“I’m REALLY stressed out. School, family, self-esteem issues, tension, just about everything” – a depressed teen posted online
People affected by depression experience a set of confused and chaotic emotions, but they are often misjudged and misunderstood. They may be seen as just being moody or behaving inappropriately. Teens are known for being a rebellious, egocentric and emotional bunch. While this is normal adolescent behavior, depression is a real disorder that affects many teens, and people should be aware of the existence of this dilemma.
The reason why I call it a dilemma is because the person who is experiencing depression, may be living in a state of denial and may be having feelings of guilt and other confusing emotions. The experience is different for every person; each has their own reasons and questions that they’re trying to justify or find the answer for. They might feel worthless or hopeless, as though everything they ever hoped for is gone, and nothing is the same anymore. They need help.
Depressed teens may be trying to find someone who is brave enough to lead them to help. Some are strong enough to deal with it, but others are so scared or anxious that they need something to hold on to. Because of depression, they’re missing so much. They want to feel happy again, they want to stop feeling useless; they have a place in this world, and they need to find it.
Some succeed, but sadly, others don’t. That’s why it is absolutely vital that depressed teens find the right answer, as there is a wrong answer.
Depressed teens may think about suicide at times. They may think it’s the answer that they’ve been looking for, but it’s not!
That phase of emotions will pass. You just need to remind yourself that you are strong. You need to fight in order to survive, and to fight, you’re going to need help. Help is available; depression is a horrible illness, and it can be treated.
I urge you to take the first step toward help and go for it. There’s nothing to be afraid of anymore, nothing to lose, and only something to gain. Reaching out will give you hope! Stop locking yourself in that room of four blank walls, just closing in on you. Look in the mirror, and really see yourself. Do you want help? Do you need help? Do you deserve help?
The answer to these questions is YES. You need to let in someone who can help; let their help shine beyond those tears, and turn them into hope; your own hope to live. Whatever happened to that little kid who looked at the sky one day and said: “I wish I could fly!”? Where did that hope go? It was never really gone; you just thought you lost it.
Please, if you know someone who is going through depression, help them! Connect them with someone that you know will help. Start by getting your friend to talk to you. Know that your friend doesn’t expect you to have the answers. Stick with your friend through the hard times. Most importantly, you MUST speak up if your friend is suicidal.
Even if it gets tough sometimes, you need to find someone mature enough to understand how delicate and important this matter is.
Here are some places you can find help:
There is an adolescent outreach counsellor, Laura Dipietro-Saul, from New Path Youth & Family Services who comes to Barrie Central on Mondays and Wednesdays. She works out of the student success area in the library. You can reach her by speaking to guidance, student success, or by contacting the New Path office. (705-733-2654 ext. 2343) Services are confidential. If appropriate, students being counselled can choose to give signed consent allowing the counsellor to contact others (parents, teachers, other professionals).
-by Bilal Ali