Ask Sam letter


To Sam

am i wasting the counsellor’s time?

Hey Sam,

recently I feel like I'm wasting the counsellor’s time as when they try get to the bottom of why im depressed and why I think some things but I can give no help as I myself do not know why I feel the way I do. am I wasting their time?

Ask Sam


Hi there

Depression is an illness and people don’t choose to feel sad. There isn’t always an obvious cause for feeling depressed and you might not know for sure what happened or when it started.

Sometimes depression can start after lots of small things have happened and you might feel gradually worse over time.  Stressful events like when someone dies or the end of a relationship can be a trigger for depression. It’s important to get support when difficult things happen in your life as it can be harder to cope if you try to deal with problems on your own.

You are never wasting the counsellor's time when you are talking to Childline. Your counsellor will understand that some things are difficult to talk about or you may not have any answers. They are not there to put pressure on you to answer questions, they just want to listen and try to understand what things are like for you. This might mean asking you questions but it’s always okay to say you don’t know or don’t want to answer.

You could tell the counsellor that you’ve spoken to Childline before and what you’d like to focus on in the chat or call today. Let them know that you’ve not been able to work out what triggered your depression and perhaps together you can focus on other things. Try talking about what it feels like to live with depression and how it has affected you. Perhaps you can talk about how to cope with some of the problems depression has caused for you.

If you think you might have depression or any other mental health problem then it’s always best to see your doctor. Your doctor might ask questions about what’s happening in your life to and also about your eating, sleeping and whether you drink alcohol or take drugs as these can cause depression or make the symptoms worse and it’s important to answer honestly so that they can work out the best treatment for you.

Thank you for your letter.

Take care,


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