Please allow me to flip the coin a little bit this time.
I think it is important to take into account that supporting a loved one suffering from mental health illness can be very difficult and overwhelming at the same time. Because now you have this lovely person who is your friend, family member, colleague etc and their behavior has now changed and you know nothing about the change.
Situations are different form one person to the other however remember as a support structure you also now need to adjust you new normal. You don’t know what you don’t know right so its time you start educating yourself because trust me it’s can get very difficult. The saying that says you cannot pour from an empty glass.
You really have to also consider getting counselling for yourself that will enable you to equip yourself and vent at the same time because that is your safe space and probably the only place where you can say no really I cannot do this because it’s too much for you without hurting the person you are caring for you know what I mean.
When a person is diagnosed with any type of mental health illness they often see their world turned upside down while in fact even the people around him/her feel the same way. Remember now you have to deal with a person whose behavior changes from time to time and you have to keep up so how will you do that if you do not educate yourself about mental health issues? learn about the medication that they are taking and understand the side effects that will help you be one step ahead and you won’t be overwhelmed as much as you would with no knowledge at all.
Not all is lost!
Tips to prevent caregiver burnout
- Take some time out to breath
- Ask for help
- Educate yourself about mental health illness and medication side effects
- Make a list of your daily activities
I hope that this helps someone.
CEO and founder of My Brilliant Mind NPO