Depression is a mood disorder that can affect nearly every aspect of a person’s life; their behavior, relationships, career or education, and how they think. Most of all, depressive disorders affect the way that a person feels. It comes with intense feelings of sadness, despair, hopelessness, guilt, and shame. These feelings can make it challenging to attend to day-to-day tasks and activities. Plus, dealing with these feelings and behaviors can feel isolating. So, many people who deal with depression disorders don’t tell their loved ones about what they’re experiencing. This is why it’s important to know how to talk about depression with people you love. This way, those who are dealing with depression can get the support they need from those they care about most.
Before talking to those you love about depression and symptoms you’re dealing with, it can help to pinpoint who you want to tell. First and foremost, it’s important to understand that you don’t have to tell anyone about your mental health issues if you don’t want to. It’s completely up to you. So, if there is family or friends who you don’t want to talk to about depression you’re experiencing, don’t feel that you’re obligated to tell them. But, it’s also important to know that telling people about what you’re going through can be helpful. This is because sharing this part of your life with those you love can provide you with support and encouragement when you need it.
So, when determining who you’re going to talk to about your depression diagnosis, make sure you consider those you trust. And, those who you know will be a source of support and encouragement. These types of people will listen to you without judgment and not base your identity on your mental health experience.
So, now that you’ve considered who you’d talk to about your depression symptoms, it can be helpful to understand how to approach the subject. Certainly, you want to have this discussion in private, so it can help to have a conversation that’s planned and in a place that you’re comfortable with. Furthermore, it can help to identify what you want to talk about beforehand. You can do this by writing down topics and symptoms you want to address during your conversation and taking these notes with you. This will also let you keep the conversation on track.
You can’t know how a loved one will react to your depression diagnosis unless you actually tell them. And, since everyone’s different, every reaction will be different. It can be helpful to know and accept this before talking to people you care about regarding a depression diagnosis. Some people may be sad, some may try to offer advice, and some may be completely supportive and accepting. Whichever the case, make sure you understand that someone’s reaction to your depression diagnosis shouldn’t be taken personally by you. And, that it may take time for some of your loved ones to accept and digest the information about your diagnosis before moving forward.
You don’t have to have the same conversation about a depression diagnosis with every person you care about. For example, you may want to tell people you’re closer to more about what you’re experiencing. And, those you aren’t as close to very little. In any case, understand that how much or how little you share is completely up to you. Don’t feel forced into sharing any information you don’t want to. Additionally, on the other hand, if you’re feeling comfortable and supported, you don’t have to hold back either.
If you’re finding it difficult to speak with people you care about regarding your experience with depression, professional help is available. Specifically, family therapy can help both families and individuals dealing with depression with how to talk about depression. This way, a healthy and supportive environment is created and maintained when addressing depression and the symptoms that come with this mental health diagnosis.
Yellowbrick collaborates with adolescents and emerging adults, ages 16-30's, their families and participating professionals toward the development and implementation of a strategic “Life Plan.” An integrative, multi-specialty consultation clarifies strengths, limitations, and risks, and defines motivations, goals and choices.
A mental health condition that’s characterized by intense shifts in mood including both manic and depressive episodes.
People living with Major Depressive Disorder, or MDD, experience episodes of depression and sadness that are debilitating to daily life.
Those living with anxiety disorders experience high levels of anxiety and stress that interfere negatively with daily life.
A mental health issue in which a person’s cognitive function is impaired, resulting in symptoms like experiencing challenges with conducting speech, reading and writing, and behavior.
Mental health disorders that negatively affect a person’s behaviors, thought patterns, and function. People diagnosed with these disorders experience challenges with managing relationships and understanding various situations.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a mental health condition that people can develop as a result of experiencing traumatic situations, characterized by symptoms including flashbacks, avoidance behaviors, and more.
A mental health condition that is characterized by specific symptoms of forgetfulness and lack of concentration, which makes it challenging to complete necessary tasks.
Mental health conditions that interfere with a person’s eating habits, thought patterns, and behaviors in negative ways.
A mental health disorder diagnosable with the DSM-5 that is characterized by both obsessions and compulsive behaviors.