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September 30, 2019 2:00 am
Here is the extended version of our conversation with Counselor, Marcie Camarillo. She and Lori share their hearts on this topic and Marcie offers advice to parents and discuss the church’s role in mental health.
Series: HEADSPACE/ a series on mental health
Hey guys, we are here today continuing series you're talking to enjoying getting to know no welcome. Thank you.
To commit it to get to know who you are, where you're from and what your background is nicer can you share with us a little bit. Sure, I live in Northwest Arkansas.
I have spent time in full-time ministry has been I were Salvation Army officers for 14 years and it definitely benefits what I do today. You definitely say say what you do today yeah that's perfect because tell us what you did today so I had an epiphany about 14 years ago and you know the Lord really spoke to me about skills I already had to give that back.
I went to grad school and got my Masters in counseling and so on.
The mental health counselor on my also a place therapist and I am licensed to supervise the new counselors and those in training for play therapy so I do numerous trainings see you're busy it's busy yeah well I am glad to hear all of them because you come to us right at the perfect time because we really enjoying this series are mental health any think it's really really important and it's so nice to get a perspective from a professional who's been connected in some way to the church as well tell him welcome really excited that you're here and I know that today we really kind of wanted to start a really dig into the mental health of adolescents and teenagers and when I was researching a little bit. I read that in the past decade. Clinical depression among adolescents. I guess you would say probably 12 to 17 has gone up quite a bit yes and John. I'm just wondering what your experiences been with that is that something you've seen in practice is something that yes definitely last year year before that. Before I I was administrator I was a clinical manager and I also had a caseload grant and I did a lot of hospital discharge as they were all adolescent between 12 and 17 with a variety of experiences. Some of them had experienced a lot of home distress has some had had multiple factors impacting why they ended up at the hospital pulling on distress at school, schoolwork academia. Some had emotional issues that had started very early on in childhood, all of them had trauma everyone, I'm wondering, I know it's difficult sometimes to gauge what is normal hormonal sure adolescents yes versus actual depression I was reading that out of all of those teens who do suffer serious depression only, not 9% actually get treatment.
So when I interviewed parents.
I'm trying to get a baseline of what the last normal was and then discuss the changes that have occurred so with depression of forcing symptoms that have lasted more than a few weeks than were starting to consider okay this may be something related to their mental health and not to their attitude so that's part of the difference having an attitude that parents don't like or teachers don't like that that's not necessarily depression that could be that there are learning about themselves in learning about the world in the teen years there gaining independence and that's what we want for them for them and from them is their display of independent skills so when we see a veering from that if children or adolescents displays symptoms that are little bit more troubling their their conversations change they withdraw, they may appear to pull back from interests that they had before eating may change sleeping may change that when we are adults need to be concerned about that checking on them.
Some thinking from a parental perspective. Yes, I have it one time had five teenagers in my house and I know that you know sleep yes is a very valuable thing right for them and so you know gauging between what is normal and what is not sleep wise and what is normal listen is difficult. So is good to its helpful so this is true of all of us. There are levels of sleep that we all need to achieve from the cradle to grave. But for teenagers there actually in their last growth spurt physical growth spurt and have a they all need more sleep than they realize. Probably need between eight and 10 hours which is more than an adult and in the world we live in. That does not support that night many hours of sleep with screen time and all the technology around us is difficult for them to unwind.
Just like for adult difficult 100% of all the teams that I did these interviews with fewer hospital discharges had sleep disturbance and so the brain is not able to function.
We have plenty of research that supports the necessity of sleep for proper brain function just like read shooting at a computer and it's just not happening for a lot of people were tied to our telephone yes and I'm wondering what the impact or not you as adults we can we can sort of manage that.
But I wonder about the impact on the adolescent green and I'm thinking about things like Instagram that paint such a perfect picture they're all looking my daughter constantly looking for the perfect picture and they're all watching this happen. Yes, and thinking that everyone else's life is perfect and that it opens up a world of hurt people to comment and say whatever they like because there's this level of anonymity so I am wondering about the impact of social media pass on depression and anxiety sure adolescents Are methods of communicating our more complex.
In some ways and yet the more shallow another ways and so reality is not the basis on which adolescents may make decisions about themselves and others and the world and that can be dangerous.
