Depression, anti-depressants etc

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
Hi everyone,

My wee sister's just been diagnosed with depression (she's 15) and although it's not really severe she's still going to have to go on anti depressants and have cognitive behavioural therapy. I'm away at university so I don't get to see much of her, and it really worries me that there's nothing I can do for her. I just don't know what to do. I guess I don't really know enough about it. What can I do to help her?

Also, what does cognitive behavioural therapy involve? I'm completely clueless.

Thanks in advance for any advice/comments - all contributions welcome!

LSS

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    just be there for her when she needs you and try to understand if she takes things out on you, although some things are unacceptable. just be a shoulder to cry on and phone her up and just ask hows she is doing.
    whatever you do, dont tell her to "cheer up". i was told that, if it was that easy you would just do it, who wants to be depressed?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Right.

    My doctor has just suggested cognitive therapy for me to help treat depression, so i'll see what i can tell you.

    It's therapy, a little like counselling, only a lot more guided or interactive - chances are she'll have tasks to take away with her and work on. There's less opportunity to chat rubbish in it (like with counselling) because it is a guided session - the therapist will ask specific questions and probe into the answers, rather than just letting you vent. I don't know much else about it, i do have a factsheet somewhere on my desk which, if i find it, i'll put some more stuff up about it... Have you tried googling for info?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Thanks, that's useful. She didn't seem to know much about it herself. She said that the therapist would talk things through with her and try to help her see which problems were worth worrying about and which ones weren't, and suggest solutions and so on. Sounds like just the sort of thing she needs, really.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,329 The Mix Honorary Guru
    i had CBT for a phobia rather than depression, but i suppose it works in the same way.

    it's all about changing the way you behave by being aware of your reactions to certain things (in my case, the thing i was phobic of, but in her case it would be anything that brings her down). once you know that a certain reaction is due to a certain thing, you're more likely to be able to change it.

    in my area they don't use it for depression at all, only for anxiety disorders and personality disorders and things like that. but in a lot of cases, depression comes as a side effect of a seperate problem, so they figure if they cure you of the primary disorder, your depression will lift anyway.

    i had an initial consultation with them, and they went through a lot of things with me, and asked me what i wanted to change about my life, to see if it would be useful to me. you do have to work at it, and it's not like counselling where you just talk. i used to come home from my sessions absolutely exhausted.

    there was a lot of 'why' questions, and a lot of rating anxiety in certain situations out of ten. you learn some interesting things about yourself, and it's not always what you want to think.
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