College Admissions Essay: How Depression Changed My Life

college essays on depression

Show More I grew up in single parent family home where depression existed, seeing my mom cry herself to sleep while taking sleeping pills is an immensely painful memory. At a very young age, I became my mother’s care taker so that made my pain and feelings unimportant. During this time was when I felt forsaken and so pressurized to grow up. I felt I was living a nightmare. Over the years I became an older sister and caretaker to three siblings. I started raising my first sibling at age nine. I invariably felt pressured to gratify my mother even if that jeopardized my happiness and deprived me from doing things ordinary children my age desired. I found myself doing things and having the responsibility of an adult. Feeling like I was not living a normal …show more content… In the process of satisfying my family I lost myself. This became enough for me to fall in a depression. Entering high school I was emotionally unstable, but I pulled through with the diminutive strength I had. I strived to cure myself from this morbid disorder by writing my feelings and thoughts into a journal from routinely. However, every time I found myself being alone in my household the depression in me would start to devalue my self-worth penetrating into my identity. My sophomore year I attempted suicide multiple times everything about that year was horrible I shut down and ruined my academic standing. This became intolerable to ignore so my parents found me a …show more content… I started to surpass the depression stage in my life and wanting to pursue a career as a psychiatrist became my prime focus. I decided to brighten my horizons, I made myself so occupied that I scarcely had enough time to think of emptiness I once felt. I enrolled myself in advanced rigorous classes and joined the Performing Arts Program as well as a variety of other clubs. Gradually these distractions made me acknowledge the potential I had hidden in me to do so many things. I gained a different outlook in life and expressed all my rage, sadness and fear through music in my schools band class. I was expressing myself as well as slowly molding myself into the person I wanted. I accepted my life as it was I knew I couldn’t change it, but I positively was certain I could change my future by overcoming my fears and creating a new path of self- improvement to promote ambition and excellence . It is in my full comprehension that I first must have a higher education to achieve my goal in becoming a psychiatrist. I intend to use the passion I have acquired to help others with similar burdens to crave liberation and change to flourish in life, because I understand how immensely difficult it is to be in an environment that deprives you from being

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Writing Your College Essay About Depression

Writing Your College Essay About Depression

So, you want to know how to write your college essay about Depression. Perhaps you don’t know if writing your college essay about Depression would even be allowed, or if it would disqualify you. To not waste your time, we’re going to provide our professional opinion on this.

Long story short: yes, you may write about Depression in your college admissions. However, there are certain limits that must be drawn.

There are also instances when writing about your Depression may actually increase your chances of acceptance. Though, you need to write your essays correctly for this to work.

We’ll cover these in detail below.

How to Write Your College Essay About Depression

Table of Contents

When is it Okay to Write About Mental Illness in College Essays?

When can i write about mental illness or abuse in my college essays is it too much, don’t just write about depression. write about the effects., does my depression justify my low grades in the college admissions process.

  • Write About How Depression and Your Overcoming/Coping Makes You a Suitable Candidate.

Example College Essay About Depression

college essays on depression

Let’s not waste any time and get right to the point again!

It is okay to write about mental illness and Depression in your college essay as long as it proves that you’re a suitable student. Thus, you should be asking yourself, “how does my experience with mental illness or Depression make me a strong candidate?”

First, let’s look at what makes a great candidate to begin with. To do this, you’ll need to turn off your student brain and turn on the business brain. Although colleges are not businesses –some for-profit ones are, though– they definitely function like one. You can think of the admissions process at a university as a calculator for ROI (Return of Investment). That means the admissions office determines which students to pick based on the applicants they believe to have the most potential for success in their school.

Let’s take this example:

college essays on depression

Take a look at the stats both Joshua Liu and Amy Alvarado have. If you were an admissions officer looking into this, which person seems to be more impressive?

Well, it’s not quite easy to differentiate between the two since these are only surface-level stats. However, at first glance, we can see that Amy Alvarado seems rather impressive. Despite her being diagnosed with Depression, Amy Alvarado defies both gender and cultural expectations and aims for computer science. In addition, she also manages to earn a 3.7 GPA whilst coping with her Depression.

As an admissions officer, you would be wise to invest your time and money on educating Amy Alvarado at your institution. She has potential considering her disadvantages. In other words, you can write your college essay about depression if you have strong attributes to your application which demonstrate a significant disadvantage. Maybe you have a decent GPA, or you performed well as a musician in your school’s orchestra despite your depression. Now, this is not the only reason you may write about depression in your college essay.

Let’s deconstruct another example:

college essays on depression

Notice the difference between June and Amy. June does not have any strong attributes such as extracurriculars, or strong academics, just low-mid range grades and Depression. However, just because she does not have strong academics does not mean she should avoid writing about Depression in her college essay entirely. If she is capable of convincing the admissions officers that she can perform well despite her Depression, then it may serve to show she is more capable than her grades show.

So, in general, you can write your college essay about Depression. If you have strong grades or extracurriculars, your Depression may serve to show you have untapped potential. If you do not have that, and only have lower grades and Depression, then you will need to describe how you are a strong candidate despite your Depression in your application essays.

Remember: with the rise of mental instability amongst students, mental stability is becoming a more critical factor in the admissions process than ever before. This brings us to the next point!

college essays on depression

Just how much is too much? Can I write about how I cut myself in my college essays? Can I write about my eating disorder in my college essays, or traumas such as sexual abuse?

For obvious reasons, there are instances when situations are just “too much” to share. There are moments when writing about your traumatic experiences or Depression CAN be too much personal information. The keyword is this: “can”. Though, how do you know when it’s too much?

You know you should not write about your mental illness or Depression if it poses too strong a possibility that you are unable to perform well in your academic career. So, for instance, you may have experienced long-term traumas that haunt you even today. They may pose a great danger to your academic performance and even your overall college experience.

It is important to only talk about Depression or mental illnesses if and only if you are capable of proving that you can both cope with it now and in the future.

Please also note that these are not hard and fast rules. It is entirely possible for students to be accepted despite having admitted instability. You just want to make sure that, when writing your college essay about Depression, you write it to your advantage and not your disadvantage. Now, how does one do that? We’ll get to that in the next 3 points below.

college essays on depression

If you want to write your college essay about Depression without turning the admissions officers away, you need to write about the effects Depression had on you. This can encompass both the negative effects (obstacles it presented to you) as well as the positive (ways in which you’ve grown).

When writing about the effects Depression had on you in your essay, make sure always to turn back to the positives. There are two reasons for this: one, we don’t want to end on a negative note and leave a sour impression on the admissions officers; two, we want to demonstrate to admissions officers of our growth over time.

Here’s an example of a good way you can write about the effects of Depression in your college essay.

Negative effects of Depression (obstacles presented):

  • Made it difficult to feel motivated.
  • Lowered your grades in school.
  • Couldn’t stay focused due to negative emotion.
  • Brought upon turmoil in family life.

