If I were you, I would move to the university campus and get out of there since the environment is stagnating and rather suffocating. It is -your- money, for one thing, and it is meant to set you up for life so that you can support yourself and get out of following a pattern of poverty. I'd take advantage of it.
Your family may get upset with you at first, but if you are successful with college/university and you do set yourself up well in life, a parent has no choice but to be proud, or that parent just is not thinking clearly at all. I joined the military to get a college fund and to get out from under my mother who was rather nuts and though she was somewhat mad at me for it, it was the best decision in the end and I'm now independent of my family and can support myself. Because we were poor, my family had no intentions of letting me even get into a college so I did what I felt was the best and so far, I can say I haven't regretted it. If you have the help to change things for yourself, you will also be able to help your family later too, rather than just staying in the same trapped situation. Good luck, whatever you decide.
This is very admirable and you should be proud of yourself rather than down on yourself. You have taken on a responsibility that is going to mean the world to that child. Pick your head up some. Really. I applaud your efforts here to do something you did not have to. However...
How old are you? If you are above 18, you could go to apply to the government for aid and also section 8 housing or get an apartment through the government to raise this child elsewhere. Then you would not have to be under her control any longer. Also, is this child under your name in care as the official guardian? If not, see if you can get the mother of the child to agree to give you that right.
As for the cutting and such, seriously... you have a child you are caring for. That kid obviously needs you. Why would you do this to yourself? Because of some relative who gets on you? As you said yourself, she has mental issues. I suggest instead of hurting yourself and giving yourself more mental issues, that you try to just accept the woman as she is and learn to not take what she says to heart. She's not right in the head and therefore she just is going to say the worst of things. Don't let it get to you. Try to get tough from it because sometimes people really are just like that and they don't even hear that their own words hurt so much. She's self-centered due to her mental condition and if you don't want to have the same thing happen to you, you either have to accept her illness for what it is and learn to ignore her or go get some therapy. By all means necessary, stop cutting and if you really are feeling so negative about yourself, even though you are doing such a wonderful thing for a new life, consider having yourself admitted at a hospital and/or applying for medicaid so that you can get some therapy.
Do you love this child? Why don't you love yourself when you are assisting it? I have relatives that do this crap too of insulting. My mother has anxiety and it turns to rage where she just says the worst of things. We just have to see sometimes, whether we like it or not, that the person is not right and just not all there. Since their perceptions are skewed, we don't have to listen to their awful voices and take it seriously. Take it in one ear and let it flow out the other. [/quote]
Again, I have to ask how old you are and about your status with the guardianship of the child. Whether you do own guardianship or not, I can possibly give you some more suggestions, but one thing is to try to just get yourself out of that environment if you can't ignore it. If you seriously cannot afford therapy, if you really are seriously negative on things, admit yourself to the hospital. Call the suicide prevention hot line and perhaps they can offer you some advice in your local area on where to go to.
I hope any of this helps. Maybe your friends have 'turned' on you because you aren't the same person they knew since you take things right now so very seriously. When we are depressed badly, we aren't thinking about other people and their feelings as much as our own, to include how we feel others feel about us. Often when depressed, we're actually -wrong- about how others feel about us too, so keep that in mind. Your friends just may be confused and not get why you are withdrawing or why you don't get out more etc. Try reaching out to your friends and see if perhaps any would want to go do something with you sometime. Try doing something where you don't just end up talking about your life situation and get out and have some fun, so it's not your focus. Focus on other things around you to bring you sensations of other emotions besides the misery you feel.
You have every reason to live and do things that can make you happy. Have some pride in it because you definitely don't have to take care of this child and you definitely don't have to stay with this grandmother either, who is not well and who would actually miss you if you left. With her attitude, I'm about sure that she's probably frightened off other people who would be around more. Don't distance yourself from life. Try taking the baby out and going for walks or to stores or something fun and relaxing. Maybe go to a park even, and try if you can to get a hold of a friend or two to go do something positive. Keep your head up and I hope things get better for you soon.