Ask a Psychiatrist and Get Answers to Mental Health Questions ASAP
I'm very sorry to hear of the situation. Suicidal ideation, memory disturbance and poor concentration are all classic symptoms of Depression and it sounds very much like you may have Developed a degree of the illness. What has your mood been like? How is your sleep cycle? Are you more tearful than usual? Are you enjoying the things you usually enjoy (hobbies, leisure activities, etc)? How have your energy levels been?
After you respond to these questions I'll advice you on how to proceed.
Ok, thanks for the information.
It just so happens that I treat international students as a specialty (at last count I've worked with students from over 35 different countries) and so I can tell you that the experience you are describing is very, very common. Transitioning to a new country is extremely stressful and we often see students begin to develop a reactive depression - something you appear to be describing clearly. Obviously you have some large questions to work through (relating to your parents and life pathway) and while these are important the key issue right now is to begin to lift the lowering mood. Depression actually alters the way in which you see things and so while your mood is down it is not the best time to be trying to answer any large questions.
The main treatment approaches for Depression are anti-depressant medication, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) or a combination of the two. I can recommend this excellent website here as a starting point for learning more about the treatment ofDepression.The recommended sequence of treatments to try is:
1) Self-help using a CBT based program
2) CBT with a therapist
3) CBT & an antidepressant medication (usually a Selective Serotonin Re uptakeInhibitor)
You can confirm that this is the correct order by checking these treatment recommendations here.
CBT is a psychotherapeutic approach that aims to solve problems concerning dysfunctional emotions, behaviors and cognitions through a goal-oriented, systematicprocedure. Treatment is technique driven, brief, direct and time-limited (normally 10-12 sessions). CBT is used in individual therapy as well as group settings, and the techniques are often adapted for self-help applications. I would strongly encourage you to consider CBT as I would expect you get great benefit from this approach.
Start by working through this excellent CBT based self-help program here. It should take several weeks to complete, is completely free and will teach you everything you need to know about Depression and what you can do about it. Alternatively, you could take a look at a book which will teach you some introductory techniques for dealing with Depression at home. I can recommend a well known manual titled Mind Over Mood and another book titled The Cognitive Behavioral Workbook forDepression; A Step by Step Program as good places to start. You can find themboth here.
If you find you aren't making the kind of progress you would like using a self-help approach I would then recommend you consult with a CBT trained therapist. CBT is usually offered by Clinical Psychologists (although not exclusively) and you should check whether your student health services provide this service (they usually do). If they do not then you can contact The British Psychological Society here for assistance with finding an appropriately trained Psychologist in your local area. The NHS covers sessions with a Psychologist in many circumstances and you can begin to check this option here (sometimes international students have access to NHS services as part of their visa arrangements). Also, take a look at an article published by the American Psychology Association here. It's an interview with a seniorPsychologist and covers some of the things you should consider when you lookingfor a Psychologist.
I hope this has been of some help. Please let me know if you have further questions or would like me to clarify any part of my answer.