Symptoms of Teenage Depression
Crazy things are happening in senior high school and colleges and we can’t deny it any longer. Teenagers seem to be breaking down and it is beginning to show. Many are involved in shootouts, boys and girls are joining cliques whose sole purpose is to terrorize others and make them feel inadequate and teenage kids are a long way from being cooperative at home. Adults may look at the mean girl syndrome as a passing phase but it points to a deeper problem that didn’t start yesterday and may not necessarily just go away. Look at young adults right now. That should tell you that it doesn’t just go away.
Whichever way you look at it the young people in this generation are in trouble and need help. If you are a parent, sibling, and friend or related to a teenager you may want to do something to help that teenager not fall into clinical depression and if they are already in it, not stay there too long. Before you start preparing that life-changing speech for them you need to know a few important things.
- You have no idea what is actually going on. You may think you do but oh, you don’t even know the half of it. It’s important to recognize and acknowledge your ignorance on this matter because it takes a lot of work and time to understand teenagers. What you see is NOT what you get.
- Being in touch with your teenager comes with a new set of communication skills. You need to learn how to parent afresh because all those methods you used when they were growing up are now useless and definitely obsolete. Connecting with her requires a change on your side.
- Now that you’ve agreed that you need to change a few things, you need to find the people who know these kills. Look for experts in this field because they will help you set up that connection on your own and in a natural and appropriate way. You’ll get hands-on training and useful advice.
- Don’t compare your worlds because there is really no comparison. Appreciate that there are many differences and immerse yourself in her world so that you can understand it. The challenges you had as a teenager are very different from what she is facing right now so don’t pull the ‘I was once a teenager’ card. You can look at it as an exploration of sorts. Read what they or other teenagers are reading, watch what they are watching, ask what’s trending and hip in their world and keep an open mind.
- Try not to judge or freak out and instead let her know that she can trust you and you are genuinely interested in her life. Listen to her and apply those skills you learned from the expert.
- As you go along she may finally break and let you in. It may not be an appropriate time for you but you need to be there. Be available for that moment because it will set the pace. For some reason it usually comes when you’re exhausted or already in bed or on that day that they come home past curfew (and you’re wondering whether listening would make you look weak and too lenient). Your sleep is important but this moment holds much more value and will be more beneficial in the long run.
- Comments about weight and appearance can leave a trail of hurt and insecurity because the world is already bombarding her with stereotypes. Instead, help her build her inner strength and improve her health. Do an activity together so that you aren’t always having serious discussions. Activities tend to get you relaxed and the information shared becomes deeper. The defences are deactivated for a bit.
There is so much pressure for teenagers to succeed and stand out yet they are uncertain about many things at this age. This increases anxiety which in turn triggers anxiety disorders, eating disorders and aggression. These eat at their self-esteem and can slowly lead them into depression. The sooner you see this connection the faster teenagers get help.