17 to 18 was a hard time for me too. I put my mom into rehab after basically kidnapping her from church to get her away from my abusive step-dad, we had to disappear until the divorce was final because he threatened our lives, I had to transfer schools and stop talking to all of my friends that I grew up with, plus I ended up in my own abusive relationship. I continued on for those around me though. My mom fed off my strength, otherwise she would have ended her life right after the move. I learned to smile and pretend that everything is ok for her. I worked my way through my senior year in half the time because I had no friends distracting me. I didn't care what classes I was in to be with who, I just wanted out. I started college right away so I could get closer to being on my own and not depend on anyone to take care of me. I set two goals in my head, work towards being completely independent, and never become so codependent that I end up like my mother. I love her with every fiber of my being, but I never want to end up in her shoes. Being strong for her made it so that she's now completely clean of all drugs, she even quit smoking, she's taking wonderful care of herself, and she married the best man I've ever met for her. I am now independent, but married with children, very happy to be out on my own, but with someone who compliments me and doesn't tear me down, and have never touched a drug in my life. Just know that being strong for other people is an emotional drain, and every once in a while, you need to take a weekend to yourself to hibernate, cry, sleep, do whatever gets you to recharge and be able to do it all over again, because breaking in front of the person or people you're being strong for, is a horrible spiral of self loathing on their part and extreme guilt on yours. Don't give up though! If you don't want to be strong for someone else, be strong for yourself! Everyone deserves to be able to strive for that one huge dream that we all have. Be strong for that! You can do it, and you're almost there!!!