Positive effects of Depression (ways in which you’ve grown):

  • Originally had crippling shyness, but overcame it.
  • Started off with no real goals, but led yourself self-discovery.
  • Couldn’t find meaning in your life, but became more connected with spiritual self over time.
  • Learned to overcome hardships such that future ones will not be too hard.

The key takeaway here is that these effects are typically all negative, and that makes sense. Depression typically doesn’t have positive effects. However, we want to turn our negative into a positive by demonstrating how the effects of Depression underscore our positive attributes. Sometimes it highlights our ability to overcome unbearable emotional strain, or it helps us mature faster than we could have otherwise.

With all this positivity, let’s tackle one of the big questions? Does Depression justify low grades? Or, will the college admissions officers judge my grades similarly to others without Depression?

college essays on depression

Here it is; the question we’ve all been waiting for: does depression justify low grades in the college admissions process? Like most things in this world other than physics and the IRS, it depends.

If you are formally diagnosed with Depression, the admissions officers will certainly take extra consideration into your application. They may be more lenient on your grades, especially if you explain how Depression affected the lower grades in your classes. However, you need to be specific. If your Depression negatively impacted your performance in your AP Chemistry class, write about that in your college essays!

It is important, however, that you do not use Depression as a scapegoat for your insufficiencies. This would include using it to pick straws at reasons you underperformed instead of providing a valid reason.

If you were not diagnosed with Depression but have suffered extreme hardship to the degree that you’ve had symptoms similar to Depression, you will need to write that in your essay. However, note that you won’t have a formal diagnosis backing you up in your college apps. As such, you will need to approach your essays with extra caution.

We highly recommend getting hyper specific about the details of your Depression. If you can articulate the details behind your Depression as well as what may have started it, you may help the admissions officers see a clearer image of why your grades suffered. We’ve seen many times when our clients did not seem to have a good explanation for their lower grades. However, their explanation after 2-3 calls justified their grades much more.

Write About How Overcoming/Coping With Depression Makes You a Suitable Candidate.

college essays on depression

So, Depression itself does not automatically make you a suitable candidate for university. It may help admissions officers understand more about you, and even have more sympathy for shortcomings in your academic performance. However, we don’t just want to settle with a good college application. We want something great; it needs to stand out amongst the rest.

To do this, you’ll need to talk about your experience overcoming and coping with Depression. By writing your college essay about Depression and your journey overcoming it, you will share valuable character traits with the admissions officers. Your path to overcoming Depression serves as a reminder that you are working at a disadvantage compared to other students. It also shows that you are capable of withstanding great pressure and bearing with it.

Roughly speaking, you need to find a narrative that weaves in your strong traits that come as a result of your depression. Let’s take a look at a few examples below.

Examples of how writing your college essay about Depression and overcoming it can be strong:

  • After having lost many friends transitioning into a new school, I sunk into a deep Depression. I’ve learned, however, how to make friends in a new and scary situation. Overcoming my Depression gave me the strength of character to become brave; this bravery helped me make new friends, and I hope to do the same at Vanderbilt University.
  • The struggles of living in a strictly conservative household made self expression as a woman impossible. I sunk into a deep Depression, and had to learn how to discover my own version of femininity outside the bounds of their conventional ideals. This meant having to stand up for myself despite great fear. Despite my Depression making me quiet and obedient, I found that my overcoming it made me strong enough to both become more independent and discover my own version of femininity. My journey is far from over, though. I would like to continue this path to self development at the University of California.
  • I used to think of myself as a person guided by logic alone, someone who worshipped the logos. “I don’t get emotional, it’s pointless.” and “There’s no point in being sad.” were common philosophies. It wasn’t until I started to listen to the works of Dr. Alok Kanojia that I discovered my “logical mind” was really a coping mechanism for feeling emotion. Ever since being traumatized by my negative relationship with my narcissistic step-mother, I shut off all emotion in an attempt to immunize myself from the pain. This coupled with her irrationality made me gravitate toward logic and reason as a safe space from her abuse. When I discovered this in my mental substructure, my psyche was split in two: I had my logical and emotional brain. In my journey overcoming Depression, I also rekindled my relationship with my emotional self. This helped me become less robotic, and even helped me perform better in my academics overtime –hence the upward trend from sophomore through junior year. Should I be accepted into the University of Southern California, I will certainly translate my newfound knowledge into my academics here.

In all of these examples, we’ve used Depression to underscore the positive attributes in an applicant. The act of overcoming Depression, or at least coping with it, can highlight many strong characteristics. Just remember to emphasize that you are an emotionally stable and functioning adult when writing your college essay about Depression, as that will be a major factor that can make or break your application.

“Rain. Rain. Go away; or, so I’d normally think. Except, there was nothing more comforting than the sound of rain. It was August. It was a strange time for heavy rain, but blessed during such a dry time nonetheless. California could use it. I am the only son of both a lawyer and a nurse. I was conditioned for what they considered success since I could remember. I never had to worry about what clothes to wear nor what food to eat. I had everything in life. Yet, in some outrageous act of irrational ingratitude, I still find myself struggling with depression. I wasn’t surprised by the diagnosis; yet, I was. My mother and father were caring and understanding with the utmost empathy. I had everything. My family didn’t even give me the quintessential ‘just get over your depression’ that so constitutes commonplace family psychology. They were right. They handled everything as they normally should. I had nothing to blame. I only had my privilege and my depression. So, why was I like this? I was depressed because rain falls. It was the rain during that hot, humid, rain in California. My family and I were on a roadtrip that took us to a small town with cute shops, overpriced hemp goods, and boba shops. My family stopped by a coffee shop, and I took the time to get distracted by a tiny bookstore. I opened a copy of a piece titled ‘The Portrait of a Lady’. I thought maybe if I stared off into space for effect, maybe it would qualify my depressiveness and perhaps validate my sadness. It didn’t. I thought perhaps my book could distract me. It didn’t. The rain grew louder. It was beginning to pour. I stared out the window. Asymmetrical droplets left traces of water in inconsistent patterns across a see-through canvas, leaving transparent streaks. Why did it even matter? Why did I care? Why would I not? Then, in that instance of moment of critical introspection, it did not dawn on me. Nope. I didn’t become enlightened by rain like what happens in a haiku. Nothing happened. The rain didn’t even have any sort of magical effect. It just… rained. It rained because that’s all rain can do and was made to do. And, it shouldn’t have to be anything. It just is. Just like my depression, there is neither why nor could nor ought to be. I just happen to be depressed as rain just happens to fall. And, like rain, so too will my depression pass and let forth sunlight once again.” Example College Essay About Depression

Writing your college essay about depression is not easy. It’s a contentious topic, which is why we highly recommend speaking with a college admissions essay expert. Contact us for a free consultation , and our admissions essay experts will get back to you within 24 hours.

