When Your Head Spins
An on-line resource for youth at risk
Young People Describe Their Depression
From Young People and Depression, Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand 1997

While mood swings, anxiety, and bouts of loneliness may be a normal part of growing up, it is very important that young people with depression are 'heard' and their feelings heard, acknowledged and understood. Many 'acting out' behaviours are dismissed as typical adolescent storminess. Often they are cries for help or signs of a problem.

John, 19 years, 'Depression feels like falling out of a plane without a parachute.'

Sean,16 years, 'There aren't any words to express the confusion of feelings.'

Courtney, 14 years, 'It's a deep hole that you feel you can't climb out of.'

Andy, 16 years, 'It's hard for people to understand unless they've experienced it themselves.
It's very hard to concentrate on things you like doing. You feel like you can't do it any more.'

Rebecca, 17 years, 'It sort of becomes a daily habit ..... being sad.'

Paul, I had no energy at all. I felt totally wiped out.'

Sara, 'My sadness became a part of my life. I walked around with tears in my eyes.'

Jean, I was sleeping all the time. I would sleep for fifteen hours and still look tired.'

Chris, 'All I wanted was peace of mind.'

John, 'You go through hell but you do eventually come out of it.'

-Youth Specialty Service, Overcoming Depression, HealthlinkSouth, Christchurch (1996).

Cindy, 1 8, 'I felt as if a dense dark cloud was around me.'

Ernie, 16, 'I was often impatient with my friends. They didn't want to be around me any more.'

Jill, 17, 'My parents were always proud of my school reports, but when I got depressed my brain

felt sort of blocked off. I couldn't take anything in any more. I started getting awful reports. Then

everyone said I was lazy, so I felt even worse.'

-  Young People and Depression - Mental Health Foundation

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