I really hope that people will raise their knowledge about depression and stop seeing depressed people like negative and boring. Depressed people need help. The only difference between other conditions and depression (or any other mental conditions) is that people know almost nothing about them and those who suffer from it are not able to seek help. A depressed person doesn’t always know is depressed. If you notice that a person you love is suffering from depression I really hope you will be at least try to educate and try to help. As a psychologist, I really do want to help people but people sometimes fear to come and seek help. This is why I do believe that family and close friends can help a depressed person a lot. Don’t forget to always consult with your doctor and recommend your depressed loved one the same thing. Every person is individual and every person has different needs. I really hope your loved one will feel better soon but I would love to share with you some great tips to help your friend with depression.
First, Found Out What Is Depression
Depression is a common mood disorder that can occur in every one of us, regardless of age and gender. Unfortunately, the number of cases of depression increases, but fortunately, the ways of dealing with her and the awareness of its existence are increasing too. There are several types of depression which I won’t be explaining here.
Depression VS Depressed Mood
Make sure she is depressed and not just in a depressed mood. It’s very similar but also very different. A Depressed person won’t reach out for help. It is very hard for them to come out of their “black cloud” and reach out for help. Your friend maybe won’t even know that is suffering from depression. Depressed mood is a symptom of depression but not depression itself. When in depression, the person almost always feels depressed, even on a sunny day, birthdays, celebrations, big happy life events etc. This sign alone is almost never a sign of serious depression. Many people think they are depressed but they only have depressed mood which is very normal and common.
Yes! Hugging and physical contact can be great for treating depression. Hug her a lot. It helps with hormones and somehow it is a way of support and expressing love. Be gentle and calm. But also be aware if she doesn’t want intimacy contact to respect that. Maybe she will feel estranged and uncomfortable, so just stay positive, smile and be natural. It is very important to keep your boundaries and to respect hers.
Meetings at home
If it’s OK with you, stay home, or somewhere where there are not a lot of people if she doesn’t want to dress up and go out. Maybe you can try to convince her to open up the windows, to laugh at some inside jokes etc. Be aware that she can’t be the same person after night. Time is everything, especially if depression came after a grief or big life event. Crowded places can be very unpleasant for a depressed person. Why not just stay at home and make homemade coffee or tea? If you are a real friend you won’t even think to pursue a depressed person to go out. Remember depressed mood in PMS is not the same as suffering depression!
Don’t even think to drink alcohol. Alcohol is the worst enemy of depression. She will feel even worse than before. Try to drink fruity juices small amounts of coffee and green tea because she may suffer from insomnia.
Go for a walk in the park. It is always a good idea to walk in the park or somewhere quiet near the place where you live. Take a long walk and enjoy the sunshine. Walking is good for everyone so you will benefit from this too.
Plan a picnic
Healthy food, blanket, and peaceful environment is a place where she can relax and maybe talk with you about her feelings. Walking in the park, hiking and picnic are great for someone who doesn’t want to be in a crowd. She will leave the house and have fun but also she will keep her privacy.
It is always good to make changes. Convince her to make a new hairstyle, something that will suit her and make her look prettier. After that, you can make manicure and pedicure, and if you can’t afford it in the salon, make it at home as a party with music and food.
Oh Yeah! All women love shopping. Sale? Yes. Go and buy some new clothes that go great with your new hairstyles and nails.
Maybe the most important thing is to listen to her. It is not easy for her to open up. Don’t act strangely. Just be normal and listen. Support her. Tell her all the good things in her life, tell her how smart she is, how gentle she is. Just be honest and give her a compliment. Help her boost her self-confidence and prepare for the world.
Maybe she wouldn’t have the energy to go to the gym, but you can always do squats, running and some easy exercises at home or in the park. It will be fun. Make sure to start slow. Exercising is good for your body and your hormones and has long-term benefits. This will also make you feel good about your body too.
Don’t forget, neither of these things is bad for you. You will enjoy them too. But be careful because sometimes depression can be “contagious”.
Depressed mood and bad thoughts can make you feel exhausted.
Also, don’t forget to encourage your friend to seek treatment.
If you want to know more about depression and how to deal with it, check out these 10 Natural Depression Treatments.