Kids: Why Do I Feel Sad?

Are you unhappy?  Got the blues? Depressed? Or, just feel like crying? If so, you are not alone. Thousands of kids have moments of sadness every day. It is a natural part of life, and just like happiness it can come and go at a minute's notice and it can last for hours or even days. So what could be making you feel sad, and what can you do about it?

Sadness can be caused by many things. A friend is moving away. Your soccer team lost the game. You overheard your parents arguing. You are starting at a new school. You lost your favorite backpack. No one would play with you at recess. Or, your puppy is sick. These are just a few of the things that can happen that could make you feel a little down. With so many things bombarding you every day, how can you handle your feelings when they turn from happiness to sadness?

First, you need to remember you have the power to change how you feel. Yes--YOU! You are strong, resilient, and are able to leap tall buildings at a single bound. Well, maybe that's Superman, but you are a Superkid.  You can cope with your sadness and make it go away if you remember that it is alright to feel sad--for a little while. 

Second, identify why you are sad and create ways to cope with it. It's easier to solve a problem if you know what the problem is. So if your friend is moving away, figure ways that you will be able to stay in contact. Exchange phone numbers, get her/his new address, write each other, send emails, send pictures, and see if you can arrange to visit each other. Whatever the problem, try to come up with some creative solutions. Think positive. Remember, I said you are a Superkid and you are.

Third, if you just can't shake the feeling on your own, ask for help. Find someone you can rely on to hear you out. That may be your parents, teacher, big sister, big brother, aunt, uncle, or coach. Tell your trusted person why you are feeling sad, and ask for his or her help to find ways to cope with the way you are feeling. You might be surprised how much better you will feel when you share that feeling with someone who really cares about you.

While sadness may be a natural occurrence, it is not an easy feeling to deal with, so give yourself time to think about it. Then, do something that you know will make you feel better. Go for a bike ride, a walk, play a video game, talk to a friend, visit a friend, go to a movie, put on your favorite song and dance the afternoon away, or read a book. The point is--do something that will make you feel better. You are a Superkid, after all. And, I believe in you!

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