My mum suffered quite severely with depression and anxiety when I was younger. All of it began when she had a stomach ulcer and was told she would have to stay in for some sort of treatment. She worried herself into a state of panic over something very routine. This panic lasted almost 5 years and she was admitted into a psychiatric hospital on a couple of occasions. I will never forget one particular time when I was about 14 and she was in the depths and was in floods of tears knowing she was going to be admitted again, begging me to help her. I felt so useless and really didn't know how to handle it. To be honest I was embarrassed by the whole situation, as cuntish as that sounds, and never spoke to any of my friends about it ever. I just bottled it all in and never spoke a word. In fact none of my friends knew about it until 2 years ago when I randomly told then almost 10 years later. It felt amazing to get it out and speak about it and they actually had similar experiences although not as close to home. My mum is off medication now and seems to be her old self, but there are days when you can tell she is not right. Watching her overcome her troubles to the extent she has made me appreciate how strong a bloody woman she is and my admiration for her cannot be measured. Approximately two years ago I was working a shitty full time job in an office with no prospects. Although I liked the people in the job and it was easy I knew I had no future in this basic admin job. One day I was on the way to work and my mind was racing and I went in and sat down and couldn't think straight. I was getting really warm and could feel my face burning up and getting really short of breath. I went to the toilet and felt really dizzy on the way and splashed cold water on my face but on the way back I was hit with a sharp pain in my stomach which rose to my chest, it felt tight and caused me to double up. I was so embarrassed as I had to hobble over to the manager and somehow tell him what was going on. I was sent home and my mum asked me what had happened, I just passed it off as something else. The same thing happened about two weeks later and my manager rang my mum to come and get me as he was worried. I had to explain to my mum what happened and she was adamant that I'd had a panic attack. She was trying to get me to go to the doctors for months when eventually I decided that if it was a panic attack the cause could only be my job. So I am now back at uni, studying a course which I like and I'm doing well. If what I had were panic attacks I hope to god it's the last I ever see of them. It is a bastard of an illness. Good luck to anyone suffering. With strength and support you can get through it.