They Are Sensitive To Other Peoples Feelings And Actions
Depressed individuals care and they care a lot. They care about how you feel, how you see them, how you see yourself and what others need. It may be that they care too much! Some of the most caring people I have ever met are people that suffer from some sort of depression. Let them know what you need and what you do not need.
Set boundaries with them that are respectful, clear and considerate. Also, ask about what their needs and wants are and let them know what you are capable of giving, or not giving. There is nothing better than a sound relationship based on healthy communication and boundaries.
Dont Put Pressure On Yourself To Have All The Answers
Especially for those that are in long term relationships, it can feel like youve done something wrong that your partner could be experiencing depression. Be compassionate with yourself and acknowledge that you arent expected to fix or solve the situation, just as you didnt cause it. Its important to remember that the support of a licensed therapist may be beneficial for those who experience symptoms of depression that interfere with daily life. Anisha Patel-Dunn, D.O., Chief Medical Officer at LifeStance Health
Be Understanding & Supportive
Remember that your partner is going through a tough time, and they need your support more than ever. Dont get frustrated if they dont feel like doing anything or if their mood changes rapidly. Just be there for them and let them know that you love them no matter what. Valentina Dragomir, Psychotherapist and founder of PsihoSensus
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Attend Positive Activities With Them
If your partner is hesitant or lacking the drive to go to therapy or do other healthy activities, offer to do it together. For instance, engaging in online couples and marriage counseling services can be an excellent way for both partners to find external support and learn healthy coping mechanisms, while avoiding the obstacle of convincing your partner to leave home. Similarly, getting your partner motivated to engage in activities like walks and dinners is easier when you go along with them.
One Of The Hardest Things About Depression Is Understanding It This Advice Will Help
Depression is devastating. When someone is suffering from depression, their entire life is blown apart. It can be a massive struggle just to make it through each day. But they arent the only ones who struggle. The people who are often forgotten are the loved ones of a person with depression. No-one tells them how to cope. They dont know what to do. I would like to try and offer some advice to those people.
Knowing somebody you love is struggling with depression leaves you feeling incredibly helpless. You feel if you could say the right thing, or do something special, that maybe you will be able to help them to get better. But you dont know what to say or what to do.
You try a gentle approach, you try a firm approach. You give them space, you try to get them to open up. You suggest things that can help. You buy them presents. You say encouraging things, you get frustrated and argue. Yet nothing you do seems to make any difference.
From my experience, the big mistake that people often make is that they treat depression as a mood, as if saying or doing the right thing will lift the depression. What you must remember is that depression isnt a mood its a very debilitating illness.
That is EXACTLY what depression is like.
This is the WRONG approach.
And most of all, when they talk, listen.
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A Depressed Person Can Be Selfish Sometimes
On the flip side, your great listener/depressed partner can sometimes be selfish. He or she doesn’t mean to be, but depression has this nasty way of making you feel as if it’s just you locked in your own world, with your own morbid thoughts.
It’s hard to see someone else’s perspective when trapped in your insular world of depression.
No matter how sad or blue your partner is today, once you understand how people with depression love differently, be a supportive partner and see the value in your lover’s life experiences. And chances are, this depression too shall pass.
Youre Going To See A Side To Them They Hate
Theres a reason they hide it. Theres a reason a lot of people havent seen it. But youre bound to when you love someone. That person who is positive and upbeat and lights up every room they walk into is only that way because theyve lived through whats on the other side of it. Its going to be hard at first.
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What Can You Expect When Dating Someone With Depression
Just so were clear: Many people who struggle with depression also have very healthy, happy relationships. It starts with understanding what your partner may or may not need.
If you are dating someone with depression, it is fair to expect unique challenges as well as highs and lows, says Miller. Everyone has off days, so a partner should be understanding of this. For example, if your partner is having a particularly low day or struggling with their depression by either staying in bed or not wanting to go out, understand things may not always go as planned. Be flexible and understanding.
Its also important to check your own emotions. If your partner needs space or time to themselves, respect that boundary and give them what they need. More often than not, when your partner needs distance, its more about their own needs than it is about your relationship. It may be helpful for you, as a partner, to see a licensed therapist to talk through these feelings too.
