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 Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.

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hppamela
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PostSubject: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Wed Apr 01 2009, 00:51

First topic message reminder :

Wow! My very own office. I've never had one of these before. Let's see how long it stays all neat and tidy. Hopefully I'll have stuff up soon. At stinky moment, I'm a bit lost. It's like being a newbie all over again.


Last edited by hppamela on Fri Apr 03 2009, 23:40; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Wed May 06 2009, 04:14

A rough draft for an editorial of my own.

DepressionóA Patientís Perspective


For as long as I can remember, I have been dealing with symptoms of depression. I went several years without any real help; I was not diagnosed with chronic depression until I was nineteen. I was told I likely coped with symptoms since early childhood. Though the diagnosis helped me deal with my past experiences, I still felt guilt when I thought about how my life had gone, how it could have been. As I got older, my depression only got worse. By twenty-four, I was experiencing the extreme symptoms nearly everyone has heard of, but few have seen. My inability to hide pain from those closest to me, and my ability to hide it from a select few, brought about certain misconceptions. Some of these were admittedly helpful and convenient; others actually hurt and often made things worse. Perhaps, though, I can use all this for good.

Growing up, I did not have a very rough life. We were from a lower income family, but I was pretty well accustomed to that. I may not have been very popular in school, and I did not get to do many of the so-called necessary experiences, such as hanging out at the mall or going on plenty of dates, but I had everything I needed. While there were issues, they mostly seemed minor. For the most part, I had a pretty good life. Nonetheless, I was still chronically sad. Tears came easily, and I often displayed a fierce temper. Because of the so-called good life, my family members were often at a loss as to why I was so sad. Even my mother, who went through similar issues growing up, was a bit perplexed. It wasnít uncommon for me to hear such things as, ďitís not that bad,Ē and ďwait until youíre an adult, then youíll really have things to worry about," from people outside my home, especially ones who either had gone through greater difficulties during youth or who never dealt with such serious depression.

One of the most frustrating symptoms of depression is a lack of motivation. Humility aside, I am an intelligent person. Intellectually speaking, I should have had straight ďAĒs. I could even have graduated valedictorian or at least salutatorian. Instead, I struggled to maintain an average G.P.A. I couldnít find the ability to care enough. I spent a large part of my time either staying as busy as possible to distract myself from the pain or lying on my bed or the couch lost in the sadness. I would likely have failed quite a few classes if I didnít have to maintain certain grades to stay in my choral ensemble. At times, I could barely bring myself to care about even that.

My temper tended to show when my depression was at its worst. It wasnít uncommon for me to punch a wall or kick a cabinet in anger. Another coping mechanism I started using when I was fourteen or fifteen was self-injury. I didnít cut; instead, I would hit myself, sometimes to the point of leaving bruises. Through high school and the first few years of adulthood, my self-injury did not get much worse. I was too stubborn, and the pain never quite reached the level at which I needed something more in order to cope with it. That didnít happen for quite a few years.

Over the years, my symptoms went up and down. At times it wasnít that difficult to deal with. Then there were times I felt I wouldnít be able to survive if I kept feeling that way. Sometimes I was convinced the pain would somehow bring about my destruction. In 2003 I entered an exceptionally unhealthy relationship. We were very unhappy together, but this person dealt with a more devastating mental illness than my own and was often manipulative. It wasnít uncommon for me to hear a suicide threat when I was unhappy about some behavior. I was too young, too inexperienced in life to handle a relationship with a person who had this particular illness, but I saw no way out. I was also living in a slummy home with even slummier people. My anger and sadness began to get more and more difficult to handle. That was the year I first cut myself. I told myself it wasnít so bad, though. It wasnít like I took a razorblade to my skin. It was a steak knife, which left scarcely more than a scratch. The implication was the same, though. Still, I didnít go any farther than that for more than four years.

Some of you may know that back around the end of 2007, I went through a rather rough break-up. Around that time, I joined Hogwarts Experience. I plunged into the site, earning a spot among the top-five housepoint earners, even though Iíd only been there for half the term. I kept myself as busy as I could for quite some time. I also began developing an eating disorder. It never reached the level of full-blown anorexia, but within six months I had lost about forty pounds. Most of the weight-loss was completely unnecessary, and all of it was achieved in an unhealthy manneróessentially, I was starving myself. I also became obsessed with my looks. It wasnít really a shallow thing; I just found something that I actually had control over. I never left the house without make-up and styled hair, except perhaps to take out the trash or do laundry. My nails were almost always nearly perfect. My clothes were always flattering and stylish. The combination of the weight-loss and the new fashion sense Iíd acquired made me seem like I had it together, especially to people who didnít see me very regularly. In fact, I frequently heard about how much happier I seemed. I even had myself convinced I was happier.

