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Can’t Tell Parents

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A couple years ago I spoke to my doctor about the emotional state that I expressed was over because I didn’t want to admit it was current, and he said that most likely I had experienced depression. At the time I honestly believed it would go away however it has only gotten much worse over the past three years. Last year was a hard year for my entire family including death, divorce, and my sister’s diagnosis with a psychosis. Even before her time in the mental hospital, my parent’s drinking had gotten far out of hand and my mom was gambling more than ever. Recently they have tried to fix things, but meanwhile I’m feeling worse and have more and more nearly swallowing a bottle of sleeping pills experiences every week, and I pretty much don’t even have a relationship with my parents anymore. My drinking is getting more and more frequent as well, and I just keep floating farther and farther away from who i used to be, I’m pretty much floating above this robot barely going through every day. However, I don’t trust or am able to rely on either of my parents to handle any of this, as they are very unstable. But I need help, and I’m only fourteen. I can’t rely on the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline anymore, nor can vodka help me anymore than it already does. How can I get help without destroying my parent’s lives? (age 14, from US)

Can’t Tell Parents

Answered by on -


You getting help cannot and will not destroy your parent’s lives. You not getting help could destroy all of your lives! If you continue on the path you are currently on, you may not make it to see your future potential, either because of taking your own life or putting yourself in a dangerous situation because of substance use. Please get help now!

You have already spoken to your doctor before so that is a good place to start now, just be very honest and let him know that these symptoms are current and they are severe. You can also speak with your school counselor. Either of these folks can then help you talk to your parents.

Despite their own struggles, I’m sure your parents love you and want what is best for you. It sounds like you could benefit from both individual therapy and family therapy. You have all been through a lot and deserve to have some help to make things better — and it can get better. Give yourself the chance to see that life isn’t always this hard and there is always hope.

All the best,

Dr. Holly Counts


Can’t Tell Parents

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Holly Counts, Psy.D.

Dr. Holly Counts is a licensed Clinical Psychologist. She utilizes a mind, body and spirit approach to healing. Dr. Counts received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Wright State University and her Masters and Doctoral degrees in Clinical Psychology from Nova Southeastern University. Dr. Counts has worked in a variety of settings and has specialized in trauma and abuse, relationship issues, health psychology, women’s issues, adolescence, GLBT, life transitions and grief counseling. She has specialty training in guided imagery, EMDR, EFT, hypnosis and using intuition to heal. Her current passion involves integrating holistic and alternative approaches to health and healing with psychology.

APA Reference
Counts, H. (2018). Can’t Tell Parents. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 2, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 20 Apr 2016)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.