My dad's favorite teaching to me as a child was that knowledge is power. As a kid, I always assumed it was one of those proverbs that I had to learn to get good grades. As a teenager, I suspected that it was a psychological measure to get me to read and study. It is as an adult I am now seeing how much weight these words hold.
As a 20-something who has seen more than her share of life's downs, I now look back to see what are the techniques I used to help me get through them and I realized that when faced with a challenge, I had put all my energy into gathering all information I possibly could about the problem itself and people like me who had faced them and survived them. Needless to say, this helped me immensely.
We all go through experiences that hurt and change us. It is through these that we become who we are. On these lines, check out this wonderful TED talk by researcher professor Brené Brown about vulnerability and happiness. Hopefully it will help you with your
struggles as much as it helped me at a point in time.