More threads by harveyl


I'm new to this chat forum. I'm lost as to how to help my daughter anymore. Not sure if there is a parent forum, but thought I'd try this one. My daughter is now 21, she's been on medication for depression since she was 16. She went from a bright, cheerful, active teen, to a depressed suicidal teen all in the matter of months. She managed to graduate from High School. She has never held a job longer than a few months, always some reason to quit. Tried college but again would quit. She put on about 80lbs and just seemed to sleep life away.

I'm a single parent and have tried my best to get her the help she needs. But just recently I've come to the conclusion that I've been taking the responsibility for her actions. I don't feel she has taken ownership.

She had been seeing this young man for over 1 year, and has broken up with him numerous times. At her lastest counseling session I found out he verbally abuses her, by calling her stupid and putting her down due to being overweight, he's very controlling. She pals with no one else but this idiot. I don't speak to this young man anymore. She broke up with him about 3 weeks ago and I was happy. But just last week she went back. This is probably the third breakup and they aren't handled gracefully, it's usually with yelling on his part. I felt it was time she learned how to handle her own life and make her own mistakes, I told her she had to move out. So she moved in with this control freak.

She was taking college courses and again has decided to quit. She has a job and has worked there for a year now. Nothing great, she's a cashier. She's horrible with money and tends to overspend. And she's very good at taking care of others and forgetting herself. There's so many other issues but I just can't put them in words right now. I want to help her in anyway I can but feel it's her turn. I feel heartbroken with my decision to have her move out and push her into this idiot's arms, but a part of me says it's time she picks herself up. I just hope she doesn't stop counseling or her medication. Parenting is hard enough, but having a child with mental health problems has made it even harder.

Just wondered if anyone has similar issues. Or maybe I'm feeling guilty for pushing my only child out into the world and need some reassurance that she will manage.

David Baxter PhD

Late Founder
I know from personal experience how difficult it is to watch your child suffer with depression and not let you help, or to watch as s/he makes decisions you are convinced are bad ones for her or him.

I also know from personal experience that until she really wants to do the work she needs to change or to accept your guidance in making better decisions, it just won't happen.

We all learn how to make good decisions by making some bad ones along the way. If she is seeing a therapist and on medications which are being monitored, she isn't alone and you can continue to have hope that she will in due course see the light. At 21, she may be reaching that point in the next year or three... don't give up.

In the meantime, I don't know that i would have made the choice of "kicking her out" but what you can still be doing is making sure she knows that you haven't given up on her and that if and when she needs your help in getting her life together you will be there.


It probably is the relationship which is causing the damage... but has she had her thyroid checked lately?

You say she is depressed and has put on weight and sleeps a lot...

I have Hashimoto's disease (auto-immune underactive thyroid), and a typical case is female and it starts at 18 (personally I think emotional stuff can be a trigger, but that is a long story)...but mine was undetected for a long time..

It wouldn't hurt for her to have a thorough blood test to check maybe...

If needed, then thyroxine tablets might help her to gradually feel more awake in a few ways, (and hopefully make some better choices)...

But of course, it may not be that at all...

I am speaking from the point of view of a 23 year old female. I had a terrible time with depression in my teens, and I understand the problems with the weight gain, and the self loathing.

I was also a very difficult teenager, not because of my depression, but because I was very argumentative, disrespectful, etc., and my mother 'kicked me out'.

Depressive people unfortunatly get onto a downward spiral. Studies have shown that they will create more and more negetive thoughts, and these thoughts will end up making them MORE depressed, creating MORE negetive thoughts... you get the idea.

What I am trying to say to you, is that if your daughter has depression, and what sounds like low self esteem, and she is living with a boyfriend who constantly puts her down, she WILL need every bit of positive re-inforcement you can give her. Obviously, don't lie. If you think that there is something that you should say, but don't think that she wants to hear it, then that will not be helping her at all. What I mean is, one can never get enough 'I love you's'.

Let her know that you will alway's be there for her, but also be aware that you need to prevent yourself from forming a destructive pattern also. You must be able to recognise how much you are able to take, and if you feel like you are being split into several pieces, you may need to step back.

You may also find talking to someone, yourself, may be a help. It sounds like this issue is wearing you down, (and has been for a while), and often just having an ear and a guiding hand is enough to get us back on track.

I'll leave it at that.

Take care, and I hope that things improve for you and your daughter.

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