To get your family to help you get through your depression, explain exactly what you need from them. Sometimes loved ones simply don't know what causes depression or what helps relieve it. They may not understand why you can't "just get better," or they may feel like they have failed because they haven't been able to help you.

You might suggest that what would really help is their patience and understanding. It may also be helpful if they remind you from time to time that you will get better, and that your situation isn't hopeless. However, it's important for them to not nag or try to hurry your progress.

You may also want to remind them that you may seem distant at times and have trouble communicating. Loved ones may have a tendency to pull away at these times if they feel that you're rejecting them. Let them know that even if you can't show it, you still need their involvement.

Sticking to a consistent schedule is helpful when you have depression—like keeping a regular bedtime, eating properly, getting regular exercise and staying socially active. Family members can help you follow a healthy schedule by setting up these activities, doing them with you and adopting the same schedule.

Publication Review By: Karen L. Swartz, M.D.

Published: 21 Aug 2013

Last Modified: 21 Aug 2013