Woman's Era - - Contents -

MY BEST FRIEND IN SCHOOL HAD A LOT OF FAM­ILY PROB­LEMS. Her fa­ther is an al­co­holic who abuses his wife phys­i­cally, and her brother is ne­glect­ing his stud­ies. The stress is giv­ing my friend anx­i­ety and de­pres­sion, and she of­ten gets panic at­tacks too.

When she talks about this to her mother and aunt, they tell her to pull her­self up, and that de­pres­sion does not oc­cur in the young. She wants to get help but they are re­fus­ing to let her. We are 16-year-old girls who want to know if teenagers can get de­pressed or not. Please ad­vise.

In­deed, some years back, young­sters were im­mune to de­pres­sion and anx­i­ety, for their lives were not as stress­filled and com­pet­i­tive as to­day’s. Feel­ings of sad­ness, help­less­ness and de­spon­dency were fleet­ing and dis­pelled quickly with some dis­trac­tions, ad­vice and com­pany of friends.

Nowa­days, many chil­dren are suf­fer­ing from clin­i­cal de­pres­sion their and need help from fam­i­lies or pro­fes­sion­als to get over it.

It is un­der­stand­able that your friend is de­pressed and anx­ious. She needs help not only for her­self but for her fam­ily. There are sev­eral fam­ily clin­ics which ad­vise and help in cir­cum­stances like hers. Per­haps, the fam­ily doc­tor could help in iden­ti­fy­ing them in your city. She and her mother def­i­nitely need in­ter­ven­tion from such helpers to deal with the prob­lems. Just shar­ing their con­cerns and get­ting sup­port and ad­vice will go a long way in re­liev­ing her stress and ten­sion.

Even talk­ing over the prob­lems with a wiser, older, kindly neigh­bor or rel­a­tive will be a good start.

IAM A 17- YEAR-OLD GIRL WHO WAS ADOPTED BY A COU­PLE WHEN I was only 6 months old. My par­ents are very lov­ing and car­ing and are giv­ing me the finest ed­u­ca­tion I could ever ask for. They told me about my adop­tion when I was 12 years old, as­sur­ing me that to them, I was their own child. They have no other chil­dren.

From some time, I keep get­ting a strong urge to know about my bi­o­log­i­cal par­ents, and to even meet them. When I spoke to par­ents about this, they were dev­as­tated, and be­seeched me not to try to know my an­tecedents. In fact, they said they are them­selves ig­no­rant about this.

I do not be­lieve them and want to go to the or­phan­age and find out for my­self. My best friend says that it is wrong and I shouldn’t hurt my par­ents who have been so good to me. Please ad­vise.

It is def­i­nitely not right to take any steps in a clan­des­tine man­ner, for you will break their trust in you. If you tell them, they will surely as­sure you that the or­phan­age will be un­able to give you any in­for­ma­tion. So, why at­tempt this fu­tile ex­er­cise? For­get the past, and try not to dig it up just to sat­isfy your cu­rios­ity. You might be shocked and hurt be­yond mea­sure with some facts which were bet­ter re­mained un­told.

Be­lieve your par­ents when they claim ig­no­rance about your real par­ents. Get on with your life now and do so well that they feel proud of you. This will re­pay them hand­somely for all that they have in­vested in you.

IAM A 14- YEAR-OLD GIRL. MY FA­THER PASSED AWAY WHEN I WAS three years old, and my mom and grand­par­ents have taken care of me. Now, my mom has de­cided to re­marry, and the man she has cho­sen is, in­deed, a good man, and I am very happy.

My step-fa­ther’s is a wid­ower with an 18-year-old son, who treats me like a kid sis­ter. I though, feel very at­tracted to him and have se­cret dreams of mar­ry­ing him when I am an adult. Should I tell him about how I feel so that he does not get in­volved with some­one else with­out wait­ing for me?

Firstly, do not make the gross mis­take of re­veal­ing your feel­ings to this young man, for it will ruin the beau­ti­ful sib­ling re­la­tion­ship he has with you. It will make you look silly and fool­ish,for what you are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing is noth­ing more than a crush or puppy love which teens of­ten have in the vul­ner­a­ble grow­ing years. Prox­im­ity with a young per­son of the op­po­site sex when ado­les­cent hor­mones are ris­ing in your body due to nor­mal bi­o­log­i­cal rea­sons can cre­ate in­fat­u­a­tions.

En­joy the nice equa­tion you share with your step­brother. As he has in no way in­di­cated that he is at­tracted to you in a ro­man­tic way, he surely does not have such no­tions. You have many years ahead be­fore you can think of mar­riage too, and many things can hap­pen in this time.

The bot­tom line is, don’t tell him any­thing at all, and try to mingle with other friends of your own age which will stop your ro­man­tic dream­ing.

AF­TER MY FA­THER’S JOB TRANS­FER TO DELHI FROM CHEN­NAI, I feel very lonely with­out old school mates. In the new school here, no one talks much to me, or in­vites me to join their group. They are not rude but they ig­nore and ne­glect me. I hate go­ing to school each morn­ing. Please tell me what to do. I am a 13-year-old girl.

Rest as­sured that all new­com­ers in school face this prob­lem. The se­cret is: if you want a friend, be a friend! Don’t wait for some­one to talk to you. Choose some class­mates who seem to be your type, and ap­proach them with a “Hello, may I join you?”

Keep a friendly open face, and be ready to help or lend a hand in any ac­tiv­ity. Join group ac­tiv­i­ties, clubs, sports etc, where you will soon make friends. Be ready to share books, notes, etc.

It takes a bit of time but you will soon be able to break the ice.

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