The holidays are coming. The holidays remind some people of the loved ones they’ve lost. It can be hard to enjoy the Holidays when you are thinking about people you wish were still here. Logging into Instagram and scrolling down your timeline, and seeing happy families is not a joyful experience for everyone. It can be hard to know how to relate to or talk to someone you love who is depressed or experiencing loss.
I know there are times that I have felt like anything that I say might make the person feel worse. There are also times when I feel like they might make me feel worse.
It sounds horrible but it’s true. I had a friend who suffered from depression, and I got to a point when the suicidal texts were just too much for me to bare. I wanted to be supportive, but I must look out for my mental health.
Depression is often accompanied by loneliness. If you are mentally available to help, and you feel that someone might be lonely, sometimes all it takes is a call or a brief visit to lift their spirits. Check on your loved ones after a loss. Not everyone will be willing to talk, but it doesn’t normally hurt to just extend a hand and let them know you are there if you need them.
Check-In on Them
I remember the year my grandmother passed away. I felt lonely for the first time. It is hard to describe why, I have other family and people who loved me, but the void felt so huge that I felt alone. I sat on the floor and cried all day that Christmas. I am not even a person who is big on celebrating holidays, but I was sad because I felt even more alone that day. I couldn’t call my friends and cry because they were enjoying the holiday with their own families, and I didn’t want to bring them down anyway
Don’t Rush Them to Move On
It seems like people don’t mind it if you mourn, but after a while, they get tired of it. I understand this because constant sadness can bring down your mood but understand that getting over a devastating loss takes some people longer than others. You can’t rush their process. It can take a long time for people to be able to function as normally after a loss.
Some Other Things to Consider…
· Be supportive.
· Listen to their feelings.
· Offer emotional support.
· Don’t ignore remarks about suicide!
Doing any of these things is of course assuming that you are in the mental state to do so. If not, I think it’s ok to let a person know lovingly that you pray for them or send them healing vibes.