Insights into Teens: Episode 2 “Depression”

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Joe and Madison tackle the difficult topic of teen depression. They discuss the factors that cause depression, the symptoms of depression and how to cope with some of the more common sources of depression. It’s an emotionally stirring and inspirational discussion that illustrates the strength and emotional maturity our twelve year old host possesses.

Insights Into Teens

Episode Transcript

Speaker 1:0:10Welcome to insights into teens, a podcast series, exploring the issues and challenges of today’s youth, your hosts, or Joseph and Madison, Waylon, a father and daughter team making their way through the challenges of the teenage years.

Speaker 2:0:39Welcome to insights into teens, episode to depression. I’m your host, Joseph Wayland, and my cohost, Madison Wayland.

Speaker 3:0:49Great to be here, Daddy.

Speaker 2:0:50Today we’re going to be talking about depression. What I want to do is start off with defining what depression is from a clinical standpoint based on the definition from the American psychiatric association. Depression is a common and serious medical illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act. Depression causes feelings of sadness and or a loss of interest in activities once enjoyed. It can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems and can decrease a person’s ability to function at work or at home or in the case of a teenager at school. So let me start off by saying, do you ever feel depressed? Yes. So let’s talk about that. How often do you think you feel depressed?

Speaker 3:1:48Well, whenever I have a negative day at school, I normally feel depressed.

Speaker 2:1:52No. Are there triggers or things that make you feel depressed?

Speaker 3:1:56Yeah, mainly what happened is my mood swings after I made the day horrible and then I just get depressed.

Speaker 2:2:06So let’s talk about your mood swings. Where do these mood swings originate from?

Speaker 3:2:11Oh, just like from the wrong body. Your hormones cause an emotion, an emotional and physical and mental effect on your body.

Speaker 2:2:23So you’re going through the. The changes that are common with liberty at this point? Yeah. As a result of the hormonal imbalance that you’re going through or they’re fluctuating. I wouldn’t don’t want to say inbounds, but it’s a fluctuating fluctuating hormones. You have good days and bad days. I take it. Would you say you have more good days than bad days? Nope. So you have more bad days than good days. You have mood swings and what usually is the cause of these mood swings?

Speaker 3:2:58Well basically if anything small were to happen, like say if I lost a level of my game, I would get outraged and start screaming and then just get all worked up and then at the end I realized it was for nothing and at school it gets more effective than when I’m at home.

Speaker 2:3:21So when you have these, these, we’ll call them outbursts for lack of a better term. When you have these outbursts, do you direct your frustration at other people?

Speaker 3:3:31Well sometimes. I mean I don’t mean to of course, but my mood swings just take over my whole body and then poof, whenever they’re gone I realized I made a big mistake.

Speaker 2:3:43And how long does it take for this mood swing to pass and for you to sort of ground yourself again?

Speaker 3:3:49Well, normally it pretty much takes the whole day. Like if I get mad in the morning, it’ll take a few mind breaks or call them to finally get my ground back and realized what I did wrong.

Speaker 2:4:08So you get triggered early in the morning and that sort of sets a bad tone for the whole day? Yeah, pretty much so you talk about mine breaks, explained to me what these are

Speaker 3:4:18basically just taking a breather of what I got mad at and just trying to think it over.

Speaker 2:4:24So almost like meditating or trying to calm yourself from that incident. Is that correct? Sure. So there’s a number of symptoms of depression. I’m not, you know, I’m not a psychiatrist or a psychologist so I, I can’t say whether or not what you’re going through his depression, but there are clinical symptoms of depression. Let me run down a few of these and you tell me if you experience these feelings of said sadness or having a depressed mood.

Speaker 3:5:03Yes, I have felt that way before.

Speaker 2:5:05Okay. And that’s triggered from your mood swings. Okay. Well the effect from my mood swings, right? A loss of interest or pleasure in activities you want to enjoy. Sometimes the topic changes of appetite, weight loss or gain, unrelated to dieting.

