How to support a loved one when they have poor mental health?
Poor mental health can affect our daily life and relationships with loved ones in many ways. We all want to feel support from the people around us, especially in difficult moments of life. Knowing how to best help and take care of your loved one can be the key to a long and happy relationship. There are many mental health tips out there, but as we know, everyone is different and there is no one set of rules that will apply to everyone. This can lead to the fact that the wrong approach to helping a person can lead to bad consequences.
The point is that the support you give to your loved one will be different from helping your friend or family member. As psychologist Elena Fenton explains: “You live with your partner and his illnesses day in and day out. His poor mental health can negatively affect your life, moreover, you are in danger of becoming a guardian of a person, and not a partner for a relationship. ”
Mental health can change very often, just like physical health. Whether your partner has been diagnosed with an emotional distress problem or is just going through a tough time. Of course, every person, both in relationships and in life, has its ups and downs, this is inevitable. You may have begun to notice changes in the way your partner behaves or talks. There are some signs by which you can identify a person’s poor mental health. But the point is that only you and your partner know your feelings, and what is normal or not normal in your relationship. Still, there are a few things to keep in mind that can improve his condition and your relationship.
Remind me how much you love him
It may sound obvious, but poor mental health is only part of something more serious, and it can be tricky to deal with alone. As I struggle with my own emotional problems, knowing that my loved one is there and supporting me is very helpful. It is not easy for a person to be alone, as well as to try to find a way out of a difficult situation. Be close to your partner, remind him that you love him and are ready to support at any moment. Encourage discussion of his problem, but only when you see that he is ready for it.
Make plans for the future
Remind the person of the things that bring joy and happiness to their life. Reactivating positive emotions from a hobby is an important part of recovering and maintaining good mental health. Make plans for the future together, but remember that it is best to do everything gradually. Planning various events or celebrations can be tricky. If your partner is going through tough times, try to plan something less important, like going to the movies or having dinner at your favorite restaurant.
Patience is key
Understanding how a mental health condition affects our partner can be essential to building a healthy relationship. One of the most emotionally draining aspects I’ve found when I’m mentally tough is the thought of making my partner feel responsible for my condition. It is very important that your loved one does not take your emotional distress too seriously. Psychologists explain that, as opposed to the support of a friend or family member, we are more likely to take personally the problems that are related to the mental health of our loved one. At this point, we feel a lot of responsibility when our partner is depressed or experiencing various forms of mental disorder for an extended period of time.
Be attentive and watch him. Perhaps his condition will worsen, irritability and nervousness will appear. Common symptoms of mental health problems include insomnia, feelings of worthlessness, and loss of interest in the environment. You may notice gradual differences in mood and reluctance to be active.
If your partner takes medications, they can cause various side effects that can negatively affect your relationship. This can include a loss of sexual desire and therefore intimacy between you. Communication problems may arise and social activity will disappear.
Remember to take care of yourself
The most important thing to remember when supporting your partner when they are in poor mental health is to think about yourself as well. You can be at risk of burnout, especially if you don’t care about your own needs. The problems of a loved one can take over your life and create unbalanced relationships. Try to shift your focus to your friends and loved ones. Connecting with family members can go a long way in building a support network for both of you.
Listen to it
Observing your partner and getting information about their problem can help both of you to some extent. But admit that you are not an expert, and in most situations you may need the help of a specialist. Psychologists warn that people can get stuck trying to help their partner and use various ineffective ways. Sometimes, it is best to observe and listen to your partner. Show that you are there, and he can come to you at any time to talk about problems, without fear of judgment.
But do not delay too long and refuse professional help. This is by no means an indication that you have failed, but rather an understanding that your partner may need help that you cannot provide.
Do not be afraid of parting
If your relationship is not getting back to its previous state, and your partner does not want to solve the problems that have arisen, then you should put your own mental health first. If your feelings cool down, you don’t have to be stressed to stay together. It’s quite normal to break up with this person. Yes, you can be close people, and continue to keep in touch, but most likely your relationship will not be as good as it used to be.