Help a loved one with depression…..

A lot of people still feel that help should be sought only when a person is violent or exhibits suicidal or homicidal tendencies. All of us have felt low at some point in our lives…..if we were pampered and had an amazing childhood, being deprived of a bicycle or a special treat would be enough to cause a bout of sulking and ‘I’m not loved’ drama, which would end as soon as it had begun. Growing up makes us face the stress of living and earning our bread and the affection of a significant other. No matter how cynical we may act, we all know that love makes the world a happier place, but unrequited love has often pushed people over the edge. Whatever the reason, if a family member or friend is feeling low, here is what you can try to do…

  1. Read up about it, you will realise that it may not be in the person’s hand to ‘snap out of it’
  2. TALK, LISTEN, do not try to offer advice unless asked for
  3. Try to motivate the person to seek professional help, offer to find a good psychiatrist and go with them and assure them you will keep it a secret if they so wish
  4. Spend TIME with the person, pick up the phone when they call, be there
  5. Since it’s a loved one, you know what they like to hear, watch, eat. Organise a special evening for them at your home with their favourite movie, food and music
  6. Take them for a vacation to a quiet place, of their choice
  7. Talk of fun times and positive qualities in the person
  8. Get them to make a list of all that is good in their lives
  9. Pet therapy….if they love dogs, take a borrowed puppy to their home for a few hours
  10. Coffee and chocolates are generally mood elevators
  11. Wear bright colours and make the other person wear them too
  12. Private Karaoke and dancing for the two of you, sing and dance with abandon
  13. Ask them to do something for you, like paint a greeting card or iron or play a game, make them feel needed and get involved in a hobby
  14. Make them smile, even a false smile elevates the mood, laughing out loud helps
  15. Talk to their family and other loved ones and get a medical evaluation…..this can be life saving, even if the person resists initially, knowing that you will be there and discreet will encourage them to get help. Several diseases may manifest as a depressed state of mind.                                                                                                                        Help, don’t judge, my mother used to say ‘we are all sealed envelopes, we never know what is really going on inside a person’s body or mind’………every day that you can get out of bed on your own and manage a smile, help someone else to smile 🙂

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