The following questions highlight common signs of depression in your children. You may have noticed one or more of them in your child. Even if you have not, consider them anyway. This broadens your perspective as you think about the range of difficulties your child can experience.
As you consider each question, think about whether your child has had the problem within the past month or so. If not, go to the next question. If he has experienced the problem, put a check mark beside the question and then go to the next question. Repeat the process until you have considered each question.
Does yourr child
Seem not to be getting up-and-over the loss of an important relationship?
Seem not to be getting over a serious loss or disappointment?
Think he cannot do anything about what happens to him?
Talk about suicide?
Have a history of attempting suicide?
These are very serious signs and progress from one sign to the next. It is hard to acknowledge your child has these problems, your child is depressed and perhaps suicidal. It is easier to think he is just having a bad day. Though this may be true, think about whether it is just one bad day or if perhaps he has been having a lot of bad days lately. Honestly consider whether there may be a pattern of bad days over a few weeks. Carefully consider each sign. Does it apply at all to your child? If so, start by assuming he has the problem. Since it is very easy to dismiss what you see, your safest course is to over-interpret his behavior to be sure you are not taking it too lightly. The following sections help you better understand signs of depression that can lead to suicidal thoughts and behavior, facilitate pinpointing the key issues, and enable you to appropriately respond to them.