13 Things To Remember When You Love A Person Who Has Depression | Thought Catalog
It can be very stressful coping with another person's depression; and, if you aren't careful you may become depressed yourself. It's okay to take. Managing depression and anxiety in a committed relationship A lot of people say they find a metaphor such as the black dog useful as a way to clearly define. But there comes a time in every relationship when it may be necessary Trying to sustain a relationship with a depressed person can make the.
When looking through their unnatural lens, you can start to feel that there is a problem with the relationship, or with one party within it. I like how it externalises the course most relationships run at some point, and shows how support can help a couple avoid crisis. A more detailed diagram shows the ongoing post-crisis path at different levels.
With the right support a couple can return to the original path. Well, in my experience; Establish it as something external to you both - distinguish between what is you and your relationship and what is the depression or anxiety. Step back and set yourselves up as a team, dealing with and managing the illness together.
Viewing it as external to you both stops it being associated purely with one individual or becoming too intertwined with the rest of the relationship. A lot of people say they find a metaphor such as the black dog useful as a way to clearly define the illness as an external party. This brings me nicely on to; Find your own language to talk about it and use this to help your partner understand.
Personally, when I get very low I get needy and dependent. Because these are more negative experiences one might have in a relationship anyway, it's important to identify that these are a result of the depression or anxiety and not of something else going on.
Try and identify how the illness makes you interact differently and explain this. Saying 'when I'm low, I feel really needy, so I might be a bit dependent and irrational today' sets you up much better to manage the day than communication purely based on the current feeling of neediness 'why are you going out today, I really want you to stay in, do you even love me? This leads me on to; Examine your motivations before you act If you are feeling depressed, a symptom of that might be that you feel needy and dependent.
If your partner doesn't realise this is a symptom of your depression they may well feel your behaviour is irrational - and tell you so. You might feel that they don't understand you and respond by ignoring them or going quiet and refusing to open up.
But what is your motivation here? Fundamentally, what you might want is for your partner to pay you the attention your 'needy feeling' wants today.
But playing these kind of games isn't the most straightforward way to get there. It may well start an argument or cause upset when it doesn't go your way and, for example, they just leave 'because you're ignoring me'. So instead - before you take an action which might affect your relationship - try to establish what it is that you really need and think about whether there is a clearer, more open path to get it.
13 Things To Remember When You Love A Person Who Has Depression
Use what works even if it feels weird It's really common to feel as though a relationship should flow along wonderfully and if it doesn't then there is something wrong with it. In fact this is quite a disempowering viewpoint. You have the power to make it work if you both want to.
Sometimes this involves finding tools and techniques to help. Some of the suggestions for managing really difficult times in relationships include ones using numbers to help you communicate when you're not feeling up to a long conversation.
Deciding what the numbers mean 1 might be 'I'm just about doing ok, but could use some love today so be patient with me' and 5 might be 'I'm really struggling, I don't even feel able to talk about it but I need you with me today so much I need you to prioritise me over other plans' and then using them to communicate how you feel could help when, in the moment, you're not able to put it into words.
Another tactic if you are struggling to put everything you want to say into words is to try writing it down. It might feel odd initially to hand your partner a letter or send them an email when you live in the same house - but you might find that it works. You have more time to formulate what you want to say and they have more time to absorb it and work out how they feel about it. These techniques might not work for you but my point is that you shouldn't feel odd about using whatever does.
It's actually a really normal and healthy way to negotiate difficult times effectively. On a slightly different note - be prepared and open to trying things that you might not think is 'you'. This might be a mindfulness course or some counselling - as a couple or individually. Finding new spaces and ways of managing and talking about how to strengthen your couple 'team' can be really valuable - and in ways you don't always expect.
Enlist the help of your partner in helping you to recognise when you're struggling and reminding you it won't last forever - and don't disregard it when they do. In a previous blog entry, I wrote about how when you are in the midst of a depressive episode it's hard to imagine that you will ever feel better.
You can't remember what it feels like to feel good. You often need help in this state to be reminded about what feeling better feels like. Your partner can help with this. When they do remind you it's very easy to push it aside - that's what depression makes you do.
But try and remember to listen to them - even if in the moment you can't genuinely believe what they are saying. Acknowledge that your mood is affecting your behavior. And give him permission to remove himself from the fight, says Bonior. Instead, he should look for ways to diffuse situations before they blow up. A good start, says Bonior, is saying something like: Depression makes you want to withdraw into your own island of despair.
While that may be all you can manage, eventually even the most devoted partner will get cabin fever and resent your diminishing social life. Find an activity outside the house that brings you joy.
Gardening, yoga, talking a walk, listening to music, laughing with a friend. Look for opportunities to take you out even for a short time. A midday movie could be a good choice. Walking and caring for a pet will get you out of the house and can lift you out of your funk. It worked for a client of psychologist Stephanie Newman, Ph. Instead of getting overwhelmed by the process, take baby steps.
Helping Your Depressed Partner: How to Promote a Healthy Relationship – Bridges to Recovery
Convey support, not criticism. Preparing a soothing bath filled with your favorite scented oils and offering to wash your hair: Also, some comfy, yet fashionable clothes, such as yoga pants, would make a great feel-good gift, suggests Paz.
Depression affects 20 million people in any given year and is a serious enough disorder to compromise one's ability to function normally day to day. Find out if you're just blue or if you might be clinically depressed.
Depression in Relationships: When to Say Goodbye
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