How to help family members with depression?
1. Communicate and interact with family members with depression
1) Recognize that depression in family members is not your problem. When they know that their family members are suffering from depression, some people feel that it has something to do with them. You know, it’s not your fault. Depression makes it difficult to establish emotional connections with family members.
2) Treat depression as a real physical illness. As a family member, you have to understand that they are enduring a double torture both physically and mentally. It is generally easy for people to attribute the problems of depression patients to their actions. But realizing that this is not entirely their fault can make you support him even more. The support of family members with depression can help them recover from depression.
3) Provide support. The most valuable thing for the recovery of depression patients is the support of family members. You can take the initiative to ask him to talk about his feelings, don’t judge him at this time.
4) Question guidance. When helping a family member with depression, you need to know his current state in time. Because depression may cause a series of problems, self-abuse, and even suicide. Guide family members to think about why they feel depressed, such as asking:
When did it start to feel bad?
What makes you feel bad?
What makes you feel better?
5) Don’t try to change family members with depression. It is futile to ask a depressed patient to change because he does not know what the problem is and how to change his feelings. If you can’t change him, you will feel depressed, he will also feel angry, and may even become more depressed than before, because it will make them feel more guilty.
6) Don’t play the role of rescuer, otherwise family members with depression will not actively learn how to manage their sadness. Depression will not go away on its own through external forces, and when you intervene in the life of a depressed family member, they will feel very discouraged to you, causing you to have negative emotions towards him. Accept his appearance, accept his state of mood swings.
7) Maintain a positive attitude. Encourage family members with depression to have hope in life, and you yourself have to be hopeful for them. Believe that family members can be treated and they can also change. If you have hope, you can help them and build confidence.
2. Identify whether family members are depressed
1) Does he feel sad?
2) Is he interested in losing?
3) Are family members more irritable?
4) Observe his sleep pattern.
3. Help family members seek help
1) Independent study. Understanding how depression is an episode is a good starting point to help depressed family members. This not only allows you to better understand what depression is, but also shows that you have been supporting him. He is very important to you, and it is very important to make people with depression feel this.
2) Discuss with family members. Depression of one person in the family will affect the whole family, so depression is not a matter for the patient alone. Family members sit down and discuss together, which can help him express himself and feel supported. This can also help you discover which words are valid and which are not.
3) Make an appointment with a consultant. If the depressed family member agrees, you can often meet with his counselor to learn about the progress. In this way, you can know if what you do at home is really helpful to him. The consultant can also provide you with some suggestions.
4) Do a family consultation. In addition to individual counseling for depressed family members, family counseling can help other family members express their feelings about depressed family members. Family counseling can restore relationships damaged by depression, especially marital relationships. Family counseling can also help the child understand his role and see that it is not his fault.
5) Help depressed family members to join a small circle. You can observe your friends to see if they have depression and see if they can talk to your family members. Or find other support groups and ask family members if they are interested in joining. With support partners, he can communicate with people with similar experiences to help him reduce loneliness, and you will not feel lonely because of caring for a depressed family member.
6) Help depressed family members find counselors. Be sure to encourage family members with depression to find a counselor who can meet their needs. The support of family members can play an important role when depressive family members are overwhelmed or even give up treatment.