I started an intense downward spiral around April of last year. I started the minor cutting again, this time with moderately sharper implements. I made my first serious cut shortly after it started. In a way, I started to feel better. It kept me alive anyway. In May, I hit rock bottom. I canít remember what happened to get me so upset, but I procured a razorblade. I didnít have any specific plans; mostly I was taking it home from work just in case I felt I needed it. One last thing happened right before I left or shortly before I got home, one or the other. It was too much to handle and I used the blade the minute I got in the door. Dangerously enough, it didnít hurt. I barely felt anything beyond a light pressure. There was something oddly beautiful about the whole thing to my emotionally unstable mind. I still canít explain it, but somehow those three cuts I put on my leg were, in my mind, a good thing. I cut more and more through the following two weeks, but at some point I decided I was going to quit. I threw away the blade. Little did I know how hard it would be. You see, it was something of a drug for me. I was addicted. Nonetheless, Iíve only received three more scars at my own hand since then. Itís still a struggle for me to this day, but Iím managing with the help of two people who love me very much and whom I donít think I could live without.

I did go through some exceptionally rough moments. Suicide was strong on my mind at times. I did call a hotline once, and I would highly recommend doing that to anyone coping with the urge to die. Worse than dealing with these thoughts, I faced anger from one person I told of my feelings some time after these events occurred. He couldnít understand or accept it. It hurt him because I essentially told him that he wasnít enough to make me want to continue. It also hurt him because, by his belief, my soul would have been lost forever. My mind still goes in that direction sometimes but, as with the cutting, I have people there for me. Iím taking it as I go. Itís getting easier, too. I have more motivation lately, and I donít focus on the pain as much. I feel, for the first time in my life, that I have something to look forward to, not just something to live for at this moment. My future, for once, looks good.

My experience with depression has undoubtedly taken its toll on me. From youth and young adulthood, to my current day-to-day life, I have faced things no one ever should. What I have been through has shaped who I am, though. I have taken lessons that I will bring with me if my child someday faces similar obstacles. I pray that day will never come but if it does, I am at least a bit more ready to handle it than I would have been otherwise. If nothing else, I hope my trials have helped at least one person garner a better understanding of this all-too-common illness.


Last edited by hppamela on Sun May 24 2009, 02:59; edited 3 times in total (Reason for editing : Corrections and modifications)
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Thu May 07 2009, 19:49

Pamela this is such a moving article. It's well written and something everyone should read *nods*
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Thu May 07 2009, 23:38

Thank you. There were a couple more points I'd wanted to make, but I really didn't want to go too long. I'll find a way to incorporate them from a non-personal perspective in the feature.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Fri May 08 2009, 00:26

Could you possibly use them in the interview piece as part of the intro or something?
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Fri May 08 2009, 00:36

Possibly. What I was planning to do with the interviews was to use them primarily for research purposes. I planned to use a couple quotes, as well. I'm not completely sure how I'm doing this exactly.

I can't believe it! I had my boyfriend proofread my piece, and he only found one thing to fix. He usually rips everyone else's to shreds. I don't think he would let me seem stupid by submitting something full of awkward sentences and grammar errors. I hope not anyway.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Wed May 13 2009, 17:23

For my own reminder, these are the things I'm doing for the 11th edition:

Depression feature with interviews - still need to PM Stephy as well as Vi's two suggestions (Done. Waiting on one reply from one of Vi's suggestions).

Editorial is pretty much done, unless I come up with something I hadn't thought of before.

Three interview questions for staff members (Sent out).

Normal editor tasks - already have a few people who've said they'll write something.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon May 18 2009, 04:07

I'm going to try to organize my thoughts a little. I'm still trying to figure out exactly what direction I am taking for the interview piece. I know I have quotes from two members who've faced depression that I want to use. I also know that I want it to be as informative as possible. I've found some statistics, but I want more. At the same time, I don't want it to read like an essay for psychology class. I want this to be something people will be able to follow, rather than another boring lecture piece. I'm looking to open with something like:

Quote :
Did you know that about twenty percent of teenagers suffer from depression? When you first hear that figure, it's easy to say, "oh. That's not so bad." Granted it seems like a small number, especially when you do the math to see that eighty percent don't suffer. Look at it from a different angle, though. Take five people in your literature class or who are in orchestra with you. Better yet, imagine your five closest friends. Statistically speaking, one of them is depressed. To go even farther, one of them is statistically likely to have possible symptoms of self-injury, self-destructive behavior, or even suicidal thoughts. When you think of it that way, it becomes clear that it is a good idea to see what the other four can do to help.

