Story of a teenager managing mental illness
Sharing a mental illness story can be an opportunity to download thoughts and feelings, get the much needed help, hope and encouragement, and break down the stigma around depression and anxiety. That is the case with a teenage boy who lives some 200 meters away from your blogger. There’s no doubt mental health awareness is a major factor to creating an open and positive environment that could save a life of the person affected. If talking about mental health was as common as talking about way we talk about diet, weight or general health most people would be speaking openly about their personal battles like the teenager did with your blogger. His story is his personal experiences that he is still recovering from after going through depression following the tragedy of losing his mother in a botched car theft attempt last December.To help himself, he has had to talk to a person he trust including your blogger.He also has friends and family who do listen to him despite the age and has surrounded himself with the people who love him. Talk to them, the teenager has told them about his thoughts and feelings, let them know that he need their support. As we talked about his challenges, I advised to also speak to his school counselor and hopefully will find him a psychiatrist who will help advise after listening to the teenager’s feelings and thoughts.The last time I had a chat with the teenager, i advised him to avoid social media because the risk of depression among heavy social media users is more than three times greater than those who don’t use social media.My advise for the teenager to go on a digital diet and snubbing social media accounts since then has given the teenager a chance to enjoy real life moments with real life people who care about him and those who want the best future for him.I was glad to hear from the young, bright teenager that he’s been hanging out with a friend who helps him exercise and has tried to ensure he’s not alone at his free time. Of cause we all know that loneliness can foster depression and negative thoughts. Based on your blogger’s experience, one way to stop feeling isolated is by being active like for my case jogging has come handy over the years and regular exercises helps regulate my mood and encourage positive thoughts.
Scientifically, research shows that physical activity increases blood circulation as well as the production of neurotransmitters, dopamine which is linked to happiness and pleasure and serotonin which helps stabilize mood.When listening to the teenager, he feels at home because he does need a friendly ear and with your blogger that is plenty. In fact, I normally listen to him and give advice only when he ask for it. My life experience has taught me that sometimes the issue is not about how difficult the problem is, but how badly it’s hurting. In the case of the teenager, I’ve always shows that am concerned since the day he lost his mother and I take him seriously, and that is okay for him to share the pain with your blogger.Being compassionate, calm and accepting has made the teenager comfortable with looking for your blogger to spend time with. My mother taught me as a kid that I shouldn’t ever judge anyone and that same principle is applied in life including the teenager thats why he’s not reluctant to share his thoughts and feelings because he’s not afraid of being judged by your blogger. I always keep in mind that this is about him and listen to what he feel and think, and don’t lay down any blame on him. After all, his depression was born out of a tragedy.It’s about how he feel and think, and how this is affecting the way he see himself.Many cases of suicides are unreported because of social stigmas and taboos that hinder people from talking openly about suicide. Such conditions makes it hard for psychologists, psychiatrists and mental health researchers to obtain accurate data and worse, to reach out to a person who may be at risk of suicide to assess their state of mental health and provide necessary treatment. Also negative public response toward suicide and mental health in general is appalling. The public lack of awareness on mental health is well documented but for the teenage boy, at least your blogger has deep knowledge about the challenges. Many people have a tendency to mock those with mental challenges exacerbating the situation and possibly their condition sometimes causing irreparable and harmful consequences. There are very many people who are not aware that severe depression can cause paranoia and other mental disorders, and provoke thoughts of ending one’s life. Depression is a mental illness. And like any illness, it does not discriminate. It does not care about age, race, nationality, gender or social status as is the case with the teenage boy your blogger is doing everything within his means to guide and help cope with the challenges.Mental illness is a serious health condition of which awareness needs to be spread, especially among teenagers who have a bigger risk of depression.