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It’s not always easy to know what to say to someone who is depressed. Try not to be discouraged by concerns about saying the “wrong” thing. Too many people suffering from clinical depression feel isolated, which exacerbates their condition.

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If you’re at a loss for words, just say that—and tell your friend you’re here for them.

This article discusses how to talk to a depressed person.

Tell Them That You Care

These two simple words, “I care,” can mean so much to someone who feels as if the entire world is against them. A hug or a gentle touch of the hand can also convey this message. The most important thing is to reach out and let the person know that they are important to you. While you may feel awkward and unsure at first, keep in mind that what you say does not have to be profound or poetic. It should simply emanate from a place of compassion and acceptance.

Remind them that you are available to them.

Depression can make you feel as if no one understands or cares enough to try to understand what you’re going through, which can be isolating and overwhelming. You may not know exactly what this will look like at first, but remember that simply reminding your friend or a depressed person that you are someone they can lean on can mean the world.

Encourage them to consult with a doctor.

Depression treatments are an important part of recovering from depression, but many people are ashamed of their condition or skeptical that treatment will help. If they are already seeing a doctor, offer to assist with medication pick-up and keeping appointments on time.

Ask if they want to talk.

The most important thing you can do for a depressed friend is to simply listen sympathetically while they talk about what is bothering them, allowing them to release the pressure of pent-up feelings.

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Make an effort to listen without interfering. We all want to help those we care about and frequently offer quick fixes to alleviate our own feelings of helplessness.

Ask how you can help.

Depression puts a heavy burden on the person experiencing it, both physically and mentally, so there are probably many things you can do to help them recover. They may be hesitant to accept your offer out of fear of becoming a burden on you, so make it clear that you don’t mind and want to help in the same way that you know they would in a similar situation for you. It’s also possible that your friend’s depression has left them so tired and down that, they don’t know what kind of help to seek.

Remind Them of Their Importance

Depressed people frequently believe that their lives are meaningless and that no one would notice if they died. If you can honestly tell them how much they mean to you and others, they will realise that they have value and worth.

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When someone is struggling with feelings of worthlessness and depression, letting them know they are an important person in your life can mean a lot.

Emphasize that there is still hope.

You can reassure your friend that they have a real illness while also reassuring them that there is hope, because depression, like any other medical illness, is treatable. Your friend has a very good chance of feeling normal again with the help of medications and therapy.

Assure them that they are not defective or weak.

Those suffering from depression often feel weak or as if there is something wrong with them. While depression is a medical condition, those who suffer from it may believe it is a character flaw. Assure your friend that depression is a medical condition caused by a biochemical imbalance in the brain and that it does not imply that they are weak. Fighting back requires a great deal of strength, so they are probably much stronger than they believe.

The simplest way to start a conversation is to ask your friend if they are depressed. Don’t accuse, threaten, blame, or minimise your friend’s feelings. Let them know you care and that you are available to talk about it if they wish. Demonstrate your support, look for ways to assist, and remind them that effective treatments are available. Encourage them to seek help from a mental health professional and keep an eye out for suicidal thoughts or behaviour.

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This article was first published on 23rd June 2022


Grace Christos Is a content creator with a proven track record of success in content marketing, online reputation management, sales strategy, and so much more.

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