Teen Depression

Sandra Dodd

(sent for anonymous posting)

I’ve been reading—a LOT—at your site lately, with a heavy focus on happiness and peace.  I’m trying to keep my head up as my oldest (18) takes another tour through depression.  There have been so many quotes in different places where I have this vague “*that*—we don’t have THAT,” or “this isn’t happening over here…,” always in an ephemeral, can’t quite nail it down kind of way.  But today I read on the radical unschooling FB group a quote (from a few weeks back, from Jo Isaac, to a mom who wrote in):  “Is she happy?  Is she thriving?”  And I thought, THAT!  That’s it.  No.  No, he’s not.

So if I can pose a question to the Always Learning group (honestly, I might have asked before…..I know I’ve sought answers in various places over the years; I don’t THINK I’ve asked here):  How do you unschool a teen through depression?  When so little lights them up and interests them; when there’s so little they’re passionate about?  When I hear (repeatedly) how exercise will help, but I can’t force him to exercise?  (Or get outside in the sunshine—another example.)

We do still have a truly good relationship—I’m the soft spot for him to land in all this, and I’m grateful that he’s willing to open up to me and thankful I can be there for him through all the yuck.  But I want to do more to help than simply be a steadying presence (even if that is a good thing to be).  I want to help bring him back to enjoying life, if that’s possible.

Brief answers to potential questions: yes, he’s on meds; no, hasn’t seen a counselor in awhile (tho he used to); and there are two younger siblings who are thriving (which I sometimes think makes things worse, as he watches them have so much fun in their days).

Any thoughts?

________________ end of quote; reminder that it's another mom, not my own question _______________________

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