As Special Envoy for Women and Children, I am extremely saddened by the loss of the lives of four year-old TrianaTeul, three year-old Thomas Teul and one year-old TrinayaTeul. I want to express sincere sympathies to the family of these children and ask the rest of the country to join me in keeping six year-old Trina Teul in our prayers as she recovers from the trauma of witnessing this tragic incident.
This heartbreaking story is a reminder that we must take issues relating to mental health seriously. The mother, 22 year-old Felicia Chen suffers from clinical depression, a common mental health disorder that many do not recognize as a real health condition. The fact is however, that depression, like other mental health conditions, can consume a person’s life if left untreated.
It is very unfortunate that Felicia felt so hopeless and without options and I am certain that there are other women, men and even children who may feel the same. It is important that we all educate ourselves on the signs and symptoms of this common mental health condition as there are services such as private counselors or the mental health services of the Ministry of Health that are available to help treat and manage depression and prevent it from escalating with such devastating results.
I urge you to take advantage of these services if you are feeling sad, empty or lost for an extended period of time, if you lose interest in the things you once loved, if you feel fatigued or see drastic changes in your sleeping patterns. Take an interest in the lives of those around and look for the signs of depression so you can help a loved one get the help that they need.
It is also time to end the stigma associated with mental illnesses that deters many persons suffering from depression from seeking help. Clinical Depression is a treatable condition and does not need to result in the loss of life.