Speaker 3:5:25I can’t really say. I mean sometimes you would know. I wouldn’t really. I would eat a few bites of food in the night, be like I’m full, but that’s really all. I don’t really think that’s causing by depression.

Speaker 2:5:39Well, and, and these don’t cause the depression. These are how you depression manifest. These are the symptoms of the depression, trouble sleeping or sleeping too much?

Speaker 3:5:50Wow. I think trouble sleeping is definitely the obvious one.

Speaker 2:5:54Okay. So you do have trouble sleeping then? Yes. Okay. I

Speaker 3:5:58mean I’m still able to get some sleep, but yeah, I still have trouble sleeping

Speaker 2:6:04now. Do you find situations where you’re sleeping too much? Nope. Never. Okay. And a loss of energy or increased fatigue?

Speaker 3:6:14Well, I do feel like I’ve, I lose energy whenever I have my mood swings or whenever I feel depressed.

Speaker 2:6:22Uh, increase in purposeless physical activity such as hand ringing, ringing or pacing or slowed movements and speech. These are more of the physical effects.

Speaker 3:6:36Well, I do sometimes pace around. Try to calm myself down.

Speaker 2:6:40Okay. Now is that while you’re having a mood swing or is it after the fact?

Speaker 3:6:46Normally after the fact

Speaker 2:6:49feeling of worthlessness or guilt. This is a big emotional drain from depression.

Speaker 3:6:55Well, sometimes I do feel guilt what I’ve done and how it affected other people.

Speaker 2:7:00So as a result of an emotional outburst, if you yell at someone or your meanness on because of your mood swing, then you feel a sense of guilt as a result of that. How about difficulty thinking, concentrating or making decisions?

Speaker 3:7:16Well, sometimes it’s happened. Like whenever I have my mood swings it’s hard to and straight and whenever I’m depressed I just feel like I want to be left at home.

Speaker 2:7:25Okay. And sometimes you know, give her the, the outburst aspect of the mood swings. Sometimes that’s probably for the best so that you don’t lash out at someone. And the last one in here is probably the biggest one. And the one that that I think concerns most parents fonts of death or suicide. Do you ever have any kind of thoughts like that?

Speaker 3:7:50No, I never actually thought of it and I never want to actually kill myself actually at my death, being that I killed myself.

Speaker 2:7:58Okay. Well that’s good night that that one will save for last year because that really is, is the big one. Do you think you’re more depressed than other kids your age?

Speaker 3:8:13Well, I don’t see them being effective at school. Sometimes I can’t help it. I’m not just cry. I haven’t really seen anyone else do that. So.

Speaker 2:8:22So you, you think,

Speaker 3:8:23but then again, I don’t really know what goes on in their lives. I mean maybe they don’t have both parents, maybe they’re just trying to stay strong.

Speaker 2:8:32I could see that. Aside from the hormonal issues that you’re dealing with right now, is there anything in your life that is depressing? Anything? Do you feel you’re not treated fairly at something? Do you feel that you’re neglected, you feel anything like that?

Speaker 3:8:53Well, kind of, cause whenever we have gym people always doubt my skills because I’m not very athletic like I’ve said before, they always choose me last and they always have the ball. So the treatment, that habit.

Speaker 2:9:11So the treatment that you get at school is a contributing factor to these feelings, these negative feelings that you have. Um, is there anything you are able to do to combat that in gym class? Okay. And have you talked to your teachers about this?

Speaker 3:9:32I prefer to keep it to myself and my parents.

Speaker 2:9:34Okay. Well then that’s the thing, I mean there’s, there’s only so much that your parents can do and I’m sure we’ll do to try, you know, mommy and I will do anything that we can try to resolve these situations, but do you feel that you’re, you’re being mistreated by your classmates, you know, you have to say something to your teachers. You don’t want it to build up and get progressively worse. Besides outside of school, are there any things that get you down or get you depressed

Speaker 3:10:10about doing? About my cat Dorian.

