January 14, 2019

How To Help Your Siblings Suffering From Depression

Depression is not a strange condition, so do not be surprised when it happens to you or your siblings. One of the most significant challenges of being a sibling is to be the helper- especially when your siblings are suffering from depression. Helping your loved ones from overcoming depression is extremely challenging. If you are not courageous enough to help them with the best of your ability, you might be depressed too or discourage. Seeing your siblings going through depression is already a challenge to you, how then can you help them from it?  


Many people with depression, their symptoms are severe enough to cause a problem in their day-to-day activities like getting to the workplace each day and attending school for those who are students. Many people feel miserable and overwhelm without knowing the reasons behind. So as a sibling, your help can make a big difference to your sibling’s condition.


Today, you don’t need to feel frustrated with helping your siblings from depression. Here is what you can do on how to improve your siblings from suffering depression.


Simple List On  How You Can Help Your Siblings From Depression

1. Understand your sibling’s symptoms of depression.

If you are concerned with your sibling (loved ones) about their ongoing depression, the essential step toward helping them is to understand first their symptoms. While the course of the depressive disorder is broad, their symptoms may also vary from individual to individual. Hence, getting to recognize their symptoms may help you to understand their condition as well as their need.

Educate yourself concerning their symptoms including the condition itself.


Get the most reliable information concerning the symptoms of depression. If you do, you can easily make the proceeding approach how you can help them. Moreover, learning the feeling of having depression, learning the facts about the condition, avoiding the misconception about depression and putting your feet to their shoes are the things you can do to help some who are suffering from depression- particularly your siblings.


2. Don’t judge, minimize the condition.  

As long as you can, do avoid saying a statement such as “I think your condition is all just in the head.” What you say or how you see your loved one’s condition can have a powerful impact on how they feel about themselves and on what they are experiencing. If you look their condition as easy as taking a bath and after it will go away, you are making them feel that they have a choice to feel or not to feel their condition- and have free will to be depressed. When your siblings are suffering from their depression, they are not only sensitive but can also isolate your loved one. 


3. Don’t offer advice, encourage either.

Advice and encouragement are two different things. A piece of advice is an opinion that is worthy to be followed, while encouragement is a motivation, hope or emotionally and mentally support.  Avoid or do not offer advice to your sibling, instead encourage them. Your sibling does not need your opinion concerning their ongoing condition, but rather they need your motivation of getting medication or treatment for further recovery. Encouragement such mentally and emotionally support can impact their condition and improved their feeling.  Helping your sibling to see their condition that it can be improved is an essential factor in recovering from the condition.


4. Be there for your siblings, listen and show concern to them.

Making yourself available anytime they need you is one of the strongest help you can do and offer.  When your sibling is struggling with their depression, one of the most healing moments will significantly come when you simply sat with them and made them feel that you are there for them.  “I’m here for you. I can help you to find a way to make you feel better,” stating a word like this can significantly help them to ease their feeling. Let them feel and not just know that you care for them by being there whenever they need you the most. Be there for them and be patient to them.


Most importantly, when they feel like crying, give them shoulder to lean on and an ear to listen to what their concern and try to understand them. Don’t just listen with your ears, instead listen to your heart. Listen and show concern.


5. Support your sibling’s treatment

Treatment such as medication and therapy is one of the most important parts in recovering from the condition. To ensure proper treatment and medication, help your siblings to keep themselves on track with their treatment. Support their treatment and help them not to feel fear about their treatment by letting know that you support them and let them feel that they are not crazy. Provide assistance that your siblings need by helping them to set an appointment with any treatment that is best prescribed to them and research treatment options.


6. Love your siblings unconditionally, be helpful.

Although you know that it can be challenging and frustrating to see and help your siblings struggle, your patients are so much important. Treatment in depression does not happen overnight, so your patience is needed. Your love and compassion to your sibling is a big help. Hence, encourage them to practice a healthier lifestyle such as mood-boosting lifestyle, maintaining a positive outlook, eating a balanced diet, doing exercise and avoiding alcohol or smoking, and seeking your family support is most important.


Encourage your sibling to do a recreational activity such as watching funny movies, dinner at a favorite restaurant, going on walks together, or playing their favorite sports. Love them unconditionally and be gentle always. Offer help with their household responsibilities or school projects.  


While helping your siblings suffering from depression is challenging, be sure to still attend to your personal needs and concerns. Although you cannot control your sibling’s condition, you can control yourself and action toward their condition. Stay healthy to help your siblings in getting treatment. Take care of yourself before taking care of others to give the appropriate help they need. Seek support from psychologist, psychiatrist or social support group. If your siblings are expressing suicidal feelings or attitude, call a GP or emergency hotline that is near to your place. Be more attentive to your loved one’s condition including to yourself. Be well informed and educate yourself about depression.        

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