Depressed Girl - Discussion
Meeting a depressed girl is a more common phenomenon than meeting a depressed boy or guy. Statistics clearly indicate that women are more prone to depression as compared to men. Studies also reveal that most women suffering from depression in their adulthood had experienced depression as children or teens.
The signs and symptoms of depression in children and teens are extremely difficult to catch, mainly because they are not in a position to communicate their feelings accurately. Parents are also often too busy to even notice the subtle changes that are occurring in their little girls. Depressed girls are often too embarrassed to talk about or discuss their problem with their parents, and these cases thus sometimes go untreated.
Until the age of 12 or 13, the number of girls and boys suffering from depression is nearly the same, but around the age of 12 and 13, these statistics show a dramatic change, where the number of girls suffering from depression starts to double the number of boys.
Family history of depression, stress factors that present in the form of tension at home, especially between parents, bad grades at school, peer pressure to look and behave a certain way, obesity, fear of abandonment, illness, disability, and ultimately the stress of coping with physiological changes that are hormonal in nature, all contribute to becoming a depressed girl.
Girls sometimes are extremely vulnerable as children, and often get physically and sexually abused by people from within the family and friends circle. They are then often too scared, ashamed and embarrassed to share this with their parents or other loved ones.
These traumatic experiences can leave long-lasting scars that tend to make them depressed. To escape these feelings, the depressed girls then start taking to drugs and alcohol. All of this ruins their health, peace of mind, and ultimately they start contemplating suicide.
It is therefore extremely important for parents to watch for the following signs in girls around the ages of 9 and above to catch depression early:
If five of more of these symptoms exist and last for over two weeks, there is a good chance that you have got a depressed girl on your hands, and parents must make it a point to talk to the school counselor. Parents should ascertain performance at school and understand from the counselors if they can suggest any good teen psychologist. Ultimately, a visit can be made to a psychiatrist who has treated depressed girls before to seek professional help.
During the age range of 13 to 16 years, girls are rather vulnerable as they tend to get too carried away with physical appearances, impressing boys, getting noticed, being part of a popular group, peer pressure, and the need to experiment with drugs, alcohol, and sex. Indeed, adolescent depression among girls is quite a common occurrence.
All this can look like a lot of fun in the beginning, but can cause severe physical and emotional damage mainly because there is generally no sense of awareness regarding things going wrong. Therefore, one must encourage girls to be open, share their interests, fears, desires, and especially shortcomings with parents, siblings, or grandparents. This can go a long way toward preventing depressed girls.
Parents should always encourage young girls to speak their mind and keep the channel of communication open. Parents should also understand that even with the therapist or psychiatrist, all points discussed are honest, open, and frank so that they will be able to prescribe treatment modalities that are most beneficial to the child. Treatment for depressed girls should generally not be discontinued without consulting the physician.
As far as friction between parents is concerned, it is best to keep it out of the range of kids of any age. Kids have a tendency to blame themselves, feel guilty, nervous, and fear the worst outcome. All these contribute to stress and if these feelings are repressed for a long time, the children will not be able to eat well, sleep well, and concentrate on regular tasks, causing poor performance in school, etc. Generally, depression will then start setting in, resulting in depressed girls and boys.
Parents should become aware of what triggers depression in their girls, and ensure that they teach them to face these challenges, overcome them, and never dwell too much on past events. The focus should always be on the present and the future.
Girls need to be reassured, offered security, and the comfort of sharing a warm relationship with at least one parent, sibling, friend, or grandparent. Encourage them to build these bonds and channelize their energy creatively and productively without indulging or paying too much attention to becoming something they are not.
Make them feel special and praiseworthy - they are like little flowers that need to bloom fully and enjoy the sunlight of your love every single day of their lives. This, again, is critical for preventing them turning into depressed girls.
Discourage girls from taking to smoking and drugs. Parents who smoke and drink should not encourage children from being around to witness much of these, because they often tend to imitate parents and, if the role model is faulty, children, too, follow in the same footsteps.
Care must be taken to ensure that, no matter what the parents are going through, children are not witness to it, but informed about the same, in the most friendly and understanding manner.
Parents must also keep an eye out for friends and family members and be around little girls who are unaware of perverted and predatory behavior they could be subject to. Little girls should also be educated about their bodies.
They should be encouraged to talk about bad experiences and, ultimately, they should be made to understand that it is not their fault and that they should not feel ashamed, guilty, or embarrassed if at all something were to go wrong.
Treatment methods that are found to be effective in treating girls with depression include cognitive behavioral therapy, mild antidepressants, and constant counseling sessions. These will help eliminate suicidal thoughts and negative thought patterns, as well as encourage depressed girls to think positively and feel good about themselves.
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