Speaker 2:10:13She’s getting older and she’s in from when she’s not as healthy issue used to be. Yes. Yeah. Well that’s a topic that we’re, we’ll wind up talking about layer, um, the death of a pet and stuff like that. It happens. Unfortunately, most household pets, their lifespans are significantly less than a human’s lifespan. Someone as a result, we suscept we, we make ourselves susceptible to having to go through that, uh, other, anything else that, that causes depression for you?

Speaker 3:10:49I guess just bad things that happened at school that trusting myself. Stressed at school.

Speaker 2:11:00Yes, there is others. I understand that there are stresses and there are pressures at school that put a weight on you and we’ll talk about those in later podcasts about you know, what they are specifically and how to correct them, but it sounds like the majority of depression that you go through at this point in time is derived from experiences at school or things as a result of your hormonal changes. So there’s really nothing, and I don’t want to demean what is legitimate sources of depression for you, but in the grand scheme of things, there’s nothing major that’s the problem. I mean you will, you know, you’re in the stages of puberty. Your, you’ll grow through the hormonal imbalances episodes at school or unfortunate but not uncommon. As you go through school, you’ll get through those. There’s nothing major like you don’t get neglected at home. You’re not abused. You have a nice home, you’ve got a roof over your head. You’re not malnourished. You’re fed

Speaker 3:12:17at home. I have a happy life, but I get to school. It’s like what happened? Mrs Gone just to pull through it.

Speaker 2:12:29Now, do you have friends at school that you.

Speaker 3:12:32Yes, I mean I know what I’m going to through.

Speaker 2:12:35Okay. Are they going through the same thing?

Speaker 3:12:38Oh, well my friend, she’s the same age as me. Is going through something similar.

Speaker 2:12:43So you have friends at school released one who’s going through similar issues as you. Do you provide support to her? Do you guys support each other?

Speaker 3:12:54Yes, we both support each other in the best way we can.

Speaker 2:12:59Now. As you find some comfort in that, does that help you get through the day? Sometimes it’s important to have someone that you know, a shoulder that you can lean on or or you know, someone that you can be there for

Speaker 3:13:14and it also goes for someone who is only two years younger than me. She goes through the same problems as me

Speaker 2:13:22and she’s going through obviously earlier in life than you are. Then when you guys get along pretty well then.

Speaker 3:13:29Yes, but unfortunately whenever my mood swings that up, she used mainly the person who I effect

Speaker 2:13:36because she’s the person that’s closest to you. Yes. That’s unfortunate,

Speaker 3:13:40but she normally just wants to ignore me because she just doesn’t want me to get mad and I don’t blame her. I mean if my friend was angry, I would have also stayed my distance till she wanted to talk and that’s exactly what she does. Every time we get. Every time I get angry at her, which was awful.

Speaker 2:14:14In doing my research into this topic, I did discover that between 2004 in 2014, there was a John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health study that indicated that there was a 37 percent increase in depression among teens. So this is a problem that is not isolated to you or you and your friend. This is a problem that is pretty widespread. They estimate that 11 percent of teenagers experienced depression in any given year and in that number goes up the 17 point three percent. So there’s a lot of things out there that caused depression in kids your age and that level of depression goes up even more with girls and there’s a lot of factors to it. You know, some of the factors that they had cited were cyber bullying, um, and specifically they talk about a higher use of smartphones, right? Girls Than Boys. And there’s a lot of cyber bullying that goes on through social media and how, how much exposure do you have to social media on your, you have a phone, right?

Speaker 2:15:30And how much exposure social media do you have? Not much. So that’s one area that we don’t have to concern ourselves too much about, at least not now. Another thing they had was socialization, so they say girls may experience more disagreements with friends and more hostility among peers. So that kind of sounds like it hits on the nail of your mood swings there. So that could be one of the sources of some of the depression. It also says girls may talk to their friends more, but instead of finding solutions may ruminate on the bad things in life more so you understand what that means. Slave would instead talk instead of talking about the positives of life that you were talking about the naked. Exactly. And one of the things that Mommy and daddy tried to tell you to do all the time is focused on the positives.

