You were wise to reach out for help, because people are generous and willing to help. Keep doing that. To unlock the artist within us, to share the transformative power of our own lived experiences, we must first understand what those experiences mean to us, how they have shaped us as people first and as artists second. To produce something that might be art, and then share it, we must first be fully integrated human beings, taking in and understanding our experiences, even if (actually, especially if) they have caused us suffering.
I don't need to tell you this because you should already know: the only way around suffering is through. We have the choice to avoid or numb our suffering, but if we wish to be creative and whole, we need to go through, to integrate the suffering because it then might become an offering for the world (i.e., art). It took me years of healing (and therapy) to be able to sit with the complexities of my own feelings about my mentally-ill dad. It almost broke me twice, but somehow we find ways to endure and transform what hurts us into what might help others. My artistic yearnings seem to be inextricably tied up with a profound desire to help others be well, and I can't do anything else but acknowledge that truth.
Since I was 6, I've had the urge to write, but it took me decades to find that calm space where I'm writing not only for myself, as a kind of navel-gazing self-therapy. When you find that calm place, you just sit there and observe, taking in what's happening around you -- colors, people, textures, sounds, your own emotions.
Having read a bit of your writing, I can see that you are already doing this with your stories. You are seeing the sensual beauty of the natural landscape and the small, intimate details. These details are lovely. It starts with seeing a place vividly, in three dimensions, and then seeing yourself there too. Then explore where you fit in: stories are ways we contextualize randomness, the details of everyday life.
I don't think doing this observation takes "courage," at least that's not how I think of it. I try to inhabit the calm perspective of a neutral observer seeking to understand what the experience and the story mean. And if you suffered within that context, you need to observe and understand that too, and explore it through your story. What I seek for myself is a calm space that holds the past in its half-opened hand, letting it fly away if it wants to but holding it comfortably otherwise. Artists must sit there, so must all people who want to find acceptance. And as you sit there, generously share what you see, what you feel. We don't wallow, we simply sit and observe. Easy for me to say, but you are the one who needs to sit there and craft "your" stories, if you choose to. I hope you do that well, because we need more strong, integrated, and empathetic voices in the world today.
And as a gesture of what this might look like, here is the toughest thing I have ever written (it took me years), but something I had to write because it was the most meaningful experience of my life: