How to Advocate for Someone You Love with a Mental Illness

Counselor in Charlotte, NCWhen someone you love is struggling with their mental health, you want to help them get the care they need. You need to understand that while you may plainly see their mental illness, they may not be aware that they are struggling. It is crucial for you to know that no matter how much you want to help your loved one get treatment for their mental illness, you cannot help them unless they want to be helped. Many people who struggle with a severe mental illness also suffer from a neurological condition called anosognosia. This condition prevents more than half of those who have severe mental illnesses, like bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, from realizing that they have a mental health issue. These people don't believe they need mental health help and as a result they are resistant to treatment. Did you know Legacy Freedom has a qualified counselor in Charlotte, NC to help your loved ones? Call today to learn more.

Advocating For A Loved Ones Mental Health

Here are the things you need to know about getting your loved one help for their mental illness:

Talk About Your Concerns 
Your friend, family member, or loved one may not admit that there is an issue. Having an open and honest conversation about their behaviors and your concerns as well as their perspective on the behaviors can help build trust between the two of you. Rather than focusing on forcing them into treatment or making them uncomfortable with a needless power struggle, shift the focus to trying to understand their needs, providing support, and building their trust in you.

Inform Yourself About Mental Illness 
It can be challenging for you to admit that someone you love has a mental illness. Acknowledging that they have a mental illness is very difficult for those who struggle with it daily. Having a good grasp of what the mental illness is or may be and then learning about the illness is essential. This information helps you understand the recovery path as well as how you can support your loved one as they recover.

Don't Guess, Ask
When your loved one is in the process of seeking treatment, ask them what they need. Don't try to guess how to support your loved one. Letting them tell you what they need helps them be more self-aware and feel empowered to make choices in their care and in their routine. Be fluid with their requests. If they are practical and doable, be supportive. Keep the conversation about their needs open and be willing to shift as their illness evolves.

Self-Care for You
It is easy to get caught up in caring for your loved one. Forgetting to take care of your needs and your own mental health can be detrimental for you and your loved one. Discussing your feelings with a trusted friend or member of the clergy who does not associate with your loved one regularly can help you feel free to unload and explain your frustrations and fears without worrying about upsetting anyone. If your mental health and well-being are being taken care of, you are in a much better position to advocate for your loved one.

Holiday Depression Counselor in Charlotte, NC

Advocating for someone you love who is struggling with a mental illness is a great responsibility. Earning their trust and putting their needs and well-being before your own can be challenging. At Legacy Freedom of Charlotte, we understand that both clients and caregivers need to feel safe and supported. Call today and find out how our qualified counselor in Charlotte, NC can benefit both you and your loved one.


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