The first thing you want to do if one of your loved one is depressed is educate yourself on depression, especially if you have never experienced it yourself. Look at online resources and familiarize yourself with the symptoms, warning signs, support available, treatment options, and more. If you’ve never had depression, it might be hard to empathize with your loved one about it or even understand why they act the way they do. Understanding and learning about depression can help with this. It’s also important to know the warning signs for more serious forms of depression to prevent any suicide risks. Check out the different support offered so that you have it on hand if you ever want to share it with your loved one.
Identify Warning Signs of Worsening Depression
Educating yourself is important because it can also help you identify any warning signs of worsening depression.This can include feelings of hopelessness, thoughts about death, substance abuse, withdrawing from social activities, and more. Be on the look out for worsening signs so that you can help your friend find outside support and eliminate any risks in the home.
When people get depressed, they can often feel very isolated. They may feel that they have no one they can talk to about their problems. Make sure you’re there for your friend when they’re going through a challenging time. Sometimes just being there and being a shoulder to cry on can help significantly. Some other ways to provide support to your friend are to show that you’re being a good listener, to keep them in the loop with your social circle, and to not belittle their condition. Depression is not something that someone can snap out of, so you should take that seriously. You can also offer your practical help. Sometimes someone with depression will neglect everyday tasks. You might find that they don’t have enough food in their home, or they are not keeping on top of household chores. Helping them do this is a great way to provide support to your friend.
Don’t Try to Be an Expert
Remember, you’re not a therapist and you shouldn’t try to be one. Depression is a serious mental illness and sometimes it takes professional help. Different treatments can work for different people. Leave the treatment of the illness to the professionals. The best thing that you can do for a depressed friend is to be there for them and encourage them to get professional help.
Encourage Them to Get Help
If your friend does seem interested in counseling, offer to help them review potential therapists. You can help your friend list things to ask potential therapists and things they want to mention in their first session. Going to the first session is always the hardest, so encouraging and supporting your friend to make that first appointment can be helpful if they’re having a hard time with it. Life Balance Therapy offers professional online therapy solutions and in-person therapy in San Antonio for r anxiety and depression treatment, families and parenting therapy, anger management, and more. To learn more about what we offer, you can click here.