I feel very fortunate to have a support group. There are people who unfortunately do not have a support group. Many of the friends I have treats me better than my own family. They have been with me through the most trying of times. They spend time with me when I am having a difficult day. They give me rides, take me to lunch or dinner among many other things. There are times that people who are my friend will say something that are things you just should not say to someone who truly suffer from depression.
1. Oh… don’t be depressed. People to truly suffer from depression DON’T want to be depressed. You telling someone to not be depressed does not help. It does not give a solution to the problem.
2. If you smile it will trick your brain into believing that you are happy, then you will smile more. Someone told me to do that but it did not work. All it did was make me frustrated. When I talked to the therapist he said that is true for someone who does NOT suffer depression.
3. Unless the person asks for advice do not give it. My friend tried to give me advice about reaching out in the future. She made the assumption that their was going to be a next time. My friend did lacked any confidence in me. That just made me feel let down by the fact she doesn’t think that I can go on with my life without wanting to kill myself.
4. Last but not least… Just think positive and you won’t be depressed anymore. That is a myth. Just because a person may think positive doesn’t mean that it will bring the person out of depression. It may help for a moment, but if the underlying problem is not taken care of then the person will continue to suffer whether or no they have positive thoughts in their mind.
None of these comment are supportive. I understand people mean well. The most important thing to do is LISTEN and VALIDATE. You don’t have to agree with the person but we just want people to try to understand us!
Thanks for reading!