Depressed 17 year old daughter

(14 Posts)
TChick Fri 14-Sep-12 11:11:34

Hi All

I really hope someone can give me some advice. Within the last week my 17 year old daughter has developed depression. She has gone from being a confident young woman to someone who has no interest in anything and who just keeps crying. She doesn't want to eat and says she has had some suicidal thoughts. I have been to see her GP and she is referring her to CAMHS but says there is quite a wait. Her GP doesn't have the authority to prescribe anti-depressants because of her age.I basically feel on my own. I have telephoned the Young minds network for advice and they are going to send me some leaflets.

She is a sensitive girl and we have had a few bouts over the years where she has experienced similar but those episodes were never as persistent and went away by themselves.
She can't figure out why it should be happening other than her boyfriend is going to university in a couple of weeks time. However he isn't going far and she will still see him each week.

I would really love to hear from anyone who has experienced similar and what they found to be helpful. She seems to be worse in the morning and by the evening is relatively calm.

OP’s posts: |
SuoceraBlues Fri 14-Sep-12 11:14:53

For the wait, until face to face help arrives.

And <big fat hug of appreciation> for being the sort of mum who gives it due wieght and doesn't leave her to flounder.

cory Fri 14-Sep-12 11:44:34

Similar here except that dd is a couple of years younger and her problems more long-standing. What you say about being worse in the morning certainly rings a bell: that's when the most pressure is on your dd not to be ill, so that is when her stress levels are going to be at their highest.

I think it helps if you are aware of what the likely procedure is going to be.

First of all, yes there will be a waiting time. It is a good idea if you spend this time keeping a careful diary of her moods and behaviour- showing how bad she is, what triggers it etc. It would also be good if she could keep a separate diary, perhaps rating her mood from 1-10 morning and evening every day, to see if there are any patterns.

If there are any further developments- self-harming, stepping up of suicide talk- be on the phone to your GP straightaway as that can help to speed up referrals. Also see if her college can help; they might be able to put pressure on CAHMS.

Secondly, once you get to CAHMS you will probably find they won't want to put her on ADs straightaway, but will want to explore other pathways such as CBT training. With dd they held out for over a year- but then she was a few years younger, and there are well justified concerns over the use of the legally available medication in young bodies. In the end they decided that counselling/CBT wasn't going to do it alone for dd: she needs a multi-pronged approach which includes therapy and medication. But they took their time over it and in retrospect I am glad of that.

purplepenguin86 Fri 14-Sep-12 13:30:11

I became depressed at around 17, and went to see my GP. I was referred to the CMHT (they didn't refer me to CAMHS for some reason, which I have never understood, but that's not massively relevant really) and also had to wait for some time to be seen. I was prescribed anti depressants, even before being referred actually - again I'm not sure why, but to be honest I didn't really find they made a difference anyway. I had a teacher at college who I was able to talk to a lot, and who was very supportive - she was the person who persuaded me to go to my GP. She also suggested I see the college counsellor, which I did until my CMHT referral came through. It may be worth suggesting to your daughter that she sees the counsellor at her school/college - talking things through may help her.

I think in the meantime all you can really do is let her know that you are there fore her, and that if she wants to talk then you are happy to listen etc, but don't push her - she will speak to you in her own time if she wants to. I didn't even tell my mum about it for several months - I have always been very good at hiding how I feel, and I wasn't ready for her to know what was going on for me. Encourage her to talk about how she is feeling, either with you or someone else, but don't make her feel pressured to, as that is one of the quickest ways of making someone close off. It is good that she has told you how she is feeling - just keep the communication channels open and keep an eye out for any changes. If it has only been over the last week or so then it may just pass, but if it doesn't then just be there for her.

TChick Fri 14-Sep-12 16:03:05

Thank-you for all of your advice and information- it has been really helpful. I will definitely start a diary to monitor the situation. She has had a calmer day today probably because she hasn't been to work or college. I am going to give her a few days to see how she goes without these pressures before seeing her GP again next week.
I am sure she will get better but realise it will take time and I will just do whatever I can to help her.

OP’s posts: |
SeventhEverything Fri 14-Sep-12 16:08:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mindfulmum Fri 21-Sep-12 01:08:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.


