Parenting: 5 things every Parent should know about Depression and Suicide watch

Foreign movies are a big influence on depression and suicide related cases
This week has been a confusing and sad one , that is because I spent earlier part of the week consoling a friend, colleague and sister,Patricia Ebolum over the death of her oldest son, Verishima Unokyur, who committed suicide in the wee hours of January 2nd 2017. How does one console a woman who has given her all, to give life to her children, raise them in love, affection and care ? What could have made a 19 year old university undergraduate take his own life?
Several scenarios played through my mind, Pregnant girlfriend, Jilted love, Bullying, Peer pressure, Spiritual Attack, Accidental Suicide? No woman has to bury her child especially at the start of the new year. After several conversations and research, I Found out that Depression surely exists and it is currently killing more youths/ adults than we care to know.

Continue to rest in peace Verishima Unokyur
Just Recently, Paul Of Peter Square posted his conversation with a young boy who was ready to join Illuminati by all means, even if he needs to sacrifice his life to do so. Another friend spoke bout how a 10 year old boy hanged himself from a fan during the December holidays, a 12 year old girl filmed herself committing suicide, another  young girl also jumped from a storey building , but luckily was saved. here are so many instances of suicidal attempt and they are all depression related.

Here are my own conclusions: 
1. Depression is real :
 It is a state of mind that makes a human being feel apathy for social activities, distances himself from other humans, do things in isolation, live  a lonely existence, have no friends. It is characterized by extreme mood swings, sudden outbursts of temper, skipping of meals, extreme quietness. The person starts living in his own world and hates all or most people around him. People suffering from depression usually feel the world is against them. Depression can be triggered by loss, emotional distress, bereavement, poverty, disability, spiritual influences, external influences or other events that can cause low esteem.

2. Watching of foreign movies is no longer the fun it used to be:
 There are lots of foreign movies out there, cartoon characters, comics and reading material that feed the young impressionable minds with evil. When evil, death, murders, sex, rape, gun killings, villainy are the ideas these materials advocate, then parents need to act fast , they either stop or retrieve those materials or warn the children about the danger of reading too much meaning into what they see, observe and listen to either on Tv, Books or music.  batman, Superman, Captain M, Iron man, Illuminati, Skulls sounds fun but for those who dont know the differnece , they take these ideas seriously, illuminate them larger than life, and try to pattern their lives along this line. 

3. Single parenting is not as easy a it is portrayed to be; 
Forget the huge clamoring by single moms, single dad advocates. True no one wants to spend their existence being lonely, but it is more than for just companionship. Raising kids is hard work, a kid needs more than a set of parents, at least a mom and dad, both are to complement each other's strengths or weaknesses, if one is too loving, the other acts a balance, if one is too lively, the other acts a calming force. A child is attuned to all the tension, energy that goes on in a home and can be positively or negatively influenced by what goes on around him. In a typical African society, the community comes together to train a child, we have grandparents, neighbors, friends, teachers, cousins, uncles, large and extended family members that help in raising the African child , the experiences shape a child to become a better adult.  A child needs the stable influence of a warm, hospitable environment, a mother figure, a father figure, a loyal friend, a confidant, an adviser and that strict personality . The above mentioned people may not necessarily be the child's biological parents, especially if one of them is not involved in the child raising due to death, divorce, separation or sheer irresponsibility, it can be a uncle, aunt, teacher, priest or friend.

4. Watchfulness and early action is the saving grace:
Parents need to be more observant,follow them on social media, (Facebook, Instagram, twitter), watch out for their posts, you can make deductions about what they are thinking especially things they are not talking to you about . Once you noticed unusual activity on your kids's account, take action. Sometimes it is even advisable to snoop into their phones, read text messages, whatsapp messages, know what they are discussing with friends. When a child is reluctant to go out and mingle, it can be a sign of depression,  force him out. At times, only love and affection is not enough, some strict measures need to be taken, after all, desperate times calls for desperate measures. It is better to catch depression early than late. Pray, commit your children into the hands of God. Let them go for bible lessons, Religion acts a balance in a world full of so much evil and criminal acts. 
Visit a psychiatrist , a priest, a medical practitioner, discuss your fears, anti -depressants can be given  to enable the child function properly, sometimes the shrink can help the child talk about what is bothering him, it can be an event from the past, but the right  communication can heal past hurts. 

5. Engage your kids in healthy activities:
Always keep them occupied, monitor their meals, let them eat properly, exercise,engage in health, fitness, exercise activities. Dont raise them in isolation for fear of them joining bad gang, going to religious summer boot camps once in a while wont hurt. 

Parents cant be too careful. No one should try to conquer death. 
Depression and suicide are real. These wicked forces are real, but more real and greater is our God. We keep speaking peace and the mind of Christ over our yet unborn children. Dear Nnenna, I experience same fear, like will I be a good mum? When I worry like that, I quote scriptures over them: "the fruit of my body is blessed" Deut 28:1-13 And "I and the children the Lord has given me are for signs and wonders in Israel" Is 8:18
And I tell myself even now, "babe, you are going to make one favoured man a perfect wife and some favoured children a great mum".
Let us keep our territories away from the clutches of the enemy. Pray. Pray. Pray. Declare God's word over and over in faith. God will help us all in Jesus'name, Amen.