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Imagine this you are sitting in your classroom listening your classmates present their persuasive speeches Your best friend volunteers to present but halfway through her speech you spot some classmates snickering across the room After class you notice a few of these same classmates nudging at your best friend and joking about her presentation You okay you ask her and with tears in her eyes she smiles and walks away After school you realize that you hadnt written down the history homework and call your best friend but she does not pick up You then remember that she was not in class after lunch and make a mental side note to check up on her later Your mom calls you into her room later that evening There are tears in her eyes and she hands you the phone Your best friend killed herself that night You may think that this story sounds dramatic but it is not Depression is a mental and emotional disorder that society does not take seriously It affects over fifteen million Americans a year the average onset age at fourteen years old lasting most prevalently within the next ten years Depression affects how you feel think and behave on a day-to-day basis yet many people minimize the seriousness of the condition and its severe side effects Have you noticed your friends with a lack of energy problems sleeping and loss of appetite or interest in activities they used to enjoy How about yourself If so to any of these seemingly minimal concerns you or your friend may be a victim of depression Friends family and even adults tend to overlook depression simply as a bad mood or a bad day However depression is a chronic illness that requires long-term treatment like diabetes or high blood pressure In fact teenagers with depression long for support and this support comes from those closest to them Who knows what actions may have prevailed if
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