Quora Question: What Do You Do When Someone You Love is Depressed Or Sad?

Found on Quora – a question and answer site, this question: What do you do when someone you love is depressed or sad?

There is nothing we can do but be quiet. Listen.

But there are 12 Things You can Do.

1. Ask, “What would be most helpful to you right now?”

2. Buy Gerber daisies.

3. Buy her a massage.

4. Take her for a hike up a mountain.

5. Ask her to give you her chore list.

6. Do her errands.

7. Pick up the dry cleaning.

8. Sit quietly.

9. Serve as a witness.

10. Radiate hope but not in an annoying way.

11. Pray for her.

12. Pray up. Pray hard. Pray deep. Pray that she will hack her way out of the swamps of despair.

You can’t talk or joke her way out of it. You can’t yank her out of it. Your love cannot save her. Only her love for herself can save her. We can’t offer happiness to anyone. It is not a gift that we can give. Be understanding but do not confuse pity with love. Pray again. And then wait some more.

What do you think? What have you done? What will you do?

About dianabletter

Diana Bletter is the author of several books, including The Invisible Thread: A Portrait of Jewish American Women (with photographs by Lori Grinker), shortlisted for a National Jewish Book Award. Her novel, A Remarkable Kindness, (HarperCollins) was published in 2015. She is the First Prize Winner of Moment Magazine's 2019 Fiction Contest. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, tabletmag, Glamour, The Forward, The North American Review, Times of Israel, and is a reporter for Israel21C, and many other publications. She is author of Big Up Yourself: It's About Time You Like Being You and The Mom Who Took off On Her Motorcycle, a memoir of her 10,000-mile motorcycle trip to Alaska and back to New York. She lives in a small beach village in Western Galilee, Israel, with her husband and family. She is a member of the local hevra kadisha, the burial circle, and a Muslim-Jewish-Christian-Druze women's group in the nearby town of Akko. And, she likes snowboarding and climbing trees.
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