That's something I just typed up without any real planning. I think I'll continue with some of the experiences of members who have been diagnosed with depression. I want to put a special emphasis on support systems. I also want to incorporate something about the different faces of depression. Not every depressed person goes around all in black, piercing every available surface of their body. I think that's a very dangerous misconception. Anyway, I'll be working a bit more on it very soon.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun May 24 2009, 02:57

Okay. Here's my problem with the interview piece I'm working on for the next edition. It isn't reading like an article. It's more like an essay. Okay, so I suppose it could appear in a magazine, but it's not newspaper-like. I'm suddenly inordinately nervous about it. I'm still plugging along, though.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun May 24 2009, 03:04

i think if its not working like you want, then just do it as just an interview, a question and answer straight forward interview.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun May 24 2009, 05:26

Well, if the truth be told, I've really only written that introduction thingy. Also, many of the answers I've been getting have been difficult to use. Some were one-word answers, others were so grammatically crazy it's hard to tell what was intended.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun May 24 2009, 08:22

lol just use the answers how they are and let everyone make up their own mind, thats the thing with an interview, you can't really put words into peoples mouths without getting into trouble, if their answer is short or makes no sense (like all mine possibly lol) then thats on them to deal with.

Oh me thinks its time for a nice hot bubble bath, good book and some chocolate.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun May 24 2009, 20:09

hppamela wrote:
Well, if the truth be told, I've really only written that introduction thingy. Also, many of the answers I've been getting have been difficult to use. Some were one-word answers, others were so grammatically crazy it's hard to tell what was intended.


You could try PMing that person and asking them to clearify things or even say more about it. I'm sure they won;t mind too much
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun May 24 2009, 22:47

Here's my big problem with doing it purely as an interview thing. It's far too easy for people to pass it off as people whining. However, if I can back it up with facts, it won't be as easy to shrug off. Everyone's aware that there are people who cut themselves, people who consider or attempt suicide, but those who hear it often think they (we) are just looking for attention. No matter how much we try to express the opposite. The interviews will be incorporated, though. As more than just research, too. They'll just be one or two quotes from each individual.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun May 24 2009, 22:54

That might be hard. I don't know how I could help you out there. I know that by the time you have it all written that it will be great.. Sorry I'm not much help
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon May 25 2009, 00:16

Meh. It's okay. I'm putting too much pressure on myself I think. Etta, if you would rather I simply type up the interviews, I will.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon May 25 2009, 03:10

I like how you planned to do it, with facts and information. I'm just thinking of some way to help. My only thought is this - i can't explain it so i'll show you what i mean lol:

(ignore my statistics and facts i made them up)

One in Five teens across the world will attempt suicide today, 43% will succeed. With ever increasing numbers of people being diagnosed with Depression, many of whom are teens and young adults, i randomly questioned members on HE about suicide and if they had tried it:

MysterGirl01: Yeah it worked as well, cos am a ghost.

ToInnocent: No, its wrong to take your own life, its a sin and anyone who kills themselves is weak minded and going to hell.



...Does that make sense/any help?
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon May 25 2009, 03:54

I follow. That's a bit like I was thinking of doing. What I was leaning toward, though, was something like
Quote :
A member of Ravenclaw house says she has attempted suicide on three different occasions. Despite this, she hasn't gotten real professional help because her parents haven't taken her seriously.

That way I can keep the grammar correct without misquoting anyone, and I can maintain anonymity.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon May 25 2009, 04:05

Yeah, i think the best way forward is to write it like that and if you struggle to use whats been said by the person as an answer, you should PM them with what you'd think would lok best and have them OK it first, that way you're not misquoting them if they've okay'd what you've put.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon May 25 2009, 05:06

Righto. One of these years I'll learn to be less hard on myself.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon May 25 2009, 10:41

To be hard on ones self, one will achieve dreams which one thought impossible.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon May 25 2009, 20:59

OoooOO that;s a good quote.

For our school paper when we have to quote people we usually write the article and than let the person who we quoted to read it and make sure we are getting across what they said and didn't mishear them. You could maybe try that Pamela
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Wed May 27 2009, 12:29

Okay. Thanks guys.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Thu Jul 23 2009, 12:26

The appeal of Teenage stars- Good/bad roll models?

Every young girl has her idol.

