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Catch Me Elsewhere
With everything that is going on in the world today, it is not a far stretch that many men, especially Black men would be depressed. Imagine fearing for your life on a daily bases and worrying about not only your well being but that of your family and friends, as well? This my friends is the reality of the world that we live in today and by knowing the signs of depression, it will allow you to know what to look for in your mate’s behavior and how to help them.
Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities
Decreased energy, fatigue, being “slowed down”
Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions
Difficulty sleeping, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
Appetite and/or weight changes
Thoughts of death or suicide; suicide attempts
Persistent physical symptoms
By knowing these signs of depression, it can help you not only help your mate, but keep you from trashing your relationship, as well. At the end of the day your mate is not going to come out and say that they are depressed because most people don’t even know that they are depressed. In a relationship, we may even think that our mates are withdrawn because they aren’t happy with us or we think that are cheating when nothing can be further from the truth. Here are some tips that can help your relationship, once it is established that your mate is depressed…
If logical thinking was an anti-depressant, no one would be depressed. Don’t offer reasons why they shouldn’t be. Your brilliant solutions will only serve to depress them further and disconnect them from your relationship.
If you don’t get it, it’s better to just offer your caring and support rather than trying to “fix it.” Your partner WISHES it was as simple as implementing whatever solution you can come up with. They don’t want to brainstorm “ideas to fix it” either.
Depression is not something that people choose.
Being depressed is not something that you can “just get over” or a cry for attention. It is severely under-addressed, especially in the African American culture and not something that is “only a woman’s issue.” Like many other things, it is very hard for men to admit so don’t force him.
Suggest getting help. According to Digital Romance, “By subtly, I mean saying something like, “I’ve noticed that you’ve seemed down a lot lately. Maybe we should go see someone. I found this really good recommendation.” Using “we” makes it seem non-accusatory and gets your foot in the door— on the way to getting their buy-in. This little turn of phase from “you” to “we” lets them save face, and right now they need that.”
Not only suggest that they get help but be available to go with them and be as supportive as you can.
You know the old saying, “what happens in this house, stays in this house?” Keep it that way!
Your mate’s mental health is his business and should be treated as a private matter. It is their prerogative to tell who they want about their situation and when. You just need to continue to be highly supportive and be there to listen to them when they need you. Trust me, they will love you even more for it.