Friday, February 17, 2012

In the News: Bullying and Suicide

This is consistently a hot topic and an important discussion to continue, as teens continue to commit suicide in the face of bullying. Is it possible that bullying has actually grown worse over the years? What are the other possible factors--lack of dialogue and underdeveloped coping strategies due to the detachment of the "techno" age? Is it a fad, now that bullying has become a hot button issue? With all that we know about how high risk teens are for depression, and possible ties to becoming bullying victims, is a crackdown on bullying the best solution?

As Dr. Drew points out, the bullies are not well themselves. We need to better recognize those in need of help and it is the shared responsibility of everyone. These teens might still be with us today if a friend recognized there was a serious problem and know how to act on it. I think suicide talk among teens is often said jokingly or hyperbole.

What do you think? How can we help prevent these suicides?

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Personal Experiences: Depression in Cartoon Form

                                      Illustration by Allie Brosh at
A friend of mine pointed out this specific blog post entitled "Adventures in Depression" as an accurate reflection of some of her experiences as well. Sometimes the most difficult part of dealing with depression is feeling like no one can understand what you are going through and you feel very alone and isolated. This blog post, as evidenced by the comment section, shows that no one is alone in these experiences.

I hope to bring attention to more personal experiences like these to encourage depression sufferers that it is okay to speak up. You will be heard and you are not alone. Read "Adventures in Depression" here*

*Please note that some of the illustrations in the linked blog post feature strong language.

Monday, February 6, 2012

In the News: Facebook Depression

                                                          Photo source

Facebook and social media have always proven to be quite controversial, mostly because we recognize that there may be unforeseeable consequences to their use. Most people have noted for themselves the lack of interpersonal skills that the new tech generation has. Texting, email, and posting on each other's Facebook walls are more popular forms of indirect communication favored by the younger set.

Now a new report by the American Academy of Pediatrics ( has pointed out a new hazard of social media use called "Facebook depression." There is an "intensity" in the online world that parallels real world social circles and therefore, someone who feels ignored and excluded in virtual world may then exhibit the same depressive symptoms as someone in the real world. I think the internet has both the power to connect and the power to isolate. What is of particular concern is the fact that it may be even more isolating if you consider that many people use the internet when they are by themselves.

I think it's important to keep in mind that social media sites, despite their name, should not replace socializing in person. We lose the ability to understand each other as human beings via the internet because you cannot comprehend someone's facial expression or tone of voice through an email, text or a status update. I suspect that miscommunication has also been on the rise despite everyone becoming more able to connect with a wider range of people.

Full original report can be found here

What do you like/dislike about social media sites?

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Music to Inspire: Dia Frampton "Don't Kick the Chair"

I have really enjoyed the musical trend, as of late, of encouraging, hopeful songs. I think music can have a significant part to play in the healing process, by surrounding yourself with positivity. This is the latest one I found, listening to Dia Frampton, from The Voice and the sister duo Meg & Dia.

Some other Positive Inspiration songs that have been on the radio in the past year...
"Firework" by Katy Perry
"Who Says" by Selena Gomez
"Skyscraper" by Demi Lovato
"Perfect" by Pink
"Loser Like Me" by the Glee Cast

What type of music makes you feel better?