Relationships are challenging for anyone, but for someone battling a mental health condition, that illness can often hinder more than help. A mental health disorder acts like a magnifying glass to problems. It convinces the sufferer that they don’t deserve someone’s affection. It can cause them to be distant.
In other words? It’s total hell.
The good news is, knowledge is power when it comes to mental illness. Just because someone suffers from a condition doesn’t make them broken. Below are a few things you should know if you love someone who has a mental health disorder.
1. Mental illness is not something they can just “get over.”
It takes time, treatment and acceptance to manage a mental health condition. A mental illness develops in the brain, making it very complex. It’s not something that’s “all in their heads” or a problem they can “snap out of” (although, they wish they could!).
2. It also doesn’t make them “crazy.”
You wouldn’t call someone with cancer “insane” or “crazy,” so the same courtesy should be extended to someone with a mental health condition. Mental illness is just as important as physical illness. Here are a few other terms that should also be avoided.
3. Some days are better than others.
One day they’ll feel excellent, but the next day getting out of bed is a victory in itself. And they never know when it’ll happen.
4. Their mood isn’t because of you.
It can feel like they’re upset with you, but please know it isn’t personal. Many mental health conditions are characterized by mood swings, including feelings of anger, depression and mania.