If someone you love is suffering from depression you maybe feeling frustrated and at a loss of how to help. Depression is an isolating disorder which can damage any relationships through misunderstanding.
Here are some tips to help support someone with depression.
1. Just Be There
When someone is experiencing depression they often don’t have energy or motivation to reach out for help or get things done. Ask them how can I help? What can I do for you? They maybe to proud or feel ashamed about asking others for help so give direct assistance if this is the case, like getting some groceries or helping around the house, only if you feel comfortable to do so. Sometimes saying nothing, give them a hug and let them know your there if needed.
2. Don’t Criticise Or Judge
Let the person know you believe in them. Their self-esteem may be low and they may feel totally hopeless. The last thing they need is for you to criticise or judge them. The tough love approach never works.
3. You Don’t Want To Minimise Their Pain
Saying something like you let things bother you to much or why don’t you try this or when this happened to me. Try not to offer advice or make comparisons. If you do the above it can invalidate the pain and sadness they are feeling. Making them feel it is a weakness or some type of personality flaw.
4. Learn about depression
Educate yourself about depression and it’s symptoms to avoid misunderstanding. You might not realise but saying the wrong thing to a depressed person can have a devastating effect on them. Be compassionate.