A 16-year-old San Juan teen has been missing for eight days and her family said Ciera B. Canales has been without her depression medication and fear that without treatment the teen could be down a destructive path.
Her aunt, Chelsea, said, they TMre just scared that it's going to take her out of whack."
The concerned aunt said the family has been in agony since the girl went missing and is worried about their loved one.
"I really don TMt know why she left," Chelsea said.
The aunt said the worst part is that the family believes her niece ran away with a 20-year-old man she met on the internet.
They said the man just got out of jail and the family fears she's in immediate danger.
"She's in medical care with her mom, her aunt said, and she needs to be taking her (medications) everyday - and she hasn't been taking her meds."
Chelsea said her niece has been taking anti-depressants for about seven months.
The family doesn't quite understand what put the teen in such state, but Medical Director of Renaissance Behavioral Center Dr. Jose Igoa said depression in teens and adults is on the rise.
"Depression is a very common illness, it is one of the most handicapping conditions in the world, Igoa said. (It) will be the second (most common illness) only after cardiovascular disease in the year 2020 - and it's number one in terms of disability to women."
Dr. Igoa said there are many triggers for depression and many ways to treat it, but once a person is diagnosed with depression and doesn TMt take their medication, things can take a turn for the worse.
"The problem could be a relapse in depression and exacerbation of the depression symptoms, Igoa said, and of course the worse would be suicide.
The family believes the teen could be in the Weslaco or Harlingen areas and they have filed several police reports.
They said she was last seen with a man, in a gold Pontiac Grand Am, in the streets of La Feria.
I just want you to come home, you don TMt belong in the streets, her aunt said.
The 16-year-old girl is described as 5 TM8, about 170-pounds, dark hair and light eyes.