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Antidepressants handed out too quick to teenagers with mental health issues

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Antidepressants handed out too quick to teenagers with mental health issues

Active scribe

Antidepressants handed out too quick to teenagers with mental health issues

My daughter has been prescribed antidepressants by a phycologist she is 17 and is struggling with life at the moment she has self harmed superficially and has thoughts of not wanting to be here. IT has been a roller coaster of emotions for a few years I myself suffered with depression in the past and was taking meds for over 10 years I know this has had an affect on my kids and being a single parent only makes it harder with a lot on counselling and meditation and pushing my self forward I have beat my depression. I still get days when I want to hide away and cry so that's what I do then I pick myself up and remember how blessed I am to have 4 wonderful kids and my health.
Sorry to talk about my self so much anyway I'm not happy with my daughter taking meds her phycologist also said she is too short 4ft 8 I am 5ft and my mum is 4ft 6 so I wasn't too concerned and that she is too thin she is petite and is trying her best to overcome her insecurities about being short. Her doctor also said she could have graves disease or a thyroid problem also I showed the phycologist a letter about my daughters eye condition Diplopia (week muscles in one eye) she just said she knows nothing about that condition so before they dish out antidepressants shouldn't they find out the underlying cause
The phycologist told my daughter she needs antidepressants to get better and they will change her life and make her happy 😢 (not true)
So on the third day Mel my daughter called me at work she kept saying mum help me I think I'm dying!!!! She had a major panic attack and felt very sick the doctor forgot to explain to her about the side affects she stopped them straight away her phycologist thinks I am over reacting to be honest I don't care what she thinks I find her very abrubt and has no empathy I asked what other help they offer she said phycotherapy but the waiting list is over 6 months and because your daughter isn't trying hard enough it's the meds or il take her of the counselling list great help she is not given any real support.
All I am asking from her is to wait for all the test results she told us to do, thyroid, hormone balance because it could all be connected then take it from there not too much to ask right?
Thanks for reading x
Parent/Carer Community Champion

Re: Antidepressants handed out too quick to teenagers with mental health issues

hi there @Mazz123 - thank you for coming on here to share what's going on for you and your daughter. 

it sounds like a really tough time at the moment - the issues you've spoken about with antidepressants are extremely common, and many people face the same dilemma when it comes to antidepressants. 

The side effects can be severe, and the positive impact limited. It is really so individual whether medication is a right fit for your daughter, and your judgment is really important! 


Your tests around hormones and other things sound like a great idea - it's very important to explore other potential things going on that can impact on mood, and health. 


It is also always a good idea to get a second opinion from a medical professional, if you're unsure about the information you've been given. 


Does your daughter find the sessions with the psychologist helpful?


I'm sorry to hear that you feel unsupported, the system can be really tough. 
What are you doing to look after yourself in all of this? 

You sound like such a caring, and supportive parent, and you should be proud of all you're doing to look after your daughter. Heart

Active scribe

Re: Antidepressants handed out too quick to teenagers with mental health issues

Hi thanks for your reply to be honest I feel like walking away from it all I also have a 14 year old son and a 21 year old son who is at uni and I have a 23 year old daughter who lives at home she had bulimia for 7 years and that was hard to deal with now I'm going through this with my younger daughter it's so draining I'm also in debt with council tax arrears and other stuff it's so tough all I do is try to please my kids all the time and don't get much me time also my sister has terminal cancer 😢I try to stay positive listen to music a lot and read I have a journal I write in every day. And I listen to a lot of meditation stuff which helps.
I know my daughter better than she thinks and I know a lot of her anger and sadness goes back to when her dad walked out of our lives when she was 9 her grandad also passed away that same year her dad quickly met someone else within 6 weeks of leaving us and now has 3 more kids he was an alcoholic and still is I know this has had an impact on my kids and my daughter needs therapy to talk about this stuff when I mention this to the doctors they just look at me and carry on talking stupid medical terms it's so frustrating we have an appointment on the 29th with the psychologist and I'm so worried that she is going to push the antidepressants on my daughter again. My daughter says she thinks she will try them again I don't want her to take them what's the point if u don't change your lifestyle they have no positive affect she just wants to feel better and thinks these are magic pills that make u feel great every day if only that was the case then we would all take them x
Super contributor

Re: Antidepressants handed out too quick to teenagers with mental health issues

Sorry to hear that you are struggling at the moment @Mazz123. You sound like you have a lot on your plate. It is great to hear that you still do things you enjoy which is really important when things are difficult. You are very concerned for your daughter and it sounds like you are both trying really hard to reach out for support. Are there any activities you do together or that your daughter does alone to relax and wind down? I am not sure if you are in a different country but in Australia psychologists can't prescribe medications, only doctors or psychiatrists. Psychologists have a unique perspective and a focus on counselling therapy which is not always the case with psychiatrists and GP's. It might be worth checking out these different options if you haven't before Heart
Parent/Carer Community Champion

Re: Antidepressants handed out too quick to teenagers with mental health issues

Hi @Mazz123,


It sounds like a tremendously challenging time (well, a long time period!),


I also agree that it is a good idea to look for other causes for your daughters struggles, well done for pursuing these!


My son takes Sertraline. When he first started taking this (at the start of the year) it made a noticeable improvement. His anxiety drastically reduced, you could feel his demeanor change. In May this year, life became really difficult for him, and we increased his dose. The suicidal thoughts decreased.


I remember learning that meds work on around 50% of cases, and as we have seen, it is not enough to "fix" things (as you say, they don't suddenly make the world perfect). When they do work, I do believe they help soften the extreme emotional responses (which can provide the mindset needed for therapy to work).


From the many issues going on in your young persons life it sounds like you are right to seek treatment from a range of professionals. I think it is a great idea that you are keeping a diary (something that I'm kind of using this forum for . . .) and I commend you for doing everything you can to make your children's life amazing.


My recommendation would be to seek family therapy in addition to personal therapy. We have started doing this, and although my son has not been pro-active (i.e., not always turning up to sessions), it helps everyone else in the family (which I think is the glue that helps everyone keep on ticking on). Just a thought for you to take or leave.


Best of luck Smiley Happy