When I started school at the age of 4 I loved it. I have always loved learning new things and meeting new people. Being in school I was in my element. I absolutely loved it! Sadly, as the years went on, my mental health went completely downhill, I started to get bullied, I lost friends and I was alone. I know that some schools are amazing with topics regarding bullying, mental illness, etc but sadly that was not the case for me. The education system failed me in my time of need.
The day I walked into my fourth year of secondary school, all that came out of my teachers’ mouths was that the next three years are the most important years of our lives. The next three years we were preparing for our final exams, we were preparing to either go to college, start an apprenticeship or start work.
I was excited.
My final exams and going to college was my escape from my abusive father. I would get out and I would finally be happy. Unfortunately, that’s not what was planned for me. In 2017, I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety, Although, I was relieved to have a name for the way I felt, I was in the most horrible situation at home and I was suffering a lot.
Throughout the years, I was always known as the happy, bubbly, always smiling kind of girl. My grades began falling each and every year I advanced through my education, I became more secluded, I lost all my friends and no one noticed…
The education system failed me in my time of need.
When my family life exploded I was in a mess, I could not attend school without almost getting sick or having a panic attack. The school was a massive trigger for me. Discussing these problems with my principal and school teachers, they didn’t do much to help me. Some teachers were very understanding and tried to help me the best they could but my principal and my Irish teacher did nothing to help and in fact, made it worse.
My principal never did anything at all to help me throughout the whole six years that I was in her school, I ended up in her office many times throughout those six years to do with bullying and other problems that I came face to face with. Each and every time she brushed me off and said I was “overreacting”. I gave up with her after that. My Irish teacher was a real bitch. During my parent-teacher meeting, she interrupted my mum while she was in the middle of explaining how I am struggling really bad and told her “I don’t care about that, your daughter is failing and she shouldn’t be in my class, she will fail her final exam”.
I was livid.
Physically and mentally I was unable to attend school but I was determined to finish my final exams and prove my Irish teacher wrong. I definitely did. I passed my Irish exam and proved her wrong. I stayed at home and did my work at home much to my principal’s dismay. My school life began amazing but as the years went on it all went downhill.
The education system failed me miserably and I would never ever wish anyone else to experience what I did. School’s like to promote mental health during world mental health week but then the other 51 weeks of the year they pretend mental illness doesn’t exist.
This really needs to change. I know I was not the only one suffering from mental illness and they were probably experiencing the same situations I was. It needs to change drastically!