Debra's Story

After becoming a young mum Debra was always looking after other people before herself. She got through depression with the help of medication and by learning to care for herself.

My experience with depression started when I was a teenager; and I was a solo mum

It was a lonely, lonely time. It was considered by some around me that I’d made my lot in life and then, therefore, nobody would really be interested in me now; and that made me feel even worse.

All sorts of things affect your mental health.


I just absolutely felt that I was at the end of my tether and I lost it

I just had enough, I couldn’t cope anymore. I just wanted to hurt something, hit something; I was scared I was going to hurt my son. I had the sense to ring and ask for help.

Depression or anxiety is different for everyone

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I decided, ‘right, I'm gonna just concentrate on my life’

My doctor diagnosed me at that time with depression and started me on some antidepressants, which took a few weeks to take effect, but they made a huge difference. I still wasn’t necessarily happy with things that were happening but I was able to manage it.

There are things that can help you get through

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I actually put myself on the list now, where for a long time, I was kind of down the bottom

There are days when I need to recognise that today it’s not a good day, and today I actually need to step back and take care of myself. I try to eat well, I try to make sure I get enough sleep, I take control of the things that I can control.

There are changes you can make to stay well

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Even though life has challenges it can still be really amazing

Other people's stories

I had post-natal depression

I had no way to ask for help

Stress in my childhood built up

I was 24/7 on the farm