You make a difference
Caregivers can make all the difference in the lives of their loved ones. People living with depression or bipolar disorder benefit from having a strong support system and that system often begins with family members and friends.
While treatment plans are often created with a person's mental health providers, family members of the person living with the mood disorder who see or talk with their loved one on a regular basis often have a unique perspective on how well a treatment plan is working. You may have knowledge that providers do not, particularly of how well your loved one is doing outside of the therapist’s office. It can be helpful for you to share your observations about changes in mood, behavior, and affect.
You may be well positioned to determine when your loved one needs you to step in and complete a task for them when their mood disorder interferes with their capacity or motivation, such as folding laundry or paying bills, and when you can support them in making decisions or taking actions on their own.
Education is a key component of caregiving. The more you can learn about the mood disorder your loved one is living with, the easier it will be for you to understand what they are going through, recognize signs and symptoms of what is going on, and identify circumstances when they need additional support.
Order our 60+ page handbook. It covers essential topics for caregivers.
Treatment decisions should be shared and patient-centric. Read about it.
Kathy and Dean
Dean supported Kathy during her depression. Patience and self-care helped.