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I'm new here, how can I help a depressed loved one?

mk1993 profile image

Dear fellow members,

In which ways have you helped someone in a deep state of depression?

Which advice have you found most effective?

I'm a full-time carer and the person affected by the state of self-paralysing depression is someone close to me.

Kind regards,


10 Replies

hi Mary,

If the person you are caring for is so badly depressed, I think it needs medical help. From my experience, when someone is like that, nothing you can do will help, they just won't (or can't) listen and won't follow any suggestions you can make. It will just pull you down with them. Get proper help as soon as you can.


Wendy_J profile image
Wendy_J in reply to

Agree Get them to the GP if you can as getting some talking therapy will help but know this may take a while but at least if they are under the eye of the GP they may suggest other options like medication although this does not suit everyone and again takes time to have an effect. Go onto the mind web site has they have some great resources and information. Depression is a serious but very treatable disorder and know how it gets in the way of everyday life, causing such pain, hurting not just the person suffering from it, but impacts on everyone around them. Know you will be going through a mix of emotions as please know these feelings are all normal & It’s not easy dealing with your love ones depression, but make sure take care of yourself as it it can become overwhelming.

mk1993 profile image
mk1993 in reply to Wendy_J

Thank you Wendy for your response as well. I appreciate you taking your time and kindness to do so.

I will have a look at the web site you kindly suggested.

Thank you for describing the diffetent emotions that may be related to the situation. It helped me expand my view of related to these mental conditions.

Wish you a lovely Christmas and New Year's time x


mk1993 profile image
mk1993 in reply to

Thank you for your kind response Jan.

I appreciate your opinion about what what the helper's limitations may be in reality.

We have saught and received medical help but, unfortunately it has not been as effective.

I will keep looking for proper help as you adviced without draining myself too much.

Thank you again for sharing your experience and I wish you a good Christmas and New Year's time!


Hello there. That's really challenging for you, to be caring full time for one person and to have someone close to you suffering with depression too. I suppose your loved one has had a proper diagnosis of depression. It's really important as there's not much that can be done until it's identified and some kind of professional help offered, whether that's medications or talking therapies.

I've had a couple of rounds of clinical depression through my life too, and my biggest fear was really of anyone around me knowing about it. It wasn't a groundless fear either. I had let my (then) husband know about it, and on several occasions when we had disagreements, he would refer to it and me, in very deprecating terms. So it can be a very lonely thing.

I'd say your number one task is to make your loved one understand that you are always there for support, whether it's to talk or to sit and not talk. And to make it absolutely clear that you will never judge and that you understand that depression is a real and difficult illness, just as much as having, say, cancer, or arthritis. Also, know that you can't jolly anyone out of a depressive state. Having someone suggest shopping or a long walk in the sunshine can be absolutely unimaginably exhausting to someone with deep depression. You can't 'snap out of it', or 'consider how much better off you are than anyone else'. It just doesn't work that way.

So I'd say, be there, be solid and be supportive. But please remember that you have a pretty full workload as a carer. Be careful that your own needs aren't overlooked, before you become the next victim of this very debilitating illness.

mk1993 profile image
mk1993 in reply to

Sorry I have just read your second message where you have shared your thoughts on the topic.

It didn't occure to me that depression can make someone feel so ashamed as I interpreted from your message?

Having your husband using that knowledge against you on that at weak moments, must have been hurtful. To me such behaviour shows weakness of the human mind and helps me understand better why, we as humans have a tendency to hide our weakness'.

I'm trying to be as careful as I can in the situation being, not intruding too much. It didn't occur to me before how stressful a friendly request for day at a shopping mall could appear to someone in such dark space.

I take the advice on being supportive and good sports - all I sometimes really feel I have to offer is listen.

Wish you good Christmas and New Year's time, hope to keep in contact x


in reply to mk1993

Thanks for your good wishes, and mine to you too and the season's greetings. Of course there are other facets to depression, but with regard to the small group of people I have dared reveal my depressions to, a common reason for not seeking help at all, has been the fear of judgment. I think that, sadly, feeling a bit low through negative events in life, which lift after a few days, have somehow become confused with the actual mental illness of clinical depression.

I wouldn't normally take issue with anyone's opinion given here, but sadly your reply does show that you have absolutely no understanding of clinical depression. None of the things you have mentioned are right and can actually be damaging, and could retard recovery. What a clinically depressed person fears the most is the sort of misunderstanding of others which you have displayed in your reply. I don't want to offend you in any way, and you are, of course as entitled to your opinion as I am mine, but I really don't think your response is helpful in any way.

mk1993 profile image
mk1993 in reply to

Dear Callendarsgal,

Thanks for sharing your opinion bravely.

I would appreciate if you could share with me what your opinion is on the topic and helping someone with clinical depression. I'm interested to know more because, you seem to have a different but strong approach to the topic.

Kind regards,


in reply to

Callendersgal, does mindlessly throwing insults at someone whom you disagree with makes you an *expert* ? You have difficulty understanding a concept that is alien to you does not make that concept unworthy and dangerous.

Simply regurgitating and holding onto old schools of thoughts that have not worked well (if it had, depression wouldn't be such an epidemic), but are familiar and comforting to the general public, is ironically depressing and damaging in itself.

It is exactly this kind of backward thinking that keeps this misery going round in circle (stagnant at best) for such a long time.

Other people who give their time, out of the goodness of their hearts, deserve just as much right as yourself to contribute in a civilised manner.

You have also given plenty of interesting advice in the past, we have always appreciated.

If we are not allowed to think outside the box, then all the same old replies might as well be spewed out by robots. Please keep an open mind to allow the rest of the World a chance to make real progress.

I do not like confrontation, but feel that in this instance, your sheer arrogance is unhelpful and needs to be addressed.

Mary's well-written original post asked two valid questions:

1. In which ways have you helped someone in a deep state of depression?

2. Which advice have you found most effective?

Therefore, others were entitled to recount their experience. Whether they are useful for Mary to apply or not, it's not for you to trash.

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