I am 21 years old, currently enrolled in a diploma course. I have trouble being positive about life, I find myself spiraling in suicidal thoughts and don’t have any future plans that I am passionately working on. What should I do?

From what I can understand you appear to be severely depressed. Suicidal thoughts must never be taken lightly. I would advise you to immediately seek help from a mental health professional. Secondly, please confide in your loved ones and friends about how you are feeling right now about life. I have very limited information about you and your condition through your question but I would advise you to stay positive, seek help and take care of yourself.

My five year old used to be a very happy and friendly kid but is increasingly becoming anxious in social gatherings. How can I help him?

A five year old won’t be able to explain whatever is bothering him clearly. As a parent, you have to figure out what must have caused him to become anxious in social gatherings. Have there been any changes around him like a new school, a new nanny or the absence of his parents from his daily life? Children can often become anxious around new people or around people who treat them harshly. Be vigilant about all the people who interact with him and avoid leaving him unaccompanied in the presence of domestic help. Please contact a child psychologist if this behaviour persists.

My daughter is 14 and dealing with a teenager is a taxing job. Please guide me how best to help her and maintain my calm in the face of teenage rebellion.

Raising a teenager is never easy for any parent. Teenagers are going through lots of emotional changes which make it very hard for their parents to connect with them effectively. Just remember that these changes are temporary and so are their mood swings and tantrums. Being patient on your part will go a long way in helping her come out of her teenage phase unscarred. Most people spoil their relationships with their children during their teenage years, so avoid doing that. Take care of your own needs and interests on a regular basis before tending to her needs. A happier parent is always a more nurturing one.