What is the best way to relate with someone that is struggling wit mental disorder? I think my dad may be suffering from some kind of disorder. I think he always had but never talked about, maybe he doesn't even know.. How can i talk to him, what can i do? I feel sorry for him.. his live wasn't like he wanted i think.. especially when my mom left him, he used to cry every night, then he met this woman but she is making him living like hell.. He did some bad things, he is not that present with us but i know he is kind in his soul.. I want to know how to help him..
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Thank you for coming to Asking Jude for advice. I’m very sorry to hear about how your father is struggling with his mental health. I cannot imagine how difficult it must be for you to see someone you love go through this pain. I first want to remind you that only doctors can diagnose mental disorders. You can encourage him to see a doctor to receive a proper diagnosis, but avoid telling your father that you think he has a particular disorder.
Try asking him about his feelings directly. You can mention that you have noticed his behavior is a little different. If he does tell you that something is wrong, you can ask him if he feels comfortable sharing what is making him feel upset. For example, you can say something like, “Hey, Dad. I noticed you seem a little different lately. Is everything okay?” I found a link with tips on how you can check in on a loved one, which I will link here: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.alustforlife.com/tools/mental-health/how-to-check-in-on-someone-you-love/am
If he does open up to you about what he is struggling with, ask him what would help him feel better. He may ask for advice about how to fix the situation or he may simply just want comfort. If he is unsure of how to cope, you may suggest seeing a therapist. Remind him that therapists are professionals in the field of mental health and that there is nothing wrong with asking for help. If he needs assistance looking for a therapist in his area, try finding local therapists with this link: https://internationaltherapistdirectory.com/listings/italy-1/
If he insists that nothing is wrong, remind him that he can open up to you if that changes. Saying, “I’m glad to hear you are okay. If anything changes, just remember I am here for you” can remind him that he has your support.
Continue letting him know that you are there for him. Some ways you can show your support are by checking in on him (e.g. visiting him in person, calling him, or texting him) and asking about his day. You could say something along the lines of, “Hi, Dad. How are you feeling today?” or “How has your day been so far?” You can also send him heartwarming messages, such as by sending him reminders that you love him.
Seeing a loved one struggle with their mental health can be a long and stressful experience. Since it is not your responsibility to cure them, the best you can do is offer them a safe space and your support. Avoid overworking yourself or taking on any obligation that you feel is too draining for you. Lastly, take care of yourself and check in on your own mental health as well. Here is a link to how you can improve your mental wellbeing: https://uhs.umich.edu/tenthings
Sending you love and support,
Hey there, love! I just relayed your submission to Helen.