For someone who has never experienced mental illness, Depression may be very hard to understand. People withdraw, they may become unable to work or go to school. They might not do things around the house. Depression can make you always exhausted, the person in question might be sleeping a lot. They might even complain of physical pain. The person can be easily agitated and hard to be around at times.
You may be compelled to speak to them about what they are going through. There are most definitely things you shouldn’t say to someone who is suffering from Depression:
- I know how you feel.
- You’re lazy.
- Why don’t you just kill yourself?
- I’ve been through worse.
- I don’t have time for this right now.
- Snap out of it.
- I don’t know how you lay in bed all the time.
- You’re just being negative.
Here are some suggestions of what to say to someone with Depression:
- I love you.
- I care.
- You’re not alone in this.
- I’m not going to leave you.
- Do you want a hug?
- I’m sorry you’re in pain.
- You are important to me.
- I’m here to listen.
Please keep in mind Depression is an illness and it is not a choice. Some people may need to seek treatment and possibly take medication to get better and to be able to function like themselves again. The best thing you can do for someone who is suffering from Depression is to support them and be available to listen if they need to vent. You probably wouldn’t cut someone out of your life if they had Cancer or Diabetes. Depression is another illness that may respond to treatment and really could happen to anyone.
Another thing to consider is those that are suffering from Depression may be contemplating suicide. It’s not necessarily the most comfortable topic for someone to ask about. But if the person close to you appears to really be struggling, you should probably ask them if they are thinking about it. If they are, then you need to get a professional involved right away. Suicidal Ideation is a very serious matter.