You’re working hard towards your GCSEs right now and you’ve never felt stress as high as this. You’re freaking out over what’s going to happen if you fail, or which A-Level subjects to choose if you do pass. Calm down. Everything will work out exactly as it should and you’ll end up going down a path that, while the opposite of what you imagined for yourself, is perfect for you. Right now you’re thinking about taking a course on Live Events at university, but you’ll end up behind a camera and shooting your own films instead. Even the guy in your Media Studies class who gets on your nerves will eventually grow to become one of your best friends in the world.
I know this period in your life is tough, in fact it is the toughest period of your life that you will ever have to go through. You are in a position where you are living three completely different lives. Your home life – on the outside it appears everything is fine and normal, but inside you are close to bursting with everything you don’t think you can say. Your school life – you are slightly more open around your friends than you are with your family, but stress is pushing you to breaking point. Your online life – the only time you feel like you can truly be yourself. It will stay this way for a while, but you’re going to start leaving your comfort zone more and more. You’ll come out as gay to your friends over the next year and you’ll tell your immediate family not long after that. The weight of the world will be lifted off your shoulders and the relief you feel will be enormous.
Over the next few years, especially at university, you will go through ups and downs as if you’re on a rollercoaster. You will make new friends who you love and can count on, and the friends you can’t will fade into the background. You will also suffer the loss of people very close to you, family and otherwise, but you will remain strong and get through the hard times just as you always have. After freeing yourself from a toxic relationship in your first year at university, you will find one that is healthy and pure in your second. She is the love of your life, and by the end of third year you will know she’s the girl you want to spend the rest of your life with.
Finally, above all else, stay positive. I know it’s easier said than done because I’ve been where you are now. I know how dark your mind can get and times and the ways you cope, but things will get better. You will be 2 years clean by 21 (after leaving the aforementioned bad relationship) and proud of the fact every day. Your current girlfriend keeps you strong when it sometimes feels like you can’t be, and things are finally looking up for the future. So keep going, because you can do whatever you set your mind to.
Love, Laura x
“Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact” – William James