According to the American Psychological Association approximately 50 percent of all people with experience atleast one traumatic event in their lives. Traumatic events include physical, psychological and sexual abuse; terrorism and war; domestic violence; witnessing violence against others; and accidents and natural disasters. Trauma is more common than we realize, it can also be the starting point to depression which is the leading cause of suicide. Back in 2016 it was reported that at least 46,000 people took they on life alone. Each year 1 to many suicides occur and by that I mean any number past 0. Everyday encourage someone, speak life into them, compliment instead of ridicule, you never know how close to the literal edge someone is.
By Paishance Welch
Could it be? One of the world’s most popular apps has been deemed the worst app for tweens in the past two years, according to the Royal Society for Public Health in the UK.
With over 700,000,000 users worldwide, Instagram’s photo saturated hosting platform has impacted many user’s health and wellness. This includes anxiety, depression, self-identity and perspective of body image. What does this mean? As a parent, caregiver, this means you should be very concerned.
Last week, we spoke about how peer pressure & negative influences can be detrimental to your child’s mental growth and the growth of others. Negative influences don’t always happen in the classroom. They can also happen virtually and sad to say, Instagram is one of those many virtual sources that contribute to negative impact on the mental health and wellness of our youth. The biggest influences being with Instagram models, both male and female.
It is important to understand that social media, in general, is not a terrible thing, however, it is when your children are being influenced by photoshopped and unrealistic model photos on their social media timeline. Today’s acceptance is measured by how many ‘like’ and ’comments’ one can get on any given post.
A click and a share seem to inspire tweens to behave and or act in a certain way that normally they would not.
Photoshopped and altered pics on Instagram can easily make a young girl feel like her body is not good enough. Young men also have had experiences with being influenced negatively by unrealistic and edited photos. This starts an irreversible chain of insecurities, low self-esteem and even depression.
Unfortunately, this is the cyber world we live in. Connection with self and with others have become less face to face and more virtually dependent. It has also affected the way we look at others and ourselves. As friends and family of these social media dependent lovable tweens, we must do our best to keep their minds filled with positive and encouraging words.
Many times we see our youth turning to the wrong people for role models and these people are usually found online. The minute you notice change in your tweens language, or choice of clothing, maybe tons of make up or crazy hair cuts, try to get into their mental state and see what’s causing them to venture off into these new trends.
Spiderman, Batman, Black Panther along with so many heroes are household names. We love their super powers, story lines, cool gadgets and most of all the costumes. The three that were mentioned have that in common, with the most notable part of the costume being the mask. It allows them to be two people at once, without risking someone seeing them for what they really are. Although a cartoon, the concept of a mask translates into something far deeper in meaning in real life. Individuals, who are dealing with depression, typically cover it up with smile, as a defense mechanism. That mask is more common than one may think.
According to blackdoctor.com, more than 5 million men suffer from depression each year. As it relates to Milwaukee, Wisconsin is ranked in the top 15 of states with high depression rates. Milwaukee is also ranked as the worse place for an African American man.
With those statistics in mind, Dr Ramel Smith started a mental health clinic, Blaquemith. The name perfectly illustrates his hands on work within the African American community. As a licensed therapist, Professor, Author and Activist, Smith has worked to combat issues faced in the community head-on, his most recent effort being the Black Men Don’t Jump mental health seminar, which took place November 8that the downtown campus of MATC. The event which was free saw over 100 attendees of all ethnicities and ages. Covering topics such as; identifying depression and resources for those who may be suffering from it, the event was full of substance.
“I never though a person sleeping too much or too little was a sign of depression” one attendee said responding to the topic of depression signs. Indeed lack of sleep or too much is a sign of depression along with anger, sexual performance anxiety, loss of focus etc to name a few of the overlooked symptoms.
“I can not express myself without being called soft” a man explained referring to his upbringing as an African American man. It has been a social stigma for years that talking bout what ails you is sign of weakness among black men, but until we allow each other to take our mask off we will continue to try to be superheroes
Depression is a mental disorder that many people live with everyday. Over 300 million people around the world have depression, according to the World Health Organization. As big as these numbers are, studies have shown a drastic increase in millennials.
Many studies indicate that millennials outnumber any other generation. Although that makes them the largest in numbers, depression seems to be spreading 3x as fast in millennials than any other generation.The second leading cause for death in college students is suicide.
This tells us that many millennials are sad, hurting, and crying on the inside, not saying a word about it. They feel abandoned and unloved. Many millennials feel lonely and misunderstood.
Many would argue the lack of patience and how millennials feel entitled play a huge roll in these circumstances but I’d argue what can we do to save our future. How do we begin to reach millennials and meet them right where they are? Also as millennials, what can be done to lessen the load of depression?
I can honestly say that as a millennial, I’ve too experienced many dark times. I’ve found myself depressed about what life throws at me and what it doesn’t. I’ve been depressed over relationships as well as business.
One thing I believe plays a huge roll in millennial depression is the ability of choice. Generation Y has access to so many different walks of life. Having so many choices stresses us out and often makes us think of what others will think more than our own realities.
Along my walk of life I’ve found some techniques that push positive behavior. These measures helped me to be proactive and I hope it can help my fellow millennials.
1. Healthy Me Time
There’s a huge difference between complete isolation and Me Time. Me Time is time you spend with yourself, doing something that you absolutely love. Some people call it pamper. Others call it self care. Either way, IT’S NEEDED! We, millennials, need more time alone to properly identify ourselves. It’s so easy for us to get caught up in allowing the world to tell us who we are or who we should be rather than taking the time to discover the real us. So begin to date yourself often, no matter what it looks like, you deserve time with you.
2. Build a Positive Network
Your surroundings have a great impact on your mood, mind, and mental. Whether your friends are loving and supportive or picky and discouraging they will have an impact on how you feel. Not only examine, but begin to eliminate negative forces in your life. Don’t give your time to people who don’t deserve it. You can’t find happiness by dwelling in misery. It’s not about have perfect friends. It’s about having the people in your life that care about you.
3. Start a Daily Journal
Life comes with all sorts of mishaps and mistakes that we often can’t prepare for. Nonetheless we are forced to deal with the tactics that come are way. Things may not always turn out how we want them to but we have to get to a place of humility. Begin to write out your feelings daily. Check on your mental more often. Whether it was a rough day or a phenomenal one, write out your feelings, your intentions, your plans, your goals. There’s nothing like catering to self. There’s nothing wrong with feeling down or depressed. It’s all about knowing taking one day at a time and believing you can make it.
Keep pushing Team Millennials!