Although this connection is normal, is it still safe? The humiliation of teenage stars these days are becoming the punch-line of the best comedians. So is it still sensible to encourage children to see celebrities as roll models? When the pro's and con's are added together, the answer is still not clear. So the question is, who exactly is the 'perfect' roll model for young people? Are we looking at it from the right perspective?

Some will say that Britney Spears is a good roll model for young people. Back in 2000 when she was nothing more than the innocent school girl people adored her, she was exactly the girl that mothers approved their daughters to look up to. However, through the more sticky and difficult times of her life, young children were discouraged against Britney. With that said some still followed her, looked up to her. Why? Because they saw what she was doing wrong and learned from her mistakes. This is an example of a positive roll model in my eyes. Learning from other peoples mistakes is the best way to do it. Everyone has yelled at their parents about 'Letting us make our own mistakes' but why do that when you can learn from someone elses, without the heartache of paying the price for what you did?

As a matter of opinion, I see more innocent stars as the threats. People are queuing up to see the likes of Taylor Swift and the Jonas Brothers. Why? Because their parents approve of it, and they like the music on show. The danger with the so-called innocent stars is- That when they start to do stupid stuff e.g. take drugs and get smashed, those young fans will think, ' I can still be young and innocent whilst doing these things, after all Taylor Swift/Jonas Brothers can do that, why can't I?'

What I'm getting at here is-
People like Britney Spears are mostly frowned upon, their drunken faces are plastered all over the news and Internet. People know that's unacceptable, but when the young stars which are praised for their purity and sensible natures start to do wrong, young teenagers may see that as an opening. Thinking 'Maybe it's accepted in sociaty now.' The choice however, is yours. This last line is the most intelligent line from the wholleeee editorial- No one is the perfect roll model. It just depends on what way you look at the person and their situation. You are entitled to your own opinion.


Editorial Oneee....
I dont even know if it's any good :/
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Thu Jul 23 2009, 15:32

I'll look over it tonight, and let you know tomorrow. My only concern is that it is rather short at only 433 words. I'll have to double check with Etta if that's going to be okay. I know there's a minimum word count for anything submitted to the Quill, but I think the editorials were all done as one "story". It may not be a problem.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Fri Jul 24 2009, 01:56

Pammers...just wondering...would a editorial on Racism be to much?

I really really want to do this but i wanna ask before I start writing anything
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Fri Jul 24 2009, 09:53

I think we set a word count minimum of 500 words for Editorials, but if you're okay with it being only 433 words long Pamela i don't have a problem with putting it up, i don't think the min word count on the quill will effect stories anymore as it was lowered to 100 words for poetry.

What form of racism are you thinking Little Pumpkin?
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Fri Jul 24 2009, 14:07

I was talking to my friend from South Africa this morning when she sent me this forum thing. I looked over it and I seen MLK and Obama and got mad. It wasnt the fact they were talking about them...I dont mind. But it was the fact they were saying all black people were stupid, fake, phoney...hypocrites. Basically...I got mad about all of it. I dont like racism...and I know its out there...but do they realize how much it hurts a person? Kids today are being teased for being what they are by other kids because of their parent's brain washing and hatred towards a race and those kids are either killing themselves or having low cofindence and self esteem.

And its not just white people there...its the black people too. They want to KILL the white people there or get them away from Africa. But we were talking about it this morning when she showed me the clip of that black man they was in prison for a long time or something...and how him and others were singing a song about killing the white people of Africa.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Fri Jul 24 2009, 17:30

Thats just one form of racism, the most public one. When someone thinks of racism its always the colour of their skin, but theres more, like which countries people come from, their accents, sexuality, religion, etc.

It is shocking, but like you said, its what their parents have taught them, and their parents were taught off their parents.

Also, i know its hard but my grandparents generation were brought up to say some words which today we, well more likely your generation Lesley, wouldn't dream of saying, but back then it was okay, no-one took offence, well actually no-one complained.

But it all comes down to the narrow-minded views drilled into each of us, we can't hold our parents and whoever responsible for the way we all act, we all make a choice without realising it to either do as our parents preach or just deal with it ourselves by not offending other people.

Like i said though, it is shocking but not all of us can or want to be politically correct every day of their lives.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon Aug 03 2009, 12:18

I am so, so sorry. The internet has been down. I was able to get on for a short time, but after I emailed my family so they knew I wasn't dead, I didn't really have time for anything. I have the piece I was supposed to do, but I don't have it with me. I won't be back on until Wednesday, but I can have it then. I'm so sorry.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon Aug 03 2009, 13:03

Don't worry Pam! We have til October! everyone just take a chill pill, kick back and relax.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Tue Aug 04 2009, 06:54

Really. Well. That's good, because the piece was very half...well, I can't say the rest of the phrase.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Thu Feb 18 2010, 00:06

I went back and re-did the original editorial with updated experiences.

