When you have a friend or loved one who is dealing with depression, they may feel lonely and misunderstood. However, showing them how much you care and offering your support can make a major difference for them. It’s really all they can ask for from you. You may not know what supporting this person looks like and whether there are things you should and shouldn’t do, but this article is here to provide you with some guidance.
Here are several ways you can support someone who is dealing with depression:
- Validate their feelings. When someone is dealing with depression, they often just want someone to listen to them when they talk about their feelings. If your friend or loved one feels comfortable enough to talk to you about their depression, remember that they probably want your empathy, not your advice. Be patient with them, don’t assume you understand what they are going through, and listen much more than you talk.
- Set boundaries. Supporting your friend or loved one is a good thing, but it isn’t healthy if either one of you gets carried away. You have your own life, too, so be honest with yourself about what you can handle and be transparent with them about when you are available.
- Encourage them to seek treatment. Some people with depression believe that things will improve on their own, but that isn’t usually the case. Depression is a medical condition, and like other medical conditions, it needs to be treated by a professional. You can support your friend or loved one by encouraging them to get treatment and perhaps by helping them find a therapist.
If you need professional help with your depression, contact the office of Dr. James Campbell, LLC.