I have taken numerous psychology classes in the attempts to become a psychologist and help those with disabilities and, more to the point, chronic pain and depression. When I was looking for a psychologist to discuss my own depression and chronic pain from my accident, there were none that had dealt with chronic pain to the point where I was. I know what is needed to help Mom, I know I need to make sure she gets the best care possible, that she does not become a shut-in and that I check in on her daily, or at least set up so that someone in the family calls her every day. Those with depression need contact, they need that trip to the coffee shop to sit and just talk about anything. But I have to let her be the one to start that conversation. I, or I should actually be saying “We” as in the entire family, need to be making sure that she does not miss any of her psychiatric or medical appointments and, finally, that she does not start into a downward spiral.
The main issue most of us have is we want to help in any way possible, we want to fix, repair, offer a better way of doing something because it makes us feel as if we are helping. Yes, I know I can’t fix what she has going on inside her and that I can only stand back and make sure when she starts veering off the road or path she’s on that I’m there to nudge her back on until she stops seeing the “Depression Ahead” detour signs. But like any good son/daughter, friend, husband/wife, I will be sitting in the passenger seat and agree to be the navigator for this trip. If you know of someone with depression, be there for them, listen, don’t talk. On that note I will leave you with this saying that I heard a long time ago and remember to this date:
“You can not listen if your mouth is moving.” – Author Unknown
P.S. And to my voice of reason, Thank You.
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