Caring For A Child With Depression/Anxiety
Caring for a child with depression or anxiety can not only be challenging but difficult to experience as a concerned parent. Here are some things that you can do to be a part of your child’s recovery:
Learn about the disorder
Learn as much as you can about depression or anxiety, whichever your child is struggling with:
Be mindful of your actions and words
Depression and anxiety can cause a lot of unhelpful negative thoughts and while you may say something with the best of intentions, it can unintentionally have an adverse effect on your child’s mental health.
Avoid statements like these
Criticizing their behavior
“You’re always feeling tired”
Comparing them to other people
“Look at your friend, they also have the same exam but are they so scared?”
Making light of their emotions
“Everybody has ups and downs”
Making statements about their resilience or ability
“But you are so strong”
Criticizing their efforts
“Oh look who’s up early today!”
Creating a safe space
Be patient and lend an ear to your child to let them freely share their thoughts and emotions.
Judge them for how they are feeling
Let them express themselves freely
Start giving them advice
Take care of yourself
It can be difficult to see your child go through a mental health issue. You may also experience some distress due to worry and guilt. Be sure to take breaks as a caregiver and reach out to your peers for support.