When a partner is depressed, these tips from Families for Depression Awareness can help keep your own mental health in balance:
#1 Be part of the solution
The first thing to remember is that it’s not your fault; depression in your partner is a medical condition and not the result of something you did or said. After a diagnosis, try to learn as much as possible about the disease so you are able to provide useful support and know what can improve treatment outcomes for your partner.
#2 It’s normal to feel that way
It can be extremely difficult not to take symptoms such as anger and withdrawal personally. So, along with compassion for your partner, don’t be surprised to feel frustration, anger, and even hatred. It’s also common for partners to have feelings of resentment for a life changed or even grief because it may seem like your loved one is just not the same person. Counseling can help deal with your emotions.
#3 Find support
If you are taking on extra responsibilities around the house or in overseeing your partner’s treatment, look for other family members, friends, or even service professionals (a housecleaner, for example) who can take on some tasks. Also, because dealing with depression in a partner can be isolating, make an effort to get together with friends who are able to provide emotional support. Many find help in peer support groups for families of people with depression. Couples counseling helps address issues arising from the depression.
#4 Have hope
You may feel rejected and discouraged when nothing you do to help your partner seems to work. Keep in mind that depression is often cyclical—worse at times, easier to manage at others—and finding the right treatment may take time. And remember that 80 percent of people with depression improve with treatment.
via Esperanza – Hope To Cope
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