Title: Depression and Your Child: A Guide for Parents and Caregivers
Genre: Self-Help, Parenting
Author: Deborah Serani
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers (September 16, 2013)
Buying Link: AMAZON
Seeing your child suffer in any way is a harrowing experience for any parent. Mental illness in children can be particularly draining due to the mystery surrounding it, and the issue of diagnosis at such a tender age. Depression and Your Child gives parents and caregivers a uniquely textured understanding of pediatric depression, its causes, its symptoms, and its treatments. Author Deborah Serani weaves her own personal experiences of being a depressed child along with her clinical experiences as a psychologist treating depressed children.
Current research, treatments and trends are presented in easy to understand language and tough subjects like self-harm, suicide and recovery plans are addressed with supportive direction. Parents will learn tips on how to discipline a depressed child, what to expect from traditional treatments like psychotherapy and medication, how to use holistic methods to address depression, how to avoid caregiver burnout, and how to move through the trauma of diagnosis and plan for the future.
Real life cases highlight the issues addressed in each chapter and resources and a glossary help to further understanding for those seeking additional information. Parents and caregivers are sure to find here a reassuring approach to childhood depression that highlights the needs of the child even while it emphasizes the need for caregivers to care for themselves and other family members as well.
When you held your child for the very first time, you were likely brimming with pride and joy. Your heart swelling with enormous love, you’re swept away with streams of thoughts for what your child needs in this immediate moment—as well as plans and dreams for the future. You expect there to be wondrous adventures your child will experience, as well as bumps in the road along the way.
And that’s okay, you say, because you know that life isn’t always an easy journey.
But one thing you probably never considered was how an illness like depression could take hold of your child. And why would you? Up until recently, it was never believed that children could experience depression. Long ago, studies suggested that children and teenagers didn’t have the emotional capacity or cognitive development to experience the hopelessness and helplessness of depression.
Today, we know that children, even babies, experience depression. The clinical term is called pediatric depression, and rates are higher now than ever before. In the United States alone, evidence suggests that 4 percent of preschool-aged children, 5 percent of school-aged children, and 11 percent of adolescents meet the criteria for major depression.
Depression and Your Child grew out of my experience of being a clinician who specializes in the treatment of pediatric depression. I wanted to write a parenting book to raise awareness about depressive disorders in children, to teach parents how to find treatment, to offer tips for creating a healthy living environment, and to highlight important adult parenting matters such as self-care, romance, and well-being.
I also wrote this book because I have lived with depression since I was a child. As is the case with pediatric depression, my own depression didn’t hit with lightning-like speed. It was more of a slow burn, taking its toll in gnaws and bites before hollowing me out completely. After a suicide attempt as a college sophomore, I found help that finally reduced my depression. Until then, I accepted the sadness, despair, and overwhelming fatigue as the way my life just was. I never realized, nor did my parents or any other adults, that I had a clinical disorder. I’ve since turned the wounds from my childhood into wisdom and believe that sharing the textures of my experiences will help parents realize what their own depressed child is going through.
More than anything else, I want this book to offer hope. As a clinician, proper diagnosis and treatment can be life-changing and life saving. As a person living with depression, I have found successful ways to lead a full and meaningful life. I want parents and children who struggle with depression to feel this hope, too—and in these pages, that’s what you’ll find.