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Dealing with a depressed teen can be scary, difficult, and confusing for parents. Often, teens don’t want to share verbally what they’re going through, so parents need to build the skills to observe their teen’s behaviors to find out more.
Signs of Depression in Teens
What are some signs of depression in teens? Look for changes in normal behavior such as eating or sleeping patterns. Are they avoiding or no longer enjoying things they used to do? Are they less involved with activities, friends, and family? These could be signs of depression.
School performance is another area that may show warning signs of depression in your teen. If their grades or interest/participation in school have changed drastically, take note.
Teens and Social Networks
Social networks can be challenging for parents to stay on top of, but these days, it’s crucial. Kids can be bothered by things that are going on online, like cyberbullying, that you never catch wind of, and they could also use private blogs, forums like Reddit, etc., to share their feelings with friends or strangers online without talking directly to you.
There’s never harm in trying to find out more about your teen even though they may be reticent to share with you. You can point out specific changes you’ve noticed and ask about the reasons for those changes. Especially if your child has expressed behaviors or thoughts of self-harm, you should be proactive and take appropriate steps.
Parenting teens is hard, and depression is often part of the process even for happy-go-lucky kids. Don’t get discouraged. There are resources you can turn to – including right here at FLEXTALK.org – and with proper guidance, your teen will make it through the tumultuous season of adolescence.