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Is writing about depression and anxiety in college essays considered a cliché? Answered

From the perspective of college admissions officers, I often wonder if it is a boring and commonly written-about subject that students should refrain from writing about. I, myself, have an essay written about mental health struggles, but I'm afraid that it might be put to the side due to its topic alone. Any thoughts?

Earn karma by helping others:

This can either go two ways: one where you just talk about your depression and anxiety, and one where you talk about what you did to overcome the challenges from your depression and anxiety. You are aiming for that second option, as colleges are looking to see how you perform in spite of difficult challenges.

I actually brought up my depression in my main college essay as well. However, instead of just focusing on that and how I felt during that time, I instead focused on how I overcome that depression. I started taking part in extracurricular activities, I was part of leadership and helped my school as much as possible, and much more. Focus on those things than just talking about your struggles.

Hope this helps! Let me know if you want me to explain it more!!

Hi, I really appreciate the response! I would like to tie it to my participation in programs that help to make mental health accessibility easier for others. Would that be an example of overcoming my struggles and writing in a way that is beneficial for my application?

What exactly did those programs do to you to help you with your journey through dealing with depression and anxiety? That is what colleges are looking for - what you did to conquer those challenges.

I would say it entirely depends. Speaking about mental health in general may well be considered a cliché, but the entire point of a college essay is to be personal to you. If you are able to expand on your own personal mental health struggles and be specific as to how this has affected your own life, how you have grown, etc., it could still be a fantastic essay.

sorry, but do not recommend that topic. depression and anxiety are common health conditions (not to make light of your health condition, but super common), and it could make you seem fragile and/or self absorbed and not mature if you pick that topic. I appreciate you are tyring to be authentic and vulnerable in an essay, but you are so much more than your anxiety or depression. it would not make you stand out as unique ... that alone might get you put aside. No doubt you have way more interesting stories to tell about yourself.

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Guest Essay

I Edited Mental Illness Out of My College Applications. I’m Not Alone.

An abstract illustration of a person, made of  stacked green and blue blobs, writing with a pencil.

By Emi Nietfeld

Ms. Nietfeld is the author of a memoir, “Acceptance.”

When I applied to college in the 2009-10 school year, I wasn’t worried about my grades or extracurriculars. Instead, I agonized over a dilemma that’s familiar to more students than ever as the Common Application deadline looms: What should I disclose about my mental health?

As I wrote my applications, my past was both my greatest asset and my biggest liability. I’d spent time in foster care and homeless, circumstances that made me attractive to the handful of selective universities that offered full scholarships to low-income students — my only hope at avoiding crushing loans. In an applicant pool filled with squash champions, concert organists and third-generation double legacies, I had my story.

But my experiences also affected me and my academic record in ways that weren’t so appealing: Like approximately 80 percent of current foster youths and many former ones, I had serious mental health diagnoses, including post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety and disordered eating. From ages 13 to 15, I was hospitalized repeatedly. Before being placed in a foster home, I spent nine months in a locked treatment center. I’d attended four to eight high schools, depending on how you counted. How could I possibly explain all that?

Officially, colleges say that students can share as much about their mental health as feels comfortable. But in practice, it seems clear that schools are nervous about accepting adolescents who divulge psychiatric histories. That perception is reinforced by high-profile lawsuits alleging discrimination against students with mental health disabilities, including an ongoing suit against Yale University and a similar one settled by Stanford University in 2019.

“We have all read the headlines of students on college campuses who have either harmed others or harmed themselves,” said Kat Cohen, a private admissions consultant who helped me, pro bono, with my applications. “These are the things that colleges worry about if they admit someone who is not stable.”

These mixed messages are forcing more and more students to make impossible choices amid a teenage mental health crisis. Should applicants play it safe and conceal their emotional troubles — even when it means leaving low grades and gaps in transcripts unexplained? Or should they tell the truth and risk getting flagged as a liability?

For those with mental health conditions, college admissions are unfairly arduous, an injustice that has long-lasting ramifications for both students and society. Many teenagers with psychological disorders end up at lower-quality schools than they could have attended otherwise, affecting their career options and earning potential. And since elite universities produce a disproportionate number of politicians and managers, society loses out by having fewer people in power who deeply understand mental illness and how it intersects with almost every major issue.

“In the age of Instagram activists, I thought it wouldn’t be as bad,” Jia Suo, a high school senior from Sugar Land, Texas, told me about the stigma of mental illness. “But when I got out of my treatment center my junior year, it’s not an exaggeration to say that I lost every single one of my friends.”

After an inpatient program for suicidal ideation (a diagnosis Ms. Suo attributes to normal angst misinterpreted by doctors), she did not receive credit for the classwork she did there. Looking at her grades — C’s and incompletes in a transcript filled with A’s — she figured she must have been given a zero for every missed assignment. She said she reached out to her guidance counselor and homebound teacher but was told it was too late and there was nothing they could do.

Initially, Ms. Suo wanted to explain herself in her college application essay. She wrote a personal statement about how her institutionalization motivated her to study law after meeting girls who had been sex trafficked and boys who languished in the facility for months waiting for foster homes.

But sharing her struggles was risky. A family friend who worked in admissions advised her, “Say you slacked off junior year.” Ms. Suo crossed her dream school, Cornell, off her list and has instead applied to 17 colleges without any explanation for the sudden drop in G.P.A. She resents that her brush with psychiatry will shape what college she attends, but it feels safer to talk about her institutionalization in The New York Times than in her applications. “I’m OK with the whole world knowing about it, but at the same time I just know the stigma they’re going to have at colleges about this.” In three months, when Ms. Suo gets the final acceptance and rejection letters, she’ll know the true impact.

When I applied to college, Ms. Cohen — Dr. Kat, as I and her other clients call her — advised the opposite approach at first. “You have to be extremely explicit,” I remember her warning me. “Otherwise they’ll have no idea how bad things were.” This surprised me. Until that point, the adults around me made me feel my symptoms were evidence of what was wrong with me, not evidence of what was wrong with my circumstances. Though I was deeply ashamed, when I applied to Yale early, I attached a timeline detailing my mom’s hoarding and my overmedication, culminating with me regaining my emotional stability as a scholarship student at boarding school.

I was rejected. My school guidance counselor called Yale’s admissions office and relayed to me that though my grades and test scores were similar to other applicants’, as she put it in an email to me, “regarding the past issues, the list was daunting.” Dr. Kat also queried her network and surmised that Yale wanted to minimize its risk after several high-profile on-campus suicides of college students around the country. “It was just T.M.I.,” she told me — too much information.

A spokeswoman for Yale this month said in a statement to The New York Times that she could not discuss my case because admission files are confidential. But she did say, “This account of an admissions decision from over a decade ago is at odds with our admissions practices and philosophy,” adding that Yale’s admissions process is “holistic.”

She continued, “The admissions committee does not discriminate against any applicant for health reasons.”

