Okay, not sure if I’ll be able to get 100 of them this time…but we’ll see how we go.
- “Hey, remember, you’re not insane/crazy/mad,”
- “I love you,” [only and I repeat only if you mean it!]
- “You are important to me…”
- “I care,” [if ya mean it!]
- “If you ever needed a friend…” [and mean it]
- “I can’t really understand exactly what it is you’re feeling, but you have my support and compassion if you need it,”
- “Don’t say anything, just hold my hand,”
- “My shoulder is here if you needed one to cry on,”
- “When all this is over I will still be here – and so will you,” [again, only if you mean it!]
- “I’m not going to abandon you,”
- “I love you for who you are,” [Why? Because depressed people have trouble loving themselves, duh! They feel unworthy of it!]
- “You’re such a beautiful/lovely/wonderful/awesome/sexy/great/passionate/spankable/ etc… etc… person,” [not repeatedly, but reassuring a depressed person of their forgotten positive attributes can help them 100 times more than continual criticism as this is just reinforcing their own criticisms]
- “If there’s anything I can do to help, please let me know,”
- [Don’t say anything – just LISTEN – don’t advise, preach or lecture. Hear what the person is saying to you because they might not be looking for advice, they may just be looking to get something off their chest]
And in my opinion the three best things you can say to someone who is depressed:
- “I am your friend and I am here for you if you need anything,” [as long as you mean it]
- “You are not alone in this,”
- [This is soooooo easy everyone forgets about it!] “Do you want a hug?”
The best – and I mean BEST – advice that I can give is to acknowledge the depression for what it is, and not as something the person has bought on themselves and please give them permission to feel depressed; it isn’t their fault, they don’t want to be!
The biggest temptation when you find out someone is depressed is to immediately leap in and fix the problem expecting results in a matter of hours, days or weeks without even understanding what they are going through.
Do not become their pseudo-therapist unless they have given you the permission to!
And never, I repeat NEVER, befriend someone who is depressed solely to fix them if you do not like them as a person!
Now…check out the list of things which you should NOT say!