What are the signs of depression?
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, symptoms of depression may include the following:
· difficulty concentrating, remembering details and making decisions
· fatigue and decreased energy
· feelings of guilt, worthlessness, and/or helplessness
· insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping
· irritability, restlessness
· loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable
· overeating or appetite loss
· persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not ease without treatment
· persistent sad, anxious, or “empty feelings
· thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts
Do you need medicine to deal with depression?
Medical questions should be addressed to physicians. Your family doctor will be able to advise you on what is the best course of treatment for your symptoms.
I was very disappointed that tonight’s presentation was in English only. Most everything in the CSD is translated. This seems like an important event to translate. Translate it and put it up on the website.
You are absolutely correct. Our intention was to provide the program in English and in Spanish by utilizing a translator and our newly purchased translation headsets/microphones. This did not happen as intended and I apologize. All future meetings and written correspondence will be translated.
Why did it take so long to organize a meeting like this?
Following the first student suicide, we immediately called in state-wide resources to assist in dealing with this tragedy. One of the resources that we sought advice from was Cindy Bowen, who is a Grief Counselor. She recommended waiting at least three weeks before having a community meeting/forum. This would honor the family, give them time to get through the funeral and also time to recover from some of the initial shock of this sudden event. We began to plan the community forum based on her recommended timeline. About that time, we had received word of the second student committing suicide. As a result, we delayed the meeting to honor the second family as well.
How can community members become part of students grieving, mentoring if they are not parents of students presently?
We welcome and strongly encourage parent and community participation in our schools. If anyone is interested in becoming a mentor or volunteering, please contact the building principal.
Cashmere High School Mr. Tony Boyle firstname.lastname@example.org
Cashmere Middle School Mr. Rob Cline email@example.com
Cashmere Elementary School Mr. Sean McKenna firstname.lastname@example.org
Great to have a community meeting and speakers were engaging and informative. What about the specifics of what happened and how to prevent these tragedies? When are we going to talk about how our kids our treated, treat each other, celebration of differences and specifically our gay, lesbian and bi-sexual youth?
This week’s community meeting was meant to be a starting point in our journey to begin to heal, restore hope and learn/grow together as a community. It is our plan to have a multitude of follow up meetings on a variety of specific topics. Tentatively, we have planned to host follow up meetings including such topics as:
1. Suicide Prevention: Signs, Symptoms, Support Services (Tuesday, April 24th, CMS, 6:30 p.m.)
2. Depression: Signs, Symptoms, Treatment
3. Bullying, Intimidation and Harassment: Current Policies/Procedures/Programs/Challenges
4. Celebrating Differences
We are going to reach out to our regional and statewide resource groups to assist in facilitating these meetings and critical conversations. In addition, we are attempting to film these presentations and then provide them as a link via the district website as well as through the North Central Educational Service District (ESD) so that parents/community members throughout the region can access this critical information.
Why were there not more staff in attendance?
Staff members have been provided support and information on the tragic loss of our two students at their school sites and have been assisted in their efforts to deal with their grief and healing process. Many Staff members were able to attend the Community Meeting to offer their support to the families who were in attendance. As with any event scheduled in the evening, family commitments, or community responsibilities may have prevented some of our Staff members from attending.
How do we prevent kids from blaming themselves?
Student blame is a common concern after the loss of two students. They, and we, want to know, “What could we have done to prevent these losses?” “Should I have been more aware of these students’ feelings?” “Why did I not see it developing?” These and related questions trouble family, friends and staff. Experts in the field of grief and loss share with us that we begin to heal when we move away from blame and begin to look at how to value our relationships and communicate our love and encouragement to one another. The best remedy for guilt is to realize what we CAN do and to make intentional efforts to create positive change. Our community will be working closely together around the issue of suicide prevention and students will be directly involved in this effort/support.