Oxygen Masks – Alumni Client  

‘Hurt people hurt people’. A moving poem depicting the painful journey to eating disorder recovery. A reminder that there is hope. 

“As I poured my heart and soul into crafting this poem, I was driven by a deep-seated desire to share a message of empathy and understanding. As a person who has battled the crippling effects of anorexia, I have felt the sharp sting of pain and confusion that comes with feeling lost and broken. But even amidst the chaos and turmoil, I have come to realise that hurt individuals often end up hurting others not out of malice, but due to their own struggles to survive and heal, just like you and me. Sometimes, their inability to offer love and support may stem from their own inner demons. 

However, we must not lose hope, for healing is indeed possible. If we can cultivate patience and give ourselves time, we can gradually learn to put on the oxygen mask on ourselves first, taking care of our own needs before attempting to help others. Through daily steps towards recovery and overcoming trauma, we can eventually find the strength and courage to heal. When we reach that point, we’ll be better equipped to love and support those around us, as well. 

If you’re going through a tough time, please remember that you are not alone in your struggles. You don’t have to carry the weight of the world on your shoulders all by yourself. Take a deep breath, be kind to yourself, and ask for help. You are worthy of love and compassion, no matter what you have been through.” 

Hurt people hurt people 

Because broken minds cannot see the blue within skies, 

they go around with a slight darkness looming 

They do not mean to 

But hurt people can hurt people 

Because they do not know what it is like to be fully healed yet 

They have not been shown what unconditional pure love 

Looks like 

They are so preoccupied with just surviving 

That they forget that you are a person too 

Going about your day living without so much dismay 

They do not know that you cannot sympathise or understand 

You know that saying from cabin crews on airlines 

The one that makes everyone’s eyes role to the back of their heads 

because they’ve heard it all before 

The one that instructs you to place the oxygen mask 

Upon yourself before you begin to help others 

Well, that is precisely why 

Hurt people hurt people 

They struggle with placing the oxygen mask over their mouths 

So, they cannot even fathom the idea of helping you just yet. 

That isn’t a thought in their mind 

It’s not a malicious act 

It’s just that they’re taking care of themselves first 

They live and breathe for themselves at this time 

Trust me 

When they have healed 

They will come back 

They will gladly aid you with your oxygen mask 

Just give them time. 

Trauma can be suffocating 

If you have felt inspired by this experience and wish to feature your own on our website, you can submit a Guest Blog for Orri here.

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