icare asks:

How can I help my 19 year old son with depression

My son graduated 5th in his class.  He wanted to attend a private school, so my husband and I paid for his first year in the school.  In the spring, he called home and said he hadn't left his room for 4 days and was planning how to kill himself.  We brought him home and found him a good psychiatrist and therapist.  He is on medication.  He found a job over the summer at a local retail store and wanted to go back to college at a local college in the fall.  We again paid his tuition and found out 3 days before the end of the semester that he hadn't been attending school for the past 2 months.  His classes started after we went to work and ended before we got home.  He had been lying to us and his therapist and psychiatrist.  He wasn't running around, he was just staying in his room in a depression that he hid from everyone.  He wanted go back to college again in the spring at the local school, so on the advice of his therapist and psychiatrist we again paid for him to go back on a limited number of credits.  A few days ago was the end of the first week of school and we found out that he lied to us twice this week and didn't go to school.  We don't see his therapist for a few more days and are at a loss as to what to do.  He is a truly good person, but we feel that we can't trust him at all anymore. How many chances do we give him?  help
In Topics: Teen issues, Depression
> 60 days ago



Boys Town National Hotline
Jan 21, 2011
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What the Expert Says:

We are very sorry to hear that your son is struggling with depression. It is difficult when our children are not well and we want to do everything we can to help. The love and concern you have for him is apparent in the words that you write.

As much as you want your son to attend college again, would it be an option for him to take time off from school and get himself on track with his mental health? If he is suffering from depression and anxiety, do you think school is too stressful for him right now? Maybe he could get a job and work for awhile until he decides what it is he wants to do in school. Taking a break does not mean he will not return. But as parents who are paying for his education, it would be important to know that he is willing follow through with his treatment and commit to school before returning again.

It's good to hear that you have found a good therapist and psychiatrist. However, if you feel that the medication and/or their therapeutic approach is not helping your son, you have the right to get a second opinion from another mental health provider. Sometimes it takes a few tries to find the right medication and therapist.

Our Hotline is for parents, kids and young adults. You and your son can call us or e-mail us anytime. We are here 24/7 to listen and to help with any problem. Take care and best wishes to you and your son.

Cynthia, Crisis Counselor
Boys Town National Hotline

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