Speaker 2:16:24Sometimes the negatives can be very overwhelming and the negatives or the things that are up in your face and you as a result of that, you tend to lose sleep on the positive things in life. And sometimes sometimes they’re little thing. Sometimes it’s, you know, a thank you for, for helping someone do something or it’s a little gift. Someone gives you words a little extra time that someone spends with you or it could just be a teacher you know, that sees that maybe you’re down and you know, they pull you aside and have a talk with you and they, they pick you up a little bit. So there’s a lot of positive that goes on. The kind of goes unnoticed. And if you tend to focus on the negatives, and there are plenty of negatives but it can tend to focus on those. You’ll see less of the positives and that tends to bring you down. And, and this statement kind of speaks to that.

Speaker 4:17:25Yeah.

Speaker 2:17:30They also talk about the fact that teens might not know that they’re depressed. Sometimes you just go through life and you think you know everything’s okay, but really you’ve got this buildup of depression behind you, so they talking about some of the forums, some of the physical forms that depression take and you tell me if you run into any of these when you’re depressed, you can have stomach aches or headaches. Do you experience those frequently?

Speaker 3:17:59How frequently, but sometimes I experience headaches

Speaker 2:18:04now these are warning signs. So you are experiencing bees. That might be a key for you to reach out,

Speaker 3:18:10talk to someone. It’s not common. I’ll tell you that sometimes you will never.

Speaker 2:18:17Okay. How about feeling tired a lot?

Speaker 3:18:23Well, I think it’s only because I don’t really get a very good sleep.

Speaker 2:18:27Again, there’s factors that contribute to the symptoms, so when that’s the case, like for instance, if I happen to walk past at 3:00 in the morning and they see you’re watching tv, that’s an immediate sign to me that there’s something going on that you really shouldn’t be up at 3:00 in the morning watching TV. I just couldn’t fall asleep last night and there’s reasons for it. Sometimes you know there’s the subconscious of your mind. It’s churning over things and stuff like that. My point is that when things like this happen, that’s when you need to reach out because not everyone would have noticed that I had. I slept through the night. I wouldn’t have known that you were up at 3:00 in the morning watching tv, but if you know you’re up in the morning, 3:00 in the morning watching tv, then it might be worthwhile to come, come talk to me or mommy and you know, we just sit and we talk and we. We have a discussion about things. It’s not anything bad that comes out of it or anything, but sometimes those little discussions, Hill,

Speaker 3:19:31nothing really happened last night. I just couldn’t get initially.

Speaker 2:19:35Okay, that’s fine. One of the other factors is, um, increased irritability. So do you find yourself being more irritable? What does that mean? More irritated by people interacting with you?

Speaker 3:19:53I don’t really like other people talking to me other than

Speaker 2:19:56what, what? Okay. So right there, that’s a problem that you don’t like other people talking to you.

Speaker 3:20:02Well, there’s a few people I would allow, but most of the time, most, it’d be a lot.

Speaker 2:20:09See now that could be a contributing factor to your depression because when you’re around people, you’re very energetic and bubbly and happy. When you’re alone, you’ve got all that negativity stirring around in your head. It’s just driving your thoughts at that point in time. You know what happens when you have a sleepover, you have a ball, you know, you socialize with your friends, you’re active, you’re playing, you’re doing different things. You’re not thinking about the negative things. So the more interaction that you have with kids your age and the more fun that you have, the less depressed you would be.

Speaker 3:20:44Honestly, I don’t know why, but I just prefer to be alone with with my friends and my family.

Speaker 2:20:55We’ve talked about your mood. We’ve talked about whether or not you think your peers are depressed. What do you think you should do when you feel you’re depressed? What do you think is the right action?

Speaker 3:21:11Well, if I feel depressed, I might want to talk to somebody or just be left alone.

Speaker 2:21:20Do you think being left alone is the right thing to do when you’re depressed?

