8 Ways To Emotionally Support A Family Or Friend With Mental Health Issues
Dealing with mental health problems require lots of willpower and courage and who better than our loved ones to offer some unconditional support when it matters the most? If you know someone who is suffering from a mental health issue, here's how you can support them wholeheartedly.
How to provide emotional support to a loved one suffering from a mental health problem. Pic Credit: Freepik
A person you care about may be experiencing mental health problems, and your support can make all the difference. Mental health is an important aspect of total well-being. Supporting someone emotionally, though, can be difficult. Be it depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder, understanding the prevailing thought process of the individual and comforting them with the right words and actions can make a huge difference in their lives.
The following eight suggestions can help you support a friend or family member who is experiencing mental health problem(s).
1) Do some basic research
It's critical to understand the exact mental health issue your loved one is dealing with. Learn more about their illness by reading books, and articles, or speaking with mental health specialists. You'll be able to empathise more easily and provide more helpful support with this understanding.
2) Listen without any judgements
Listen carefully without passing judgment. Encourage the person you care about to be open with their thoughts and feelings. Sometimes, just talking to them can help them feel better.
3) Just be there for them
Even if you don't say much, your physical presence on occasion might be comforting. Spend time with your loved one, participate in their favourite hobbies, or just be there to give them a sense of security.
4) Be empathetic
When talking about mental health, choose your words carefully. Do not use offensive language or mocking comments. A safe environment for your loved one to open up can be created by speaking in an empathic and non-judgmental manner.
5) Give space when needed
Recognise that sometimes your loved one may require some alone time. When someone is ready to interact or express their feelings, respect their limits and give them space. Pressure may make them more stressed.
6) Offer them help with chores
A person suffering from a mental health disorder often loses its capacity to perform everyday tasks. To lessen their load, offer to help with chores, grocery shopping, or other responsibilities.
7) Encourage them to seek medical help
While your assistance is greatly appreciated, it's crucial to urge your loved one to seek professional assistance if required. Offer to help in locating a support group, therapist, or psychiatrist who can offer specialised care.
8) Focus on self-care
The emotional strain of supporting someone with mental health concerns can be severe. Make sure you give your health top priority as well. Find your own network of supporters, get therapy if necessary, and give yourself some rest.
Keep in mind that helping someone who has mental health concerns is a lifelong effort. You may assist your loved one in navigating their mental health journey by listening with compassion, maintaining boundaries, and helping them seek professional care. Be kind and patient because the results are not always going to be positive. Your constant assistance may bring some changes in their journey towards healing.
Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purposes only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult a psychiatrist to get an accurate diagnosis and its treatment.
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