ANGST: A New Film About Anxiety

Christine Bergmann and Rebecca Green, WIN-TV Reporters

Anxiety is a constant state of fear and emotional stress that significantly impacts an individual’s everyday life. On Wednesday February 13th, Wakeland High School students gathered in the auditorium to learn more about anxiety. Wakeland PTSA along with PTA’s from Cobb MS and Griffin MS hosted the short film Angst. Unique perspectives from students, teachers, role models, and experts allow students to better identify anxiety in order to personally overcome it or help another individual get the help they need. Though the film Angst will not be premiered again, anxiety still significantly affects Wakeland and their students. This fact brings up the question of what now. How can Wakeland students and staff properly handle anxiety?

The short movie, Angst, has brought a high level of awareness about this disorder to the school as it opens up the conversation of how anxiety affects people. The film truly discusses the important topic of mental health which is the beginning to how a school can successfully cultivate a mentally and emotionally strong student population. Awareness of the problem leads to people being able to identify anxiety in peers and even themselves. Also, it makes people feel more comfortable talking about their struggles. At school, if you know someone who is struggling with an anxiety disorder, it is important to acknowledge their suffering and to tell them that you are there for them. This shows that you care and are willing to help them in any way possible. If you are struggling with anxiety, feel free to rely on your friends, family, school counselors, and teachers. These people are concerned about you and want what is best for you. The film also provided strategies for dealing with anxiety. The Wakeland PTSA President, Denise Schager, describes how she loved the practical strategies Angst gave students such as “breathing techniques when you feel stressed- they call this the “deep belly breathing” with deep, long, slow controlled breaths, that you CAN control.” Students must focus on the things they can control so they do not let anxiety overtake them.  

Anxiety is a real problem, and it can be hard to talk about. Denise Schager explains that “you aren’t alone; anxiety is real and everyone struggles with it, but it can be overcome.” Though an individual may be struggling, it is important to keep a positive attitude and always feel comfortable to get help.

Additional Information Provided by the Wakeland High School PTSA President:

How did you become involved with Angst?

My involvement with the Angst program began last March when our Frisco Council of PTA’s hosted a free screening of the documentary.  You see, Wakeland HS PTSA is part of a larger PTA group that serves all of the schools that have PTA’s in Frisco ISD. At the time, our PTSA had just finished showing the film documentary “Screenagers” in January and we had received such a huge positive response that I knew this was something that Wakeland parents, students and teachers were looking for.  So, I went to the free screening of Angst at the Administration building last March to check it out. I came away with the intention that I wanted to bring this to Wakeland. We are a new PTSA and in our second year as an organization, part of our job as a PTSA is to bring meaningful programs to help every student, parent and teacher at Wakeland meet their potential, and that is our goal as a PTSA.  So, I meet with Dr. Edge in August and discussed bringing this program to Wakeland. After her approval, Our PTSA Programs Chair contacted the company, Indieflix, that produced the film and we partnered with our feeder PTA’s from Cobb MS and Griffin MS to help with the cost of the film. We worked with Ms. Delaphina, the Drama/Theater teacher for the evening date and she helped run the sound, lights and computer for us as we lived streamed it for the evening.

Why did you bring it to Wakeland?

The message in Angst defines the core root of anxiety as “the fear of losing control” and the reality is that we can’t control everything in life.  Try as we may, stuff will happen that is absolutely not in our control, so how do we deal with it? Well, we recognize it; see the things that we can control and release the things that we can’t. I loved the message that we don’t need to rush to medication for anxiety, much of anxiety is looking at the situation and recognizing it and putting it into perspective.  This is why I wanted to bring it to Wakeland because of the positive message that can help students reach their absolute potential at Wakeland HS!

How can people get help?

We also have a PTSA partnership with Dr. Meredith Magruder with Crossroads Counseling in Frisco.  If there is a student, teacher, parent or administrator that is struggling with anxiety and depression, they can contact her for an appointment.  Just mention that you are with Wakeland High School PTSA.
Also, if you aren’t a member of Wakeland’s PTSA, please join- there are tons of volunteer opportunities and scholarship opportunities for you exclusively for our PTSA members.  We are currently looking for Students who would like to serve on the board for next year. You can join today at – follow us on Instagram and Twitter- Wakeland PTSA