I'm 19 yrs old living with my 61 yr old dad who is suffering severe depression. I've been down lately, I need encouragements :(

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I would love to hear from other people who also is taking care of their depressed parent or so.. I would love to learn more and understand better..

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You sound like a wonderful son.

Your dad should see a doctor to find out if he is more than just "down," and is suffering from clinical depression. There are medications that can help. Clinical depression isn't something people can just snap out of. It's a very real illness, often because brain chemicals aren't just right. But there are therapies. I hope your dad will listen to you and see a doctor.

You can help by encouraging him and being kind, but don't feel that you can "cure" him on your own. That's too much to take on.

If your dad has a good friend, you may want to ask this person for help in convincing your dad to see a doctor.
Good luck,
Carol
Thankyou. Well I dont know what you call his depression but what I noticed is that every 6months he is manic and the other half he's in a depressive state.. He just stays at his room for months.. He has a Psychiatrist he was prescribed with medicines but I dont think its working for him well.. would you prefer a therapy than medicine..
xjusguinax, I'm glad your father has a psychiatrist. That is the medical specialty that can address imbalances in brain chemicals. Usually these doctors manage medications. Is Dad seeing this doctor at least every three months?

Often a psychiatrist will recommend talk therapy in addition to drugs. The therapist may suggest certain activities. For example a common recommendation might be to avoid isolation -- get out of the house daily, even to go buy a newspaper, or walk around the block.

As Carol says, this is a very real illness. You can't talk someone out of a chemical imbalance. But a therapist can help the person deal with some of the emotional challenges that can develop.

Encourage your dad to see his psychiatrist as scheduled, to take his medications, and to see a therapist if that has been recommended. If you can, encourage him to emerge from his room, perhaps by asking for his help with something.

But also accept that you cannot cure him and you cannot make everything all better. Your best bet is to encourage him to get professional help and to follow the treatment plan.

Hi jeannegibbs, Yes he visits his psychiatrist when needed and when he is scheduled.. Well he visits his doctor every 2weeks-1month.. Thankyou you really for your tips.. I wish I could really look for a great therapist who specializes depression.. I'm from the Philippines btw.. and the reason why I am really frustrated because the recent month he was acting really normal from 4months of isolation in his room but now he's back to his depressive stage.. It's just really hard to adjust with everything.. And I really feel im being choked because I cant go out and live mylife I have to be here for him everyday and sacrifice plans for him...
Can you find a counselor that you can talk to about your own issues? This is a huge responsibility for you ... in fact, more than you should have to deal with alone. Please take care of your own needs, too. You deserve it!
It's just really hard and im most concerned with my future im nearly off to my internship this summer and i dont know what to do as of the moment.. but bigthanks I really appreciate it jeannegibbs.
you are trying to take this on by yourself. you need to talk to your fathers doctor, and tell him what is really going on. chances are your father isn't telling him about his state of mind. perscriptions don't always cure depression (been there myself) there needs to be more outside help to help your father out of this. talk to his friends and any family you might have nearby. they can help by getting him out of the house and doing something. that really helps everyone especially you.
when the medicine did not help me, my friends and family took over. I finally came out of it (takes a while) but you need help from others. this is not something you can handle alone. Is there someone who is willing to move in so you can take care of your studies and not worry about your dad? is there family that is willing to take your father in thier home so you can do your studies?
I know that your care about your father, but, you need to take care of yourself first. Letting this keep you from pursuing your goals, will haunt you the rest of your life. If you are not happy, then you will fall into that same empty space that your father seems to be in. do not let that happen. you can't help him if you stop yourself from going forward. Get help from others so you can pursue your studies and do not feel guilty about it. You deserve to go forward. not stand still.
xjusguinax, I am a 21 year old with a 58 year old father who became severely depressed after losing his job a year and a half ago. I can empathize with the "down" feeling you're talking about. I must admit that just finding your discussion and knowing there are others out there dealing with the same sort of situation is a relief (if that's the right word). Living with my father is extremely difficult. He lives in a constant state of negativity and gets worked up at the drop of a hat. My father refused to see a doctor, and doesn't believe in therapy or medication. Unfortunately just recently he was taken in to the hospital and told that his depression has lead to extremely high blood pressure which in turn has resulted in congestive heart failure along with extensive liver damage. I try to be as supportive as I can be but it is undeniably hard. Sometimes the best thing I can do to keep my cool is to leave the house. I haven't really figured out how to deal with this myself, but some of the things that help me are A) simply taking myself out of the equation for a while. This basically means I leave the house. I stay with friends, I go out to eat, or for a walk in the park, anything to take my mind off of it. B) Talking. I'm fortunate to have a very supportive boyfriend, who is always willing to listen. My advice is find that person in your life. Getting your feelings out will not only help you take some of the weight off your chest, but will also help you evaluate and realize exactly what it is you're feeling. Writing in a journal has the same affect for me.
In all honesty, my heart aches every day. I am always thinking of ways to help my father get back on his feet. It seems that most people in my life are telling me precisely what sue1952mcc said. I get that it's harder than that; easier said than done. Parents are very important to people's lives. I can remember back when my Dad wasn't depressed, and think of that time often (though it seems a lifetime ago now). Since my mother died when I was 5, my father genuinely was my best friend. We loved spending time with each other and now it's hard to be in the same room with him. I love him dearly, which makes this that much harder.
- Also, I have a full-time job, and am going to school. I am currently coming to terms with the fact that my Dad is an adult, and he runs his own life. I have to live and move forward in my own life. I can't let it stop. It's a difficult balancing act.

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