Talking to Depression: Simple Ways to Connect When Someone in Your Life is Depressed

Talking to Depression: Simple Ways to Connect When Someone in Your Life is Depressed

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by Claudia J. Strauss
     
 

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When someone suffers from depression, friends and family members naturally want to help—but too often their good intentions come out all wrong. This practical, compassionate guide helps readers understand exactly what their loved one is going through, and why certain approaches help and others have the potential to do damage. Talking to Depression

Overview

When someone suffers from depression, friends and family members naturally want to help—but too often their good intentions come out all wrong. This practical, compassionate guide helps readers understand exactly what their loved one is going through, and why certain approaches help and others have the potential to do damage. Talking to Depression offers specific advice on what to do and what not to do—and what to say and what not to say—to avoid frustration and give the kind of caring, effective support that will make a difference.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The author of Talking to Alzheimer's shares a simple, direct and effective approach for family and friends of those living and dealing with clinical depression. Strauss delves into specific scenarios with depressed loved ones, clearly explaining why certain responses and phrasing of comments are helpful while others are ineffective or seem like mere "stock phrases" to the person who is depressed. Strauss also explains that simply being there for the depressed person helps more than giving specific advice. "It isn't her job to listen to you; it's your job to listen to her. That's the best way to help her." Clinical psychologist Martha Manning, whose book Undercurrents offered a personal dimension to the illness, hits the exact note when she writes in the foreword that "dealing with depression is a collaboration." Strauss uses this approach throughout the book, explaining the unique ways in which the depressed mind works and, consequently, how others can better connect with that way of thinking through appropriate conversation, body language and practical support. When viewed individually, these suggestions may seem like ways to tiptoe around the depressed person, but altogether they are considerate and sensitive methods of communicating in any type of relationship. Strauss's insight applies to the day-to-day battles alongside the depression sufferer, but she also stresses how much can be learned from these strong individuals: "In physical battles, we celebrate the bravery of the soldier who falls. The bravery of the psychological warrior is no less." (Jan. 6) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Given that ten percent of adults suffer from mood disorders each year, the plethora of literature available on depression is not surprising. While there are ample resources for those who are depressed, books devoted to their loved ones are less abundant. Strauss (English, Albright Coll.; Talkisng to Alzheimer's) attempts to fill this gap with a book aimed at "the rest of us," listing useful resources, reminding caregivers to maintain their own well-being, and suggesting conversations and activities to engage depressed individuals. Unfortunately, these one-liners aren't enough; the book would have benefited from real-life examples of exchanges with depressed persons. In addition, important issues are not discussed (e.g., evidence that depression increases the risk of heart disease), and a bibliography of sources consulted in the depression overview is notably absent. "Tips for Kids" reads like an afterthought, since so few pages are dedicated to this special group. Those interested in helping a depressed loved one should see Laura Epstein Rosen's When Someone You Love Is Depressed or William R. Beardslee's Out of a Darkened Room. An optional purchase for large public collections.-Heather O'Brien, Acadia Univ., Wolfville, N.S. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780451209863
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
01/06/2004
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
253,956
Product dimensions:
5.38(w) x 7.94(h) x 0.58(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Claudia J. Strauss is an award-winning communication consultant and educator. An adjunct professor of English at Albright College in Reading, Pennsylvania, she runs a business in strategic communications, and coaches adults with ADD and learning disabilities.

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Talking to Depression: Simple Ways to Connect When Someone in Your Life is Depressed 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent book - I've a fairly big library devoted to better being there for my depressed wife, this book has been a great addition and VERY HELPFUL, especially for recommending to other people (like her parents).
Anonymous More than 1 year ago