Parents need to take care of personal mental health

Destiny Hines, Staff Writer

For a lot of people there is never a good time to bring up mental health concerns like depression, anxiety or suicide. I myself have struggled and continue to struggle with PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), generalized depression and anxiety.

One of the hardest times I’ve experienced was PPD (postpartum depression) after having both of my kids.

Depression can happen to anyone, it has no preference of age, race or gender. There is a lot of stigma to admitting you have depression. I’ve found that helping others understand what it is, and all of its many forms can help lessen that stigma.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, a study from 2009 to 2012 shows that 7.6 percent of all Americans age 12 and over have depression ranging from moderate to severe. According to another study by the CDC from 2013, suicide was the second leading cause of death among people aged 12 to 34.

With this stigma, there are people out there who don’t understand that this is an illness. Your mental health matters and you should never go a day thinking it doesn’t. Even if you confide in a trusted friend or teacher just to get your feelings out and talk through it, this can make a world of difference.

You should know the signs and symptoms of depression just in case a loved one doesn’t have the strength to reach out.

There are lots of signs and levels of severity of depression, and not everyone experiences the same symptoms:

  • Feeling sad, empty or anxious. These feelings continue over time without getting better or going away.
  • Feeling helpless, worthless or guilty. This includes feeling bad about yourself or your life, or thinking a lot about losses or failures.
  • Feeling hopelessness. People experiencing this may be overly pessimistic or believe that nothing good will ever happen. This may even include suicidal thoughts.
  • Feeling irritable. Experiencing feelings of restless or more crankiness than usual.

I am someone who manages life with depression every day, so I understand. I understand the moments of feeling lost, hopeless, lonely or not being able to get off the couch because it really is that hard to function some days. Please reach out to someone.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Destiny Hines is a Journalism Major currently enrolled in the Liberal Arts transfer program at Madison College and a proud parent of two very busy boys. Each issue of The Clarion, Wolfpack Parent column will provide parenting support for our Wolf Pack Parents. To reach Ms. Hines with questions and suggestions for future topics, please email her at [email protected]



Madison College Counseling Services – subscribes to the Screening for Mental Health’s Online Screening Program. Free online mental health screenings at

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

RISE – (608)250-6634 – Parent Support, Home Visiting, Emergency Child Care

Parental Stress Line – 1-800-632-8188 – Confidential Listening Support for parents 24 hours a day

Dial 211 – available 24/7 if you ever need help with food, shelter, disaster relief, employment or education opportunities, domestic abuse help, support groups, and more!