How to help someone who doesn't want help

C

concernedfather

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Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
8
Location
UK
#1
Hello,

I have posted briefly in the introduction section but wanted to put down more details in a full post in this section.

I am 99% certain my 23 year old son is suffering from severe depression.

He is suffering from the symptoms below

  • Tiredness and loss of energy
  • Sadness that doesn’t go away
  • Loss of self-confidence and self-esteem
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Not being able to enjoy things that are usually pleasurable of interesting
  • Avoiding other people, sometimes even your close friends
  • Feelings of helplessness and hopelessness
  • Sleeping problems – difficulties in getting off to sleep or waking up much earlier than usual
  • Very strong feelings of guilt or worthlessness
  • Finding it hard to function at work/college/school
  • Loss of appetite
  • Physical aches and pains

He returned from 2 years travelling about 18 months ago and has been in the family home every since. He has struggled to hold down a job and has been unemployed for more than half of the time he has been back. He has always been a very lazy person and we have struggled to cope with the way he has behaved. As well as the above symptoms he has been very angry and moody. There has also been cannabis use at the house, although we have specifically asked/told him not to. I have a feeling that there was a lot of cannabis use and possibly other drugs whilst he was away.

We have tried our best to support him but we have been struggling to understand how he is feeling. A lot of the hopelessness seems to revolve around his work and we have tried to encourage him to do other things than working in retail which he seems to hate. Unfortunately none of these efforts have worked out and we are back to square one and he is in a deeper depression now than he has been before. He has not left his room or eaten for 2 days.

My son needs help with his depression. We are in the UK. He went to the GP many months ago now and had a 10 minute appointment. I am not sure what exactly was said but he left feeling no better with a prescription for sleeping tablets. He has also called various helplines to discuss his issues but became frustrated as he didn't speak to the same person twice and spent most of his time explaining his situation to a new person. Whenever my wife tries to speak to him about getting help or trying to get do something about his depression he just clams up or storms off. We have put as much pressure on him as we can to do exercise but he doesn't do anything apart from the occassional walk back from work.

His outlook is very bleak. He sees everything in such a negative light. We have tried many tactics to try to change things but he is an adult and in order to improve he needs to want to improve and seek help to do so. He has convinced himself that his life will be a miserable journey and that he will have to live with depression for the rest of his days. He has never expressed suicidal thoughts to us but this is the logical solution to some of the things he says.

We just do not know what to do for the best. I know there is no logic in depression and I personally struggle to understand his thinking. He is a bright, handsome lad with all the advantages in the world. At the moment he is on a downward spiral and I am not sure where it will end.

Please could someone help
 
Urban Hermit

Urban Hermit

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Jan 18, 2019
Messages
2,648
#2
Hi, I'm sorry to hear that your son is feeling that way ... You are doing all you can and coming here is a great sign of just how much you love him ..

As a 43 year old man, who has at times had all of the above issues , apart from the anger issues ..
It is hard for you because I know at times I've felt pushed my family and that doesn't always help , when I feel really low I can't see why and don't feel like I deserve help or love , so the support sometimes feels worst because I am aware more so if the stress and burden I'm putting on others and at times that's the worst because I then feel like ending things is going to make everyone's life easier ...

For me support and love comes best when it is consistent and I'm given s voice so I like it when my thoughts are taken into account, so it doesn't feel like I'm being a weight for others . ...

Ultimately you can only do so much and I know that's hard but he has to want to get help and support, you can't force someone to feel better....

You could suggest he joins this forum or a group or something to help get him out with others

Im not sure how much helps this is but I just wanted to share some of my experiences....

Things can get better for him, they did for me , from multiple suicide attempts to wanting to live a long life now .. my road has been rough but I'm glad to be alive , I hope your son will feel the same way soon xx
 
C

concernedfather

Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
8
Location
UK
#3
Thank you for your input. I have a couple of questions for you, if you don't mind.

Do you think that the family home is the best place for him right now? I feel that he has really regressed since he has been home. Whilst he was travelling he was mostly independent and coping, now he is at home he is struggling.

How can we prevent him reaching rock bottom and trying to commit suicide?
 
Urban Hermit

Urban Hermit

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2,648
#4
Thank you for your input. I have a couple of questions for you, if you don't mind.

Do you think that the family home is the best place for him right now? I feel that he has really regressed since he has been home. Whilst he was travelling he was mostly independent and coping, now he is at home he is struggling.