For my next round of applications, I wrote a simple explanation for why I had changed schools and thereby excised three years of my life: the diagnoses, the drugs, the self-inflicted scars. I became a parallel person who’d gone through the same things but come out unscathed. I hit “submit,” applying to 10 schools, including Harvard.

While I waited, I lived in fear of being found out. In my dreams, admissions officers interrogated me. They called me a liar and a cheater.

But after three months of nightmares, on April 1, 2010, I got into Harvard.

I screamed when I opened the email; I danced in the rain. Then guilt fogged the world. Harvard accepted 7 percent of applicants that spring. I felt alternate versions of myself trailing me, fates in which I hadn’t been able to hide my past and it haunted me into adulthood.

I spoke to current and former admissions officers this fall, seeking answers to the question that had mystified me as a teenager: How much should students talk about mental health on their college applications? Echoing the advice of other professionals, Claudia Marroquin, the dean of admissions at Bowdoin College, implied that applicants should not feel pressure to disclose. Pressed for more specifics, she told me that students “have to feel comfortable with what they’re sharing.” This platitude made me seethe with frustration: Even if I was comfortable sharing everything, I suspected that the colleges were not comfortable hearing it. The students I interviewed all sensed there was a line, but few of us were lucky enough to know where it lay.

Only Dr. Kat was willing to speak candidly. In the years since she initially advised me to discuss my struggles in detail, she has realized that this approach may be unwise.

“Without exception,” she said, “reading a personal statement about the applicant’s mental health struggles — that’s going to immediately raise a red flag unless it can really be contextualized as something that the student has triumphed over.”

She emphasized that mental health had to be handled on “a case-by-case basis,” ideally in close consultation with the student’s school guidance counselor.

But that, too, is fraught. At 16, I sought out Dr. Kat’s help because even at a private boarding school, my counselor didn’t have the bandwidth to give me the personal attention I needed. The pro bono services I received would’ve cost more than $16,000 in 2009 dollars. When I spoke to students about their experiences, far greater than the variety of emotional issues was the range in support. Even at Ms. Suo’s affluent suburban school, a single counselor could juggle more than 400 students at a time. Students with less help turn to YouTube gurus and Discord servers where peers workshop their essays.

Favour Osisioma, who immigrated from Nigeria to rural Tennessee at 13, started 2020 on track to attend an elite school. Then Covid hit. She found herself caretaker for her two younger siblings — the three of them remote-learning on one computer while their mom worked 100-hour weeks and Ms. Osisioma worked part time at McDonald’s. “I felt that it was my job to bring my family out of poverty,” she said. Her grades fell, escalating the anxiety she’d had before the pandemic into paralyzing panic attacks. She remembers an adviser saying, “‘I never expected you to disappoint me in this way.’”

Ms. Osisioma agonized over how to explain this to colleges. “I was trying to get the perfect words,” she said. “But I wasn’t sure anyone would see me and think, ‘This is an attractive package.’” In her senior year, she won a number of accolades, including a prestigious Coca-Cola scholarship. A video crew surprised her at school with a jumbo check.

“I remember coming home and putting it down in my room and still crying because I didn’t know what to say in my applications about the anxiety.” At the time, a single guidance counselor was assisting 800 students with everything from class scheduling to college counseling. Staring at her Yale application, Ms. Osisioma watched the deadline tick past and became so overwhelmed that she couldn’t walk and felt herself going in and out of consciousness. She had to see a neurologist to rule out seizures. She ended up attending college a year later than planned at the University of Tennessee at Martin. She’s a university scholar there and enjoys her classes but feels a long way from where she hoped she’d be.

Meanwhile, prep schools often employ former admissions officers as counselors, with caseloads closer to 30 students. Jessica Smith, the director of college counseling at Westtown School in Pennsylvania, said she takes pains to protect “students’ private business.” She added, “Even when a psychiatric crisis affects a transcript, there’s a lot I can control about how much it shows up.”

Jaimi Salone, now in their final quarter at Stanford, benefited from this kind of advice while a student at the Blake School in Minneapolis, which they attended on scholarship. In their essay, they wrote frankly about depression, anxiety and shame after their mom’s cancer diagnosis and eventual death — providing context for why they “did not look like what was expected of a Stanford admit,” with a 3.06 G.P.A. and many absences. But at the suggestion of their college counselor, they omitted their sophomore-year hospitalization. “Is it lying to not include?” they wondered. “What is considered an accurate representation of me as a student when I actually do have mental health issues?”

Even after they got in, the stress stayed. “I was worried my admissions would be revoked if other information came out.”

My Harvard application taught me what was acceptable to share and what was not. I sensed that colleges wanted a pristine survivor who was not marred by trauma. At 16, I didn’t realize that it is impossible to emerge from certain hardships unscathed; the perfect overcomer is a fantasy that some young people are coached into creating. This illusion can do great damage. I saw that I was not that person, which caused me deep shame.

Effective admissions policies require grasping how mental illness manifests in different students’ lives. The same crisis that leads to an outpouring of support for a wealthy child might cause a foster youth to be sent to a locked facility, prescribed antipsychotics and forced to change schools. Stigma varies widely across communities, affecting how teenagers view their struggles and what leeway they get from adults. Some kids are far less likely to be diagnosed and treated; others receive superfluous labels and get overmedicated. Understanding these disparities is crucial in the face of worsening adolescent mental health and ever more competitive standards at the colleges that produce an outsize share of leaders.

For a decade, I believed my story was an anomaly, but every year that seems less and less true. There are so many young people unable to hide their crises. We all lose out if this disqualifies them from a better future.

Emi Nietfeld ( @eminietfeld ) is the author of a memoir, “ Acceptance .”

The Times is committed to publishing a diversity of letters to the editor. We’d like to hear what you think about this or any of our articles. Here are some tips . And here’s our email: [email protected] .

Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook , Twitter (@NYTopinion) and Instagram .

An earlier version of this article misspelled the name of a city in Texas. It is Sugar Land, not Sugarland.

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Depression In College Essay

Depression was once believed to affect mainly adults for various reasons. It was hardly ever seen in minors or college students. Today depression is more common in younger populations mainly college students. There are many things that can trigger depression in college students, such as the environment, anxiety, and the fear of failure. All these things can contribute to depression in college students and sometimes cannot be seen. Many college students will never seek help, and many wont ever admit that they struggle with it. Depression can have a great impact on someone’s life. Imagine trying to balance these symptoms while in school, work, or being a mother or father. Although while suffering from this disorder there are solutions out there

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that depression was once thought to affect adults for various reasons, but today it is more common in younger populations mainly college students. the environment, anxiety, and fear of failure can all contribute to depression.
  • Explains that depression can have a great impact on someone's life. there are medications, counseling, and meditation techniques that can help.
  • Opines that finding the right medication can make all the difference in a student's life.
  • Opines that counseling should be offered in schools or at work when dealing with such battles. counseling is just a step but it can provide the student great benefits.
  • Opines that meditation is a way to relax your mind and keep your symptoms managed. meditative techniques focus on practices that relax the body and mind.
  • Opines that having the proper resources can help with grades, progress, and the participation of a college student.

