“At the age of 13, I was raped for the first time and then shortly after, the blame was placed on me for a hit list and bomb threat that took place at my middle school right after Columbine. So, I went away into the system from the age of 13 to the age of 18, where I struggled with more self-injury and suicide attempts. I saw the reality of untreated mental illness in the system and I saw how people would abuse themselves, stop at nothing to try and take their lives, and even saw suicides happen before my eyes at that young age.”

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