I have been writing short stories, poetry (and I am currently in the process of writing two novels), since I was around 13. Many of us go through major life-changing events. Some of us are lucky where those events are happy ones. Others, not so much. To this day I still struggle with depression, anxiety, and panic attacks. My childhood was unique, and a lot of times fun. The childhood many others wish they had. With the constant traveling and moving and going to fun places. But it was also filled with loneliness and an angry parent who made me feel no bigger than an ant daily. There are many people out there who can relate to a certain extent to my experiences and then some. And many more out there who have had much more difficult lives in many ways. For me, writing was a release of all the emotions I couldn't talk about. Whether it be because I didn't have a friend to talk to, or I just didn't want to open myself up. Either way, I had to get it out, or it would continuously eat at me and make everything so much harder to deal with in the end.
So, it began with poems, short, sometimes confusing poems that I never shared. Then those poems grew into short stories that were rough in context but kept me sane. You see, the best way to get through life, especially the rough years (yes, teenage years can be rough) is to find an outlet that works for you. For me, it was writing. Many people turn to music or other art forms. And that's great, but there are those that go to drugs to forget, to alcohol, to bad ways. That should not be the answer. Try this, just write down how you are feeling. Write about that rough thing that happened today. And when you're done, whether you want to be a writer or not, you can keep it, like I used to, or burn it. Either way, writing it is the initial release. For me writing helped in so many ways I can barely express. For a friend of mine it was music. He would sing his heart out daily, for himself, whether there was a crowd around him watching or he was alone in his room. It helped him deal with the stress of living, and growing up with cancer, until the cancer finally took him. He found his release by singing and writing music. And there are many other friends of mine who had other hobbies, sports for instance, and art. Drawing and painting. Everyone finds a way to deal with the pressures that life bring your way. But you have to find the right one for you.
Always remember you are writing, or singing, or dancing, or playing an instrument, or painting, or drawing, or taking photos, or doing makeup, or making YouTube videos, or playing sports, or fixing cars—whatever it is that you choose to do, you are doing that for YOU. No one else. Because once you start doing it for others, you lose that release you once had to get over the daily stress life brings us all. Once you do for others, or for money, or for fame, it becomes just another job, and no longer has the joy it once brought to your life. And for some, that release is the only thing that keeps them on this earth. Everyone has a reason to stay, and a reason to continue putting up with the crap we all deal with. Sometimes you just have to search a while to find it. It's not always obvious, but once you find it you’ll know.