Teen suffering from own demons arms others to battle theirs
Published Wednesday, March 15, 2017 12:05PM MDT
A teen who suffered from mental health issues is now sharing her story with others in an attempted to help them through their own struggles.
Julia Caddy used to feel isolated because of her mental illness and didn’t think that she was a help to anyone at all.
"Nobody understood what was going on. I was afraid to tell anyone what was going on and I felt like I was stuck in this world inside my head, which is kind of what mental illness is, but I couldn’t reach out to anyone and I was sick of that.”
Caddy was in Grade 8 when she was first diagnosed with depression and anxiety and says that that helped her realize what was going on but also made it a bit more difficult because it was hard to accept.
“It was a weight off my shoulders in terms of ‘okay, this is something real, this is what’s going on’ but it’s also scary, right?”
She is now working to help others face their own mental issues and uses her experiences to help them express what they are feeling.
Kerri Robins, a communications consultant who volunteers to help victims of mental health issues get their voices heard, says Caddy’s willingness to come forward is inspiring.
“I just find her very encouraging in recognizing that she did need help, she got help and now she’s helping others. So she’s really come full circle and I’m really proud of her for that.”
Caddy says that since sharing her story, she has made an impact. “I got so many messages from people I had met, friends I had who were thanking me for opening up because they were then able to open up to me.”
“I really admire her courage in speaking out about her mental health challenges,” Robins says. “I mean, it’s not easy, we still see a lot of taboo around the subject of mental health today.”
For her ability and willingness to share her own personal experiences to help others, Julia Caddy is our Inspired Alberta this week.
(With files from Darrel Janz)