How can we prevent him reaching rock bottom and trying to commit suicide?
Honestly you can't prevent him from getting that bad... It isn't your responsibility for that .... I needed to take ownership of my problems and want help .... Give him space and company wren he wants it ...

I would encourage gently for him to see the GP again and see if you can go with him and push the GP for a some mood meds .... I know they domt like to prescribe and if he hasn't expressed how bad he real is feeling then the GP wouldn't know . You can always speak to your GP too and see what support is they are you too xx
 
C

concernedfather

Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
8
Location
UK
#5
Sorry, a couple more questions as I am delighted to have an insight into how my son must be thinking.

What helped you to feel better and start to feel that life was worth living?

When you are feeling so low that suicide is the only way out do you not have a thought for the devastation that you would leave behind you if you succeed? I have never contemplated taking my own life nor would I ever and I struggle to understand it but I do know people whose relatives who have committed suicide and the impact on the survivors is catastrophic. I cannot imagine being that low that I would not think about the impact on the people around me. My son has definitely expressed the feeling that he doesn't want to be a burden and no matter how kind and understanding we are there is no doubt that he is a burden and a worry. If, heaven forbid, he were to kill himself then all our lives would fall apart and we would then spend the rest of our lives living with the pain and the guilt.

Sorry if the above seems ignorant and insensitive but I am really trying to understand my son's thinking
 
Urban Hermit

Urban Hermit

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Messages
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#6
I can't speak for your son, I can only tell you how I feel and felt , I'm glad if this helps but he may feel differently than me keep that in mind X

The love and support of my family (some of them) one in particular that had her own mental health issues and could relate to me , medication was then the next thing , having purpose so for me art as a creative outlet to express myself and also feel useful by posting on here and feeling like my experiences could help others ... (Like now) and then I was luck enough to meet an incredible woman and her unconditionally love and understanding has changed my world ....

.... In the darkest times before all of the above and the changes that have helped me want to live a long time , the idea of ending everything felt like it would be a relief to my family and everyone because they wouldn't have to deal with my problems and I felt it would be hard for them to lose me but better for ever if I was gone too ... Also the thoughts about others didn't always come into it , it was about wanting my pain to end because I don't want to feel that way anymore ....

It's hard when you are in that place to remember or think that things can get better and the pain can end , but I learnt that it can and for me did , I still struggle at times but never as bad as it was before ....

Xx
 
OCDguy

OCDguy

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Jun 13, 2016
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#7
In my opinion (and I am no Doctor/professional etc.), regular meal and sleep patterns, will give physical stability, and should go some way to stabilising his moods. Are you able to describe his daily routines? Consistent encouragement, love, support and understanding as well as giving him purpose, will probably go a long way in helping, as will conveying your need for him in your lives and possibly your feelings of worthlessness in not being able to help him and get him through this. Are his feelings of guilt and worthlessness solely in response to what he feels he is putting you all through? Is it possible to arrange a Doctors home visit, if he is reluctant to go himself? I think talking to different Doctors and having to go through everything more than once when on the phone (no eye contact for the Doctors), may be for the purpose of assessments etc.
 
midnightphoenix

midnightphoenix

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#8
Sorry, a couple more questions as I am delighted to have an insight into how my son must be thinking.

What helped you to feel better and start to feel that life was worth living?

When you are feeling so low that suicide is the only way out do you not have a thought for the devastation that you would leave behind you if you succeed? I have never contemplated taking my own life nor would I ever and I struggle to understand it but I do know people whose relatives who have committed suicide and the impact on the survivors is catastrophic. I cannot imagine being that low that I would not think about the impact on the people around me. My son has definitely expressed the feeling that he doesn't want to be a burden and no matter how kind and understanding we are there is no doubt that he is a burden and a worry. If, heaven forbid, he were to kill himself then all our lives would fall apart and we would then spend the rest of our lives living with the pain and the guilt.

Sorry if the above seems ignorant and insensitive but I am really trying to understand my son's thinking
Having been suicidial myself several years ago, from my memory of then it is very hard for a suicidial person to realise that it would hurt those they love, your son's brain will probably twist it round to "my family will be better off without me" :hug:

in my case, even if someone in my family had said to me "our lives are much better with you here with us" i wouldn't of believed them due to my illness (they never said it though) :hug:

All you can do is keep trying to get him some help :hug:
 

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