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Five Things Not to Say to A Depressed Person

  • Post category:Depression

Depression is a chronic mental health problem that is affecting increasingly more people around the world. Although it is easy to recognize its symptoms such as sadness, despair, irritability, or anger in some individuals, some other people affected by it may likely try to keep the condition unknown by hiding its symptoms. It may appear that he is living a happy and healthy life but is struggling with many internal struggles. In such cases, it may be important to join a mental health rehabilitation center, which provides a supportive environment for people struggling with depression. What can worsen their situation is the way their loved ones talk to them and the phrases they use. Friends and family must approach the situation with empathy and understanding, encouraging those affected to seek professional help.

While their intention is certainly not to hurt their sentiments or make them feel worse, it is very likely that they might feel worse. Therefore, it is important to keep a close check on the words/phrases one uses while talking to someone who is dealing with depression. Some of the common phrases that one must avoid using when talking to someone dealing with depression are as follows:

  1. Try Harder : Avoid using phrases like ‘just snap out of it’ or ‘try harder’ as these might make the person dealing with depression feel worse. Instead of motivating them, these phrases might demoralize them and make them feel that their situation is hopeless. It is rather important to support them, listen to them patiently, and advise them to seek medical advice to get rid of their situation.
  1. Cheer Up : Do not try to make them feel better by oversimplifying things. Using phrases like ‘cheer up’ or ‘be happy’ might sound positive but these might make the concerned person feel worse. Sadness is deeply associated with depression and therefore, the person affected by depression cannot force happiness on him/herself.
  1. You don’t look depressed : People dealing with chronic mental illnesses like depression try their best to hide their condition. They try to look happy and put on a happy face even when the reality is different. Therefore, it is important to make sure that you educate yourself about the facts associated with these illnesses and their symptoms so that you don’t make statements like ‘You don’t look depressed,’ or ‘You don’t seem sad’ that might make them feel worse instead of rendering help. 
  1. It can’t be that bad : Never ever make comments like, ‘do you think it’s that bad,’ ‘it could have been worse,’ or ‘his situation is much more ruined than yours.’ You can never know how the person is feeling or the pain he/she is going through. Therefore, comparing his/her situation with someone else you know who has or had dealt with depression is not justified. Either listen to their pain carefully or don’t make any statement that might worsen their condition. 
  1. It’s all in your head : Depression as a chronic illness is caused due to multiple factors like stress, anxiety, genetics, childhood trauma, or some other major life event. Therefore, saying things like, ‘it’s all in your head,’ ‘it’s the way you think,’ or ‘it’s just your imagination’ can make them feel worse. Depression is not a choice that someone makes; it’s a medical condition that needs medical intervention by experts at mental health rehabilitation center.

Seek Professional Help 

Depression may make an individual develop the feelings of guilt and shame. But it is the love and care of his/her loved ones that can help him/her feel better and recover from his/her illness. While offering help, it is important to make sure that you are not ignoring them or making them feel alone. Making statements like things could have been much worse or don’t overthink can make them feel worse. Therefore, make sure that you are not using such language.

If you think there is someone around you who is dealing with depression and needs medical advice, Athena Behavioral Health can help. Athena Behavioral Health is one of the leading providers of Mental Health Treatment in India. With state-of-the-art infrastructure and experienced professionals, they assure you the best medical intervention for your mental health and provide the top-class Mental Health Services in Gurgaon. Want to know more about our treatment plans? Call us at 9289086193 or drop us an email at

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