Saturday, April 10, 2021

Meet Victoria Cliff: A nursing student with autism and mental health challenges

 

                                                                                 Victoria Cliff, Student Children's Nurse

Victoria shared her journey in an article published by the Children and Young People Student Network in the UK.

"I have Autism, and this will be with me for life. I have always had it and I always will have it. My brain works differently to others, I communicate differently, I process things differently - but these also become my strengths."

"Autism probably seems like enough to put some barriers in place to me getting where I want. But I have also battled with mental illness for as long as I can remember, and I have had days where tomorrow looked like it would never come. It caused me to drop out of my A levels because I got too unwell, and then when I started a different course a few months later, I only managed 5 days. At this point, I truly felt I would never be able to reach my goals. I felt like my education ended at GCSE’s because I just couldn’t get any further without losing myself to mental illness."

"These built barriers and walls in my way to success. I had no idea how I would get to where I wanted to be, I almost just accepted a lower quality of life than what I deserved. But I fought. I battled to be where I am."

"Then, I got my offer to study children’s nursing. I felt over the moon. I was there, I was going to get my goal after all. Starting university is difficult for anyone, then add into the mix my life and it was complicated. I almost gave up several times that first month. I wasn’t good enough; I could never do it. But the support from my lecturers and the university made a difference, proved that I could do it. Placement proved to me even more that I could do it, making a difference to families every day and I loved the feeling of helping people."

Read more about Victoria here:

https://cypstnnetwork.wixsite.com/cypstudentnetwork/post/disabled-nursing-student-from-diagnosis-to-university

Cheers!

Donna

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