Click here to unlock this and over one million essays

Essay On Depression Culture

While it can affect anyone, statistics have also shown that some may be more prone to depression. A main group of individuals to look out for are young adolescents, especially college students, who are constantly under stress and often times are unaware of how to relieve such emotions. Stress is a frequent issue that contributes to signs of depression, not only in students but also in adolescents as well. Despite the frequent occurrence of the illness, it is treatable in many ways. Some treatments include medications, psychotherapy, and exercise. With more understanding of the illness, more options of treatment are likely to come in the near future. The best treatment is however, is the support from friends and family. It is extremely important for depressed individuals to know that they are not alone in fighting the illness and that others are fighting with

Major Depression Essay

Major depressive disorder is more than just sadness; it is a mood disorder, which is characterized by feelings of hopelessness, depressed mood, and a reduced ability to enjoy life. The symptoms of depression fall into five categories: affective, motivational, cognitive, behavioral, and physical. People suffering from depression may experience several symptoms, for at least two weeks, in any or all of the above categories, depending on personal characteristics and the severity and type of depression. They generally have feelings of sadness, emptiness, pessimism, hopelessness, worthlessness or unreasonable guilt; lack of interest and pleasure in daily activities, reduced energy and vitality. The cognitive ability of the brain is also affected; thinking becomes slower, concentration becomes more difficult, memory lapses and problems with decision making become obvious. Individuals , may have difficulty going to sleep or experience early morning awakenings. Some other patients may feel an excessive need for sleep, and some may be troubled by dreams that carry the depressive tone into sleeping hours, causing abrupt awakening due to distress. Appetite changes are very frequent; a total loss of appetite is common and it is associated with weight loss. The same individuals who oversleep when depressed also tend to overeat. Finally, physical complaints are common and may or may not have a physical basis. Physical symptoms can occur in any part of the body and can include pain (headache, backache), gastrointestinal problems (nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea, and constipation), and neurologic complaints (dizziness, numbness, memory problems) as well as recurrent thoughts of death and contemplation of suicide.

College Students and Anti-Depressants

Starting college can be a stressful time for any adolescent. For students suffering from depression it can be a traumatic experience. Worlds feel turned upside down. Even for those who manage to “cope,” pressures can cause these students to feel overwhelmed.

Essay On Causes Of Depression

Researchers believe that it is caused by chemical imbalances in the brain, which may be hereditary or caused by different events in a person’s life. Most types of depression seem to run in families with any problems. Many illnesses have specific medical causes and have straightforward treatment, but depression is more complicated then with any other illness because you can not cure it with surgery. One of the causes of depression can occur with “social factors such as loneliness which can be a break up with a boyfriend or girlfriend or a death of a relative or friend” (Curtis). It can be any type of family history conflicts such as anyone within the family or any child abuses. An early child abuse can lead to it or it can be heredity if a family member has been through it. Money can be another issue towards depression people lose their jobs. Once they lose their job they get stressed out and at times feel depressed because they don’t have sufficient amount of money for themselves or their family to support them such as food, clothing, rent, and payments. “Depression can be a temporary response to many situations and stresses” ( Major). Sex hormones may

Mental Health And Depression

Depression is different from physical illnesses because its cause cannot be traced to one single organ. Possible causes of depression include a combination of biological, psychological, and social factors. (Smith & Seagal, 2016) There are a number of risk factors that share a connection with depression a few of them are; traumatic events like the death of a loved one, stressful events like financial problems, a history of mental illness in the family, pregnancy and child birth, being a member of the LGBT+ community in an unsupportive and unconducive situation, personality traits like issues with low self-esteem and confidence, strains in personal relationships, abuse of alcohol and illegal drugs, use of certain prescription pills, diagnosis of chronic life-threatening illnesses. College students are at a higher risk of developing depression because they are very likely to experience one or a combination of the risk

What is Clinical Depression?

Depression is a serious and common problem that affects people of all social class and racial group throughout the world. They are good and affordable treatment for depression. Most people who have depression do not receive adequate treatment. We must do more and do better to take care of ourselves. It is not easy for any of us to tackle a problem of this magnitude, but by being responsible and taking care of our own health and mental well-being needs, we can also reach out to help others who are dealing with depression or other mental issues by sharing with them information’s and pointing them in the right direction to find the help they need.

What Is My Depression Essay

I am a person who loves to talk. Most people find me to be an open book. I forget that many things are not socially acceptable to talk about and will chat away often leaving the other person uncomfortable. But what about the time I kept a secret.

The Many Causes Of Depression: What Is Depression?

First thing I going to talk about is the many causes of depression. First off there is abuse, which can range anywhere from emotional, mental, to physical. If someone is abused in any way it can make them feel worthless or make them feel like the deserve the abuse cause they view themselves as failures, which isn’t ever really the case. Second there’s serious illnesses that can cause depression. For example cancer, autism, asthma, diabetes, and epilepsy. There are millions of people in the world who have “regular” to life threatening illnesses. They are the poster children of depression due to the fact it delays their mobility, the cant do things normal people can do, they have to take a substantial amount of medication, and so many more reasons. All these setbacks depresses them and makes them feel like a lower human being who always needs taken care of. Third there’s death and loss that can cause depression. If someone loses someone very close to them (whether it has to do with death or just a permanent

Depression In The United States

When Abraham Lincoln’s first love Ann Rutledge died, he fell into a deep depression and suffered from chronic depression his entire life. Most researchers say that his depression led to his greatness (Random Facts). At some point in their lives, one out of every four Americans have or will experience depression. Depression is more common than it seems. Although depression is one of the mental illnesses that are not as easily seen, there are many ways to notice depression. Depression is very common in college students and can be treated. Major depression is common, disabling, and is usually a recurrent illness. Depression is a disorder of the brain (Holtzheimer). There are multiple symptoms and causes of depression, and if you can identify the

Depression Essay

Depression plagues over about 121 million people worldwide suffer from some form of depression. On average 1 out of every 10 people in the U.S. suffer from Depression. Depression is a state of low mood and aversion to activity that can affect a person's thoughts, behavior, feelings and sense of well-being (www). Depression is unbiased in whom it chooses to plague. Anyone and everyone can become a victim of depression, including children. And twice as many women have been reported to be affected than men. In order to defeat depression, we must first begin to understand it. Depression is more than a feeling, it is a disease.

Depression affects people all around the world and takes over many lives. It is a detectable disease. Most every case of depression is very personal, and usually has it’s own specifications and circumstance. By speaking with people who have depression in their families and being a sufferer of the disease myself, I’ve realized that it’s not the end of the world and there are ways to get help. Treatment for depression is relativity inexpensive but whatever the cost; it is more than made up for an increased productivity, efficiency, physical health, improved relationships, and enjoyment of life.

