In a YouTube video released Sunday, former Miss America Teresa Scanlan opens up about her battle with depression and suicidal thoughts.
In the video, the Nebraska native says March 2013 was the lowest point of her entire life. During that time, she wrote a letter explaining what she had been going through for the last two years.
"I was only 17, but I discovered what being bullied on a national scale felt like," begins Scanlan.
She revealed that during her year as Miss America she wrestled with her body image.
"I tried to drown my sorrows often with food."
She gained 30 pounds in one year.
"Apparently, I'm not very good at handling pressure," says Scanlan
She recalls the first time she felt like making an attempt on her life. After a hike near her family property, Scanlan stood at the brink of a cliff, and felt like jumping off.
"I almost did it, but someone texted me right then." Scanlan says it's the first suicidal impulse she can remember, but not the last.
"I've cried myself to sleep more times than I can count."
This spring Scanlan opened up to her parents, sharing her fears and depression. She says her family has helped her through this difficult time.
Scanlan credits her faith, and depression medication she's been taking since March.
She believes the battle is far from over, but trusts her family and faith will help her. She is urging anyone dealing with similar pain, to reach out and share what they're going through.
Scanlan returned this year to the small Christian Patrick Henry College. She's a sophomore. Among the things she loves: "I've never had to sign an autograph, and I've never had to take a picture."