Role Reversal—Following My Daughter’s Lead During Depression

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*, told me, “I think I have anxiety. ” I responded with something compassionate yet dismissive about the teenage years. When she slept for hours after school, isolated from family, forgot to hand in homework, displayed unusual irritability, I said to myself, “It’s the teenage years. ”Once her symptoms interfered with her daily life and relationships, I finally admitted, “It’s depression and anxiety. ”My denial up until that point was not only about my daughter.

It was also about me. I couldn’t accept the reality of her struggles because I couldn’t accept my own. I refused to admit how depressed and anxious I was, and had been for years.

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