet and all the hormone crap is racing around in there not doing its job properly, or over doing it often, leading to big highs and lows and chemical freak outs. That’s why certain drugs can help you feel better and sometimes, if it’s not the right one or combination, can make you feel worse. If it wasn’t an internal thing then they wouldn’t work at all. All this going on inside you can make you do, think and act in ways that aren’t you. As I have always told my kids, this is not an excuse but a reality. What you do with it from there is your responsibility and choice.
You are nearly through this part of your life. Pretty soon all the internal stuff is going to start settling down. Whatever triggers that have caused this crash are still going to be there, but they are going to find their place and become something that happened that shaped you into who you are, not the thing that defines you. Nobody gets through life without bad shit happening, it’s what we do next that counts.
Sometimes we have trouble with the bit that comes next. It’s ok to get help, and don’t think you have to accept the first doctor/therapist that you go to. They are like hair dressers and tattooists. You have to find one that fits you. If you don’t like them or they annoy you then it’s not going to work. Ask to try a different person. This pretty much works for everything you do in life . . . except social welfare. There you just have to deal with the asshat they assign you.
One day this will all be behind you and you will be stronger for it PLUS because of what you have been through you will have great empathy for others when they are struggling. This is a good thing. People without empathy are arseholes.
Sooooooo after many many words what I am trying to say is this. I love you. Your mum and your dad love you. Your sisters love you and so so so many other people love you. Hang in there kid because it will get better.
In the little bag is a bracelet of the manly leather kind. It’s a real one not some cheap piece of crap from a market or $2 shop. It’s for you. I want you to put it on and wear it so that every time you look down you know that I am right here if you need me. I am only ever a phone call away.
I love you little fella
Aunty Toni xxx