Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Depression in Children

A new study shows that children as young as 3 years old can be affected by depression... and once more science says something I coulda told you already. I don't remember anything before when I was three years old, but here's my earliest memory at that age:

Mom and dad were trying to punish me for something they didn't like about my attitude and since I didn't like being hurt by being spanked and didn't think I was being bad, I was physically struggling to get away from them. That led to them deciding that dad would sit on my head while mom spanked me. I will never forget the feeling of my father's ass pressing my face down into their bed, feeling as if I'd never get enough air again, while my mom hammered away at my ass with the huge paddle they had.

Not a pleasant memory and I was terrified that my parents would kill me after that. I was also incredibly depressed, something that was THE defining fact of my life until just last year. It affected all realms of my life and especially my relationships, which were few and far between. Being able to trust others was nearly impossible and since I couldn't trust people enough to ask questions about the things in life that didn't make sense, I had to muddle through as best I could and it was incredibly difficult. For most of my life depression kept me from opening my mouth in 99% of situations when I had something to say.

Newser.com reported:

Among initially depressed children, 64 percent were still depressed or had a recurrent episode of depression six months later, and 40 percent still had problems after two years. Overall, nearly 20 percent had persistent or recurrent depression at all four exams.

Depression was most common in children whose mothers were also depressed or had other mood disorders, and among those who had experienced a traumatic event, such as the death of a parent or physical or sexual abuse.

My situation certainly wasn't helped by growing up with a depressed mother AND physical, emotional and sexual abuse.

I'm glad that people are becoming aware that children aren't invulnerable to emotional hazards. I think anyone who thinks otherwise must've forgotten how to be a kid.

Related posts:
For Once, Happy Birthday
Anxiety and my Genetic Inheritence
Living with Emotional Blackmail

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1 comment:

Stacey K said...

We're on the same wavelength today. I was thinking about depression and how it affected my life. It didn't start as early for me, but by my late teens I was feeling the effects. For me a lot of it seems to have been wheat related and when that left my system the depression fog lifted.

I'm glad you found ways to work through/past/around your depression. I like the outspoken interesting May I get to know.