Hearing parents say that they want the best for their children feels reassuring. It implies that they care for the youngsters’ future and that they will support them in any way possible. It is also a sign that they will do anything for their sons and daughters to make sure that they have an excellent life that others will envy. So, they work day and night as soon as the baby comes to the world and prepare for their future. “If you’re trying to figure out if a teen is depressed, the thing to look for is a change of behavior or mood,” says Lori Hilt, PhD.
The problem with such words starts to arise when the child goes to school. Even from their first day in kindergarten, the mom or dad may say, “You should show your classmates and teachers that you are the best. I will give you a prize if you get a lot of stamps.” In a youngster’s mind, they connect a good deed to a reward, so they may try to do what they’ve been told.
The more the kids’ grade levels move up, though, the more the parents’ expectations grow. When I was still in middle school, I had a classmate named Jason, who’s used to being on top of the class every year. He graduated from elementary school as a valedictorian, from what I heard. He managed to do the same thing during our 7th grade as well. Unfortunately, when 8th grade came, Jason lost to another classmate CJ, whose grades were not even close to his in the past. It made Jason’s parents frustrated, so they pushed him to do better by comparing him to CJ. The result was that his mind snapped at some point, and Jason got so depressed that he needed to take some time off school for treatment.
There’s no doubt about the love that you have for your children. So, if you want to prevent them from getting depression like my former classmate, you should know the following:
Celebrate Achievements, Big Or Small
The first thing that you should do is to celebrate your child’s achievements. You should do it whether they have come second in class or they have gotten a Gold medal in track and field. Both of them are great results — something that not all kids will be able to achieve. Recognizing their success will push them to work harder next time.
Stop Having High Expectations
It is not acceptable to set the bar too high for your children as well. That will be all that they will think about, after all, and forget how to be happy. If they fail, therefore, they will take the failure too hard. The result will either be depression or, worse, suicide. Kristen Roye, PsyD talks about suicide which is chilling – “For many people the initial reaction to hearing about suicide is discomfort or fear. Often time, our behavior is to automatically deny that suicide is an issue that affects us personally; or we may simply ignore it and hope the problem goes away on its own. Unfortunately, denial will not solve our problems.”
Give The Kids A Mental Break
Some overbearing parents force their kids to study in advance even during summer break to “get ahead of everyone else.” Well, don’t be like them. Allow your children’s minds to rest. School vacation is the time for playing, not studying. If you don’t do that, they may lose interest in education overall.
Parents need to set their priorities straight. The welfare of your kids should come before any success that may bring to the family. Insisting on the opposite of that may strain your relationship with them later or become the cause of their depression. I am sure that you don’t want either to happen, so kindly follow the ideas mentioned above. “The key to living with depression is ensuring you’re receiving adequate treatment for it (usually most people benefit from both psychotherapy and medication), and that you are an active participant in your treatment plan on a daily basis.” Says John M. Grohol, Psy.D.