Depression In College Students

From the research stated above, one can see that depression is prominent in college students. Adjusting to college life, keeping up with academics, sleep deprivation and substance abuse are all factors that contribute to depression in college students. When left untreated or if a person does seek help for the depression, they may turn to suicide as a way to deal with the pain that depression causes them. Proper counseling and screenings for students can help decrease depression and suicide in students.

Signs and Symptoms of Depression

There is no single cause for depression. Life experiences, lifestyles, personality traits, all of which may play a role in the onset of depression. Something that creates a depression in an individual can suffer no effect in another.

Depression is one of the most commonly diagnosed forms of mood or emotional disorders. It’s normal for people to occasionally feel down or sad, but it’s not normal when the feelings last longer than a few days. Depression will interfere with ones’ daily life and causes difficulty for the one afflicted and for their loved ones. Depression can also cause physical pain, and can interfere with a person’s daily routine as well as their life. What is sad about depression is that it has driven many people to commit self-harm or even suicide.

“Depression is a prison where you are both the suffering prisoner and the cruel jailer” -Dorothy Rowe

More about Depression In College Essay

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Do not write about mental health or any of the other following topics in your college application

  • by Mattie Culkin


Content warning: I do not plan to go in-depth on any particular topic, but I will be addressing many, many topics by name that may be inherently difficult to read about in this piece.

Other warning: My intent for this piece is to provide what I believe to be a critical message in as clear and logical format as possible. My intent is not to come off as cold or nasty, but I am willing to risk that to ensure those reading this understand how strongly I feel about this subject.

Third warning: My opinions below are entirely related to the college application process and in no way reflect my feelings on overall teen mental health or well-being in any way.

Bonus fourth warning: (DMs are also fine!) I fully invite/encourage students to ask about other topics in the comments below. I will happily edit this post to assign them wherever I see fit. But as a general rule, if you are not sure whether a certain topic is appropriate for a college essay or not, my answer is “go with something else.”

Here is a complete list of topics I do not believe you should write about in a college application for any reason. I would resign and refund a student’s money before I would let him or her submit an application containing discussion of:

Clinical depression

Anxiety (Be careful about this one. It leaks through)

Any other form of mental illness

Antidepressants, mood stabilizers, or other medications related to mental health

Stays in mental health facilities or any other sort of involuntary hold

Rage, wrath, or wishing revenge

Suicidality/attempted suicide

Interest in guns, explosives, or other weapons capable of mass-homicide

Sexual, mental, or physical abuse

Sexual assault

Eating disorders

Drug Addiction/rehab

Substance abuse in any way

Acts of extreme violence, either to or by you

Gang affiliation

The following list are topics I do not recommend except for certain edge cases as described below:

Any topic from the above list, but as it pertains to someone else experiencing it and you supporting them

Meaning I don’t recommend essays about your sister’s drug addiction or mom’s mental health. This is mainly because such topics make it very difficult to write about yourself. If you can make it about yourself, these topics are not inherently off-limits.

Learning Disabilities

In the case that a learning disorder was discovered while in high school, was treated, and your grades improved as a result, it is fair to address this topic in the Additional Information Box, while including a note that you plan to continue to work on your condition and plan to succeed in college.

In all other circumstances, I’m against including it. I understand the hypocrisy of such a statement.

Former or ongoing tragedy/illness/death/other forms of extreme hardship unrelated to topics above, mostly death of a loved one.

When it comes to such tragedies, I tend to take an “if it comes up, it comes up” approach to the situation. I’m more likely to have it come up if the event happened while the student was in high school and the loss was substantial. That does not mean I ever base an essay around it. Instead, it tends to come briefly early on in a piece, which further directs the “real” story.

If such hardship caused your grades or ECs to suffer, it is fair to explain what happened/is happening in the Additional Information Box. Be objective but detached while explaining the circumstances and how they’ve negatively affected your circumstances. Then be equally objective on steps you’re taking to heal from the incident and how you plan to remain effective in college.

Anything from the list above, but as an explanation for weaknesses in your application.

Additional Info Box again. You do not need to go in-depth on the issue itself. I would recommend you leave the situation vague, using some term like “personal issues” in lieu of bringing up the topic. Then explain how you’re improving on these issues (be less vague here) and that you plan to continue to work on your condition and plan to succeed in college.

This is the one I’m least sure about and would be happy to hear other’s opinion.

The following are pretty much fine and can be quite effective. But they do have caveats:

Forms of hardship that stems from sociopolitical or economic factors beyond your control

This includes topics such as poverty, racism, crime, sexism, war, and homelessness. These topics can be effective, but only when handled with extreme care during the writing process. Generally, they work best when partnered with an analysis on how you plan to use your college experience to rectify the type of oppression that still faces you and those like you.

Gay/trans identity

I don’t have a problem with it. But I encourage you to make sure your sexuality/identity is not the primary reason a school should be accepting you.

If you are involved with organizations that tackle any such issue

Totally fine. If you work for, like, RAINN, you are allowed to explain what they do and how the topic had affected you, if only on a theoretical level. That being said, if your reasons for joining involve at one point being a victim of similar abuse or condition, you really don’t need to mention that. Pick any of the other many reasons the program matters to you and go with that.

That’s all you really need to take from this piece. If you just want to, “ok got it” and off you go, that’s 100% fine with me. The following 2,098 words are merely a somewhat ordered list of every reason I believe that mentioning such “hard” topics is not a good idea.

Here is a hypothetical scenario I explain to students that I have found to be a successful way to explain my rationale.

Colleges have a very real crisis on their hands. Two, really. The first is students being unable to handle the newfound pressures that college brings. In many such cases, the student fails or drops out. In more severe cases, the student takes his or her own life.

The second is that colleges are terrified of being the host site to the next publicized sexual assault, murder, or mass-casualty event.

With that knowledge, pretend you are an admissions officer. You have thousands of files to get through this year, and not one of them directly impacts your future in any way. You stumble upon a student who seems like an easy accept. Stats are clean. Strong music ECs. Seems like a solid student. But then you reach a paragraph in her supplements where she mentions a history of depression. You are suddenly faced with three options:

Ignore the depression part and present the rest of her application to other AOs as if nothing ever happened

Bring up the depression to the committee and celebrate whatever positive attributes she reflected upon facing it

Quietly slip her into the no pile and never think about it again

I’ve never been an AO, but my breakdown would likely be 30/0/70. The middle 0 is because I’d want to get my student in, and I don’t think it would help my case. But I would honestly resent that 30% most for putting me in that situation. The reason is I wouldn’t be able to shake a worry that if that 30% student went on to do something tragic that tarnished the school, that those in charge wouldn’t start looking for ways to pass the buck. And what might happen if they go back into the admission archives and see that someone learned about her condition ahead of time and didn’t say or do something about it?

I’m down to 10/0/90 just writing that.

