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A New Beginning

Reach Out To A Friend Or Family Member Battling Depression

By Jazzlyn Hickman

    For the past couple of decades it seems we hear about more and more suicides as people deal with tough times in their life triggered by stress stemming from the economy, careers, and social status.
    Many haven’t been able to deal with the struggle and turn to something to relieve their pain. This problem isn’t just in adults, it is also a problem with teens. This issue is preventable and there is help out there for the people who have trouble dealing with their emotions and feelings.             
    In the past couple of years more teenage girls and guys take their lives over problematic relationships, school work, bullying, or problems at home. One out of 10 teens in the nation deal with these issues each and every day, but they can’t seem to find the right source or person to confide in.
    Trust is a big part of helping the situation before it becomes out of control. Teen girls feel like they have to change their personality to be “popular”.
    Guys try to fit in by changing their way of thinking  so their friends think they are “cool.” The entertainment business (television, magazines, music, etc.) make us believe that in order to be the “in-crowd,” a person has to look a certain way.
    Adults also deal with this problem. Things begin to become a huge burden and they just don’t know how to deal with the situation so they turn to alcohol, drug abuse, and/or hurting themselves.
    It’s also hard for some people who are trying to provide a living for themselves and their families. The way the economy is today, many people are experiencing problems, but before a person turns to suicide there are specialized personnel that are there to help anyone cope with any situation.
    Another big issue is social status. Facebook and Twitter are large social sites that attract many viewers.
    A lot of people use these  sites as advisors and put all of their problems on there for the whole world to see. Guilty as charged…but some people use these sites to hurt others which can lead to death or mental issues.
    The sites are all about having friends and catching up with long distance relatives. “Twenty years later, it won’t matter about what kind of shoe a person has…or clothes they are wearing…or social status they may be in…”
    People should always remember this isn’t a guideline for a person’s life.
    There are certain signs to watch for in a friend or family member to tell if they are planing to hurt themselves or others.
    Among these signs are are: mood or behavioral changes, appearance, deep sadness, trouble sleeping and eating, loss of interest, talking about death, not feeling important, feeling helpless, hopeless, visiting or calling love one’s saying goodbye and/or chronic depression.
    There are some hotline numbers to use, 1-800-784-2433 or 1-800-273-8255, to get some information and tips or help with thoughts or even attempts of suicide and with depression.
    Other factors that might indicate a higher likelihood of suicidal thoughts include: family history of suicide, violence, physical or sexual abuse, chronic illness or pain, imprisonment, and exposure to the suicidal behavior of others.
    Statistically, in 2009, about the 10th leading cause of death in the United States was suicide.  That same year there were about 37,000 people who took their lives and a million people who attempted according to Center for Disease Control.             Men take their lives nearly four times the rate of women. Risk factors vary by age, sex, gender, race and ethnic groups. This issue has tripled in the last three years and counting.
    Please reach out to a pastor, friend, family, teacher or the community for help. It’s not anything wrong with talking to someone. We together can spread the word and help one another, which will save a life one day at a time.

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