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How to keep giving emotional support without burning myself out

If you're concerned about, or care for, someone with mental illness
alice942
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Feb 01, 2020 1:32 am

How to keep giving emotional support without burning myself out

Postby alice942 » Sat Feb 01, 2020 1:45 am

Hi, 21f with a boyfriend the same age who suffers from depression. He has had a particularly rough year that I have been supporting him through but its getting more and more difficult for me. I'm aware that whatever I feel he has it much worse, I just want to be in the best place I can to support him. But its hard, there's only so much I can do, and I don't have anyone I can talk to about it. I feel like a therapist sometimes, only I don't know what I'm doing and I don't want to make it worse. It's very frustrating at times, he has a lot of issues with motivation and making himself do things. I feel at the end of my rope and I worry for him and our future together. Any thoughts or advise would be truly appreciated, I don't know what to do anymore.

rsxo
Posts: 1245
Joined: Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:12 pm

Re: How to keep giving emotional support without burning myself out

Postby rsxo » Sat Feb 01, 2020 10:43 am

Hey :)

I admire that you want to help him so much, especially during a difficult time for him. But your question is important - it's not easy to support someone else when we are not doing well ourselves. It's not a zero-sum game, where you give up your happiness in the hope that his might improve. There's lots of support out there that can help with that - therapy/counselling, services such as Shout and Samaritans, other friends he can lean on - it's not fair on you to take on so much. If it does get too much, maybe stepping away temporarily to give him some headspace and figure things out would help you both to help each other?x

Much love <3
RSxo <3

supportivewife
Posts: 39
Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2018 8:13 pm

Re: How to keep giving emotional support without burning myself out

Postby supportivewife » Sat Feb 01, 2020 5:24 pm

Hi,
I haven't much to add, but just to say please take care of yourself as you need to make sure your well-being is catered for in order to support someone else and do seek some help, as suggested above. I wish you and your boyfriend all the best. Aileen. x

alice942
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Feb 01, 2020 1:32 am

Re: How to keep giving emotional support without burning myself out

Postby alice942 » Sat Feb 01, 2020 8:52 pm

rsxo wrote:Hey :)

I admire that you want to help him so much, especially during a difficult time for him. But your question is important - it's not easy to support someone else when we are not doing well ourselves. It's not a zero-sum game, where you give up your happiness in the hope that his might improve. There's lots of support out there that can help with that - therapy/counselling, services such as Shout and Samaritans, other friends he can lean on - it's not fair on you to take on so much. If it does get too much, maybe stepping away temporarily to give him some headspace and figure things out would help you both to help each other?x

Much love <3


Thank you, I will definitely look into trying those suggestions x
I will try to keep that all in mind; you're right, I can't set myself on fire just to keep him warm, that's not sustainable for either of us. I think part of it is that he isn't comfortable in talking to other people about it yet. But I will suggest finding different methods of support for both of us. Thank you for your help x


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