Writing about such topics the wrong way is the single easiest way to have your overall application chances completely plummet

I spend some time over at  r/collegeresults . What I’m looking for are outliers. 85% of students I see there succeed at roughly the rate I’d expect given my knowledge base. There’s some variance, but this ain’t no lottery.

But then I’ll see a student who just gets **destroyed—**destroyed in a way that does not make sense given my understanding of this process.

In the limited times I have gotten a chance to see that student’s application, I have found that their mistake was writing about one or more of the issues mentioned above in a way that sunk his or her application. It’s super sad and feels so avoidable. Yes, there are ways to make any topic work. But seeing the potential punishment for doing it wrong is what makes me so indignant to turn this into a black/white issue as opposed to giving the standard, “well maybe if it’s really important to you and you can show how you grew…” response that other adults pass off because they don’t want to come off like a dick.

It’s not what schools want

I blame “Essays that worked.” You go check those out and every other one is about a student overcoming some unbelievable period of adversity. But that’s not the game. I promise you that top schools aren’t lining the freshman class with sob stories. They  can’t  do that. Instead, every year a few such students do get in, but they are very much the exception and not the rule. I would further argue that those that do fall into the “hardship that stems from sociopolitical factors beyond your control” camp. In those cases, it is the student’s improbable story itself that is what sells them. Not necessarily the values they learned through it. Them making it here at all is the draw.

Schools want perky, optimistic, brilliant kids that love learning and then doing stuff with what they’ve learned. At top levels, they want idealistic prodigies who will go on to do something great. Essays on mental health and otherwise do not point to that future.

It’s super not what AOs want

I could just link like 30 “NO PLEASE NO MORE” pieces from AOs here. But this one seems to be pretty much what we’re talking about:

You are not the only one applying to schools. And at some point, I don’t recommend these topics for the same reason I don’t recommend writing about sports or video games. They’re simply done quite often by students and are a bummer to read. Do you really want your AO seeing your essay and going, “Ah Christ, another one”?

Every essay you spend writing about a hard issue is an essay you don’t spend writing about something else

You get around 1,000 words per school to explain your everything to them. And what you must understand is that this really is what they use to define their understanding of you. Those 1,000 words are precious, and you must pick the topic for them carefully. It does not pay to expect AO’s to read between the lines and attribute to you characteristics that are not patently spelled out to them.

It goes into theming an application. Like it or not, any topic you bring up into your application goes into your overall brand. A student who writes about solving Rubiks Cubes and then also raising pet goldfish is pretty much defined by those two things like that’s his entire personality. But replace goldfish with overcoming an eating disorder, and now that’s your brand. It just is… Because that’s what you wrote about.

Think of the opportunity cost on any such essay you plan on writing. What gives you a better chance for success? That, or whatever else you could be writing that you think gives you the best shot?

You don’t owe these schools shit

College admissions are not a confessional. There’s no priest and no redemption. This is a creative writing exam submitted to a team of 10 people you’ll never know who then decide if your family gets to buy their product or not.

As such, you are under no order to tell them anything about your life, good or bad. You have to tell the truth! But the way you present that truth is entirely up to you. Often quiet omission is the best practice. You just….don’t bring it up. Then everything else is exactly as you remember it, just without the part you’re not bringing up.

College applications are just modified versions of job applications

Your essays are your cover letter + interviews. Your ECs+stats are your resume. And on and on.

I do some career/entrepreneur consulting on the side. I get through to those I’m advising that companies/clients don’t care about how they can make your life better. That’s what the money’s for. Instead, hirers want to know what’s in it for them and how you will be the best possible candidate for the job + not cause any problems along the way.

Think about how insane it would be to talk about a history of substance abuse, mental illness, or anything else in a job interview—-especially at one for a high-end position.

Any positive values gained from overcoming hardship can better be attributed to another story from your life

This is the theoretical gain from such essays. It’s not that you hope writing about depression will interest AOs but instead that your positive characteristics will shine through in your discussion of  overcoming  those challenges.

And to that, I say, who needs the depression part??? If you want AOs to know you’re resilient or driven, or any other trait, that’s totally fine. But attribute those characteristics to something else you did. I hope that if you were able to rely on such traits to face your darkest demons, you’ll also have relied on them to, like, win a debate tournament or something.

You can even soften your issues into a still-true-but-less-chaotic story. I had a student write about overcoming insomnia. Another changing her diet to keep her energy levels up while performing. Those essays both covered for a larger issue they faced and…well neither essay was that great tbh but that 4th UC essay rarely is and they both got in just fine.

Speaking of UCs..

That “Most Significant Challenge” UC prompt doesn’t have to be taken literally.

Hey, guys, could you fix this one for 2021? You decided to not take test scores halfway through last season, so I like to think you also have the ability to modify one of your prompts to stop conditioning teens into thinking they need to relive trauma to get into Riverside.

It doesn’t make for a very good essay

In my first year, I had students write about mental health. I decided not to have them submit any of them less because of the bigger realities I know now and more because I thought they were bad and kind of boring essays.

The essays I like have a twist to them. That a student accomplished their goals in a way that only they could have thanks to their talents and brilliance. On the opposite end is the “I got an A” essay. That’s any essay that follows the plot, “I was bad at something -> I did exactly what you’d expect to improve -> I improved.”

The problem with overcoming mental health and other hard issues is that there is no trick. No brilliant maneuver to jump the line and achieve your goals. Instead, the way out is slow, predictable, and frustrating. It tends to involve a lot of therapy, and time, and support from friends and family, and time, and medication, and time.

Such essays tend to end up sounding very, very familiar in the end. They also lack personal agency. It’s hard to be the hero of your story when it comes to getting help. That’s the point of getting help to begin with.

Hard issues don’t just “go away”

My legs itch as I write this. It’s because it’s summer again, and I have no choice but to turn the AC on. The air swirls up dust in my apartment and causes me to break out in hives.

By my count, I could classify seven of the issues I mentioned as ones that I have personally dealt with. The ironic part is I didn’t really cover “chronic illness” because I don’t actually know if that one’s kosher or not.

Many of these issues started back when I was in high school and have come and gone at their own pace for the past 15 years. I don’t write much about addiction, depression, illness, or otherwise because a top goal of mine when writing is to get the words out, so I never have to think about them again. There is an endlessness to such topics that makes any observation or advice regarding them seem foolish and outdated almost immediately.

I’m afraid to be the bearer of bad news here that most dark, heavy, very real problems you face today as a teenager will either stick with you or one day return. No one told you at the time, but you became an adult like eighteen months ago, and this is pretty much what being an adult is like. Sucks, I know.

But there’s hope in that message. You don’t  have  to solve every damn issue you face right here and now or else. Instead, understand that there’s a lot of life out there waiting for you. And the best way to tackle it is to not just gather support to end crises as they arise but instead be willing to reach out for help before you need it. Take advantage of the free mental health services your future school will provide you and any other form of moral or emotional support that enables you to live the life you want to live.

