worriedsister27 wrote:hi, im just looking for advice on how my family can help my sister.
she was taken to hospital after our gp was worried about her mental state and the crisis team said she is displaying signs of severe depression and paranoia. we are all in agreement that she is not well but we are struggling to stay patient with her as she seems to have periods during the day where she is perfectly fine (generally when her boyfriend is around) and will laugh and listen to music. but then as soon as something she doesnt want to deal with comes around she completely shuts down, paranoia shows up, and noise hurts her head and ears. she is so up and down that it is beginning to seem as though 75% of it is put on or made up because she doesnt want to deal with things. obviously if it is put on she isnt well anyway and needs help for whatever is causing her to do this. either way we know there is something wrong with her but my mom in particular is getting very stressed trying to keep an eye on her as she has had suicidal thoughts and also looking after my 9 year old niece as my sister has stopped interacting with her daughter most of the time. its all just very stressful and confusing. im just looking for peoples thoughts on whats the best way to help her
Mental health is one of those things that can really tear people apart due to miscommunication. The fact that she has been diagnosed with paranoia and depression means that you've sought help, which is good. When one suffers from depression, the patient will feel like the world is against them. They will become more irritable to stimuli, and respond more radically. This leads to degradation of relationships, which may explain your frustration.
I think what has happened is a vicious cycle of behaviours. Initially, the patient feels distressed, which signals to others that she needs her own space and time to calm. The patient recognises this response, and uses it when she wants to be on her own. By showing distress, the patient is able to get her own space, and thus avoids the situation. However, this also means that she actually does become distressed to uncomfortable situations, so the behaviours are real.
The best thing to do for her is seek professional help. A psychiatrist or therapist would help her tremendously in overcoming the symptoms of depression.
From your side, the family needs to be there for her. Dealing with mental health patients is no fun, requires a lot of patience and effort, and is emotionally draining - however, that's what everyone has to do, because of the situation. Yes it's frustrating, yes you will be angry sometimes, but that's how you accommodate for the situation.
Much love <3