When I was younger (up to about the age of 14) I didn't really understand depression. How was I supposed to? Am I just expected to know what it is? We don't get taught it in schools, instead we get taught the anatomy of a leaf, which they seem to think is more important than our mental health.
I'm just going to start off by saying that your mental health comes before your education. Yes, education is very important, but so is your mental health, but how are we supposed to know if we have a problem with our mental health if they don't teach us. We aren't born knowing these things, and we don't all have parents that understand mental illness or who are willing to help and teach us.
I used to think depression was just being down/sad. I also used to associate depression with the colour blue and men. Which thinking back to it now, is rather odd because mental health (especially in teenagers) is looked at by society as only girls? Which is honestly the most stupid thing ever because mental illness is not gender specific. (DUH!) But I can understand why I associated the colour blue, because for me blue = sad.
I knew that my internet friend had depression when I was about 12/13. She briefly mentioned it after I explained that I came home from school one day because of my anxiety. Back then I didn't understand what it was, but if I had just did some research into it I could of helped her a lot more. It would of made me realise how hard having depression is. However, as I didn't see her everyday as she lived in a different country, every time I spoke to her she appeared to be happy/cheerful so obviously I didn't think anything was wrong.
WHICH IS TOTALLY WRONG 12 YEAR OLD EDEN JUST BECAUSE SOMEONE ACTS HAPPY DOESN'T MEAN THEY ACTUALLY ARE HAPPY.
Now my friend has recovered from depression, maybe not fully, but enough so that she can finally say that she's happy in her life. I however...now struggle with depression. The tables have now turned on me. Back then when I didn't even understand what it was, back when I couldn't even imagine suffering from such a thing. I wonder if I was taught about depression in school, then maybe I wouldn't be where I am today? Maybe I could of recovered quicker, and help other people.
Teenagers With Experience is an organisation created to provide teenagers with a platform to share and help others from their own experiences while also educating others on different topics. We aim to provide a safe space to all teenagers around the world and support others. You can contact us via email, social media or our contact form found on our home page.