Do You Know If Your Loved Ones Are Depressed?

“There are wounds that never show on the body that are deeper and more hurtful than anything that bleeds.”
― Laurell K. Hamilton

Often times, we don’t see or know if our loved ones are depressed. Sometimes it shows and sometimes it doesn’t, and sometimes you miss the signs because you don’t know what to look for. So my post today is to help you if you have concerns for loved ones.

Signs and symptoms:

  • Withdrawing from family and friends
  • Not doing their usual activities
  • Staying in their room a lot
  • Sudden alcohol or drug use
  • Not concentrating
  • Low scores at school
  • Dramatic mood swings
  • Really low lows and really high highs (in terms of mood)
  • Low confidence/self esteem
  • Not making eye contact
  • Tired or sick all the time
  • Headaches, stomach cramps etc
  • Significant weight loss or gain
  • Change in eating habits
  • Sleeping problems

Sometimes the sufferer could show some of these, all of these or even just one of these. This is nothing compared to what’s going on on the inside. If you are concerned that a loved one may be experiencing depression, I’d recommend doing the following:

  • Ask them if they are okay
  • Ask them if they need any help
  • Listen to them if they come to you for help
  • Know that there are places that can help them
  • Let them know they aren’t alone
  • Keep in mind that they may not be completely honest with you (this could be out of shame, being scared etc)
  • Simply, just support them

It can be hard to get your loved ones the help they need. Sometimes they don’t want help and sometimes they are too shy or don’t know how to go about it. There are many free and low costing centers that are available depending on your location. there are also tonnes of online support. Depression can happen out of nowhere or as a result of a stressful or life changing event. This could be death of a loved one, under pressure at school, peer pressure, trouble at work, change in circumstances, relationship break up and so on.

The main thing to keep in mind is that your loved one may be in a sensitive place, so remember to nicely phrase things and don’t make judgements or assumptions. People can experience depression in different ways and it’s always worth being mindful of this and taking this into consideration when discussing the topic to the said person. While someone may be depressed, they also have suicidal ideologies and may self harm. This isn’t to say that all do, but it is likely. Counselling is very important in dealing with depression and with suicide and self harm involved it’s urgent. In Australia, if you have concerns for loved ones or yourself you can call the following:

  • Lifeline on 13 11 14
  • Suicide call back is 1300 659 467

It’s important to seek the right help for yourself and loved ones. Depression is a very personal and debilitating thing, but you can always get help. It’s one of the hardest things to deal with, you feel new things, you feel nothing and you become someone you just aren’t and it’s hard enough dealing with that by yourself.

{Don’t forget: you are loved, you are cared for, you’re not alone and it will be okay in time }

I hope this has answered any questions you may have, stay tuned for more.

— Thanks for stopping by —

 

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