I eat.  But only when I need to.  Right now I haven’t eaten for two days and I don’t feel hungry.

At seven years old I started to get sick.

I don’t know why, I can’t think of any reason for why my mind started to do to me what it did and still does, and I can’t think of any reason for why I don’t eat.  My brain just does stuff.

It’s not hard talking about my mental illness but it is hard trying to find something to say that will help people understand it.

So, I have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and I sort of have anorexia, but it is not anorexia.  No one really understands what it is.  I also have short term memory loss and again, no one really knows why. I’m medicated for my OCD and that helps a lot.  It helps to make all the obsession stuff less full on.  I’d say it’s down to about 80% now which is great.  I think the doctors hoped that my skinniness and my not needing to eat was a part of the OCD and that medication would fix it, but it hasn’t.

I eat.  But only when I need to.  Right now I haven’t eaten for two days and I don’t feel hungry.  It’s not about what’s on the plate, it’s just that I don’t feel any need to eat.

People tell me that’s OCD.  My granddad had the same thing and I think that some of my family have experienced depression, so I guess my family have been really good at dealing with this.  My sister and my grandfather have been the best in understanding me.

Before I got support, I really thought I was going insane.  I was having suicidal thoughts all the time.  I wanted my old life back and I know I won’t get it back.  I don’t know why this has happened to me.  No one can tell me why it’s happened to me.

I got bullied at school because of my weight.  I hated them for that.  I was scared all the time.  I was scared someone would do something really horrible to me and I used to get nightmares and I wished I were dead. In the end I had to stop going to school because of my mental health stuff.  My school didn’t have the resources to help so I had to leave.  Even though I was bullied there it was still hard to leave because that made me scared too.  I didn’t know what was going to happen to me.

Until I came to STREAT I hadn’t completed anything, I’d never had a job.  Now I’ve been in their cafes every week for almost 20 weeks and I’m about to complete a Certificate II.  That feels good.

If I met someone going through similar stuff to me I’d tell them not to be scared.  I’d tell them they’re not alone and that suicide isn’t the answer, that there are people who care. And I’d tell them all about STREAT.

I still don’t know where I’ll be in the future, but now I know I can work and study then maybe everything else will start to make sense and I’ll work it all out.  I feel like that could happen now.  I feel like I have a future.

 

Jamie graduated in 2015 and is now pursuing his dream of becoming an actor.