Depression--A Survivors Perspective

Tuesday, November 17 2009 began as a fairly normal day. I woke at 9 AM to feed my 3 1/2 month-old son, Thomas. I was frustrated with myself because I needed to leave ten minutes before 10 AM, and I'd not given myself enough time to eat and get ready. My frustration turned quickly to anger because I was tired and hungry. On top of that, Thomas was being difficult, pulling off after every ten seconds of eating to scream some more. I didn't really even want to get ready. I just wanted to lay Thomas back down after the feeding and go back to sleep. But I knew I needed to go. Somehow I managed to feed the baby, shower, dress, and get out the door only ten minutes late. Cussing and yelling at my boyfriend, James, I headed to the last place I wanted to go: the wellness center. That trip to the wellness center changed my life in the end, though. All Iíd wanted was to get my anti-depressant medicine changed. I ended up in the hospital for three nights.

For as long as I can remember, I have been dealing with symptoms of depression. I went several years without any real help; I was not diagnosed with chronic depression until I was nineteen. I was told I likely coped with symptoms since early childhood. Though the diagnosis helped me deal with my past experiences, I still felt guilt when I thought about how my life had gone, how it could have been. As I got older, my depression only got worse. By twenty-four, I was experiencing the extreme symptoms nearly everyone has heard of, but few have seen. My inability to hide pain from those closest to me, and my ability to hide it from a select few, brought about certain misconceptions. Some of these were admittedly helpful and convenient; others actually hurt and often made things worse. Perhaps, though, I can use all this for good.

Growing up, I wouldnít say I had a very rough life. We were from a lower income family, but I was pretty well accustomed to that. I may not have been very popular in school, and I did not get to do many of the so-called necessary experiences, such as hanging out at the mall or going on plenty of dates, but I had everything I needed. While there were issues, they mostly seemed minor. For the most part, I had a pretty good life. Nonetheless, I was still chronically sad. Tears came easily, and I often displayed a fierce temper. Because of the so-called good life, my family members were often at a loss as to why I was so sad. Even my mother, who went through similar issues growing up, was a bit perplexed. It wasnít uncommon for me to hear such things as, ďitís not that bad,Ē and ďwait until youíre an adult, then youíll really have things to worry about," from people outside my home, especially ones who either had gone through greater difficulties during youth or who never dealt with such serious depression.

One of the most frustrating symptoms of depression is a lack of motivation. Humility aside, I am an intelligent person. Intellectually speaking, I should have had straight ďAĒs. I could even have graduated valedictorian or at least salutatorian. Instead, I struggled to maintain an average G.P.A. I couldnít find the ability to care enough. I spent a large part of my time either staying as busy as possible to distract myself from the pain or lying on my bed or the couch lost in the sadness. I would likely have failed quite a few classes if I didnít have to maintain certain grades to stay in my choral ensemble. At times, I could barely bring myself to care about even that.

My temper tended to show when my depression was at its worst. It wasnít uncommon for me to punch a wall or kick a cabinet in anger. Another coping mechanism I started using when I was fourteen or fifteen was self-injury. I didnít cut; instead, I would hit myself, sometimes to the point of leaving bruises. Through high school and the first few years of adulthood, my self-injury did not get much worse. I was too stubborn, and the emotional pain never quite reached the level at which I felt I needed something more in order to cope with it. That didnít happen for quite a few years.

Over the years, my symptoms went up and down. At times it wasnít that difficult to deal with. Then there were times I felt I wouldnít be able to survive if I kept feeling that way. Sometimes I was convinced the pain would somehow bring about my destruction. In 2003 I entered an exceptionally unhealthy relationship. We were very unhappy together, but this person dealt with a more devastating mental illness than my own and was often manipulative. It wasnít uncommon for me to hear a suicide threat when I was unhappy about some behavior. I was too young, too inexperienced in life to handle a relationship with a person who had this particular illness, but I saw no way out. I was also living in a slummy home with even slummier people. My anger and sadness began to get more and more difficult to handle. That was the year I first cut myself. I told myself it wasnít so bad, though. It wasnít like I took a razorblade to my skin. It was a steak knife, which left scarcely more than a scratch. The implication was the same, though. Still, I didnít go any farther than that for more than four years.

