I'm not sure if I'm depressed, and I feel like I need to talk to someone

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Hi, this is the first time I've posted on something like this...so I'm a bit nervous.

I'm going to be honest, it's taken quite a bit of courage to even do this little post.

Um, I don't really know there to start. I don't really know what's happening with me, I'm 17, and I have recently thought that I may be depressed in some form but I feel that some people have to live with much more serious problems than I do, so maybe I'm just being pathetic. I don't feel like I can talk to anyone who's too close to me in case they think I'm being over dramatic.

I would talk to my dad, but I can't bring myself to worry him, and I can't talk to my mum because, as much as I love her, she always seems quite critical of what I do, and if I tell her I might be depressed she would just tell me that I'm overreacting to something, or I have no reason to be...I feel like she would just brush it off and not take me seriously.

I don't really know when it started, I guess the first thing that started to go wrong was when I was under a lot of pressure last year and I felt the need to be completely perfect in everything I did, including my image, I went through a stage when I wouldn't eat, I got up earlier than everyone else so I wouldn't have to eat breakfast. I'd tell my dad that I had already made lunch, so I didn't eat lunch. And I would eat parts of my dinner so slowly that everyone else would finish before me and I could throw my dinner away. I lost a large amount of weight, and to be honest I think I did it because my mum said she thought I was heavier than I should be, I still wore (and wear) a uk size 8, I'm only 5ft. But I weighed around 8stone 5, which I was told was too heavy.

Then in November, I had persistent rows with my mum, which always resulted in me feeling rubbish about myself, and as if I could never do anything right, they would be about the most petty things, which is why I think I might just be being pathetic, but they affected me dramatically; we wouldn't go a day without arguing, and she was one of the most important people in my life (and still is), her opinion is the only that really matters so when I thought she felt I wasn't good enough, I started trying to cut myself. I did this a few times, and I told my dad the first time. He wanted to tell my mum, but I begged him not to. I didn't tell him the other times though, I had sworn to him that I wouldn't do it again.

It's got worse recently, I can't really be bothered to do anything, I keep thinking of all the things I need to do, and I put so much pressure on myself and get so stressed that I never bring myself to actually do anything. I have felt constantly down, and had panic attacks on the way to college. I'm absolutely exhausted and I'm questioning if there's much point in me trying to do anything anymore. I think it's normal for people to wonder if anyone would care if they just didn't exist anymore, but I have been thinking about it quite a bit recently. I'd like to think I wouldn't try anything like that, but at the moment I'm only getting worse. I just feel like I'm withering away. And I don't really know what to do.

I would appreciate any advice, or reply in some form. If I am being pathetic in any way, please let me know, because I don't know if it's serious or not. I just need someone to tell me. And I apologise, if I am being pathetic, if I've offended anyone who has had any serious problems depression related.

Thanks.

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    You need to speak to someone now while you are still young. If you let this problem carry on it will only get worse. If people don't listen just keep drilling it into them. They will realise eventually that this is an issue and it needs to be resolved ASAP. I wish I had been able to resolve my issues at 17 so get it cut out now while you are. You have a future ahead of you. Don't let it go to waste smile.
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    • Posted

      Thank you so much for replying! I know I should speak to someone, but I feel as if I might not really have a problem, and if I talk to someone they will think I'm just wasting their time. I don't mean to sound stuck up or anything like that at all, but I have had such a great life compared to some of my friends and others I know, I feel like I have no reason to be feeling like I do. My parents are still together, we're not rolling in money, but we have a nice house and I have nice things; I haven't lost anyone close to me recently. I don't really know why I feel the way I do about myself.

      Alicia

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  • Posted

    Hi Alicia

    No, you are not being silly. I would first point out that I am a middle-age man without children so you can accept or reject what I write.

    First I am sure that your parents and any siblings would be devastated if you weren't around.

    Likewise your friends.

    I believe that children have a much more open relationship with their parents than they did when I was a teenager.

    Having said that I know that chidlren can still find relationships fraught.

    Do you have a counsellor at school that you can talk to, or a particular teacher?

    You have expressed yourself well and therefore it would seem that you need to be able to talk to a friend or go to a group where you can talk about your similar problems.

    Are there activities you can involve yourself in, hobbies, school groups or activities, youth groups, musical groups?

    There might be some blogs or forums for teenagers, and, no, I don't mean FB etc but which is specifically for young people and which hosted by a charity will be moderated so that there can't be cyberbullying etc.

    And, again, no, you are not being pathetic.

    Tell us how you get on.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the advice. I know it is important to get these problems out into the open. This was my first step towards starting to talk to people about my problems, but I sometimes feel like I have no real reason for feeling the way I do, and that makes it hard for me to justify what I might tell people about how I feel.

      I think I might speak to one of my closest friends first, he's someone who I can confide in for any reason, so I know I won't be worried about being judged. Then it should be easier to make a decision on whether to tell my dad, or to speak to a proffesional first.

      Thanks again.

      Alicia

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  • Posted

    Alicia, of course you're not being pathetic, and I can't see how what you've said could possibly offend anyone! And you weren't overweight at 8st 5lb if you were 5ft either. That's a BMI of 22.8, and overweight only starts at 25. To be honest, you just sound like a slightly exaggerated version of a normal 17-year-old to me!

    I know parents can be very difficult to talk to. Often a denial to admit anything is wrong can be a form of trying to protect their child, paradoxical as it sounds. Do you have a college counsellor or anyone like that? Even teachers can sometimes be helpful. Sounds from your English and your writing style as if you're in the UK. Have you tried googling Childline? They have help lines and (I think) chat rooms where you can talk to counsellors anonymously. I realise you're not a child at 17, of course, but you can still use their services at your age. And it's not just for victims of sexual or other abuse. It might be that talking to one of their counsellors could give you all the help you need. If not, they could probably point you in the direction of more specialised help.

    Perhaps it might be a good idea to see your GP too. Young people your age are prone to various minor ailments like infectious mononucleosis (glandular fever) which can drag on for months and cause similar symptoms. A simple blood test would find any evidence of this.

    You were quite right to post on a forum like this. I'm sure a lot of people will give you helpful advice. (And a few may give you unhelpful advice too, like suggesting you have a serious mental illness, but I'm sure you're sensible enough to discriminate between the two.) However, now you've overcome the first hurdle of admitting you have a problem, you need to take it up a stage and talk to someone directly about it, whether it's over the phone or face to face.

    Lots of people your age go through this phase. It's part of the normal growing-up process but it can be much more severe for some than others. By starting to address it now, you're giving yourself a good chance of nipping it in the bud.

    Good luck!

    Lily

     

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply, I didn't think of speaking to child line. That sounds like a reasonable idea. I just feel like I might be wasting people's time if I think I have a problem, when I don't. But, if I do, I really do understand I should speak to someone about it soon.

      Thanks for the great advice again.

      Alicia

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    • Posted

      Alicia, I volunteer on a crisis line (though not one specifically for children or teens). All kinds of people call, some with devastating problems, most with relatively minor upsets. The rule for callers to all lines of this kind (and the people who staff them) is: "If you feel you have a problem, then you have a problem". No one is going to dismiss you just because you don't come from a financially under-privileged background. There are different kinds of privilege.

      Make that first call!

      Lily

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    • Posted

      Thank you again! I feel like just getting it out in the open on here is helping a little. It's quite encouraging to know that there are others out there willing to listen to me and help. I'll try to make a call.

      Alicia

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