Our experience with childhood anxiety/depression—this is a story I’ve wanted to share for a while. It is not something I approach lightly. It is a very heavy topic to cover, but I feel like it is important to share our experience with the hope that it might help someone else.
Last winter was a very hard one for our daughter Noelle (now 11). For the year leading up to it, Noelle gradually had become a young girl with extreme anxiety that affected everything she did. There is both anxiety and depression on my side of the family, but nothing could have prepared me to watch my daughter go through it! At first I thought it was pre-teen hormones, but eventually my husband and I realized that this was more than hormones.
Noelle went from being cheerful and friendly to having an unnatural fear of bugs, germs, vomiting, and making choices (easy and hard). She went outside less and less because of her extreme fear of bugs and thus played with friends less and less. She was worried about going to school, doing homework assignments or anything new. Things that should have taken 5 minutes took 30 minutes to do because of anxiety.
Getting her out the door to school in the mornings drove me crazy! My stress level dealing with her each morning, then helping her do her homework (which she had to do perfectly due to anxiety), and then getting her to bed at night was more than I could bear. It was so hard! My husband commented, “I used to think she was our one normal child.” Nope. I guess we don’t have any of those.
So, what did we do? First, I prayed a lot! Then I went on a crash coarse to learn all I could about childhood anxiety.
In the process I found a really neat program that I purchased online that helps kids with anxiety. Two wonderfully creative and educated men with Ph.D’s in Psychology and counseling designed this program with CD’s and a notebook. They made it really fun and interesting for kids with music and children telling a story. It is called the Turn Around program. See https://
This really helped Noelle identify her fears and learn the steps she needed to take to overcome them. I highly recommend it!
We also worked with the Psychologist at Noelle’s school, her teacher, her pediatrician and most importantly God to help us with all of this. I prayed about every decision we made.
Another key that really helped Noelle was some good quality vitamins. As I was praying one day God reminded me that a good friend of mine in Texas had a son that struggled with childhood depression. After going on medication for this, she found some vitamins that she started him on. Working with a doctor she was able to wean him off his medication and he has been fine just taking these vitamins.
I felt this was a good route to take with Noelle. I started her on the True Hope vitamins but eventually switched her over to Hardy Nutrition vitamins because they were less expensive and worked just as well. (True Hope was founded by two men. A few years ago they went their separate ways and Hardy Nutrition was formed. They essentially make the same product—a high quality vitamin that has been proven to help people with several disorders including ADHD, Anxiety, Depression, OCD, Autism, Bipolar etc.) Both companies are so great to talk to if you have ANY questions, I highly recommend calling them and talking to their professional staff!
I started Noelle on the lowest dose and slowly increased it as we started the 2015 year. By May she was taking the full adult dose—4 in the morning, 4 at lunch and 4 in the evening. She was a different child! She was wearing bright clothes again. Her fear to go outside was greatly diminished. Her appetite had increased. She was finally playing with friends again. She was happy and making choices that just a few months before had completely paralyzed her with fear.
I was watching her joking with Jordan last week in the kitchen. She was laughing so hard and teasing him like a little sister should! It was then that I realized how far she has come in the past year. It is so great to hear her laugh! She is still on the full adult dose of vitamins, but she is happy and acting like a normal 11-year old girl should act.
I still don’t know if it was genetics that triggered her anxiety/depression or a nutritional deficiency caused by her sudden growth spurt. All I know is that she is not the same little girl I was dealing with a year ago, and I am ever so thankful to God for guiding me to know the right people to talk to and find the right things that helped her.
#ChildhoodAnxiety #ChildhoodDepression #OvercomingAnxiety #OvercomingFear#TurnAround #HardyNutrition