Trigger warning: suicide and suicidal thoughts.
Depression is a silent killer—silent as heck, really— you're lucky when someone like your girlfriend is comfortable and brave enough to explain to you what's going on in their head. Being there for your girlfriend when she is going through a depressive episode is one of the many things you should do to keep your relationship healthy as heck.
When you're not there you're not being a good partner. I mean that in the nicest way possible—you are LOSING the relationship game.
You know what else can get you a push out of a girlfriend's life forever? Read the headline.
Yes, when you are telling your friend to just 'go get help' you are adding to the silent killer we are calling depression.
Just listen to me, don't say that. Let me help you out—from someone trying needing the 'help' to someone trying to be the 'help.'
1. Just listen, it's as simple as that.
Literally just being present either through text, phone call or even in person is probably the best feeling to have when you have depression and just need a really big hug, or just an ear to listen to all the gibberish coming out of my mouth.
You don't even have to say anything just, you know, listen. It's really that simple.
Note: Sometimes she "won't want to talk about it," and that's okay. Don't force her to talk about it, just let her know that you are ready to listen when she's ready to talk.
Sometimes that won't ever come, but the feeling that you have someone to talk to it comforting as heck.
2. Give her a hug—a big one.
With that being said, just hug her. You know that look that she gets on her face when she's about to cry? You know what i'm talking about.
Yeah, that one.
Just hug her, really hard and really tight. Squeeze her, and just let her feel the weight. Let her listen to your heart beat to help her calm down.
3. Cuddle her—hard.
I mean go past the hug, lay on the bed and let her be the small spoon for a little bit. Let her feel the comfort and warmth of your body and just let her know that you are there when she wants to talk about what she's feeling.
4. Suggest going out to eat to get her mind off things
OH MY GOD FOOD.
I mean it's common sense that food has comfort attached to it. Even if it is just a burger from McDonald's or a 4 for 4 from Wendy's. The feeling of your stomach being filled is just pure comfort, easy as that.
Or you can take her to get a big steak dinner (or to her favorite vegan/vegetarian restaurant).
5. Suggest going for a car ride
Car rides tot he unknown are the most relaxing thing ever. Just being able to look what's out there and how big our world is and knowing that whatever you are feeling at that moment is so small is so comforting.
Note: Do NOT tell her that what she's feeling is small. Let her figure it out on her own. Don't say I didn't warn you.
6. Put on her favorite music
MUSIC. Especially her favorite music is so relaxing and soothing. If you don't really prefer the music that she listens to, suck it up and play it. Play her favorite slow songs, or play some Chelsea Cutler (and thank me later).
7. Ask her what she needs you to do.
I mean, don't play the guessing game. If she's willing to tell you what she needs from you, then let her. Sometimes it's not about what you do, it's about what you don't. If she wants you to leave and just walk away from her and the situation—let yourself walk away.
Do what she needs you to do.
8. Let her know she's not weak
DEPRESSION MAKES YOU FEEL LIKE THE WEAKEST HUMAN BEING IN THE WORLD.
I think that's why so many people think that suicide is the answer—in that moment you feel like you'll never get through it.
In that moment it's nice to know that someone thinks you're strong even if you don't feel like it.
Especially if you love the person—because a person that loves you doesn't lie to you.
9. Tell her you understand how she is feeling.
"I understand" only really helps if you actually understand why and what she is feeling. Seriously, don't just say it because you "read it in an article" say it because you really mean it.
And if you don't ask her, sometimes she doesn't even know why she's feeling that way.
10. Tell them you love them.
Even on their hardest days.
Odds are, when someone has depression they are talking to someone professional. If they aren't, it's important to let them know that's it's always an option, but, if they feel like they 'aren't ready' then it's vital for you to be there as best as you can. It's hard to go to therapy when there is so much negative talk about therapy.
Therapy changed my life but it was hard to face the facts. You're not the person to force them to go, they are the only person that can get themselves to go in the long run.
If you are someone you know are struggling with depression, call 1-800-273-8255 or go here for more information.
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