Also, understand that your partners emotions may fluctuate easily. Dont fault your partner for their mood changes, depression is physiological and emotional, says Phillips.
Dont Stop Loving Them
I know at times its extremely difficult to love someone with a mental illness. But dont mistake the difficulties you have with your depressed lover as difficulties you wont have with someone else. Everyone has their faults, and every relationship has its problems. In your relationship, depression plays a role. In other relationships, its ADHD, BiPolar, PTSD, or a myriad of other mental illnesses. Its also character flaws and lifestyle struggles.
People suffering from depression are just people who struggle to cope with the stress of their life differently than others. That doesnt make them less lovable, or less loyal. It makes them empathetic and giving. Often selfless to a fault, and capable of loving someone else with much intensity.
Loving someone with depression is not for the faint of heart. It can be scary at times. When I handed my then-boyfriend that letter, he was scared. And he reacted out of fear. Try to respond with understanding. When you are faced with what looks like a selfish act from your lover, act from empathy. Understand that their feelings of despair that drive them to suicidal thoughts come from feeling worthless. They are only seeking to make others lives more manageable. They think they are a burden to those they love, even though this is their chemical imbalance lying to them. Remind them, how much you love them. How much you need them. Help them to see their worth, and they will thrive despite their depression.
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Things To Remember When You Love A Person Who Has Depression
1. Depression is not a choice.
Depression is one of the most helpless and frustrating experiences a person can have. Its sometimes feeling sad, sometimes feeling empty, and sometimes feeling absolutely nothing at all. There are times when depression can leave someone feeling paralyzed in their own mind and body, unable to do the things they used to love to do or the things they know they should be doing. Depression is not just a bad day or a bad mood and its not something someone can just get over. Remember no one chooses to be depressed.
2. Saying things like itll get better, you just need to get out of the house, or youll be fine is meaningless.
Its easy to tell someone these things because you think youre giving them a solution or a simple way to make them feel better and to ease their pain, but these kinds of phrases always come across as empty, insulting, and essentially meaningless.
Saying these phrases to them only create more tension within, making them feel as though theyre inadequate, and like youre not acknowledging what theyre going through by trying to put a band aid on a much larger issue. They understand youre just trying to help but these words only make them feel worse. A silent hug can do so much more than using cliched sayings.
What you can say instead:
Avoid offering advice but instead just let them know youre there for them and ask them questions to help guide them in discovering what could make them feel better.
The 7 Most Important Things To Know When You Love Someone With Depression
By Laura Lifshitz Written on Dec 12, 2021
Depression might just be one of the worst things ever because it’s as if you’re sinking no matter how hard you try to swim to the surface. It’s as if you’re bound and gagged and no matter what knife you use to slice the bounds, you can’t.
I’m what they call a bubbly, effervescent woman, but I’ve experienced depression in my life. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, 14.8 million American adults have Major Depressive Disorder per year. That’s a lot of people.
When you love someone with depression, your relationship may not always be easy. Loving someone who is dealing with depression takes work.
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He Does Not Want To Be Depressed
Depression is not a choice. If any man with depression had a choice, he would choose to be rid of it.
One of the most hurtful things you can do to a man with depression is say that it is his fault, that he could choose to be better if his will or character was stronger. Men have a responsibility to try to overcome their depression symptoms so they dont negatively affect the ones they love. Even the strongest men, however, are not immune to illness and cannot cure it alone.
If the behavior hurts you emotionally, you should know he most likely did not intend to, said matchmaker Cassie Moffit, who has successfully matched couples with mental illness. Knowing this will allow you to be more patient and understanding.
They Love It When You Reach Out To Them Unexpectedly
I believe that one of the biggest assumptions of someone dealing with a bout of depression is that they want to be left alone. Although that could seem true at times, it is a dose of healthy social medicine when a friend, a loved one, or a neighbor drops by to say hello. One growing theory about the root of depression in our society is the lack of social relationships in our communities and even in our families. There is a constant dose of emptiness and disconnection in our everyday interactions due to overworking, television and technology. People managing depression need more company, more friends, more people reaching out to them, and more people wanting to spend time with them, not the opposite.
