By: Patrick Gomez

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Colton Haynes just wasn’t feeling himself.

“Something’s been off lately,” Haynes writes in a first-person piece dated Nov. 2, 2014, that the actor has now shared in the current issue of Paper.

The former Teen Wolf star — who publicly came out as gay in early 2016 — opens up in the magazine about suffering from mental health issues and how he was able to finally move forward.

“I honestly wake up after five hours of sleep wide-awake. It’s probably from the bottle of wine I drank before I finally fell asleep/passed out or the amount of pills I’d had,” Haynes shares from 2014. “I read up on why I’m experiencing numbness and lack of circulation in my hands and feet and it’s due to the stimulants I’ve been taking for quite some time now.”

“What I don’t realize is that I will stay in the same place sitting down for five hours and have no idea ’cause I’m so focused, but with nothing t to do, nothing to create, I’m a vampire. A shell. Wishing I was the old Colton,” continues the former Arrow star. “The person who used to love going out and talking to my family/friends. Now I’m so closed off to the world that I can’t even get up enough courage to go in public. I’m afraid of people and have become agoraphobic.”

Haynes goes on to say that be began to only leave his house — or, as he calls it, his “cellar” — to go to “work, the liquor store or to grab coffee and an occasional sandwich.”

“I used to look forward to working out and working on my physical appearance to build up the idea of what people think I am,” he writes. “I am not my cover. I am so full of emotion and love and I wish I was able to express that again.”

“Why can’t I just be happy in the now?” he asks himself. “I am losing the battle right now … I won’t in the long run. Mark my words.”

And Haynes is staying true to his word. Sharing another first-person piece dated Nov. 12, 2016, Haynes shows how far he’s come in becoming a happier, healthier person.

“I’m finally realizing is that I can’t and wouldn’t want to go back to that headspace ever again. So clouded and unsure about myself, my life, my privacy, my mental health. I’m finally in a position where I can say I’m the happiest I’ve ever been,” he wrote. “I’ve accomplished so much with so little and my smile is finally not forced. I’ve taken control of my own life for the first time … I’m finally free.”

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