One of the major areas of concern by family members was the fact that there was a great lack of understanding of what depression is, and how if effects the depressed person. One of the members of Dep-Anon mentioned that the night before the meeting she and her daughter talked for hours and came to quite an understanding what the daughter was experiencing. Was it the fact that the mother was joining Dep-Anon, and going for help, that motivated her to sit down and try to understand just what the experience of depression is all about?
We came away from the first meeting of Dep-Anon with a fairly good map of what the landscape would look like as we charted a beginning course for the support group for family members and friends of the depressed.
One of the obstacles associated with the recovery of a family member depressed is that the family normally does not have a clue as to the nature of depression and how deadly it can be. Because of their lack of knowledge of the causes and negative outcomes of the depression experience, the whole family is put at a disadvantage, making it imperative that the whole family be on the same page when seeking help–firstly for themselves within the family support group of Dep-Anon. The depressed family member can seek help within it’s own support group, Depressed Anonymous.
Just as the family learns about the disease of alcoholism, in an effort to better understand their loved one, so too the family of the depressed learns about depression. Dep–Anon, can be likened to Al-Anon in the sense that both have support groups in which families together can be source of strength, help and hope for each other.
It has been my pressing concern over these many years as a practicing mental health therapist, to do more to help family members be part of the conversation with the mental and medical health professionals when it comes to dealing with a depressed loved one. Also, it has been an ultimate concern of mine to support setting up Depressed Anonymous groups while at the same time encouraging Dep-Anon twelve step groups for family members with a depressed loved one.
In the next few weeks, Depressed Anonymous Publications, will be sharing information when the Dep-Anon book will be available. Hopefully, sometime by the middle of January, 2021.
Hugh S., for the Fellowship