Some of you may know that back around the end of 2007, I went through a rather rough break-up. Around that time, I joined Hogwarts Experience. I plunged into the site, earning a spot among the top-five housepoint earners, even though Iíd only been there for half the term. I kept myself as busy as I could for quite some time. I also began developing an eating disorder. It never reached the level of full-blown anorexia, but within six months I had lost about forty pounds. Most of the weight-loss was completely unnecessary, and all of it was achieved in an unhealthy manneróessentially, I was starving myself. I also became obsessed with my looks. It wasnít really a shallow thing; I just found something that I actually had control over. I never left the house without make-up and styled hair, except perhaps to take out the trash or do laundry. My nails were almost always nearly perfect. My clothes were always flattering and stylish. The combination of the weight-loss and the new fashion sense Iíd acquired made me seem like I had it together, especially to people who didnít see me very regularly. In fact, I frequently heard about how much happier I seemed. I even had myself convinced I was happier.

I started an intense downward spiral around April of 2008. I started the minor cutting again, this time with moderately sharper implements. I made my first serious cut shortly after it started. In a way, I started to feel better. It kept me alive anyway. In May, I hit rock bottom. I canít remember what happened to get me so upset, but I procured a razorblade. I didnít have any specific plans; mostly I was taking it home from work just in case I felt I needed it. One last thing happened right before I left or shortly before I got home, one or the other. It was too much to handle and I used the blade the minute I got in the door. Dangerously enough, it didnít hurt. I barely felt anything beyond a light pressure. There was something oddly beautiful about the whole thing to my emotionally unstable mind. I still canít explain it, but somehow those three cuts I put on my leg were, in my mind, a good thing. I cut more and more through the following two weeks, but at some point I decided I was going to quit. I threw away the blade. Little did I know how hard it would be. You see, it was something of a drug for me. I was addicted. Nonetheless, Iíve only received four more scars at my own hand since then. Itís still a struggle for me to this day, but Iím managing with the help of two people who love me very much and whom I donít think I could live without.

I did go through some exceptionally rough moments. Suicide was strong on my mind at times. I did call a hotline once, and I would highly recommend doing that to anyone coping with the urge to die. Worse than dealing with these thoughts, I faced anger from one person I told of my feelings some time after these events occurred. He couldnít understand or accept it. It hurt him because I essentially told him that he wasnít enough to make me want to continue. It also hurt him because, by his belief, my soul would have been lost forever. I was a little better for awhile until I truly hit rock bottom one last time. I finally had a plan. Thankfully it fell through. In a moment of lucidity I told my boyfriend, and he convinced me to tell the doctor the full extent of my state. The doctors and the nurses at the hospital didnít really help much, aside from getting me on good medication and getting me through that patch. What helped was being around others who knew how I felt and whoíd gone through similar experiences. My mind still goes in that direction sometimes but, as with the cutting, I have people there for me. Iím taking it as I go. Itís getting easier, too. I have more motivation lately, and I donít focus on the pain as much. I feel, for the first time in my life, that I have something to look forward to, not just something to live for at this moment. My future, for once, looks good.

My experience with depression has undoubtedly taken its toll on me. From youth and young adulthood, to my current day-to-day life, I have faced things no one ever should. What I have been through has shaped who I am, though. I have taken lessons that I will bring with me if my child someday faces similar obstacles. I pray that day will never come but if it does, I am at least a bit more ready to handle it than I would have been otherwise. If nothing else, I hope my trials have helped at least one person garner a better understanding of this all-too-common illness.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Thu Feb 18 2010, 14:49

Pamela this is such a great article! This makes me think of my own good friend when she was going through this. I think this is well written too
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sat Feb 20 2010, 05:43

Brilliant article Pamela. I think i'll write a small one to go with it, i finally got help for myself and was told i had anxiety and low mood which worsened to panic attacks and panic disorder. I think your article will help many people.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun Feb 21 2010, 05:11

Thank you.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon Feb 22 2010, 02:16

I actually came up with the thoughts contained in this piece (after the intro) as I typed it. Hence, the phrase silent speculation. I was thinking it might be a neat feature if there's space. We could take turns with a question and, well, speculate. Just a thought. Either way, here's another piece to consider.

Silent Speculation - Am I boring?

In recent months, Iíve begun to notice that people just donít seem to like me. I checked off all the possible reasons I could think of. Am I friendly? Yes. Am I lazy? Maybe a bit, but no more than most. OkayÖdo I actually talk? Yes, until I get bothered by the fact that those to whom I speak seem uninterested. Finally, I was forced to come to a conclusion. Iím boring. So where do I go from here? Should I try to be more interesting? How do I do that?

