Living with undiagnosed mental illness: Amanda’s story

Editor’s Note: While we encourage people to receive proper diagnoses and help from support groups, medication or counselling, we have to acknowledge that this may be a big step for some who refuse to, due to personal reasons. As Amanda tells it — the struggles of undiagnosed persons are just as valid as those who have been diagnosed. Thank you for your story Amanda!

I am fearful of disappointing my family.

Unlike most people who have an official mental health diagnosis, I do not have one. But I do struggle with mental health issues.

I have lived with an eating disorder and anxiety for almost four years.

Today, I am here to share my story as I get many unsupportive comments from people who knows about my condition.

People tend to say, “Oh but you are not diagnosed so you cannot assume that you have a mental illness.”

Not being diagnosed does not mean you are not suffering from mental illness.

In fact, undiagnosed people like me suffer equally as well. The loneliness we feel because we do not have anyone to talk to.

I am here to tell people like me that you are not alone.

Suffering from an eating disorder all these years has made me addicted to it. So how do I cope with it? I write songs and poems. Never would I have thought that writing songs could bring me such relief. It has helped me greatly.

I have written more than 4 songs within 6 months. Here is an extract of a song I wrote during a very tough period. This is dedicated to my family.

Every 11:11, every shooting star 

I beg for life to be okay 

but sometimes 

Me breathing 

would just be enough 


at 17 years old 

here I am 

writing this song 

wishing I wasn’t dead 

cause of u. 

I hope that through my story, I have spoken up for people like me. I also hope people can see a better way of coping with problems. I really hope that my poems or songs could comfort someone or at least tell them that they are not alone. And I hope to continue writing songs and poems for people.

Amanda is a 17-year-old polytechnic student who enjoys composing songs and writing poems.

Join the conversation

© 2014-2017 The Tapestry Project Singapore