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Where do we go from here

A quote from Joyce Meyer said it best, "Depression begins with disappointment. When disappointment festers in our soul, it leads to discouragement." There is a culture of young people today, that feel discouraged. Today's culture is an ever changing social experiment. We are riddled by new forms of communication and our youth are at forefront of it all. ​Our youth are targeted by nasty agents which constantly pick and pull at them. Amongst these negative agents are things you would call stress, bullying, social media, sex, family problems, peer pressure--and countless other examples. All of these agents hinder youth and their development. Creating obstacles, untold challenges and often times depression. Parents argue that their teens won't communicate and they ask, "where do we go from here?" There are many factors that play in with youth development. There are also many forms of youth anxiety, depression, and other social problems which are hindering their ability to live happy and healthy lives. Sure, we can send our youth to see a physician and provide them with self-help materials. However, there is a solution which can take place and it's better than any medicine. It all begins with prevention. Easier said than done, right? Not exactly, youth have more control over their lives than they like to think they do. They often times are their own worst enemy and do not even realize it. First off, there is a word that teens ask and it's not always discussed. Youth love using "why" questions. Why doesn't she like me? Why can't I do anything right? Why am I so ugly? Why can't I make friends? Why do people not smile at my? Many questions, that often times go unsaid but are deeply rooted in a youth's thinking process. Speaking on behalf of teens, in our mind, we are constantly asking these questions and wishing things were different. Although social interaction is a much broader study, we certainly understand the struggles that youth have with pressures of everyday life. People target teenagers and use sayings like, "teens don't think before they act". It's not that youth don't think, rather, they haven't fully constructed their reasoning or understanding of the situation. For all the reasons and more, we all understand that young people are young for a reason. They haven't seen all of life difficult situations and they are learning as they grow. However, most parents and adults often misunderstand their teenagers. They move their feelings into a pile of, "just being a teen". In reality, this is not an assumption worth making. There are more dangers associated with believing that young people only act a certain way because they are "young". ​In my own life, I have dealt with the symptoms of depression. It is a disorder which should be taken seriously. Most youth are afraid to say anything because they might feel ridiculed for having those feelings. It's also important to understand that youth might hurt the ones they love in order to seek attention. Their mood will be changed and often times they'll take it out on the people close to them. It's important not to give up and use that as an opener towards having a conversation about depression. ​Youth are experiencing a new generation of communication. With access to social media right in their pocket...they see highly edited versions of people's lives. It might be difficult for teens to understand that what their friend just posted doesn't mean they always have that "wonderful" life. In reality, we all share similar emotions. We might have really good days and really bad days. There are signs of depression which may last a couple of weeks. Make sure to review them: -Withdrawal from friends and activities - Drug/alcohol abuse - Hopelessness and sadness - Anger and dissapointment - Lack of motivation, enthusiasm or energy - Overreaction to certain comments - Low self-esteem - Changes in thought or behavior - Sucidial thoughts or actions -Problems with authority There is much more to discuss on the topic of depression and stress. The thoughts above will hopefully help you organize some of your own thoughts and understanding on the issue.

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