"You have people here to help you, people like me." A Qualitative Analysis of a Blogging Intervention for Adolescents and Young Adults with Depression or Anxiety
Journal of technology in behavioral science
adolescent, anxiety, blogging, depression, expressive writing, mental health
Blogging in the lay community has been shown to be a popular means of expression for all ages exhibiting mental illness symptoms. With the recent rise of mental illness rates among adolescents, blogging in a space specifically designated to discuss mental health topics for adolescents could potentially be beneficial for this demographic. In order to reveal whether or not blogging has positive effects on adolescents and young adults, we created a moderated, anonymous eHealth intervention for those in this demographic experiencing depression and/or anxiety symptoms. This intervention, called Supporting Our Valued Adolescents (SOVA), allows a safe place for participants ages 14-26 (inclusive) to read, write, and comment on blog posts regarding various mental health topics. In this paper, we analyze 40 SOVA blog posts and their corresponding comments written by 18 participants over a six-month period to see if actively engaging on the website was beneficial for their mental health. These posts and comments were analyzed on their degree of self-disclosure, regulatory and interpersonal support, acknowledgement of others, and reader feedback. We found that the content analyzed implied that blogging had a positive effect on participants using this online intervention.
Bickerstaff, J. M., Karim, S., Whitman, R. K., Cypher, A., Wiener, S., & Radovic, A. (2021). "You have people here to help you, people like me." A Qualitative Analysis of a Blogging Intervention for Adolescents and Young Adults with Depression or Anxiety. Journal of technology in behavioral science, 6 (4), 578-588. https://doi.org/10.1007/s41347-021-00210-w