Chris asks :

Hi Lucy,


I have just finished my first year at university - it's going pretty great! As time has progressed over the last few years I find myself distancing from family and friends and hating any social occasions. I eat in my room, and only ever really go downstairs when my parents are out. I speak to my friends a lot yet every time I converse with them I will cuss (faux pas - not intentionally) and I will think about why and shame myself for the next week. I haven't been 'myself' for months if not years and can't bear to speak to a family or friend in fear that they won't understand. Seeking help I looked online, and fingers pointed towards depression (although I am not diagnosed) and I want to join the army in the future. Joining the army with history of mental health is extremely difficult, but I need help.

Hi Chris,

Agony Aunts on Female First

Agony Aunts on Female First

Although it's very admirable that you have plans for the future beyond university, you also need to look after yourself now. If you think you might have depression then it might be worth exploring this with your doctor. Although your symptoms might indicate this- it may be down to something else; however you won't know until you look into it further.

Perhaps write a list down of things you have been feeling to take with you then you will get the most from your time with your doctor and don't leave aynthing out. They may suggest that you take a course of counselling to talk to someone privately if you feel that you are not ready to speak to your family and friends about it.

Once you are able to open up to a professional it may help you to verbalise how you are feeling with those closest to you.

University offers counselling too so when you return back for your second year, then you can continue it if you feel you need to.

Try to remember that going to university is a big transition in your life and the first year can be a little uncertain which is why you might feel worse now even if it's been going on for a few years.

It's important to plan for your future, however it could be a much brighter one if you tackle any issues you have now rather than leaving them to continue unaddressed.

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