Students attend Ann Marie's Law Presentation

Students attend Ann Marie's Law Presentation
Posted on 10/31/2019

Ann Marie's Law  Depression and Suicide Prevention Presentation at CMMS

Compiled by CMMS student and E-Journalism Club member, Vincent O.

On October 16th during Red Ribbon Week at CMMS, students were visited by Ms.Tucker, a counselor at CMMS, regarding the serious topic, depression and suicide prevention. We learned about Ann Marie’s law and why it's important, what depression means, and other topics. Ann Marie was an 11-year-old student in an Orland Park school. At the end of 5th grade, she took her own life. She did not appear to have any signs of depression. She was apparently unhappy. After Ann Marie’s death in 2013, her family worked very hard to get a bill passed that says that every school in the state of Illinois, grades 6-12, must learn about suicide prevention awareness and ways to help prevent it. The bill became a law on August 21, 2015. 

Difference between Depression and Sadness

One of the signs of Depression can be whenever a student would work alone or by themselves all the time. Life is full-on hard times. What happens when that feeling stays. Depression is a common and serious brain disorder. About 5 kids in a class of 25 have depression. No matter what you like to do, depression won’t stop you. Depression is treatable. Some symptoms of depression can be always being upset, always tired, always wanting to be alone. Depression feels like living lonely.  It can make you lazy or grouchy. Depression happens from school pressure, family problems, feeling like you don’t fit in, a death in the family, a chemical mixup in the brain, or other stressful problems. Some other symptoms can be depressed mood, loss of interest in activities, fatigue, having trouble making decisions, using drugs or alcohol, or thoughts to harm yourself. Depression can be treated with medication and professional therapy. 

What a social worker does

A social worker, in this case, will stand up with you and go against depression. They will support you whenever you need to make a decision that you don't know the true answer to.

What to do if you think you find someone with depression

If you find someone who you think has depression, tell a trusted adult. They will set up something with their parents or guardians for how to help them overcome depression

How to help a friend with depression

You can help a friend with depression by:

  • Encouraging them to do fun things

  • Support their treatment

  • Listen to what they say

  • Encourage them to overcome depression

  • Tell a social worker whatever you think is abnormal for your friend to say

  • Don't treat them differently from any other friend

  • Invite them to play a game with you

  • Go out and do something that they like with them

  • Never solve a problem on your own

  • Be supportive

About depression

Depression is a feeling of sadness that lasts for at least two weeks. 

Sadness vs Depression



I’m so irritated today

I’m always irritated

I’m not hungry right now

I haven’t had an appetite for a week

I didn't get much sleep last night

I haven’t slept in days

I don't want to hang out today

I haven’t felt like hanging out with my friends for a while

I’m having a bad time concentrating today

I haven’t been able to concentrate no matter what I try

I want to hurt myself. I’ve been thinking of suicide.

Things that can stress you out:

  • Divorce

  • Grades

  • Neglect

  • Family

  • School

  • Homework

  • Friendships

  • Poverty

  • Homelife

  • Violence

  • Abuse

  • Social media

  • Bullying

Warning signs:

  • Lack of interaction with friends

  • Ending friendships for no reason

  • A change in personality

  • Making statements about feeling hopeless or helpless

  • Complaining about headaches or stomach aches

  • Poor hygiene

  • Loss of appetite

  • Lots of days absent

  • Making statements about wanting to hurt themselves

Who are trusted adults

  • Parent

  • Coach

  • Spiritual advisor

  • Mentor

  • Social workers

  • Grandparent

  • Coach

  • Teacher

  • Counselor

How can I help

  • Always take your friends actions and what they say seriously

  • Encourage your friend to talk to a trusted adult

  • Don't ever promise to keep a secret

Ms. Tucker

Room 128A