My daughter is 15 yrs. old and for the past several weeks has been going through a bout of deppression and constant crying. I found out that she was being bullied in her HS because of her being different, I've already gone to the school and complained but it still continues. She hates going to that school and is tired of being bullied. My question is what can I do? Who can I turn to for help for her before it's too late? Can someone please give me advice a
on what to do.
You could try taking it up further with the school, but it doesn't sound very positive from what you've said.
If she really hates the school so much is it an option to move to a different school? If it is, get her involved in the selection process? Kind of a dramatic solution though. Maybe others have better ideas.
I think diabetes can be linked to depression but I'd be more inclined to blame bullying as a more direct cause? Diabetes can separate "us" from "them" but if people are singling you out and attacking you, particularly at that age, I would think that it would cause that. If you've complained and it continues, I think that it would be important to maintain pressure on the school, on a daily basis if necessary, to build a case against the bullies.
Most schools have distinct anti-bullying policies. At my daughter's school, she mentioned that they'd had some sort of dress-up day (black and white clothes for a poetry slam I think?) and some kid wore a colored shirt that other kids made fun of him or something (maybe it was more horrific, I didn't see it...) so the offenders got suspended and the whole class had some bullying studies added to their syllabus.
My son was not bullied, but public high school failed him dismally. We very reluctantly tried a home schooling charter school and it worked great for our family. Son graduated in 3 years instead of 4, and went right on to community college. He had more time to be with his true friends, to exercise, and to volunteer for public service. It immediately removed the source of friction in our house and peace reigned.
Since whomever you've spoken to at the school hasn't been effective, take it further up the chain by contacting the school board. Ask the board what their anti-bullying policy is. Am so sorry your daughter is being subjected to cruelty.
Given all the press surrounding bullying and suicide amongst teens, I am appalled that the school isn't doing more. What is the nature of the bullying? Physical? Verbal? Both?
If the bullying is that bad (to the point where it's significantly detrimental to her physical and emotional health), I think it is appropriate to pull her out of school. If the school cannot fix the situation within the building when your daughter is there, they should be able to accommodate home studies. I did this while in high school (not because of bullying but because of medical reasons) and had no issues completing my assignments from home and keeping up with the class. It's not the best solution, but it might work for your daughter.
A related issue is her diabetes management. T1D does increase one's risk of depression. On the most basic level, BGs that are hard to control (common in teen years when hormonal surges make control almost impossible) can cause a roller coaster of emotions, including depression. In addition, if she is being teased BECAUSE of her diabetes, this could make her management of the condition worse, leading her to eat things she shouldn't or not taking her insulin or testing when she should.
You need to get to the bottom of what the issue is, whether it's her diabetes management, the bullying, or both. Once you know what the problem is, you need to force the school to help you find a reasonable solution. Depending on her maturity level, it may be better for her to pursue her high school diploma in a less traditional setting (i.e., through a GED program or independent studies) and then move on to college.
Please tell her that, simply put, high school stinks. I know for me things got SO MUCH better once I moved on to college.
I want to say thanks for the feed back, I went today to the school and requested Flvs online Academy for her for the next 3 years of hs. They accepted the idea for it's less work for them in the long run anyways. My daughter is upto it and says she rather do that anyways. So lets see whats the out come in the next few weeks.I live in Miami,Fl
and the school system really stinks for kids with medical issues. I'm going to save my daughter one way or another. As far as the bulling she says it was everything together, the fact the she attends an all black school ( not to be racist), and the fact that she's a diabetic, and is a big girl. But it will work out everything was documented and tomorrow is the last day of school anyways.
While you have tended to your daughters needs, and i applaud you for your proactive actions, I encourage you to pursue the matter further. It sounds like you may have spoken to a teacher or an aid. After having spoken with them, the next step would be an adviser or counselor. If you ever want to enact change in a school though, the person to listen to your complaint is the principal at the school. If nothing happens there, then you want to go to through the district channels all the way up to the superintendent of the school district. While it is troublesome, and hopefully you never have to go that far, as you go through the chain in command, something will be done. They all have a boss who will put the pressure on them to make changes if they haven't listened to you. Even the superintendent has a boss. That would be the school board. believe me, generally, when it gets to the principal, action is taken. Principals never want to be known above their position, within the district as one who doesn't care about the needs of students. That just makes them look bad. So generally, it will get taken care of at that level. But if not, then you want to go up the chain of command. Again, congratulations on being able to find something that will help your daughter and meet her needs. But, I encourage you to pursue the matter further. It is likely happening to more students than just your daughter.
I hope that things improve for your daughter. I feel for her. Diabetes can certainly make difficult situations at school worse.
I'd also caution against doing too much. Sometimes being too protective can backfire. At 15, she is not a little kid anymore, and will need to learn to start standing up for herself and fighting her own battles.
I don't pretend to know what's going on, but I think someone should throw that out there. Good luck.
This is horrible what you said about being bullied...
How can people do that !!!!!!! Sorry for my anger but its just insane that people get bullied just because their diabetic.. I have experienced depression recently and it seems that it is related to type 1 diabetes as i have type 1 and have been depressed. Depends on sugar readings it effects the mood, especially high sugars, Some people were cruel to me becasue i have diabetes.. been saying i wil always have it and all that.. considering my age 19 i didnt do anything but maybe change of the school is a good idea??
You may also want to consider having her thyroid checked - TSH, T3, T4 - next time she has blood work done. While hypothyroidism is more common to start at middle age and beyond, it's worth a check if you're concerned about depression.
I am 17 and I was diagnosed with Hashimotos (hypothyroidism) when I was 15 in November of 2010. I had gained over 15 pounds in a month and was very depressed. Within 2 weeks of starting Levothyroxine I was back to feeling so much better!