Teen Depression: PART 2

How do you know if your feelings are really depression?
• If you are losing control of your life situation.
• If you cannot control your emotions.
• If you think that your situation is hopeless and will never improve.
• If you have suicidal thoughts.
• If nothing seems to give you joy anymore and you are constantly sad.
• If you think that all your problems are caused by other people or events you cannot control and that your situation can only improve if they change.
• If you constantly feel drained of energy and are not motivated to do things .

If you are experiencing any of these feelings, you might be depressed and should seek help.

• Let others help you! Our natural tendency is to want to fix things on our own, but with depression, isolation and secrecy is the enemy. Your feelings of failure will only intensify if you try to battle depression alone.
• Participate in activities that may make you feel better.
• Mild exercise, going to a movie, a ballgame, or participating in social activities may help.
• Postpone important decisions until the depression has lifted. Before deciding to make a significant transition – start a new love relationship, quit school, change jobs, get married, etc. Discuss it with others who know you well and have a more objective view on your situation.
• While feelings can be overwhelming, they are also often untrustworthy for someone who is depressed. Remember, feelings do NOT determine truth. If you are feeling worthless, hopeless, or like a failure, try to take a step back and gain a new perspective and talk with someone who can be more objective. There is always hope.
When we’re depressed, we often make poor choices in an effort to end the pain. It is not uncommon for those who are depressed to turn to alcohol, drugs, self-harm, food, promiscuity, or other destructive choices. Sadly, these things only add to the pain, accentuate the feelings of failure and deepen the despair. If you are turning to any of these for solace, please seek help immediately. Likewise, if you feel out of control, despondent, have thoughts of suicide, or find yourself isolating and unable to do normal activities, please get help.
“While feelings can be overwhelming, they are also often untrustworthy for someone who is depressed. Remember, feelings do NOT determine truth!”
There may be some debate about medical treatment for depression and the use of drugs, but we believe that there are cases where medication is needed to help conquer depression, but it should be used in combination with counseling to address the underlying emotional. There is no reason to feel guilty for seeking help; it is not an admittance of failure, it is an act of courage.

For immediate help please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255: Available 24 hours everyday