Motivational speaker visits AHS

Jordan Burnham spoke to AHS students today about his struggle with depression.

Amir Mohammed

Motivational speaker Jordan Burnham came to AHS this morning to speak to students about depression and getting help if you feel depressed.

Burnham spoke about his life, and while he did not always feel suicidal, he was depressed for most of his high school career.

“Tenth grade was the first time I went to a therapist and was diagnosed with depression,” Burnham said.

Burnham then spoke about his struggles of switching from a small private school in Pittsburg to a public school where he was bullied and beaten up.

He also talked about his struggle of having his sister who was his best friend go to college while he was in seventh grade.

“She was my best friend and therapist, and then I didn’t have anyone to talk to about my feelings. I started to bottle up my feelings,” Burnham said.

He also spoke about his move to a school outside Philadelphia, where he was made fun of again. He had problems telling people his feelings, and found he could only talk about his emotions was when he was drinking.

“The only way I found that I could talk about my feelings was through alcohol,” Burnham said.

During his senior year of high school, after getting caught with alcohol multiple times, and a week’s stay in a mental hospital, he decided to try take his own life.

“To this day I still don’t remember jumping out the nine story window. I remember everything else leading up to it,” Burnham said.

Though a majority of Burnham’s speech was focused on his story, he wanted students to have a deeper understanding of why he was at AHS. He wanted students to take away that it is okay to ask for help if you’re feeling depressed, and there’s always someone to talk to, even if you don’t think there is.

“I was really touched by his speech,” senior Leah Bowie said.