As reported in the Metro and the Daily Mirror, Emilee left her prom night in tears after being bullied. In the latest PAPYRUS blog she discusses her struggles with anxiety, the support she has received and her invitation to Summer’s Ball, a memorial event which is raising life-saving funds for PAPYRUS.

My name is Emilee Perry, I am 16 years old and I have suffered with anxiety for as long as I can remember. It’s hard to put a finger on how I feel a lot of the time, but it’s something that I cope with day to day, and it just becomes part of you.

I have always had problems at school. I have always felt like I don’t fit in with anyone, and I think this is why I have had problems making real friendships. It also sums up why, ultimately, I moved schools. To escape and hopefully fit in somewhere else. I don’t feel like I act like a teenager is stereotypically supposed to. I like to stay at home and immerse myself in my passion, which is makeup. I suppose what I like best is solitude. Well as long as my mum is nearby that is (and that is a whole different side of my anxiety).

If I’m struggling on a particular day, maybe I have no motivation, or I feel like I’m not good enough, I have learnt to take deep breaths, recognise that it is my anxiety making me feel this way, pop on some lively music and keep myself busy, either doing my makeup or just thinking about the good things that are coming my way. Such as makeup college or just focusing on positive things in general. Sometimes it works, and unfortunately, sometimes it doesn’t, but it feels like it is the best coping mechanism that I have.

Whilst I am learning to come to terms with living with anxiety, I want to help others do the same. If you feel like you are being bullied, and bullying comes in all forms (from physical to mental), you need to speak to someone you can trust and confide in. This can sometimes be hard if you feel like all your ‘friends’ are against you, but I’m lucky and have very understanding parents who try to guide me through it. The worst thing that you can do is suffer in silence. Nothing gets better if you keep it all inside. Despite what your anxiety (or the bullies) might tell you.

You need to remember that you won’t always feel like this. Better people will enter your life and good things will happen to you. I couldn’t imagine getting over my prom ‘incident’. To be humiliated in front of everyone is, I would say, my biggest fear. But it’s happened, and I can’t change that. What has happened since, the people who are giving me support, has helped no end and it is a massive understatement to say that I will be forever grateful for it.

The world is full of wonderful people who do care, and I need you to believe me when I say that. When I think back to my prom, in the future, I won’t be traumatised by what happened to me, instead (thanks to the love freely given by my family, friends and strangers), I will be uplifted and grateful for all the world sending me love!

When I received my invitation to Summer’s Ball, I was overwhelmed with emotion. I didn’t know Summer directly, but it is such a tragedy that her life was cut short and I can’t imagine what her friends and family have gone through. I am absolutely honoured to have been invited and am looking forward to showing my support to PAPYRUS and hopefully raising much needed funds to prevent these kind of heart wrenching tragedies. It is heartbreaking that so many young people are ending their lives due to bullying, stresses of school etc.

Some people just don’t think of the circumstances when they are being cruel to people, whether it be physically or mentally. It needs to stop and I am certainly going to be getting involved in trying to bring change for such an important issue.

Without the love and support of which I received, I have no idea where I would be now. So, it is my turn to give back, to both thank the people who helped me, but also to make a small change in the lives of others who need it.

Lots of Love
Emilee xx


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