For starters, Iím not the person that others automatically think I am. Yes, I love to read and knit. I also love to go out dancing. I like singing at karaoke nights. Itís true that nine times out of ten Iíd rather sit at home and read or something. But thatís not all Iím about. Personally, I think I am a rather interesting individual. I suppose some would say that just proves how boring I am. Maybe thatís true. So what do I have to bring to a conversation? I donít have many achievements but if I did, I donít think Iíd want to brag about them. I do know a few things that I find to be fascinating, but I canít seem to find anyone else to get as passionate about those things as I do. For example, an out-of-towner once asked me what a hoosier is. I got very excited and started going on and on. He looked at me like I was a complete nutcase. Itís something Iíve always thought was pretty interesting. No one really knows for sure what exactly the term means. There are several possibilities. He didnít seem to care, though. The thing is, it seems like the overwhelming majority of the people I know are interested only in the shallow and superficial. So where does that leave me?
Sometimes I think I should just do more so I have more interesting stories to tell. Itís not like Iím afraid to do things, I simply donít have much of an opportunity. Is anyone up for a bungee jumping expedition? Seriously, the most exciting thing Iíve done was to take a weekend vacation in San Diego. You can only tell so many stories about Sea World. So, should I go out and have a new adventure every weekend so I can be interesting? The others I know donít do that, so what am I missing?

Maybe thatís the key. Maybe they do have adventures every weekend. Maybe they take the ordinary and find the extraordinary within it. Letís say someone goes to her husbandís softball game. Thatís not all that interestingÖuntil she tells an anecdote about one the coach letting one of his players keep an eye on his phone because his baby was due any day, and his wife sent him a text message of a not-safe-for-work nature, unaware that someone else would read the message. Honestly, I think I may be on to something here. Instead of ďI went out dancing last night. It was fun,Ē maybe I should find something special in that night to bring up. I donít need to jump out of airplanes; I just need to jump into life.

So, to all you boring people out there, continue to be yourself. You donít need to change your lifestyle to be more interesting. Just seek out what is interesting within your lifestyle. Or, better yet, you could always seek out another boring person and do boring things together. I know Iím not the only one; weíre out here, probably watching paint dry.


Last edited by hppamela on Mon Feb 22 2010, 02:17; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : formatting)
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon Feb 22 2010, 02:38

violetriddle wrote:
Pammers...just wondering...would a editorial on Racism be to much?

I really really want to do this but i wanna ask before I start writing anything

I'm so sorry that I overlooked that question. I'm sure it would have been fine, but are you looking at racism, prejudice, or discrimination. Really, there's a difference. At it's most basic definition, racism is really preferring your own race. An overwhelming number of people feel this way. Then there's prejudice. I don't think there's a person who isn't guilty of it. If a tall, heavily pierced man comes in wearing a dark hooded sweatshirt at three in the morning, I become suspicious. Then there's discrimination, which takes racism (sexism, homophobia, etc) and prejudice and turn it into something dark. I'm just curious.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon Feb 22 2010, 04:08

Nicely written on your silent speculation i like that idea.

And i think an editorial on racism would be wonderful, especially on a site like HE where we're all from different places.

Okay time to hit my office :S
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon Feb 22 2010, 15:06

Pamela I like your article and I think I'm a boring person too.. lol We can watch paint dry together
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Wed Feb 24 2010, 06:37

I'm so glad that someone, at least, didn't think I was fishing for sympathy and compliments. Thank you.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Tue Mar 02 2010, 15:33

I found out last Thursday that I am pregnant again. I'm excited and scared out of my mind. Mostly excited, though. Just wanted to let everyone know! I'm due November 4. So, Thomas is going to have a little brother or sister
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Tue Mar 02 2010, 17:45

YAY PAMELA!! Congratulations! November 4th is my friend's birthday too!!! I'll be able to remember that date lol

Don't worry everything will be fine
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Tue Mar 02 2010, 18:22

It's five days short of mine, and it's the day before my hunny-bunny's.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Tue Mar 02 2010, 20:02

Whoa that's many birthdays at once. Well you could always throw a big giant party for all of you at once
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Tue Mar 02 2010, 21:08

Maybe for Michael and the kid. I'm far too self-centered for that, though.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Wed Mar 03 2010, 05:25

lol I would be too Pamela
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun Mar 21 2010, 03:01

This may be a bit long for consideration, if we even do this as a regular thing. I thought I'd submit it anyway.

