Lauren's story:

I was brought up in an erratic family. Things weren’t so great growing up and I didn’t know how to deal with my emotions or distress.
 
I first attempted to take my own life when I was 13. I didn’t really know what was happening, just that I wanted to die. Over the next few years I tried to take my own life a number of times. Even through this dark time, I had a little support from people around me. Even doctors couldn’t help.
 
Over winter 2013/4 I tried to take my own life 4 times and ended up in coma, sectioned under the Mental Health Act and was admitted into a psychiatric hospital. I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder and OCD – I believed I had to kill myself on specific dates or something bad would happen to my family.
 
I found out about PAPYRUS from a girl who was taking part in a PAPYRUS suicide-safer community project near me. I wish I had known PAPYRUS was there to help years before.

During therapy, I knew I wouldn’t be able to help anyone else unless I helped myself first. Therefore, a big motive in putting my all into learning to deal with my suicidal thoughts was being able to volunteer for PAPYRUS.
 
In 2015, I met up with one of the team to see how I could get involved with the charity. I was helping out in the office and have done stands at events to help raise awareness. I was trained in Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST).
 
PAPYRUS built my confidence up immensely in being able to provide support for others; something which helps give me a meaning to my life.
 
I still do struggle with suicidal thoughts today, but due to PAPYRUS I know that they are there if I need them.
 
In September, I will be starting my degree in Mental Health Nursing in King’s College London, which I am so grateful for and worked so hard for. Things are so much better than before as I am able to deal with situations without hurting myself or trying to end my life. I am so grateful and extremely proud of being a PAPYRUS volunteer.