My Family Doesn't Know What's Going on With Me Emotionally

Published: January 20, 2017
Dear TeenHealthFX,
I'm 12 turning 13 in june, ive had suicidal thoughts for awhile and actually almost did it, but then I remembered my bestfriend and stopped, I almost even tried to break into my dads safe to get a gun, ive been having major mood swings and I think i may have a personality disorder but none of my family knows and I'm afraid id be put into conseling or maybe anti-depressaints
Signed: My Family Doesn't Know What's Going on With Me Emotionally

Dear My Family Doesn't Know What's Going on With Me Emotionally,

TeenHealthFX would like to start by acknowledging how hard things must be for you right now. To be experiencing major mood swings and to have suicidal thoughts is a difficult thing to deal with. Especially when you are dealing with it all alone because nobody knows what you are going through. We are glad, however, that you took your first step in reaching out to us because we do think it is important that you are not alone in this and that you do get the help you need in order to alleviate the symptoms that you are experiencing.

If you have been experiencing major mood swings and have had suicidal thoughts for some time, then there is a good chance you are dealing with some type of mood disorder, such as depression. When someone has a mood disorder it is very important to seek out help from a trained, reputable mental health professional, such as a clinical social worker or clinical psychologist. A therapist can help you with the following:

  • Assess your symptoms and provide you with an accurate diagnosis.
  • Provide education about that particular diagnosis, including treatment options.
  • Work with you to help identify triggers for your mood swings, as well as ways to cope with and manage the mood swings.
  • Provide a safe, private space for you to discuss whatever thoughts and feelings you are having.
  • Address any underlying issues that are contributing to the changes in mood.
  • Meet with your family to educate your parents about your diagnosis and discuss with them helpful ways in which they can relate to you and support you in what you are going through.
  • Make a recommendation, if necessary, to have a consultation with a psychiatrist who can assess whether or not you would benefit from taking psychotropic medications. FX can appreciate that the idea of this might be anxiety-provoking, but if it comes to this then keep your initial focus on the idea of discussing and learning. You can discuss with your therapist and/or the psychiatrist any concerns you may have about taking medication. You can also ask whatever questions you want of the therapist and psychiatrist so that you can consider what they are saying in terms of whether or not this is something that could be helpful for you.  


TeenHealthFX can appreciate that it might feel scary to think of talking to your parents about this and being in therapy. But it is very important that you do since mood disorders can get worse when left untreated. In addition, since you are having suicidal thoughts it is very important that you receive treatment before these thoughts or urges become more frequent or more intense. FX invites you to think of a mental health issue the same as you would a medical issue. For example, if you had symptoms associated with diabetes it would be important for you to meet with a doctor so you can be properly diagnosed and so that you can receive the treatment you need to address your current symptoms and prevent the illness from getting any worse. It is the same principle with mental health issues. So please speak with your parents or a school counselor right away so that someone can help you to get the treatment you need as soon as possible.

FX also encourages you to continue to think about why it is worth it for you not to harm yourself and why it is worth it to get treatment. Thinking about a best friend is certainly one helpful way. And remembering that there are successful treatments out there that can make things better for you is another helpful thing to remind yourself of.

If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area. You can also contact your insurance company to get a list of in-network mental health providers or check with your school social worker or psychologist to get a list of referrals in your area.

If you get to the point that you are seriously considering suicide or are afraid of your impulses then you need to seek help immediately. You can call 911 or go to your nearest hospital emergency room. In northern New Jersey you can also call the crisis hotline from Morristown Memorial hospital at 973-540-0100. Outside this area call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433), available 24 hours a day, or the Suicide & Crisis Hotline, 1-800-999-9999, 24 hours, 7 days a week.

Signed: TeenHealthFX