Depression Can Hit People At Any Age

Taken from the  Daily Herald    which is found  HERE.

“How do you deal with depression?” asked a student in Gregg Thompson’s sixth-grade social studies class at Woodlands Middle School in Gurnee.

Sadness, sometimes crying. Blue, isolated, irritable, sensitive, rejected, angry.

These are feelings some people experience every day. What once made them happy now causes anxiety or mixed emotions. Maybe they have difficulty concentrating, or they sleep a lot.

When these symptoms last more than two weeks, it’s depression.

“Your mind feels like it’s running on empty,” said Dr. Jessica Yeatermeyer, child psychiatrist at Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. “Things that used to make you happy don’t make you happy anymore. It’s different from being sad about things that would bother anyone.”

People can experience depression at any age. Yeatermeyer described depression in children younger than 12 as irritability.

As kids move into their teens, depression can mean a withdrawal from social activities they used to enjoy. Weight gain, increased appetite, fatigue and sleep problems can go hand-in-hand with depression. Sometimes depressed teens feel numb and harm themselves by cutting to induce feeling. They might have suicidal thoughts.

Yeatermeyer said the character “Sadness” from last summer’s hit Disney movie “Inside Out” realistically portrayed life with depression. At one point the character wisely identified her feelings: “Crying helps me slow down and obsess over the weight of life’s problems.”

The National Institutes of Health reports 10 percent of teens between the ages of 12 and 17 experience depression.

There’s good news — depression is treatable.

Depression can stem from several things, Yeatermeyer said.

“Sometimes kids are worried about hard things like money or illness,” she said.

A family history could identify parents or grandparents who experienced depression; it sometimes runs in families. Kids who are bullied or who have difficulty understanding gender identity can become depressed. Yeatermeyer is encouraging when she speaks about the possibility of returning to stability and regaining full energy.

“Many people benefit from talking with therapists. Depression can be episodic, lasting six months to a year. That can give hope to some patients,” she said.

More severe symptoms can require medication, or a combination of medication and therapy, Yeatermeyer said. If you think you might be depressed, talk to your parents, school counselor or doctors. They’ll send you on your way to creating a path to regaining full health.

What if it’s not you who is depressed, but you think a friend might be?

“Counselors are great resources, and don’t be afraid to contact parents — either your friend’s or yours. Try to be open with them and get on it early,” she urges. “They can make sure kids get connected with good interventions.”

How do you start that conversation? “I’m here for you” and “What can I do to help?” are phrases that tell a friend you support them no matter what. Letting them know they will find ways to help bridge through them daily life without depression can help, too.

If the situation seems really serious, and there’s a suspicion of suicidal thoughts, patients or family should contact doctors or visit the emergency room at the hospital. Doctors and therapists tell family and friends to talk.

“There’s good research that shows it helps to discuss these thoughts,” Yeatermeyer reports. “There’s less stigma around mental health issues today.”

Teen With Asperger’s Used Selfie Stick to Document the Daily Bullying He Experiences

Taken from  Seventeen  which is found   HERE.

Ryan Wiggins suffers through bullying every single day. The 14-year-old teen from Hertfordshire, Britain has Asperger’s Syndrome, and kids at school often taunt him by calling him “nerdy” or “gay.” Rather than dealing with the problem in silence, he’s bravely speaking out in the form of a short film that he wrote, filmed, and starred in.

He shot “Tomorrow” in black and white using a selfie stick. The film follows Ryan through a typical day — waking up, washing his face, going to school, taking his medication, and so on — with voice-overs that describe the emotional toll bullying takes.

​”Will there ever be a time when I’m finally happy?” he asks in the video.

The hardest scene to watch is when his phone lights up with mean comments from an anonymous number. “Kill yourself,” one text dares him.

Ryan posted “Tomorrow” to the YouTube channel for Anna Kennedy Online, a British organization for autism awareness, last week. The video was in honor of Anti-Bullying Week and has since racked up more than 20,000 views.

“From as early as I can remember, other children seemed to want to have a dig at me,” he told the Daily Mail​. “I was constantly teased at primary school, with people calling me names like ‘nerdy’ and ‘gay’. Once one started, it wouldn’t take long before others joined in. At worse they would push me around physically and a couple of kids threatened to beat me up in an alleyway. I tried to toughen up and deal with it but it gets unbearable after a while.”

Thanks to his film, other teens like Ryan won’t have to feel so alone anymore.

