Should Parents Be More Supportive of Their Child’s Mental Health?

Mental health is very important, especially in kids. At times, it’s not that noticeable if a child is feeling depressed or stressed out. “Ever having been diagnosed with either anxiety or depression” among children aged 6–17 years increased from 5.4% in 2003 to 8% in 2007 and to 8.4% in 2011–2012.4” stated by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. Or possibilities are there are children who were born with a mental illness that they can’t control. They’re suffering. The pain will never go away because it has become a permanent part of them. They’re not able to tell anyone because they figured it’s no use. They have considered going to a therapist but they don’t want to trouble their parents with their personal problems. Why is it so hard to go to your parents, you ask? It’s because we think that they won’t have a full understanding of what’s wrong with us. But it sucks having to bottle up emotions that you wanted to vent to someone for forever. 

I think that parents should be more cautious of their children’s mental health and help by supporting them. Without noticing the signs, things may take a turn which leaves a huge impact. In the US, suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among children and adolescents ages 10-24, and the 3rd leading cause of death among 12 year olds. Think about how many children’s lives have been taken due to their mental health. It’s important to get help for your children right away if they have been experiencing suicidal thoughts, thinking not high of their self-worth,  want to harm themselves etc. And make sure you know that they know that they have ALL of your support, no matter what. 

I know it’s a big step for them but also for you too (parents). You can build them up and make them become stronger and more confident in themselves. Then they can feel better about themselves and more motivated to do stuff, plus they are happier. It’s a long process but here are some tips on how to help them: Don’t get mad at them for making a mistake on something and instead figure out a way to help fix it so you don’t make them feel anxious, make sure they have enough energy for the day, bring them to a therapist anyways and help break some barriers so they feel more safe etc.

Please be aware that sometimes your child might not want to right away get help and will keep refusing. They are doing it because they’re scared of the consequences. Make sure that they have your full trust so you don’t scare them away.

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