“It feels like running after something but not being able to reach it, no matter how hard I try,” a fellow peer at Round Lake High School stated. She said living with depression has been, hands down, the hardest thing she has ever had to do. “After losing my mother, I fell into a very deep depression. Even to this day sometimes I wonder how I managed to overcome it.” Depression can be brought on in anyone, and at any moment. Depression, however can be beat head on, as long as people know how to identify the signs and ask for help.
Depression leads to suicide, and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance reports that more than 6.7 percent of the population 18 or older. Suicide is the leading cause of death in the United States. It is approximate that 30,000 people commit suicide each year, according to suicide.org. Many people do not know how to cope with feeling suicidal or being depressed, yet there are many resources out there to help overcome these tough times.
The month of February is actually Mental Health Awareness Month, following that is Suicide Awareness Month in April. Reason being, a disorder which correlates an individual’s emotions to the seasons around them. “This disorder is formerly known as S.A.D., or Seasonal Affective Disorder,” said Gina Hoffman, a school psychologist at RLHS. “Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that is related to changes in seasons — SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you’re like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody.”
“ It is not unusual for teens in high school or young adults to experience Seasonal Affective Disorder or have depression from time to time,” said Hoffman. Many teens are having to make adjustments in their lives, and just need a little guidance along the way.
There are many ways to deal with the effects of depression and suicidal thoughts. Sleeping is a great start, many people can have fatigue from being depressed, but what many do not know is that sleeping is good. Embrace the need to sleep because it is great way to temporary block out everything that is upsetting and hit a “reset” button. Next would be to talk to someone. Many young adults in high school do not know who to go to or who to talk to about their issues, either being depressed or suicidal. But each and every high school has at least one counselor. RLHS has tons of certified counselors, psychologists and social workers, all here to help students with any problem they may have.
“ I think I got over the whole depression and suicidal thing by doing something I loved,” said a fellow peer at RLHS. “I drew. I would draw for hours on end, many of my first drawings were a little sad but as the days continued on and on I realized the more I did what I loved the more I felt my depression slowly go away. But all in all, I think the real reason I overcame depression, was because I wanted too, I pushed myself to get better again.”
Depression and suicide can be beat. It will be a challenge but it is all worth. Exercising, sleeping or talking to someone is great ways to help lift a fallen spirit and get back in the swing of loving life and being happy.