It is a tough feeling, seeming like you can never say the right thing. Especially when your significant other has slipped into a depression. The wrong thing can send them yelling and screaming, and you might not even be sure why. How do you talk to him or her without it being a problem? How do you avoid making things worse, when you just want to be supportive? How do you say things so they are not taken the wrong way?
The worst thing that you can do is say things with the wrong tone. That can be the most important thing to do. If your tone is perceived as being condescending, it may be interpreted as such. Even if you don’t think your tone is wrong, you need to be careful. It is a hard thing to determine, but the best thing to do is stick to a neutral tone of voice.
The second thing to do is not to pry, but let your significant other talk to you about what is wrong. Listen, comment when appropriate, but don’t voice too many opinions. This is a time for them to be upset and they will deal with it as appropriate. Telling them to snap out of it is not the best approach. Let them set the tone for the conversation.
Finally, when they are depressed, be supportive. Now is not the time to say things that are critical. As hard as it might be, now is a time when you need to hold your tongue a little bit.
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