Joeella1 Sun 06-Aug-17 04:58:26

Hi I have a 17 year old daughter that always had a good friendships then she became awkward and stopped fitting in.There had always been issues of her getting left out from the age of about 15.School became a nightmare and she got dug at for being a dumb blonde! She has always struggled with education.From there it got worse as we changed her school and her awkwardness got worse and people noticed it.A friend of mine informed me she got attacked by another girl in town and we then discovered it was put on social media which infuriated her dad and myself.We found out who it was and the girl had come from a rough family.A family friend told her to stay away and my daughter got an apology of her but the damage was done.From there we took her out of school but it was year 11 so she came out with no exam results as the school was very unsupportive.She then started college but not a local one as she didn't want to mix with anyone from our area.She had friends but it was hard as they wasn't local.Her best friend turned on her eventually and it left her isolated and now has nobody and sits in her room crying a lot.We are trying everything but nothing is working so I'm taking her to our gp tomorrow as she is having suicidal thoughts.I feel so desperate and as a mother am struggling to cope myself.I have a 10 year old son that I'm trying to shield from this but it's hard and now worry he will go through the same.Can anyone help please?

corythatwas Sun 06-Aug-17 11:39:47

sorry to hear this, Jooeella

I posted on the thread 5 years ago, so am that little bit further down the line. My dd is now 20, has ongoing MH issues, but is also strong and confident enough to be about to leave home and start on a very competitive course. Her db has got over the worst of the shock and has not developed any similar issues.

If your dd is diagnosed with depression I wouldn't try to shield your son too much. Tell it like it is (assuming she is ok with that), say she's got an illness and that she is being treated but that it may take some time for her to recover.

If your dd gets a referral, it may be well to warn her that the treatment is likely to take some time: first they will want to do a proper evaluation, then they will probably start by teaching her some techniques to control her mood. These can be very helpful, but she will need to put some work in. Depending on what the doctors think best, she will either get some medication to help with this or do it unmedicated.

LorLorr2 Sun 06-Aug-17 11:48:30

Do you notice her mood getting any worse at particular points in her menstrual cycle?
Is her diet good, as deficiencies could be to blame?
You've done the right things, it can be really hard when someone feels extremely low and it's not caused by a specific event or situation. Especially when you're young and don't understand what's happening to you.

StaplesCorner Sun 06-Aug-17 11:49:29

Did your GP say how long the waiting list is for CAHMS? If not please check, it may be many months - could you afford private counselling? Even if you paid for the first exploratory session? (Also bear in mind you wont be included - they won't give you any information or results after your child is 16.)

Young Minds is a really good resource and they don't normally just send leaflets, they provide a listening ear and practical advice about referrals and where to find a counsellor/what type to use. They can also offer a free telephone consultation with various types of therapists including psychotherapists or psychiatrists if the situation warrants it (obviously a charity so that's not offered to everyone).

If you do nothing else then please check the NHS waiting list before you decide what to do next.

Joeella1 Tue 08-Aug-17 23:28:46

Thank you for your replies.We have contacted private councillors to try and get help as the doctor said as she is 18 in march by the time she is referred to cahms she will be classed as an adult.We spoke to the gp together then she spoke alone but the doctor told me that as she is looking forward to starting full time work in London in 2 weeks and seems positive about this then we should give it a bit longer to see if she is happier being busy doing other things that will keep her off social media.She is obsessed with it even though it makes her miserable.We have tried taking it off her but we want her to decide that for herself now.Gp said if there is no improvement to go back straight away within 3 weeks or so and to have private counselling but no medication yet.She literally doesn't trust anyone.You are right maybe I should explain it to our son properly.I find it so hard trying to be positive all the time when all I want to do is cry for her.My husband has a fantastic job and we have a great life style but all I want is to see her happy 🙁 One thing she's learned is money does not buy happiness.X

Joeella1 Tue 08-Aug-17 23:47:35

We also got information of the gp for "young minds" and other places she can email if she wants to talk to someone and not us.I think she feels she doesn't want to upset me so I need to stop being so emotional.I have told her we can cry together but I'm thinking I shouldn't say that! Somehow I have to be stronger than her but it's so hard! She has a good family network around her and cousins (girls) About 6 years older but feels embarrassed as they have lots of friends so she told me not to say anything to them! 🙁

StaplesCorner Wed 09-Aug-17 17:32:49

I wish you both well, its so hard to see them suffer and you can't do anything.

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