How many times have we asked our friend, who sounds a bit off, how he or she has been doing? Not many times definitely and for the mere reason of feeling avoided or ignored by them. Our egoistic self insists that we shouldn’t be making that extra effort when the other person isn’t. But we fail to realize that our friend may be in dire need of our help, both mental and emotional.
Anxiety, depression, stress and other mental health issues may force people to cut off social contact and suffer in silence. So, if your friend or someone you know, has been behaving a bit off and you know they might be suffering from depression, here’s how you can help them combat it.
1. Educate yourself
If you have never faced depression you may not know how hard it is for them to try and make everyone understand what they are going through. So, the foremost step in helping someone with depression is educating yourself about the problem and recognizing if any of your friends are going through this.
Some of the most common signs shown by someone in depression are:
- They might feel cranky and tearful more often
- They might experience usual problems with sleeping
- They may develop unusual eating habits
- They might miss out on many social activities
It might feel really difficult for someone with depression to try and talk out about their feelings. You also don’t need to push them if they are not okay with talking about it, but what you need to keep in mind is that you make sure your friend feels comfortable in the environment where you are encouraging them to talk. Starting a conversation and listening to what the person is saying are both equally important.
3. Help and encourage them to find help
Your friend who’s battling depression may sometimes be not aware of the problem they are facing and how to deal with it. Helping them in knowing that depression is treatable if dealt with properly is important. There are counsellors and therapists out there who can help them in these situations and finding them can sometimes be quite daunting for them, therefore helping them with this is what you can surely do.
4. Be ready to help in all emergencies
Knowing about the different forms depression is also important. Realizing depression can be linked with bad mood, anger, irritability, excessive fatigue etc. is helpful. You should also be prepared for any type of emergencies. Your friend in this may also attempt things like suicide but being prepared and knowing how to act in that situation is something that could be quite helpful.
5. Be patient
Depression is not a problem that you can snap out of in a day or so. It is something that can take a long time in being cured. You might encounter many situations where you would feel like walking out on them and continuing with your own life. But, staying patient and constantly helping the person having depression is what you need to do.
6. Take your own care
If you are reading this article, it suggests that you really want to help someone who’s battling depression. This deep caring you have for this person may also entice you to drop everything else aside, even your own self. But, what you need to realize is that you first need to take care of your own self if you want to be available for someone else.