For those who have ever known or interacted with anyone living with or going through depression, they will understand that most times it’s extremely hard convincing and pulling a depressed person out of such a dark abyss.
It feels like all your efforts are yielding no results, you try to be there for him or her and just make them realize that you’re there for them but it seems like your efforts are just not recognized. You’ve this overwhelming feeling of guilt just watching someone you love or care about go through such and yet it seems like you can do nothing about it
Well have you ever considered the fact that you might be going about “helping ” the wrong way? What you might think as providing an aura of calm and love might not really be what you give off to the person.
I know all you wish to do is to help and be there but it’s time you do it right this time and I have some guidelines that usually works and I do hope it works for everyone as well!
My personal guide:
- Do you know what depression truly is about? – Most people just understand depression as been sad or down in the dumps, but depression is more than this. We’re quick to want to help and give advice but have you tried understanding and researching about depression, the symptoms, the causes etc or are you just working on what you’ve heard floating around.
Try to understand what it’s all about, recognize the signs the person displays or the triggers or events that just seem to get the person spiralling downwards. And then since there are different types of depression you might need to educate yourself on them as well so as to know how to go about been of help and how best to be of help. In case you might need help with knowing the types here’s a quick chart:
2) Remember you’re a friend not a therapist or counselor : After you’ve done the above then try seeing life through their own lenses, put yourself in their shoes or situation. Show them love, make them understand that they as an individual are loved, wanted and worth something to you.
Give them a listening ear but don’t force them to have to talk or open up, because you might seem imposing. Make them feel free with you, make them understand you’re not going to be judgemental or get angry or belittle their sufferings. Just listen to them and work with the info they give. Check up on them from time to time, show them that you care. Offer solutions such as seeing a psychiatrist and having them on medications.
Remember you’re to be a shoulder to lean on , you are to be a support system, something like a beacon of light in the midst of the darkness. Shine as bright as to light up the road of happiness but not too bright that the person fails to see the path you’re trying to lead them on.Abbey
3) Don’t lose yourself : It’s so easy to ignore your self in trying to help others which is been selfless but sometimes been a bit selfish isn’t bad. Don’t get overwhelmed.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed trying to help and be there for someone else that you begin to get annoyed and frustrated when he or she isn’t making what might seem like an effort. But that’s OK don’t be too hard on yourself sometimes relax and get your own mental health in check cause trust me it’s easy to get depressed seeing someone you love depressed.
Trust me it won’t do either party any good , if you don’t also keep a check on your own mental health. It’s important to understand that your frustration isn’t exactly directed at the person depressed but rather at the depression itself. The problem isn’t the person – always remember that.
4) Share and reminisce good times : I’m sure you must have had good times with them, remind them of the good times, the fun days. Remind them of the silly things they did last year,remind them of the best things that will cause their face to immediately lighten up just by remembering it.
Just any memory that you know will bring a smile on their faces and make them realize that if they were once so happy then they can still be happy and deserve to be happy. Motivate them and show that your belief in them is unwavering.
Theses are my guides and I do hope it helps someone out there. If you would like to add more please feel free to post it in the comments section.
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