How can I deal with my mother who has depression?
Last Updated: 01/20/2020 at 12:18am
Tara Davis, Doctorate in Counselling Psychology
I have worked successfully with a wide range of difficulties. Nothing is more important than developing a warm, compassionate relationship with someone you can trust
Top Rated Answers
Try to do your best to be understanding and comforting to her, realize that maybe you can't fix everything for her but you can be a shoulder to lean on.
Always let her know, and show, how much you love her. Maybe seek professional help for her, if she would like it.
You have to be supporting and understanding. See things through her eyes, but don't criticize her. Try to encourage her to think out loud with you, and walk step by step with her through her mental processes. This will help you spot what is causing her anxiety or negative feelings. It would also be a help if you could brush up on basic cognitive symptoms of depression because understanding the cause makes it easier to treat. For example, people with depression usually exhibit dichotomous thinking, so you can help your mother by explaining (using simple, everyday examples) that the world is actually more varied and accepting than she thinks. If this is communicated well to her, it will help her deal with her anxieties more efficiently.
Continually show her that you support her, lend an open ear, listen to her thoughts and concerns. Show her that she is not alone and don't trivialize her struggle.
Having a family member with depression can be hard on everyone in the family. Be as supportive as you can, but remember that her depression is not your fault. If you need to, seek therapy or help for yourself!
Be supportive, but set clear boundaries which respect yourself. In caring for others, self care and awareness of your own limitations and needs is especially important. Also, be mindful of the triggering potential of familial relationships.
Being thoughtful, talking to her and showing her that she matters and no issue is worthless, because you want the very best for her.
Stand by her no matter what. Depression makes you feel unbearably alone & sometimes push people away when you need them the most.
I start by talking to her and encouraging her to do daily maintenance routines, such as brushing her teeth, taking a shower, and eating some healthy foods. I take her out of the house to go on walks with me at a park. Or we have a meal together at a local restaurant. I spend as much time with her as possible to cheer her up.
Be there for her, show her you love her. Take her out for dinner, or somewhere in the park. Make her feel young again, take her to shopping together (no matter if you're boy/girl) just tell her she looks great and say thank you after every meal,say thank you for everything she's been doing for you since you were born :)
As long as she is taking her meds and seeing a professional therapist/counselor every once in a while she should be fine. As for you this will be hard because you will take up the role of making sure she does just that to get better so that in the long run it will be better for you.
It can be really hard to have a family member or loved one go through depression. Often, we feel helpless because we want to be able to do something to make it better. Unfortunately, we can't "fix" other people. The good news is that just simple things like listening and being there for them can help them to a certain extent. When the person suffering is a caregiver, it's easy sometimes to resent them for not being there for you like they used to be. In these times, we have to try to empathize. It always helps to have someone else to talk to or vent to if you need to.
Dealing with a loved one that is facing depression can be quite challenging. First and foremost, you have to be very patient with that person. You also have to show that person that you care and let them know that you are there for them. Talk to them about what's wrong and if after talking about it things still don't get better, suggest that they seek professional help!
You have to understand your mother is dealing with negative thoughts and feelings. So don't get mad if the situation is a bit aggravating. Be the example on how to feel at the moment. Remind her what to be happy and thankful for. This will take time, she might have a situation that is pulling her down, and she might need someone to talk to. If anything, ask a good friend or family member of hers to help her out. If she has no access to anyone when she needs one, then recommend 7 Cups!
My best friend has depression and it's definitely not easy. You have to realize that sometimes it's not about what you say, but rather just listening or sitting with them in silence whenever they feel alone. Your first instinct will probably be to try and "fix" her but that isn't possible. Just finding little ways to show that you care such as surprising her with her favorite things, bringing her food, and helping out with things that she needs to get done but doesn't have any energy to do will go a lot further than you think it will. Remind her she can get through this and that you are there for her no matter what.
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