Understanding Teenage Depression & the Solution


Last Updated: August 31, 2022
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Understanding Teenage Depression

Browse through the newspaper for a whole week and tell me if you make it without coming across at least one student suicide headline. An impossible task, I can assure you, given that at least one student commits suicide every 55 minutes in India.

“I can’t keep up.”

“I cannot cope any longer.”

“It’s all too much.”

“I can’t take the pressure”

These common statements are left behind in most suicide notes – a simple piece of paper that holds the final moments of pent-up pain and suffering. What compels teenagers, who have barely seen a fraction of the world, to resort to such extreme measures? How does life get too tough to handle before you’ve even reached the complexities of adulthood? And more importantly, who is to blame? Is it the educational system, for putting so much academic pressure on students? Is it parents, who push their children to succeed in an increasingly competitive world? Is it society, who is so quick to label students’ choices as ‘good’ and ‘bad’ that anyone who chooses to ditch convention for passion gets labelled as a ‘rebel’ or worse, a ‘failure’?

Student suicides in India data

One in every four Indian children between 13 to 15 years suffers from depression.

– WHO, 2017

Depression. The elephant in the room that most Indian parents refuse to even acknowledge. “Nothing’s wrong with my child,” they dismiss. “This statistic doesn’t apply to my child,” they claim proudly. And yet, 25% of our youth struggles with depression. They face tremendous pressures in their life – from keeping up with curricular, co-curricular and extracurricular activities to dealing with peer pressure, to fulfilling their family’s expectations – and they just don’t know how to manage it all. To top it all, our long-standing prejudice against mental health prevents them from opening up and talking about their problems. “Toughen up,” is a common phrase we’ve all heard at some point or the other while growing up, either from our families, our teachers, or even our friends. But ‘toughening up’ doesn’t cure a mental illness. Would you ever ask a cancer patient to ‘toughen up’ and beat the disease?

Cause of Teenage Depression

It’s high time we all understood that depression is a serious mental illness – 36% of our population is likely to go through it at some point or the other and no, toughening up isn’t the cure. Watch out for telltale signs of depression and stress among your children, students, friends and classmates, and reach out to them with the right kind of help. Why are they depressed? What’s causing them so much angst? And what can you do to help them?

Students have enough and more on their plates already. And yet, by the age of 15, we expect them to figure out what they’re supposed to do for the rest of their lives. Today, children have over 12,000 options to choose from. Given their extremely limited exposure to the world, they can probably think about 50. Conversations with friends and family will help them come up with another 50, maybe even 100. If they were to ask their school teachers for guidance, they could probably add 100 more to the list. Even then, it’s hard to come up with a list of 1000 options. How, then, would this 15-year-old make the right choice? What if they were meant for a career they haven’t even heard of?

 From classrooms to corporates: Nearly 42% employees in Indian corporates are depressed.

– Assocham, 2015

girl hiding her face

Say you leave a cough untreated for a week, hoping it goes away on its own. If it’s a mild infection, chances are that it just might. But when it persists for weeks – even months – you will seek medical help. Sadly, we don’t treat depression in a similar way. Most people accept their depression as ‘a way of life’ and trudge on, letting it fester.

Think about every student who chose job security and convention over passion. At some point in their professional lives, they’re bound to lose interest in the role, especially if they have already discovered that their passion lies elsewhere. Think about all the engineers, doctors or corporate employees who gave up their creative dreams because their parents or society wanted them to pursue a more ‘stable’ job option instead. How happy do you think they are, knowing they could’ve been painting, writing, acting, or doing just about anything else instead? It’s not that creative careers don’t make money. Think poetry isn’t a lucrative career option? Ask Rupi Kaur if she struggles to pay her bills. Think painting won’t get you anywhere? I’m pretty sure Anjolie Ela Menon has a different tale to tell.

We understand the struggles of finding the right career fit for you which ties in with your strengths and abilities. Take the Mentoria career assessment test and talk to our counsellors to discover the ideal career pathway for you.

From Clutter to Clarity with the Mentoria Solution

children lying in grass

At Mentoria, we aim to destroy these statistics and build a nation of happy, productive and successful individuals. After years of research and interactions with thousands of students, educators and psychologists, we realised the importance of pursuing a career based on one’s interests, and the repercussions of not doing the same as well. When you choose a career based on your interests, even if you’re not good at it, you’re likely to work harder to get better at it. And that’s bound to bring in both happiness and success.

Now, figuring out all your interests by 15 and making an independent career decision based on these interests is no cakewalk. You’re going to need the right science in order to make the right choice, and that’s where Mentoria comes in. We use a four-step solution to help individuals discover themselves and their ideal career paths:

Step 1 is where you will take India’s most reliable psychometric assessment to evaluate your personality traits, abilities and core interest areas.

Step 2 involves going through the report of the psychometric assessment with our expert career counsellors, who will help you understand your strengths and development areas, and shortlist the top three career options best suited for you.

Step 3 unlocks a Knowledge Gateway that gives you detailed information about your chosen career paths – from what you need to study and which skills you need to acquire right down to what your promotional path would look like and how much you would get paid. Apart from this, we also offer weekly updates on trends and news within your chosen field.

Step 4 connects you to industry professionals from your chosen career field through online webinars, where these experts offer a deep and realistic perspective on your chosen career.

A significant majority of team Mentoria, too, went through convoluted career journeys before figure out their true passion in life. And now that we know the joys of pursuing a career path you truly enjoy, we want to make sure that you and the rest of the nation experiences that joy. Nobody deserves to live in sadness and misery, and our only objective is to change the above statistics so that all of us get a chance to pursue our passions and excel at life. If you wish to experience the same joy, sign up for the Mentoria Solution today and discover where you truly belong.

Sign up for Mentoria –

India’s most reliable psychometric assessment

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