Silent Speculation - Motherhood

During the course of my pregnancy, one of my co-workers repeatedly told me, ďyou think you know what love is, but you have no idea until you have a baby.Ē I mostly thought she was a bit arrogant. Honestly the statement would imply that people without children donít experience love in its greatest depth. After my little Thomas came into the world, I kind of began to understand what she was getting at. I think that a better way to put it is that you donít realize how far love can expand until you have a child. Even thatís not quite right. Any time another love is introduced into your life that amazement comes upon you. But thatís not what I really want to talk about. I just want to talk about what itís like to be a mother, and how itís changed my life.

I think one of the best illustrations of how I often feel is the scene in Order of the Phoenix in which we encounter Mrs. Weasleyís boggart. Now, in the past, Iíd always said I couldnít imagine what my boggart would be. All my great fears were intangible or so ridiculous that Iíd have few difficulties working past them. That is definitely not true now. In the back of my mind I have a constant dread that one day something will happen to my son. I donít know what I would do. I recently heard a story from a woman whose son had fallen out of their second story window when he was two. Naturally, she was devastated. In her case it was made worse because she had to deal with the accusations that she pushed him out the window. Years later the pain from the incident is still clear when she speaks of it.

A couple weeks ago, my son was trying to figure out how to crawl. He fell forward onto the floor, and cried harder than Iíd ever heard him cry. I was so scared, especially when I found blood in his mouth. He was fine in a matter of minutes, but since then it has been so hard for me to let him do anything. Iím so afraid that heíll really injure himself. I have a very difficult time letting go of the fear enough to let him grow.

When youíre a mother, everything changes. You donít worry about things you used to, and you worry over things you never did before. I was never overly concerned with the cleanliness of my home. Now that I have Thomas, I see everything on that floor as a potential hazard. I canít get my home clean enough anymore. I now have such questions as, ďhow will I know heís ready to start finger foods?Ē and ďdo I really need to turn my home into a maximum security ward?Ē I never knew how precise the science of motherhood actually was. Itís insane! There are so many possible answers for nearly every question. If your babyís having trouble sleeping, some will say to use the ďcry it outĒ method. Others will say that you should do everything you can to keep your child from crying at bedtime, even if it means rocking them through the entire night. Really thereís no wrong answer as long as youíre not risking the childís life or posing significant risks to their development, but thereís so much pressure from different schools of thought to follow their advice, that itís easy to give in to self-doubt.

I think that has been my biggest challenge so far. I doubt everything I do. If he cries, I wonder what I did wrong. If heís slow to recognize his name (the one milestone heís truly behind on), I feel I didnít say it often enough. If he doesnít want to eat when I think heís hungry, I berate myself for not knowing after seven months what my baby needs. I know these thoughts are irrational of course, but I canít seem to kick them.

I think an expectant mother has to be the biggest marketing target, increasingly large belly aside. If you dare to sign up for a helpful email newsletter, you will begin to get all sorts of ďjunkĒ mail. Admittedly, a lot of the advertising is quite relevant. Then again, if I (a renter) had gotten one more homeownerís insurance letter, I may have taken a sledgehammer to the nearest State Farm agency. There are a million and one products out there that a mother ďabsolutely cannot live without.Ē I could easily subvert the trendy new Slingaroo with matching pumps, but what about the portable crib and the newborn/infant/toddler tub? I looked at everything from a logical stand-point. I didnít need the portable crib because we wouldnít be travelling any time soon. The tub was a must because it would be safer than putting him in a bath with me. After he was born, though, it all went out the window. He was too much of a squirmer to control from that distance in the tub. And, hello, that portable crib is a must if I ever want to take him to visit my grandma. Itís another case of ďthere is no right answer.Ē Everyoneís needs will be different; although, I doubt thereís anyone who canít live without the Slingaroo and pumps set.

Iíve gotten rather long-winded, and Iím not sure if I ever made a point, so Iíll do that now. Being a mother can easily be summed up in the statement that the feelings can never really be articulated. A mother is a superhero, a comedienne, a singer. She is a doctor and a counselor, a researcher and a teacher. A mother knows greater fear, joy, and love than sheís ever experienced before. Iíll leave you with something a mentor of mine likes to say: ďThereís nothing like a baby for unconditional love.Ē Itís truer than you can imagine.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Sun Mar 21 2010, 18:10

Pamela I do like this. I think almost all parents go through this. My mom has told me the same thing though my aunt never had this issue though she practically doesn't raise her son. This is a good article
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon Mar 22 2010, 11:39

Thanks! I wrote it at three in the morning, so I'm surprised it turned out okay. Not surprised, however, that there's no direction to it whatsoever.
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PostSubject: Re: Pamela's Office--Leave your editorials on my desk.   Mon Mar 22 2010, 13:36

Well the last paragraph kinda gives it direction
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