Just don’t write about any of that in your essays, OK?

– Mattie

Depression in College Students

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Depression is a form of illness that has diverse types of symptoms. Most people suffering from depression may not experience sadness but experience irritability, or lose interest in most of the activities they were initially engaging in. This illness may interfere with people’s daily routine and normal functioning in various aspects of life. Specialists encourage people not to hide or ignore such symptoms that may lead to depression. Depression is never a character flaw. People may find it hard to overcome depression without assistance.

There are various types of depression.  They include major depression, when a person experiences episodes that are discrete (Marek, Schaufeli & Maslach, 2017). In discrete episodes, a person starts feeling different, as there is alteration of his or her behavior. Then there is persistent disorder, which is chronic. This means depression is low- grade, when there is a possibility of a person to deteriorate or improve with time. The third type of depression is psychotic depression, which is the most dangerous of all the types. This depression has a tendency to make people experience hallucinations or delusions. Next, the type of depression people experience during the winter is known as an affective seasonal disorder. Finally, the depression that most women experience when their menstrual cycle is near is referred to as premenstrual dysphoric depression.

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Notably, there are different symptoms and signs of the disorder. They include being anxious, feeling hopelessness, fatigue, insomnia, poor memory, poor concentration and decision making, unwanted changes of weight, suicidal thoughts, irritability, and physical symptoms such as headaches or muscle pain (Kales, Gitlin & Lyketsos, 2015). Different people experience different symptoms and signs. Some may have only some of the symptoms, while others experience majority of them.

College institutions offer exciting experiences where students can explore new opportunities. However, college can also be a challenge to many. As years pass by, college students have been experiencing anxiety and depression that have been affecting them negatively at an alarming rate. Researchers noted that depression and anxiety are among the top reasons why students attend counseling. Nearly one in every six college students is suffering from depression and anxiety.

Women and men can experience anxiety and depression in various ways. Commonly, in depression-related experiences between the genders, female gender is twice more likely to develop the disorder then men. The reason is due to the production of hormones when a certain region of the brain is growing in the female and male fetus (Wade & Ferree, 2015). The biological changes set the foundation for the development of vulnerability that lead to depression.

There are different factors that lead to depression. One of them is technology dangers. Technology and social media are categorized as the most perilous elements of depression, especially in males. Excessive use of them leads to engendering impairment of social interaction and sense of isolation increases. It also leads to competition that is between virtual life and real life. A war grows between students engrossing in social media posting, selfie-taking, and sending of texts instead of them enjoying the physical social interaction.

Most students live two different lives: a virtual life, and real life. Both lives tend to be very competitive and most times virtual life becomes more dominant. There are also students with different personalities, especially females, who most profoundly are attached to using their mobile phones. This behavior frequently leads to anxiety, depression, overall stress, and sleep deprivation. Research has revealed that at significantly, fifty percent of students tend to wake up in the middle of the night to reply text messages. Also, the research revealed that the additional use of technology during sleeping hours leads to poorer sleep quality, increased anxiety, and depression rate.

Secondly, another factor is the searching of drugs. Students tend to acquire stimulants like Adderall and Ritalin. As years progress, the usage of stimulants have principally increased. Students use these drugs mostly to assist them to concentrate in their studies especially when preparing for the final examination. Prescription of such drugs affects patients who are suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The drugs are very effective with such patients but they can be quite hazardous. If students start using such drugs, they may develop depression and anxiety. Both side effects are well known for people who prescribe for themselves the Adderall and Ritalin drugs. In most colleges, the students who misuse these types of drugs are men as compared to women.

The third factor is the depression rate (Avenevoli et al., 2015). Research has revealed most students’ parents in college are depressed. Depression has a genetic component, which means that the risks and dangers of a depressed student may affect a parent who initially was not depressed. There are students, especially women, who complained of cyberbullying especially in high school . Notably, these students have a higher rate of being depressed and anxious. Moreover, the number high school students who are depressed have doubled.

Furthermore, the smoking cigarette is linked to problems of sleeping in most college students. This leads to depression and anxiety especially for men, but fortunately, e-cigarette use and cigarette smoking have continued to decline at around sixteen percentage of students in college.  Moreover, other factors are the violence, sexual harassment, and discrimination (Tarrant, 2015). Many students, especially women face more troubling incidents and are more affected than men are. Female students may face dating violence, religion and race discrimination and gender biases. Others face sexual harassment from their peers and lecturers. These incidents can lead many to suffer from depression and anxiety.

Some students find it hard to adjust to college life, especially female gender. They start feeling separation anxiety and sometimes, homesick. Such students have a high risk of experiencing anxiety and depression. Financial stress can also lead to depressive illness. One cause entity is college fees increase where students understand that it may be hard to attain their financial requirements.

Students who are suffering from depression should seek medical counseling. Before joining higher education learning, parents and students should be aware of the mental well-being of their children and themselves. Colleges should have qualified professions who can assist students with their confidential issues and the risks they may be facing. Moreover, the colleges should notify both the students and their parents of such available amenities.

It is key to understand that there are various ways of treating depression (Miller & Raison, 2016). They include psychotherapy, known as talk therapy. There is also the combination of psychotherapy and medication. Psychotherapy can assist students to comprehend their emotions, moods, and guided on how to control them. Students can talk to therapists about their feelings, emotions and they are advised ways of managing them.

Some students, especially men tend not to share their emotions with doctors, so they prefer keeping them to themselves. Such students should understand that there are ways people can deal with depression and anxieties. They should always be patient with themselves, performing daily exercise, spending more time outdoors, healthy eating, properly disposing all illegal drugs they possess, spending some time with families and friends who are supportive, and having sufficient sleep. By performing these activities, they can assist students in reducing depression. Early treatment is the most effective. Treating depression assists students in accomplishing college and succeeding in their lives.

  • Avenevoli, S., Swendsen, J., He, J. P., Burstein, M., & Merikangas, K. R. (2015). Major depression in the National Comorbidity Survey-Adolescent Supplement : prevalence, correlates, and treatment. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry 54(1) , 37-44.
  • Haberler, G. (2017). Prosperity and depression : A theoretical analysis of cyclical movements . Routledge.
  • Kales, H.C., Gitlin, L.N., & Lyketsos, C.G. (2015). Assessment and management of behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia. Bmj, 350(7), h369.
  • Marek, T., Schaufeli, w.B., & Maslach, C. (2017). Professional burnout: Recent developments in theory and research. Routledge.
  • Miller, A.H., & Raison, C.L. (2016). The role of inflammation in depression : from evolutionary imperative to modern treatment target. Nature Reviews Immunology , 16(1), 22.
  • Tarrant, S. (Ed). (2015). Gender, Sex, and Politics: In the Streets and Between the Sheets in the 21 st Century. Routledge.
  • Wade, L., & Ferree, M.M. (2015). Gender: Ideas, interactions, institutions. WW Norton.


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