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16 yo daughter is suffering depression and anxiety - looking for support

16 yo daughter is suffering depression and anxiety - looking for support

Casual scribe

16 yo daughter is suffering depression and anxiety - looking for support

Hi. I am a mother of two teenage daughters, 16 and 18. I am happily married and work part time. My youngest suffers from depression and anxiety and has not attended school this year. I am looking for support from other parents who have similar issues.

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: New member? Introduce yourself here!

Thanks for sharing @Seahorse  Sorry to hear that your youngest has been suffering from depression and anxiety and not been at school this year.  It can be a difficult time for everyone in the family when someone is struggling with mental health issues.  What support is your daughter and yourself currently receiving?

Casual scribe

Re: New member? Introduce yourself here!

Thanks Zoesplace. We have been in and out of all kinds of psych treatment and my daugjter is fed up with it and has decided to stop taking medication and no longer wants to see her psychiatrists. So we have reached a bit of an impasse. I see a psychologist and my husband and I will continue to see our daughter's psychiatrist as we need advice. We just feel a bit stuck at the moment but my daughter is starting a new part time job tomorrow. I know that the morning will be very difficult as she will have terrible anxiety and will find it hard to get there so I hope she will get through. Hopefully this will be the start of something new for her. But I feel very sad as she has isolated herself rom her friends and is not in a great place.
Parent Peer Supporter

Re: New member? Introduce yourself here!

Hi @Seahorse you mention that your daughter has been in and out of all kinds of treatment.  Does this mean that there has not been a treatment that has been helpful for your daughter yet?  It is so important to find the right medical treatment and psychological (talking) therapy - someone who your daughter can feel comfortable with and can respond to positively.  It is a shame if the treatment you have received so far has not been beneficial.


Is your daughter going off her meds under medical guidance, or something she has decided to do by herself? 


It is great that you and your husband are getting support, which will not only help your own mental health but also allow you to better care for your daughter.  I can appreciate how sad and despairing it can be seeing your child suffer like this, especially if she has isolated herself from her friends.  

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: Teen suffering depression and anxiety - looking for support

Hi @Seahorse, I hope you don't mind, I've moved your message into the forum so it doesn't get lost in the introductions. This way your post is easily seen by all parents in the forum, opening up the opportunity for others to respond.


My daughter who is now 15, has missed a lot of school over the years since her diagnoses. She missed the end of Year 8, attended the first two Mondays of Year 9 before refusing to go anymore. We finally got her into distance education which she has settled well with and back into getting an education which is a huge relief for me! She's only doing core subjects, but I figure it's better than nothing! She works part time but not enough to satisfy the education department.


How is your daughter feeling after coming off her medication? I also read she was starting a new job. How's that all going? 


It's really sad when they isolate from friends. Mine did that too, but thankfully she has recently reconnected with her closest friends again. Hopefully it's just a stage for your daughter as well that she will work through.


It's really stressful seeing our kids unhappy and struggling and it's great that you have your own supports. Self care is really important. Do you have any other things that you enjoy doing to keep yourself going strong?

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: 16 yo daughter is suffering depression and anxiety - looking for support

Hi @Seahorse How have things been since your post last week? There are lots of wonderful and caring parents on the forum that may be able to provide the support you are looking for.  Hope to hear from you soon.

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: 16 yo daughter is suffering depression and anxiety - looking for support

hi @Seahorse how did your daughter go starting her new job?


I hope it was a positive start for her




Re: 16 yo daughter is suffering depression and anxiety - looking for support

Thank you for sharing your story.
I’m a married, mother of 3 children. Two have grown up and moved out and our youngest, 15 years old, is struggling with anxiety and depression since she was probably 3 but she got dignosed at the age of 8 with severe social and separation anxiety. Since then her mental issues have increased and evolved to depression and in my opinion OCD as well.

When she was 8 we could more easily take her to see mential care and professional help but now that she is older she is refusing all treatment. She has done cognitive behavioral training, medication and online support.
During one of her sessions with a counselor she was told by the professional that she will never get rid of her anxiety. That is now the core of our current situation with helping our teen daughter get though her struggles.

She has given up. Refuses to take meds and does not want to talk to anyone. She refuses to go to school but at the same time is endlessly worried that her grades will not be straight A’s. She doesn’t trust anyone and believes there is no reason to keep working on her mental health because she “will always have it! So what’s the point?”

She talked about being tired of her physical and mental exhaustion. Endlessly pretending and tiptoeing around in school just to come home and brake down. She gets headaches, hives, stomach isssues and tiredness.

I’ve reached the end of my rope and out of options of help and support for her. She is a strong minded yet fragile soul.
She loves laughing but hardly does so any more. She is usually friendly but now she spends hours on end in her room.

For days now she has been asking to be removed from school so she can be home schooled. That scares me to death for two reasons: she will be even more isolated and I’ll have to be the one responsible for her education when I’m already in the line of fire when she has a breakdown.

I would love to hear from other parents that have similar issues.
How do you get your teens to school?
How do you get your teens to talk to a professional ?
How do you work through a panic attack?
Do you homeschool?
Sorry lots of questions ... you would think after almost 10 years of having a child with anxiety in the home I would know these things. But to me it feels like as soon as I think we have a grip on things, it collapses. Once I think I know what to do, it doesn’t work anymore. And working with a teen is so much different than with a child. When is it hormones? When are they just being rebellious ? When do they get to choose their treatment or in our case non treatment?

I’m just looking for support from others with like situations. And want other parents to hear that they are not alone.


Re: 16 yo daughter is suffering depression and anxiety - looking for support

Hello @Buttercup and welcome to the forums so glad you found us here!  It is so wonderful that you are sharing your story so that others do not feel so alone.


Before I respond, it sounds to me that you are not based in Australia – where we are,  so cannot refer you to any specific resources, but in saying that you have found a community of amazing supportive people and is a great place to hear from other parents who have been in similar positions.


My heart goes out to you at the moment and I am sorry to hear about how difficult things have been for you and your daughter – it is no wonder that you are feeling like you are at the end of your rope right now!  


It must be so heartbreaking to watch your daughter suffer and express to you that she has ‘given up’ on things that she obviously values in her life – like her schoolwork and frustrating to not know how to help her through this.  I will say that your love for your daughter shines through in your post which is a huge positive and providing her with a comforting, loving and supportive space –while it may not seem like it now, is such a great start.


From your post, it sounds like you think that having your daughter reengage with a professional would be useful for your family at the moment – even though some of her recent experiences are causing her to resist this?  It might be the case that the professional you were speaking to previously was not the right fit for your daughter at this time and maybe proposing to her that you see somebody different might be more agreeable to her at the moment?  In my own life, it took me a few attempts to find a counselor who was completely right for me – but when I found her it was like a revelation and made all of the lead-up just part of the process of getting me to where I needed to be.


There are some amazing people who I am going to tag into this conversation as they have had experiences and perspectives that might be useful.


@taokat whilst not homeschooling exactly, has had experience with distance education and might have some insights into how that process was for her family.


In addition to this, @motherbear and @Chalke5 have spoken beautifully about their experiences supporting an anxious child.


Lastly @Schooner has shared experiences of finding the right professional help in the past.


Again, thanks so much for sharing your story here!

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