Streams In The Desert: November 28th, 2015

Thou makest the outgoing of the morning and evening to rejoice Psalm 65:8

Get up early and go to the mountain and watch God make a morning. The dull gray will give way as God pushes the sun towards the horizon, and there will be tints and hues of every shade, that will blend into one perfect light as the full-orbed sun bursts into view. As the King of day moves forth majestically, flooding the earth and every lowly vale, listen to the music of heaven’s choir as it sings of the majesty of God and the glory of the morning.

In the holy hush of the early dawn
I hear a Voice
“I am with you all the day,
Rejoice! Rejoice!”

The clear, pure light of the morning made me long for the truth in my heart, which alone could make me pure and clear as the morning, tune me up to the concert-pitch of the nature around me. And the wind that blew from the sunrise made me hope in the God who had first breathed into my nostrils the breath of life; that He would at length so fill me with His breath, His mind, His Spirit, that I should think only His thoughts, and live His life, finding therein my own life, only glorified infinitely.

What should we poor humans do without our God’s nights and mornings?
–George MacDonald

“In the early morning hours,
‘Twixt the night and day,
While from earth the darkness passes
Silently away;
“Then ’tis sweet to talk with Jesus
In thy chamber still
For the coming day and duties
Ask to know His will.
“Then He’ll lead the way before you,
Mountains laying low;
Making desert places blossom,
Sweet’ning Marah’s flow.
“Would you know this life of triumph,
Victory all the way?
Then put God in the beginning
Of each coming day.”


Praise & Worship: November 27th, 2015

1.  O Holy Night-  Luciano Pavarotti

2.  Silent Night-  Enya

3.  The First Noel-  BeBe& CeCe Winans

4.  The Lord Is Gracious And Compassionate-  Kathryn Scott/Vineyard UK

5.  He Knows My Heart-  Maranatha Singers

6.  The Wonder Of Your Cross-  Robin Mark

7.  One Thing Remains-  Bethel Music

8.  Walk On The Water-  Britt Nicole

9.  Your Love Never Fails-  Chris Quilala’Jesus Culture

10.  God Of Our Yesterdays-  Chris McClarney

11.  My Savior, My God-  Aaron Shust


Streams In The Desert: November 26, 2015

And Caleb said unto her, What wouldest thou? Who answered, give me a blessing; for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And he gave her the upper springs, and the nether springs Joshua 15:18, 19

There are both upper and nether springs. They are springs, not stagnant pools. There are joys and blessings that flow from above through the hottest summer and the most desert land of sorrow and trial. The lands of Achsah were “south lands,” lying under a burning sun and often parched with burning heat. But from the hills came the unfailing springs, that cooled, refreshed and fertilized all the land.

There are springs that flow in the low places of life, in the hard places, in the desert places, in the lone places, in the common places, and no matter what may be our situation, we can always find these upper springs. Abraham found them amid the hills of Canaan. Moses found them among the rocks of Midian. David found them among the ashes of Ziklag when his property was gone, his family captives and his people talked of stoning him, but “David encouraged himself in the Lord.” Habakkuk found them when the fig tree was withered and the fields were brown, but as he drank from them he could sing: “Yet will I rejoice in the Lord and joy in the God of my salvation.”

Isaiah found them in the awful days of Sennacherib’s invasion, when the mountains seemed hurled into the midst of the sea, but faith could sing: “There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God. God is in the midst of her: she shall not be moved.”

The martyrs found them amid the flames, and reformers amid their foes and conflicts, and we can find them all the year if we have the Comforter in our hearts and have learned to say with David: “All my springs are in thee.”

How many and how precious these springs, and how much more there is to be possessed of God’s own fulness! –A. B. Simpson

I said: “The desert is so wide!”
I said: “The desert is so bare!
What springs to quench my thirst are there?
Whence shall I from the tempest hide?”
I said: “The desert is so lone!
Nor gentle voice, nor loving face
Will brighten any smallest space.”
I paused or ere my moan was done!
I heard a flow of hidden springs;
Before me palms rose green and fair;
The birds were singing; all the air
Did shine and stir with angels’ wings!
And One said mildly: “Why, indeed,
Take over-anxious thought for that
The morrow bringeth! See you not

The Father knoweth what you need?”


An Example Of Prayer From A Clint Eastwood Movie

This prayer came to mind today and I’ll admit it impacted me as it did when I saw the movie years ago.  The movie is Pale Rider.  A gang of thugs had just terrorized the place where a young teen lives and in doing so kill her dog. 

