Things not to say to Depressed People | Mental Health | Depression and Mental Illness

Depression and mental illness are different
for every individual. It’s not an easy journey and it is very easy
to feel misunderstood and alone. We still don’t know a lot about mental illness
and often handle it inadequately. We often go to people and say things like,
‘Oh, you’re depressed? Yeah, I’ve been sad too; it’s just a phase. You will get over it’. What we need to realize is depression and
sadness are not the same thing. It’s not an emotion it’s a constant and
exhausting battle that consumes people’s lives. Avoid saying things like, “Oh, just snap out
of it”, “hawa kura nagara” or even “You’re just seeking attention” Rather than seeking
attention it could be a cry for help. We have to realize that words like “Cheer
up”, “Look on the bright side” and “Choose to be happy” do not help. Saying things that are dismissive of how people
feel immediately distances you from the person. For someone to share their feelings with you
requires a lot of trust and saying things like “It’s all in your head” or “I
can’t do anything” actually might cause more harm. “You don’t look depressed.” or “you have got nothing to be depressed
about”. Not all mental illness have physical symptoms. Discrediting their condition could actually
lead to people being skeptical about seeking help. If you have not experienced depression yourself
it can be hard to understand what your friend is going through. Try not to blame them or put too much pressure
on them. The best thing to do is listen, care and be
there for them. Sometimes you don’t even need to say anything. Your presence is all that matters. Silence speaks when words can’t.

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