When your partner is suffering from depression, it tends to be an overwhelming and challenging experience. One day your partner seems on top of the world, while the next day is full of sadness. Sometimes when you offer to help your partner, you may get shut down immediately. Depression can test the strength of your relationship as you often feel frustration and confusion.
As it is difficult for you and your partner, you should know that your presence will make him/her feel better. Having your constant support is a great way to uplift your partner’s mood. Also, you can make it easier for your partner to recover once he/she knows that you will help them no matter what goes on.
Always be there for your partner.
One of the best ways to show your support is to always be there for your partner during depressive episodes or otherwise. Even if he/she asks you to go away, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your partner doesn’t want you around. Just by being there, your partner may feel better.
Whether it is maintaining eye contact with your partner, actively listening to what he/she is going through or holding his/her hand, it can mean the world to him/her. The fact that your significant other knows that you still love him/her will help in fighting the symptoms of depression.
Breakdown larger goals into smaller ones
When your partner is suffering from depression, you must know that large goals such as preparing for an interview or something as mundane as cleaning the house might seem overwhelming. However, you can make your partner’s life more comfortable by breaking down all the large goals into smaller ones.
For example, if your partner has to get ready for a job interview, you can break it down as much as possible. The first step could be to create or update his/her resume. Upon completion of that goal, you can focus on drafting a cover letter. Then, you can help your partner look for jobs. In other words, break down the daily tasks into small, achievable goals.
Create a supportive and healthy environment
You can make it easier for your partner to start the process of recovering from depression by creating a supportive and healthy environment. Leading a healthy lifestyle has a significant impact on the symptoms of depression, as it improves appetite, sleep, and energy.
First, try to eat healthy and wholesome foods every day. Cook with your partner so that the task is fun and exciting for everyone. Daily exercise with your partner can be a mood booster as well. Whether it is riding the bicycle or going for long walks, do it with your partner. The environment at home should be as stress-free as possible so that the number of triggers for depression is minimal.
Never take depressive episodes personally.
As depression is tough to handle, you should avoid taking the situation personally. Since depression can make a person feel lethargic, he/she might not feel like doing anything during an episode. For example, he/she may not be interested in having sex, watching a movie, or any other regular activity. Understand that it is the depression they are experiencing, not the real character of your partner.
Fighting depression is an uphill battle and by no means is it an easy task. Just keep in mind that by providing your partner patience, kindness, love, and unconditional support, you are making it easier for him/her to grow stronger emotionally and mentally. Try to open-minded, patient and understanding while communicating with your partner and supporting them during depressive episodes.