Depression: 'That was a very lonely place, a very scary place'
Tom Lenihan is using his own experience of depression to help others in a similar situation
Tom Lenihan is young, intelligent, popular and of good family. As the recently elected president of Trinity College's prestigious student union, he's taking a year out of his studies to work on behalf of his fellow students. At 22 years of age, he's tall and attractive, with – like his late father Brian – a charmingly warm manner.
So why is he sitting across from me trying to explain how it was that his teenage years were spent in misery; so much so that he constantly battled suicide ideation and, in one case, made a very serious attempt to take his own life?
"Mentally," he says, "as a young teen, I just felt very alone. I was ahead of my peers, physically I developed early, and I felt I couldn't relate to people, I had lots of friends but I had a darkness inside that I couldn't understand."