Until I moved up to a comprehensive school I remember being happy most of the time. My sister and I were very much typical siblings and I had friends that lived on the same street.
Going to another school was frightening as I went from a small primary and junior school to a comprehensive that had about 2000 students. What made it worse was I was split from my friends which added to me feeling scared. The teachers, who thought they were being helpful, wanted me to sit near the front and on their left-hand sides. I am deaf in my right ear so my mum made the school aware of that. That just made me feel even more uncomfortable so I told the teachers I would move if I had problems hearing them.
I was fortunate that a girl from another school latched onto me who had plenty of confidence, enough for both of us. That friendship was strong for the next five years and helped me get through some difficult times. One of the first ones was to do with a family matter but I couldn’t tell her exactly what it was. Just being there for me was enough to help make life easier.
What I didn’t understand at the time was I started feeling depressed. I couldn’t talk about it to anybody including my family as I didn’t know why I was feeling so low. It just became a pattern in my life that I could be happy then suddenly felt miserable so I tried blaming it on hating school as I really did hate school. I would become moody at times so of course, I would get comments about it at home. I would just freeze up completely which just made it worse for me emotionally.