But this young girl’s prayer is her hearts cry in pure honesty before God as she struggles with the loss of her dog.  She was in a dark and hopeless place.  Many times when I’ve prayed I’ve tried to do so in a spiritual way that really wasn’t honest before God.  It was what I thought He wanted to hear instead of my hearts cry.  By no means is this a primer on how to pray but a reminder that it’s okay to be honest with God.  He looks at our hearts, not the words we use.     Allan

   A review of the movie is   HERE.


“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”
But I do

“He leadeth me beside still waters. He restoreth my
But they killed my dog.

“Yea, though I walk through
the valley of the shadow of death I shall fear no evil–”
But I am

“–for thou art with me. Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort
But we need a miracle.

“Thy loving kindness and mercy
shall follow me all the days of my life.”
If you exist.

I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
But I’d like to get more
out of this life first.

If you don’t help us we’re all going to
Just one miracle?


10 Things Everyone Should Know About Seasonal Depression

Taken from Huff Post  which is found   HERE.

For some, the winter is hardly “the most wonderful time of the year.”

Seasonal affective disorder is a condition that affects nearly 10 million American adults and can make a few months out of the year feel downright unbearable. It’s common to feel bouts of the winter blues, but those with seasonal depression may experience symptoms and low moods that sometimes make everyday tasks feel impossible.

Here are a couple of things to keep in mind about seasonal affective disorder, its treatment options and how it affects people’s daily lives.

1. The underlying cause of SAD isn’t just bad weather.

In most cases, SAD is just a seasonal component of clinical depression or bipolar disorder, according to Michelle Riba, a professor of psychiatry and the associate director of the University of Michigan Depression Center.

“For people who see a regular pattern every year of getting sad, anxious or a cycling of moods, the first thing they need to do is to see someone to get an overall diagnosis,” she said. “They need to treat the underlying depression.”

2. It’s not a punchline.

It can be easy to blame a bad mood on the earlier dark skies, but people should think twice before saying they “must have SAD.” The condition is hardly something to be flippant about, Riba said.

“It’s not something to laugh about or joke about,” Riba said. “It’s a significant health problem.” Here’s a list of other mental illness terms that shouldn’t be used nonchalantly.

3. There are multiple ways to treat SAD…

For a long time, many considered light therapy one of the gold standards of SAD treatment. The method helps sufferers by exposing them to artificial light similar to sunlight. Experts theorize this technique helps correct the body’s inner circadian rhythm and produces feel-good hormones that people get from the sun during other times of the year.

However, light therapy isn’t the only route. Since the key is treating the underlying depression, that could include methods like cognitive behavioral therapy, medication or both. Recently a study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry found that talk therapy may even be more effective than light therapy when it comes to treating SAD. But keep in mind that the best method varies from person to person, Riba says. Any active treatment is better than nothing.

4. …But it may take some time.

Riba says that most doctors don’t determine if a person has SAD until they’ve experienced at least two episodes (essentially seasons) of the disorder. In other words, it may take a little while to make sure it’s the right diagnosis. Physicians want to make sure that they’re treating every aspect of a mental health disorder properly.

5. It’s debilitating.

Symptoms of SAD include sadness, fatigue and a loss of motivation. Any depressive disorder can also be physically exhausting. People with depression often experience headaches and changes in appetite in addition to their emotional symptoms.

6. SAD doesn’t always occur in the winter.

It’s rare, but some people do experience the condition in the spring or summertime. These symptoms usually include increased feelings of agitation or anxiety, according to the Mayo Clinic.

7. The condition is complex.

According to Riba, SAD can not only be a component of major depression, but also bipolar disorder or other mental health issues. A rare case of SAD also may have contributed to one woman’s obsessive compulsive disorder flareups during the winter months. Experts agree that there may be a tie between seasonal changes and exacerbation of illnesses. Like all mental health conditions, the disorder is complicated and as such, deserves thoughtful and effective treatment from a physician.

8. It’s more prevalent in northern states.

People who live in colder, cloudier climates may be more susceptible to the disorder. Northern states have higher rates of SAD than southern states, according to the University of California, Irvine.

9. SAD is more common in women.

Studies show women have higher rates of depression than men, including SAD, the New York Times reported. However, that doesn’t mean men are immune. Depression doesn’t discriminate and can affect anyone, regardless of gender, ethnicity or any biological factor.

10. It should be taken seriously.

Above all, mental health conditions like SAD are manageable, but only if people seek the help they need.

“It’s important for people to recognize these signs within themselves and get evaluated,” Riba said. “This isn’t a trivial problem, it’s part of a major mood disorder that really needs to be addressed. But it is treatable.”