The following content may contain information about depression, anxiety, self-harm and/or other related material which may be triggering. Reader discretion is advised.

Story Submission by Anonymous, Age 23

Anxiety: something every teenager is sometimes too proud to admit to; too stubborn to find help for.

It began for me after a few things went wrong early on. While I didn’t feel as though I was depressed, it felt like I was under constant pressure; like I was in the ocean at night and I could see no light.

Often I would get so worked up I’d have trouble breathing. So I began driving and that’s when my love affair with cars took off. I felt as though I had finally found some kind of comfort, but that feeling soon faded away. Once again I felt like a robot.

At one point I considered throwing my car into a tree.

Months of alcohol abuse and other bad habits later, I began to build something I’d never fall out of love with. I still do feel a sense of emptiness, often longing for something, but when I do I fire up my car and my problems wash away. I put it into gear and my mind goes blank. It comes onto boost and my childhood comes back.

This car has brought me hope.

If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, anxiety, self-harm or addiction, please reach out. Call 13 11 14 for Lifeline’s 24hr Telephone Crisis Support or contact a mental health professional. If you are looking for other mental health resources, browse our Find Help page.

If a life is in danger call 000 immediately.

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