Watching a loved one struggling with the deep pain of depression can be heartbreaking. You cannot fix your loved one’s depression, but you can help ease their symptoms and encourage them to keep moving forward in recovery.
Be Extra Loving
You aren’t going to love your partner or loved one out of depression. However, some studies have found that extra displays of love can help someone who is depressed feel the love they need to feel from others, helping them to feel it toward themselves. How you react to their episodes of depression in terms of the love you give them directly affects the way they perceive themselves and their ability or worthiness to be loved. By being extra loving, you’re letting them know they are worth not just your love and care, but their own as well.
Spend Quality Time With Them
Episodes of depression can conjure up a lot of feelings of guilt and shame, resulting in behaviors which try to push people away when they are needed the most. Your loved one will be most benefitted by spending a lot of quality time with you, even if they won’t admit it. You don’t have to plan activities to try to get them out of depression, but you don’t have to enable their depression either. Exercise is a proven method for reducing the symptoms of depression. Find a creative way to get them moving for just a little bit or engaged in an activity which takes their focus off their depression.
Support Yourself As Well
Being the loved one, partner, or caretaker of someone living with clinical, chronic depression can be exhausting. You are in need of all the same love and support as your loved one. The best way to support someone is to make sure you are supported. Airlines use this example in their safety measures. You are instructed to put on your oxygen mask before placing one on a neighbor. The saying “you can’t transmit what you haven’t got” also applies. Have regular appointments with your own therapist, your own self-care regime, and spending time with friends or family who lift you up.
Avalon By The Sea provides primary residential care to men and women needing treatment for depression. Our programs are focused on bringing healing and balance to mind, body, and spirit. For a confidential assessment and more information on our programs, call 1 (888) 958-7511 today.