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  • Dear 18-year-old Mandy, stop trying to be somebody else; being Mandy is enough.

  • I was always trying to be Mandy the singer, Mandy the actress, Mandy the bodybuilder.

  • It was never enough to just be me; I always felt the need to be something else for everybody else.

  • Ignore what other people think of you.

  • I would just beat myself up inside constantly.

  • It was things like they hate you, they're staring at you, they don't like what you're wearing.

  • I was just a mess and I was ill; I just didn't know I needed help.

  • My relationship with my husband brought me so much happiness, but ultimately, it couldn't save me from my own thoughts and destruction.

  • You'll go through a lot of tragedy in a short space of time.

  • My marriage had ended, I was involved in a fire, my pet cat died in the fire, Joy.

  • And I lost all of my belongings; I had to start again.

  • Overnight, your life will change forever.

  • I reached breaking point; I felt totally empty, I felt like nobody saw me.

  • I just wanted to disappear.

  • So, I just started running; I started running towards the bridge.

  • I wanted to take my own life.

  • I was then admitted to hospital.

  • I finally got the help I needed; I was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder.

  • I started on medication and I started writing a blog, which kind of documented my road to recovery.

  • It's become a real community, a real supportive community.

  • And part of the, kind of, overall project is this exercise to write a letter to 18-year-old you.

  • And I found it a really, really therapeutic experience.

  • We've had hundreds come infrom lawyers, doctors, students, young mumsall doing the same exercise and all getting different things from it.

  • I think that there's something different for everybody to be gained from sitting down and reflecting and writing to you at 18.

  • Some of the women who've written in "To Me" get together and take to the streets to share their own messages of empowerment.

  • We hand out flowers to strangers to help them feel seen and empowered, too.

  • If I can help others with my own journey, then what's not to love?

  • My best bit of advice to 18-year-old Mandy?

  • Don't hide parts of yourself from the worldthe world needs those parts.

  • Trust yourself enough to fly.

Dear 18-year-old Mandy, stop trying to be somebody else; being Mandy is enough.

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