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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
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Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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My 15year old is depressed, but does not accept any help from

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My 15year old is depressed, but does not accept any help from us. What should we as parents do?
Hello, I'd like to help you with your question.

If your daughter is not willing to get help, it can be very frustrating. Getting someone to get treatment when they refuse is always difficult, especially when dealing with someone that you have difficulty controlling. You want them to see the importance of taking care of themselves but for some reason, they refuse. It can be upsetting when you care about the person and they will not listen. You can see what they are going through, but they are not willing to address any of their own issues so they can recover.

If you can, try to see if your daughter is willing to see her own doctor. Sometimes a person will talk to their doctor when they refuse to talk to a therapist or psychiatrist. If she is willing to see her doctor, call ahead before her appointment or go along to let the doctor know what is going on. He or she may not be able to share anything with you, but you can certainly tell them what you are witnessing with your daughter and they can address it with her. Plus you want to rule out any physical condition such as hormonal issues before considering depression. The doctor can help with that.

You can also enlist the help of friends or other family members. Sometimes a person will listen to someone from outside of their immediate family because they are not so easy to dismiss.

Here are some other resources to help you with ideas on how to help your daughter:

I Am Not Sick I Don't Need Help: How to Help Someone with Mental Illness Accept Treatment-Xavier Amador.

Watch for signs of her health and behavior going downhill, especially with depression. If you feel your daughter's life is at any time in danger, you can contact your local ER to ask about involuntary commitment. She will at least be given an evaluation to determine her condition.

Learn more about depression so you can help your daughter. Here are some resources to help:

Most of all, offer your support. Be there as much as you can for your daughter. Sometimes that is what makes the most difference in helping her to change and get the help she needs.

I hope this has helped you,
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