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supporting your loved onesKnowing how to help your loved ones during their recovery can be difficult. You may not want to overstep their boundaries, but you do want to help them be the best that they can be. One thing is for sure: your support is the best thing you can offer. Continue reading for more information about how you can help your loved ones by supporting them in their recovery.



The National Institute of Mental Health reports that 16 million American adults — or about 7% of the adult population — have experienced a depressive episode in the past year. Children and teenagers are also not immune to depression’s impact. In truth, no one is immune to mental illness or substance use disorder. Because of the increasing numbers, many friends and family members find themselves as caregivers. Unfortunately, many caregivers don’t know how to handle the situation they are often thrown into. If you’re caring for someone you love who has a mental illness or substance use disorder and you feel unsure about what you can do to help them, you aren’t alone. 


What To Do and What Not To Do

Many people think that if they ignore the problem of a mental illness or addiction, it will make the situation less awkward. Others hope that it will silently fade away if ignored. This isn’t the approach you should be taking, however. If you ignore the elephant in the room, it will continue to grow. Eventually, you will find it sitting on your chest and weighing you down, causing unimaginable pain. What you should do instead is talk about what your loved one is going through. The more open you are, the more open they will be with you. They will want to feel like they can go to you, and that just won’t be possible if you ignore the condition at hand. 


Another thing people worry about is the big s-word: suicide. Of course, it’s only natural to be worried about your loved one if you think they are thinking about suicide. Many people take the hands-off approach here as well, feeling as if they ask about it, they will “plant the seed.” This just isn’t true. It’s essential to be straightforward with your loved one if you think they have thoughts about suicide. 


You should also take care not to minimize what your loved one is going through. Treat depression, anxiety, substance use disorder as you would treat cancer, diabetes, or physical illness. You shouldn’t avoid it. It’s not something scary. Try not to minimize what your loved one is going through. Instead, tell them you know how hard this time may be for them. Let them know that you are there to support them with whatever they need. 


The Guest House is here to help you help your loved ones that are struggling with a mental illness or substance use disorder as a result of a trauma. Call us today at 855-483-7800. We want to help you. Call now.