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Teen Depression-I've Been There and I'm Living It

Posted by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 7:12 PM
  • 13 Replies

There have been quite a few posts lately about cutting and teen depression.  I'm living it.  And I thought I would share my story because it might help.  This is going to be long.  A bit of background, my daughter is 14 and has an older sister who seems perfect.  Blonde, blue eyes, beautiful, does great in school, got into a really good college.  She's not perfect, but in a small town, she sure looks it.

My daughter has always been moody.  In January, I got a call from the counselor at her school.  D wanted to tell me something.  She was sobbing and told me she was cutting herself.  I hung up the phone, grabbed my purse and walked out the door to go to the school.  I called my boss from the car.

We talked a bit and my husband got us immediately into the doctor.  He referred us to a clinic in the big city in our state.  It is 3 hours away.  We called and got an appointment in less than a week.  I was shocked by what I heard.  She said she wanted to crawl into a ball on the floor and cry all the time.  And she wanted to die.  That stopped my heart.  When your child wants to die, well, I can't think of anything worse than finding a dead child.

After that first appointment, she said she felt better because there was hope.  She was put on some medication.  We went back in a month and the meds got changed.  Added a mood stabilizer.  It helped for a while, then the next month her stabilizer was strengthened. 

She's a different person.  Getting good grades.  Bubbly, happy person.  This has been a miracle.  Going from wanting to die to this is incredible.  We have always been honest about it.  Her brain's electrodes are zapping the  wrong way and she needs these meds to make them work the right way.  No more cutting.  That's just the trendy way of dealing with depression, anxiety and anger.  We go those 3 hours every month because the clinic is the best in the state.  I would travel anywhere to get her help, but this place has been a miracle for us.

We will always deal with this.  I sometimes worry that she won't be able to take her meds when she gets pregnant some day.  Or that when she goes to college, she will forget to take them.  But that's something I need to relax about now. 

If this is happening to you, find a therapist who specializes in teens.  Ours does, and D is extremely honest with her.  She loves her.  She gets really excited about seeing her.  If there are any questions, I'm more than happy to help.  I'm in Arkansas, so if you are dealing with this in my state, I'm more than happy to recommend the clinic.

by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 7:12 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by on Sep. 21, 2013 at 9:27 PM
Thank you for sharing your story. I'm glad your daughter is getting the help she needs and it's working
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by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 8:36 AM

Thanks!  I wanted to let mothers know there is hope and it has nothing to do with your parenting.

by Bronze Member on Sep. 22, 2013 at 1:40 PM
Thank you for sharing your story. I'm hoping when my daughter sees a therapist that all she will need is talk therapy. She doesn't want to take medication. But if she has to she will.
She's doing well in school. I'm wondering though if her dad's decision not to call her might be a part of this? He hasn't called her now in two months.
by on Sep. 26, 2013 at 7:24 AM

I'm anti-pills.  And I think kids are overmedicated.  Plus, I think there are way too many misdiagnosed ADD kids.  But we went to parent teacher conferences the other day and my D has all A's.  That's never happened before.  The medicine she's taking has been a miracle for her.  Between the therapist, medication, prayer, and parents who wouldn't give up, this girl is going to be ok.  From wanting to die and even having a suicide plan to bubbly and happy and doing great in school is truly a miracle.  Good luck with your daughter.  If she doesn't like the therapist, find another one.  One who specializes in teens.  xoxo

by on Sep. 26, 2013 at 12:06 PM

I'm so glad yur daughter is better. I have a similar situation.  My daughter is a cutter and now she is in a psych hospital. she says she does it to get my attention but i am there to talk to her about anything. Unfortunately she had to drop out of school because she wasn't getting any better.  she promises me she is going to do things to better her life and never does them. I have now told the hospital I won't take her home unless she goes into a  treatment center.  She refuses. She just crawls up into a ball on the hospital floor and cries that she wants to come home. I am a working mother too and I have her grandmother and younger brother to take care of.  My daughter also had an eating disorder we sught treatment for.  this has been ging on for 6 years. I am so worn out. Any help or advice anyone can offer would be much appreciated. It was really nice to hear a sucess story.

by Bronze Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 1:58 PM
My daughter has her assessment today. Her school has a counseling center with psychologists on school grounds.
Except for getting mad about a teacher yesterday, her mood does seem better. I'm wondering if it's because she's brought the problem out in the open.
by Bronze Member on Sep. 27, 2013 at 2:05 AM
1 mom liked this
My daughter had her assessment today. The doctor thinks at this point therapy without medication may work. She saw a therapist this afternoon. She seemed to like her. She will see her next week too.
by on Sep. 30, 2013 at 10:51 PM

 Glad you found something to help

by on Nov. 29, 2013 at 9:30 PM

My daughter is now 17 and started cutting at age 14. By age 15 1/2 she was depressed and suicidal. We were already in family therapy and she was in individual therapy; we saw a psychiatrist and she was started on medication. From freshman yr of high school through jr yr she attempted suicide twice and was hospitalized twice. Meds were changed, therapists were changed. She attended intentsive outpatient therapy and dialectical behavior therapy, group and individual. She was so out of control she could no longer live at home and so was placed in a group home for girls for about 9 months. She returned home about 11 months ago and is doing well, applying to colleges though she does have her depressive moments. It is NOT about parenting; it is, at the risk of sounding flippant, the "luck of the draw" and anyone who tells you it is because you are a bad parent is delusional-- they have not experienced this and so assume that their children are doing well because they are fabulous parents. Get your children the help they need even if it doesn't seem to help; it will eventually.

by on Nov. 29, 2013 at 10:55 PM

My dd hasn't cut but she has a lot of anxiety and OCD symptoms, maybe depression too, but she says she's not depressed. I found a journal and read an entry from a few months ago and she talked about fake smiling when she is around her friends and if she was gone that nobody would miss her, so that's why I think maybe depression too, but I don't want her to know I read her journal so I just ask her if she is feeling depressed and she says no, so I am trying to take her on her word.

But her anxiety seems to get worse and worse. She has social anxiety, generalized anxiety and sometimes she has separation anxiety. I toook her to a psychiatrist but I'm not sure about this dr. He put her on Prozac and it seemed to help some, but not enough. There just didn't seem to be a very thorough evaluation at the first appt. Then he keeps asking her to decide if her meds need to be increased and she doesn't know. I want HIM to deicde that, not my anxious dd who has trouble deciding if she wants apples or grapes for snack. If she can't make a simple decision like that, how can she decide if her meds need to be increased?

We are still waiting on an appt with a psychologist. It is on Dec 11, and maybe she can give us some more insight on what to do. Sometimes it might be easier if she was cutting or something like that, bc then the dr could really see how much she is hurting. She is so quiet and doesn't show her feelings much, except to me, so I think that makes it harder to get her the help she needs.

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