advertisement
Question
Posted by: Yello | 2010/10/22

Teenage son unmotivated and depressive

Hello Cybershrink
Have not been to the forum for a while. I have read some of your articles today - enjoyed the ones about breasts!

My son is 15 (he has an older brother of 20 and a younger brother of 13). He sleeps all the time! I eventually took him to the doctor and they did blood tests and they are all ok. He asked to go to the doctor as he felt he needed anti depressants. The doctor had a long long chat with him asking him lots of questions and trying to find out if his depression is boredom or true depression. I also feel he is just bored and unmotivated. His older brother has been trying to get him to go to gym with him or start something sporty but he just is not interested. He sits on Mxit all the time, sleeps or plays his guitar.

Some girl at school rejected his interest and this had him very upset, but this is all normal stuff that we all deal with. The doctor aked me to take him to a psychiatrist for a full assessments which is R1300 first visit and then R650 for follow ups! I booked the appointment but he told me today he does not need to go.

It is not like he is miserable all the time, Mostly he is full of jokes, and easy going, chatting to me.

What do you think I should do? Take him to a psychiatrist? Fight with him? I really dont fight with him much at all, mostly I am just happy to be home at night and we chat about stuff. I dont go on and on about homework as I feel it is his responsibility to get on with it. But he does bring home some fairly mediocre reports. Then I jump in and buy extra lessons and kits to help him.

I dont want to not do anything and then he ends up suicidal.

I had a huge fight with him this morning as I have been trying to get him to do extra maths and he just does not organise it. I have paid he just needs a password but he has left it for ages...

How do I motivate this child/adolescent? I know that motivation comes from within, if you are too bone lazy to make an effort and sit around feeling sorry for yourself how on earth does someone else motivate you? I have been depressive in the past and have learnt that when I start obsessing about something then I am obviously bored and need to reorganise my cupboards and clean something! Do any small thing that makes you feel that its a win, and then keep going.

I have shared these feelings with him to try and help him.

Any advise would be most appreciated.

Kinds regards.

Not what you were looking for? Try searching again, or ask your own question
Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Hello again,
Of course, depression does occur in children, and in teens, so your doctor was wise to consider this, but also to explore other possibilities. Some teens just seem to go through a slothful and sleepy phase I haven't seen properly explained. And of course boredom may look alike, but needs to be managed very differently.
Explore whether there is SOME type of exercise that DOES interest him, as exercise works well for sloth, and depression. If he's often as joky as you say, maybe antidepressants aren't what's needed. Make sure your communication with him works well, that he feels free to tell you any time he IS feeling very low or has other problems. That nightly chats sound excellent.
Loss of motivation can't be treated by transfusion, as you have realized. Maybe try chartting to him about your worries about the consequences of not doing well at school, and how that could limit his options to pursue things he really will want in life.
Has he talked about his forming ideas about where he wants to go in life, and what he eventually wants to do ? Motivation arises best when its about getting to a specific destination, rather than as a vague generality.



The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

2
Our users say:
Posted by: the real psych | 2010/10/22

This aint depression. If his appetite is not affected it aint depression, sleeping too much can be symptomatic of a atypical depression but more likely just teenage behaviour. A psychiatrist will just prescribe a low dose of Wellbutrin

Reply to the real psych
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/10/22

Hello again,
Of course, depression does occur in children, and in teens, so your doctor was wise to consider this, but also to explore other possibilities. Some teens just seem to go through a slothful and sleepy phase I haven't seen properly explained. And of course boredom may look alike, but needs to be managed very differently.
Explore whether there is SOME type of exercise that DOES interest him, as exercise works well for sloth, and depression. If he's often as joky as you say, maybe antidepressants aren't what's needed. Make sure your communication with him works well, that he feels free to tell you any time he IS feeling very low or has other problems. That nightly chats sound excellent.
Loss of motivation can't be treated by transfusion, as you have realized. Maybe try chartting to him about your worries about the consequences of not doing well at school, and how that could limit his options to pursue things he really will want in life.
Has he talked about his forming ideas about where he wants to go in life, and what he eventually wants to do ? Motivation arises best when its about getting to a specific destination, rather than as a vague generality.



Reply to cybershrink

Have your say

Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
advertisement