Anxiety, Depression and Suicide Among Top Reasons Young People Contact Teen Line
March 1, 2023
LA-BASED YOUTH VOLUNTEERS SHARE MENTAL HEALTH TIPS FOR
WORLD TEEN MENTAL WELLNESS DAY
LOS ANGELES – March 1, 2023 – World Teen Mental Wellness Day is celebrated on March 2 to raise awareness about the youth mental health crisis, destigmatize mental health and spotlight life-saving resources and information. Teen Line youth volunteers want to ensure that young people across the United States know where to turn to for youth-led mental health support.
Teen Line, a program of Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services, is the nation’s leading crisis and support hotline that connects youth with professionally trained Teen “Listeners” who provide peer support and mental health resources to teens across the United States. In 2022, Teen Listeners responded to more than 6,500 calls, texts and emails from their peers. Relationships, anxiety/stress, depression, suicide and mental health concerns were the primary challenges facing young people who reached out to Teen Line in 2022.
“I want people to know that they deserve to be listened to, receive support and that they are not alone, regardless of how big or small they perceive their issue to be when reaching out to Teen Line,” shares Remi, 17, Teen Listener.
Teen Listeners offer an empathetic ear and help young people find new ways to cope, identify people in their support system and suggest helpful resources in their communities.
“My biggest tip for teens is to take self-care seriously because your mental health is so important,” notes Eva, 17, Teen Listener. “It’s also important to remember that we are all different people so try and find things that work for you. Be really honest with yourself about how what you tried made you feel and whether it did or didn’t help you,” adds Max, 18, Teen Listener.
Prioritizing mental health from an early age and practicing self-care is an effective way to build resiliency. Teen Listeners have identified tips that can be effective for addressing mental health concerns and the daily stressors of teen life:
- Build a support system of people whom you trust, which may include friends, family, teachers, counselors, a therapist, etc. The quality of the relationship is more important than the quantity of relationships.
- Talk to the people in your support system about your mental health and normalize these conversations.
- Try to look at the situation from different perspectives and give yourself permission to step away from the problem you are facing.
- Spend time doing things you love. Examples of self-care that Teen Listeners shared include journaling, drawing, reading, working out, cooking, going on walks, listening to music, watching TV, playing video games, spending time with your loved ones – and don’t forget the basics, like getting enough sleep, drinking water and eating well.
- Reach out to Teen Line for support.
“While I completely understand how difficult it can be to reach out for help, I truly wish that more people know how many resources like Teen Line are out there – we are ready to listen and support you,” says Alex, 17. Teen Listener.
Teen Listeners complete more than 100 hours of training on topics such as depression, abuse, self-harm, active listening, crisis and suicide assessments. Since it began in 1981, Teen Line has trained more than 2,200 Teen Listeners, centering the role of teens in meaningfully addressing the mental health needs facing their generation.
“The peer-to-peer model is grounded in an understanding that teens can more readily relate with and connect with their peers. This focus on connection, empathy and shared experience are at the root of how this model works, but the incredible Teen Listeners are at the heart of why it works. I am in constant awe of their compassion, humility and commitment to destigmatizing youth mental health,” shared Cheryl Eskin, LMFT, Senior Director of Teen Line, Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services.
Young people can contact Teen Line at 800-852-8336 and be connected to a Teen Listener 6pm-10pm PST every night, 365 days/year. Any calls received outside of this timeframe will be redirected to a crisis line operated by Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services. Additionally, people can text TEEN to 839863 6pm-9pm PST or email www.teenline.org/email-us.
ABOUT DIDI HIRSCH MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES
Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services is a national leader in suicide prevention and delivers community-based mental health, crisis care and substance use services across Southern California. With deep roots in community-based mental health, Didi Hirsch is a Los Angeles-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and for 80 years has been dedicated to advancing health equity and ensuring that young people and those living in under-resourced communities have access to high-quality, compassionate mental health and substance use care. As an expert in these treatment areas, Didi Hirsch provides outpatient counseling, support groups, and social services coordination for children, teens and their families. Didi Hirsch holds partnerships with nearly 100 schools in Los Angeles and Orange Counties and operates Teen Line – the nation’s leading peer-to-peer mental health and crisis support line. Learn more at www.didihirsch.org.