Speaker 3:21:23Probably not. Probably not, but I just feel like, hey, just want to be

Speaker 2:21:29and I know and believe me that is experienced very deep depression in the past and I’ve felt the same symptoms you have and I’ve taken the same course of actions that you have where when I’m depressed, I want to be left alone and I can tell you from personal experience, that’s probably the last thing that should happen. When you’re depressed, you are self consuming. Being alone is not going to bring you out of your depression. All it’s gonna do is get you deeper into it by interacting with the people around you that love you and support you. That is what lifts you up from a depression. You’d be surprised how effective it is, so when you are feeling depressed, that’s when you need to reach out. That’s the last point in time that you want to pull back and be by yourself. What makes you happy?

Speaker 3:22:34Hang on. My family makes me happy, I guess.

Speaker 2:22:37Okay. Well that’s good. That means we’re doing something right. What else makes you happy? What activities do you like to do that make you happy?

Speaker 3:22:46TV, play video games.

Speaker 2:22:48Anything that includes other people.

Speaker 3:22:51Oh, I totally. With my friends with our toys.

Speaker 2:22:54Maybe that’s something that we need to look at doing more out there because you don’t do that very often there.

Speaker 3:22:59I’m going to do it at school and I don’t really see my friends the entire day. I almost see it on like a few hours of the day. The rest of the day I spend at school.

Speaker 2:23:10So maybe if we had some more interaction with your friends outside of school that will help improve your mood or at least have time with people. Right? I’m not really selling you on that, am I?

Speaker 3:23:24I,

Speaker 2:23:27no. Okay. So what else makes you happy? Is there like, what’s. Is there a food or a meal that makes you happy?

Speaker 3:23:36Sushi. I wouldn’t make me happy. I like Sushi.

Speaker 2:23:40Sushi makes you happy. Okay. Uh, what about for sweets? When you have a mood swing, is there something that you eat that helps you with your mood swings? Like what’s that? Chocolate. So the chocolate helps. So as long as we keep chocolate in the house, we contain the savage beast inside you. So what else do you like going places? Um, where, where do you like to go that makes you happy? Sometimes it is nice sometimes to Disney. Well that’s good because we’re going there next week. So that should make you happy. But what about stuff that’s not elaborate? You know, week long vacations, thousands of miles away, other day trips, other museum and going to go here. Do you like to go to the mall?

Speaker 3:24:32Oh really? I like to um,

Speaker 2:24:38are there places you like to go, like fun plaques or someplace like that that you enjoy going to flex would be one of them now it’s more fun if we go with friends though. Right? So like if a friend of yours was interested in going, we could probably take the two of you up the fund plaques and you guys could spend the day at the phone flags that would improve our mood will. These are some of the things that we’ve used

Speaker 3:25:04to um, meet my friends who don’t go to my school but I’m able to stay in contact with.

Speaker 2:25:12Okay. And what would you do if you could meet them? Meet up with them?

Speaker 3:25:17Well we will normally like have an activity planned and then probably if it was around lunchtime we would get some lunch.

Speaker 2:25:24And how often do you do that?

Speaker 3:25:25Well we did it more often over Christmas break. CNN as well. We have lots of days off. That helps. Yeah. We got to catch up with a bunch of my friends and my and even my cousin.

Speaker 2:25:38So you’d like to Pamper Yourself? Do you like to go? Like I know sometimes you go with molly when she gets her nails done. Do you like foot baths? You know, stuff like that that makes you relax. Certain things I guess. Okay. These are some of the things that we can focus on that we’ll try to help you get through these mood swings and give you something positive to focus on it and I think that’s really what we need to do. That’s really the theme of this.

Speaker 4:26:13Okay.

Speaker 2:26:14Was there any final thoughts that you had on teen depression?

Speaker 3:26:18Well, I guess you shouldn’t allow the personal loan and if anyone who is depressed, you might want to find out as soon as possible.

Speaker 2:26:27Okay. I think there are very good points. Any last pointers for any teens out there who are depressed? What they should do?

Speaker 3:26:35Well you should try talking to people who you trust, who you love and who will support you.

Speaker 2:26:42Okay. Well, thank you for your time today, man. Listen, I appreciate it. I know it was a rather difficult discussion to talk about what I appreciate you taking the time and being open about it and I think that’ll do it for this week’s edition of insights into teens. Next week we will be broadcasting on location from the happiest place in the world. Goodbye.