The way their parents interact with them and and interact with social media is important I think parents are the starting point for that setting some parameters around that modeling it themselves they have to practice what they preach for that before. The kids will buying and do it the tight so your what would you suggest for. It's just at this stage of life stories, allowing for independence but also maintaining the structures that it seems a need.
So outside of modeling it themselves. Some very strong conversations expectations that start super early long before adolescence arrives.
If parents haven't had conversations by then it it just becomes so much more difficult lives in children addicted to technology and don't think that it's not like drugs and alcohol and other things that it is very much like that.
So that conversation within very early on in the relationship. The relationship will win the day super important to have heard it said that discipline without relationship equals rebellion. I've often mentioned to parents when I consult with them about their children that in essence are not raising children right raising adults.
That's right yeah and so thinking about what the end result is values. Values parents not only establishing values in their home that communicating those values and then living them out as a family curious about the connection between parental mental health and mental health. Children and adolescents is their connection. So I I would say that parent mental health sets the stage for the child's good mental health so good strong mental health now it is on a continuing shift on a continuum because we all have had season of rises and falls in our mental health.
Just like anything else I had the flu. How many times in my life in so have experienced some anxiety had a couple of times on a bike. I've experienced depression. Now I can look back and say I'm thankful to that I experience that so I can know the physical symptomology and say that I really know it because I experience it think it would be.
II would think in you can correct me from wrong, that it would be valuable to model that in life we have said yes I know and I think sometimes maybe in the church. Yet we portray what we expect is is happy perfection, and particularly teenagers and tag you praise and worship and we smile assured raise our hands and were dressed nicely and I wonder if that's a disservice sometimes wears if we can have conversations at home or in the church with her own children about yes this is life.
Okay, it's normal to experience deep sadness.
It is life because you look at Scripture you look at David yes aluminum you can hear it all over there so I think I wonder what your perspective is on that in regard to modeling. Yes, normal ups and downs of life and how we deal with and in the church at the conversation has to be there antics. It needs to be there after a tragedy, or in the midst of the trauma will hear people say I wish I'd known I could've been how terrible our wish I'd known how to help. It is important that we open up the conversation and keep it there, you have good normal honest conversations with one another. They think maybe when we do that, as adults, men as leaders in particular and remodeling for adolescents that it's okay to be broken into God works through brokenness networks through broken people. It's also over Scripture yes and that it's okay I would love to see that happen in churches everywhere that we have polarizations and kids can only benefit yes, don't you think absolutely reminded of of the Old Testament Scripture that says morning last were the night but joy comes in the morning and three and so it if were going to live biblically presenting the whole gospel legal counsel of God's word people self centered and people struggle and it's absolutely okay to do so. That's right. That's where God meets us totally Agree and I think also the redemption of your pain in your stories by sharing needs connection with other people to remove that stigma of mental health that I think still existed. Think it's probably getting better. But the more we talk about it. I think the better it can get his secrets and keep a stock attorney and sick and so being able to incorporate one's experience into a narrative into a story.
There is nothing that we have experienced last the Lord cannot touch and be present in I so often feel the spirit of God in the counseling room you know it feels like a holy place many times in and I know that I sit in the sacred chair as I listen to the stories of others.
What is your perspective on how we can go from here. Everyone does have a story and and so I think about the gospel. The gospel is the story of God's love and redemption for people and that is akin to our story to and so just like God's plan for us. Our story has ups and downs and twist and turns and some of those turns are traumas and disappointments and surprises and some are good and some are not to eat until bit it becomes at all becomes part of of who we are and that's okay so secrets can keep us stuck in yet.
We are people of transformation entering we can be transformed into who God wants us to be in the here and now. Not perfect but healed, or in the process of healing and that displaces glory that that supports the significance of of the church.
What the church is to do a gives opportunity for us to live in community and to live out the gospel message that even though we were in one condition, one state through healing touch, through healing word three transformation we can become transformed into this person and that's really that's the basis of most therapy is I'm here and I'm evaluating the process of getting over to hear your overcoming me can do that and also it just keep thinking to myself that conversation don't connection connection.
So I've enjoyed my conversation. Thank you so much if not