Loving someone who deals with depression is not easy but it is very worth it. While you might not always know how to handle things, being able to educate yourself on how to support your partner properly can make a world of a difference overall.
Depression is not the same for all who have it but there are things we as people who support and try hard to be there for those facing can do to help make things a little less hard on them. When the person you love is going through a depressive episode, it can make you feel very closed out, and as if nothing you do will help but there are small things you can do that will mean a lot in the long-run.
Below I am going to go over some of the dos and don’ts when it comes to depression and helping people through it. While some of these might not sound like much they are huge in the eyes of those with depression. Depression is a mental illness and it’s not something that just goes away.
7 Dos And Don’ts For When Your Partner Is Feeling Depressed:
1. Do give them space when they ask for it.
When someone with depression asks for space please know it is something they truly need. They need to be on their own to really go through the things they’re feeling. It’s not that they’re pushing you away it’s just that they’re going through something you might not be able to truly understand.
2. Do remind them that help is out there but don’t push them into anything.
Just because they refuse to get help doesn’t mean they don’t appreciate your efforts. You shouldn’t be afraid to remind them that there are options out there for this kind of thing. However, you should not be putting them in the position where they are being forced into doing things they’re not comfortable with.
3. Don’t be overly positive but do try to keep your head up a bit during times like these.
Being positive when your partner is down is important. They want to see you well and content in order to help them find a way back to that place as well. Sure, being overly positive is a bit much but just acting as per usual and not getting down on their level might make a difference. If they feel as though they’re bringing you down they will end up feeling worse overall.
4. Do let them know when you’re concerned but be direct about it.
Don’t be afraid to let them know that you’re worried about them but don’t do it in a manner that makes them feel like they’re to blame. Just tell them you’re concerned about them because you care and be direct. Don’t complain about their lack of want for doing things and so forth.
5. Don’t try to fix things, this isn’t something that can be ‘fixed.’
You cannot fix depression and so trying to simply make things better isn’t going to work. You are only going to waste your efforts and make your partner feel more-so like something is wrong with them. Remember this is a mental illness.
6. Do be willing to put yourself in their shoes from time to time.
Stop thinking of things from the point of view of someone without depression. If you do not have depression you do not get what your partner is facing entirely. Put yourself in his or her shoes and really work on educating yourself on depression as a whole.
7. Do sit down and talk with your partner, listen to all he or she has to say.
Don’t close your partner off and lock them out because they’re being a bummer for you or because you don’t get what they’re going through. Be willing to sit with them and talk about things. While you can’t fix things, you can lend an ear when it’s needed.