The next time you find yourself thinking about someone that is going through a depressive state, think of a nice, engaging and friendly act you can show them, instead of choosing to stay away from them. If we use the example of Jesus, He was always with people. To take it further, Jesus chose to spend time with trusted associates and not be alone too often. In fact, it was when He was alone that Satan chose to tempt him the most.
Mother Teresa put it very well, The most terrible poverty is loneliness, and the feeling of being unloved.
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And Never Under Any Circumstances Use The Following Words:
- Just think positively.
- You could just choose to be happy.
- Stop wallowing in self pity!
- Its probably just a bad week.
- Think of all the people less fortunate than yourself!
- Stop feeling so sorry for yourself.
Any of the above sentences are capable of causing more harm than any sort of good, and no matter how frustrated you feel, you must never ever use them towards someone suffering from depression. If they could choose to be happy, if they could be in a better place, they would have already done that. If they could just think positive, they wouldnt be depressed. If they could fix themselves in an instant they would but they cannot.
There is no handbook that can truly teach self care because every individual who suffers with depression is different. They need different things. But they all share one thing in common: When someone with depression tells you they are having a bad week or month and actually trusts you enough to tell you why, they arent doing it because they want you to fix them. They are telling you because they believe you are important enough to them to know why they are not feeling a hundred percent that day. Respect and love them for doing that. Because they clearly respect and love you.
How To Love Someone With Depression
Your partner has just told you they are depressed. And that they are really struggling with it, especially this particular week. You want to be there for them but you dont know how to. You dont even know where to begin.
So heres the 101: depression is one of the most difficult things to cope with in life. Mainly because depression is a trickster. It convinces you there is nothing actually wrong with you but all you feel is hopelessness. It convinces you that you are worthless, that there is nothing for you to live for and everyone around you would be happier if you just disappeared. That is what goes through the head of someone who is depressed every single day. When you love someone with depression, this is what they need you to understand and do.
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How To Encourage Your Partner To Get Help
It can be difficult to get your depressed partner to start treatment. Depression saps motivation and energy, so things like finding a doctor and even making an appointment can seem daunting to your depressed partner.
There are also negative thinking patterns involved, where your partner might believe their situation is hopeless and that it’s pointless to seek treatment.
If your partner resists getting help:
Encourage them to see a doctor for a general check-up
Offer to help them find a doctor or therapist
Let them know you’ll go with them to their appointment
Be Alert To Signs That Treatment Is Not Working
On the other hand, the absence of any such signs most likely means that ones depression is not improving and may be getting worse, Halaris notes, adding that a major concern in the absence of improvement is whether your loved one is having suicidal thoughts.
This is where you need to very gently raise the question whether they are having even fleeting thoughts of their life not being worth living, Halaris says.
According to Mayo Clinic, signs your loved one may be considering suicide include:
- Making statements such as I wish I were dead or I wish I hadnt been born
- Purchasing a gun or hoarding pills
- Fixating on violence, death, or dying
- Withdrawing from social contact with others
- Feeling hopeless or trapped in their current situation
- Telling people, goodbye, as if theyre going to disappear
- Getting their affairs in order or giving away their belongings with no other plausible explanation for doing so
If your loved one shows signs of considering or planning to take their own life, Halaris and Riba recommend taking steps to reduce their risk of attempting or completing suicide, such as:
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Icipate In Your Partners Healing
Depression is treatable. Therapy, medications, and lifestyle changes can help people get better. Professional therapists are trained to support people in managing their depression symptoms. If youre dating someone with depression, encourage them to get help. And remember, if youre juggling depression and love, the best thing you can do is be your partners cheerleader, support them within their boundaries, and recognize the hard work theyre putting into healing.
At Rosglas Recovery, our expert psychologists take a comprehensive and holistic approach totreating depression. Besides evaluating the biological factors that could be causing depression, we also take into account the social and lifestyle factors that are unique to each individual. If youre dating a person who is struggling with depression, dont wait until your relationship has been damaged permanently. Talk to us today and take the first step toward healing.
Keep An Eye Out For Self
Many people with depression experience thoughts of suicide. It may not be possible to observe when people experience this internal struggle, but occasionally there are warning signs. If your partner is threatening to hurt themselves or suddenly becomes calm and at peace after a period of extreme sadness, you may want to reach out for professional help. You can also call the emergency mental health hotline by dialing 988 .
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