It can be difficult to watch a loved one struggle with a mental illness. However, with your help and support, they might be able to overcome the issues that are plaguing their everyday lives. Unfortunately, it is not always easy to help a loved one living with a mental health condition because they might not be willing to seek help or even admit they have a problem. If you want to protect your parent, child, relative or friend, find out how to help a loved one with a mental illness today to truly make a difference.
Research the Illness
It might be beneficial to learn as much as possible about the person’s mental illness, so you can identify the best ways to support your loved one. For example, it is common for some people living with depression or PTSD to turn to drugs as a coping mechanism. As a result, you could look for signs of misuse or addiction and potentially enter a loved one into a drug detox center.
Of course, if a friend or relative is in psychiatric distress, you might have no other choice but to enter him or her into hospital involuntarily. While it can be a tough decision to make, it could potentially save your loved one’s life and help them to overcome their mental health condition. By seeking help from professionals who are trained to deal with such conditions, you can hopefully help your loved one move forward into recovery.
Talk to Your Loved One
It is crucial to sit down with a loved one to talk about their mental health. Even if they do not believe they are living with a condition, you should sit down and listen to them. Don’t attempt to change their mind, and simply focus on building their trust. By doing so, they will be more likely to open up about how they are feeling, so you will understand exactly what is going on in their mind.
Additionally, it is important your loved one feels both loved and supported during this difficult period in their life. Rather than making assumptions about how you can help, ask him or her if there is anything you can do to make their life easier. For example, they might appreciate your support when attending medical appointments or could need you to pick up their children from school.
Seek Counseling for Yourself
While helping a loved one overcome a mental illness will most likely be a top priority, this doesn’t mean you should disregard your own mental health. If you want to truly be there for your friend or family member every step of the way, you must start caring for yourself.
It might be helpful to speak to a qualified therapist to discuss your emotions. You can openly discuss your stresses and concerns in a non-judgemental setting, and they could possibly provide clarity, solutions and objectivity regarding your problems. Talking really can help, so don’t keep your feelings bottled up inside and speak to a therapist to effectively handle your emotions.