Words Can Hurt or Heal

October 30, 2019

              It can be very difficult to witness a loved one experience mental health issues. We want to find the right thing to say, a way to help and support this person we care about. However, if we say the wrong thing, even with the best of intentions, we can inadvertently make the situation worse. How do we provide support without saying the wrong thing?

              Some of the wrong things to say to someone struggling with mental health issues might seem obvious to most. Examples of the wrong things to say include, “get over it” or “suck it up”. Often those who have never had significant mental health issues don’t understand just how hurtful and unhelpful those types of comments can be. Instead of asking your loved one “what’s wrong with you?”, try asking them “what can I do to help?”.

              Support your loved one in seeking professional help to address their concerns. Even if you do not personally agree with the use of medication or therapy to treat mental health issues, understand that your loved one may have reached their capacity to handle their symptoms on their own, and is therefore in need of intervention. Above all else, approach the situation with kindness, empathy, and an open mind. For more advice on what not to say to a loved one with mental health issues, click on the link below.

 

Original material found at: https://health.usnews.com/conditions/mental-health/depression/slideshows/what-not-to-say-to-someone-with-depression?slide=10

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