In talking with numerous students of late who knew local high school students who took their own lives, my colleagues and I have been struck by a common reaction the teens have reported: “I had no idea he/she was struggling like that!” This expression of shock is one of the many important emotions teens and others need to talk about to work through their grief. Stigma complicates the ability to seek help when depression or other forms of mental illness arise. We hope the community will continue to “normalize” mental health needs so that those who experience them feel more comfortable getting the help they deserve. The Mayo Clinic offers powerful insights into how to make good health – and not societal pressures – your focus. In addition to stigma, however, another barrier to effective treatment can be a lack of knowledge. Some people still believe, for example, that children and teens don’t experience depression; that it is only an adult issue. Others are not sure what to watch out for in their children or students, since signs of depression can look different in youth compared to adults. A recent Washington Post article provides a wealth of information about this important topic. Finally, plan to watch “The Race to Nowhere” on Thursday, September 25th (9:00 p.m. on WTIU). This program explores how today’s teens and families grapple with relentless pressures to succeed that can become overwhelming.