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Green Country Teen Says Mental Health Screening Saved Her Life

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Meagin just finished her sophomore year and says she never realized her bad mood, short-temper and bouts of sadness were signs of depression that could lead to suicide. Meagin just finished her sophomore year and says she never realized her bad mood, short-temper and bouts of sadness were signs of depression that could lead to suicide.
Chris Siemens goes into schools to give the TeenScreen test. She said teens often don't think of suicide as ending their life, they just focus on ending their pain. Chris Siemens goes into schools to give the TeenScreen test. She said teens often don't think of suicide as ending their life, they just focus on ending their pain.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

Mental health experts in the Tulsa area are trying to reverse a tragic trend. Teen suicides are way up. Three per year is average, but 10 local teens have already taken their lives over the last year.

One teen says a simple test saved her life.

Meagin just finished her sophomore year and says she never realized her bad mood, short-temper and bouts of sadness were signs of depression that could lead to suicide.

"I had a plan and I knew what I was going to do and when I was going to do it," she said.

Meagin's life almost ended at age 14.

"I was like, 'You know, I'm not good enough for this, I'd be better off, they'd be better off without me, it would all be better if I just wasn't here.'"

She was battling dark thoughts and deep loneliness, but didn't know why. Meagin tried take her own life, but backed out each time.

Then she took a test at school called TeenScreen, which according to the organization's website, is now defunct. It was an online assessment offered through the Mental Health Association that looks at a teen's physical and mental well being.

9/26/2012 Related Story: Counselors Say Communication Can Prevent Teen Suicide

That's when Meagin found out she was experiencing depression.

"I didn't know how to respond to it, at first, other than to bawl my eyes out," she said.

Meagin got counseling and identified the root of her pain. Now, 15 years old, she can talk about what happened at age 12.

"I was raped and I saw that as my fault," Meagin said.

She said her friends didn't believe her, so she quit talking about it, changed schools, and bottled up her emotions, which led her down a destructive path.

"We've had students come up suicidal that you wouldn't think otherwise," said Chris Siemens.

Siemens goes into schools to offer youth outreach. She said teens often don't think of suicide as ending their life, they just focus on ending their pain.

"With the adolescent brain, it's not fully developed," Siemens said. "It doesn't fully develop until they're in their 20s, and that, unfortunately at that age, is the most rational thing they can think of."

TeenScreen was claimed to be able to identify disorders, stress, substance abuse, anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts.

Meagin credits her health, and her life, to TeenScreen.

"I've been through a lot of counseling to help me realize that it's not my fault and I like to share my story, because this can happen to you, and it's not your fault if it happened," Meagin said.

TeenScreen was shut down in 2012, but the Mental Health Association in Tulsa offers other youth outreach services.

Learn more about the Mental Health Association in Tulsa

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