Do I Need To Seek A Therapist? Please Read

Okay, I'm not really diagnosed with depression. I merely joined this group so I could get some advice if I should seek a therapist or not. Please read :( I think I'm suffering from it...

[Forgive me if you find any grammatical errors. I'm Asian. ]

It all started when I was 14. I remember feeling so stressed out because of school. I hardly had time for myself, and easily got irritated by small things. Oftentimes, I would shout at my mother and older sister because of some shallow mistake that they had done. Every day I'd only get about 2-4 hours of sleep, and it was because of this that I got my family worried of my health. My mom noticed that I had lost weight and turned quite pale. She gave me vitamin supplements, but I hardly took them because I didn't like taking and depending on meds. (I know, I was stupid)

Soon I started cutting myself to relieve myself from all the stress, pressure and loneliness that I experience in school and at home. I really don't have friends...or maybe I have, but don't consider them my friends. I have trust issues, since my best friend in middle school back-stabbed me. I don't have a good relationship with my family either. My older sister is selfish, only thinks of her body and looks, and my mom hardly notices me since she has got herself a nice job. And my father works abroad, so I barely have a chance to talk to him, but even if I have, I don't think I will, because we're not close and I don't like him...

Lately I've been feeling very depressed. My life makes me depressed. My grades are going down the hill, and I CAN'T sleep. A month ago I was eating myself up. Now I barely eat. When I do eat, I feel like a fatass (because I really am), and then throw up. I heard that the eat-throw up thing is bulimia....but I don't really know. Maybe I'm just dizzy or too confused. I'm like this too when I'm having panic attacks, but I think that's only natural. And I'm still cutting.

I'm 17 now, and I want to seek help, but I'm afraid my family won't be too open and accepting.

So what can you advice? :( Is it okay to take over the counter antidepressants? I've been eating chocolates to make myself feel better, because I read that it can help people get through depression.

An Ep User An EP User
2 Responses Jan 10, 2013

I too, am an Asian. Half Filipino to be exact. But I haven't been in the Philippines in a while. Depression has been a taboo in the Asian culture, but I believe Asian countries are starting to open up to the idea that depression really is a problem. And more and more people are starting to accept that depression is in fact, an illness, which needs medication at times. Please consult a therapist, I assure you it would help you in realizing if there is something wrong. Well, for starters, you can go see your school's guidance counselor. They usually have degrees in psychology, and would probably know whether to refer you to a psychiatrist. And with regards to your family not being open about it, you can try explaining it to them and making them understand, or you can ask your therapist to help you with it. Not everybody is understanding and accepting about depression (I'm recently diagnosed with major depressive disorder, currently on anti-depressants, and am dealing with having to make my dad understand that I have depression, and that it's something treatable).
I pray you get and feel better, and hope to hear from you soon.

I think you need to see a therapist. You're still a teenager, and it's understandable that you feel the way you do. You still have some growing up to do, and believe me, I know it's hard. Growing up can be painful because it requires you to give up a lot of things and to step out of your comfort zone.<br />
I had a major depressive episode in 2006. I was 30 years old and, yup, I had some growing up to do even then. I, too, resorted to cutting to relieve stress and to distract myself from the emotional pain. I was lonely. I was living alone, I hated my job, and I was recovering from a heartbreak. (I watched the person I loved get married a couple of years back.)I went to a psychiatrist because I started having suicidal thoughts. I also didn't like cutting myself, but I just felt I had to do it. She prescribed some antidepressants. I then moved back to my mother's apartment.<br />
I have recovered since then. I'm very blessed to have a best friend who has been my angel since we met. (We met after I had a major depressive episode.) I tell her everything and she patiently listens to me. She's like a big sister to me. <br />
My advice? Go to a psychiatrist. You may need some medication because chemical imbalance can cause depression. There are also medical conditions that cause depression like hypothyroidism. My psychiatrist ordered thyroid function tests to rule that out. Don't self-medicate. Anti-depressants require presc<x>ription. There are some herbal supplements that are said to fight depression, but it's always best to consult a health professional before you take anything.<br />
Find friends that you can talk to. You just might be surprised to find caring people around you. I suggest that you talk to someone older and wiser. (My best friend is six years older than I am.) Choose your friends well. Be with people who bring out the best in you and who inspire you to accomplish great things. Don't be with people who encourage you to wallow in self-pity and take advantage of your vulnerability. Keep away from those who think that alcohol and drugs are solutions to problems. (You'll never solve problems unless you face them.) Allow yourself to be loved by the people around you and try to be more loving to them. <br />
Love yourself just as you are. Please don't call yourself a fat ***. Depression can cause you to eat a lot. I gained a lot of weight when I was depressed and I've kept it on, but I don't worry about the way I look. I worry about my health because I'm three years shy of 40 and people my age are susceptible to cardiovascular diseases. If you must lose weight, do it for your health's sake, not because you're afraid of what others might think of your body. If you want to lose weight to look good, that's okay, but do it for yourself and not for anybody else. Look for healthy ways to lose weight. <br />
Getting some exercise is a good way to fight depression. Our bodies release endorphins when we exercise. (Hmm...This is something I should do more.) Endorphins are neurotransmitters that promote the feeling of well-being. Yoga fights stress and it may also help you lose weight. Arthur Boorman is my inspiration when it comes to losing weight. He was a cripple and was morbidly obese, but he lost more than 100 pounds and was able to walk again without crutches. He doesn't just walk; he runs! You might want to watch his YouTube video (He's part Asian, I think. By the way, I'm Asian, too. I live in the Philippines.): <br />
Try to talk to your family. You may think that they aren't open and accepting, but you could be wrong. However, if you find it too hard to talk to anybody in your family, try talking to a counselor. <br />
At 17, you still have your whole life ahead of you. You have yet to see the best that life can offer. Love yourself and be happy. Love and allow yourself to be loved. I wish you the best.

Thank you very much for your advice. I really, really appreciate it :) That video was very inspirational. You're right that I can't live all by myself, so I'll try to reach out to my family. I still don't know how I could tell them about my problem, but I'll find a way. I hope that you too will get through your depression. May God bless you. Thanks again.

[I live in the Philippines too :) ]

You're welcome. If you feel bad and you need to let it all out, you can send me a message. I'll be praying for you. May God bless you, too.