|megpie71 (megpie71) wrote,|
When you see someone drowning, well, there's a lot of things you can do. Some of them will help. Many of them won't. Standing on the shoreline yelling "breathe water" won't help. It would address the problem the drowning person has, I grant you - they need oxygen, there's at least one oxygen atom per molecule of water, so if they could just breathe the water, they wouldn't be drowning, right? Bingo! Whole issue solved, no further problems, no further issues. Except for that first step (figuring out how the heck to do it when you're fitted with lungs rather than gills), which is something of a whopper.
Telling someone depressed to "cheer up" or "pull themselves together" is the same as telling someone drowning to "breathe water". First supply instructions on *HOW*.
Other things which can help in the case of drowning victims are things like swimming lessons. Swimming lessons can be great, and can really help prevent drowning... provided they're started at some point prior to the person actually having their head going under the water from exhaustion. Counselling, psychiatric help, psychological sessions and similar for someone in the middle of a depressive breakdown are analogous to swimming lessons for your drowning person. Yes, they'll help, but not right this blinkin' second.
What you really need, when you're drowning, is for someone else to offer you practical help getting out of that situation. Ideally, you need someone who's able to get in there with you, and physically drag you to safety. But you'll settle for a rope thrown from the shoreline, or something that floats to hold onto so you can concentrate on breathing, or a set of flippin' water wings in a pinch. So some things which count as that thrown rope (for me at least) include having someone check up on whether or not I'm taking my medication, eating regularly, interacting with other folks, getting out of the house, etc. The person who gets into the water alongside me is the person who gets me out of bed when I'm sleeping well into the afternoons, calls the doctor when I'm certain I can't, and tells me they still love me even when I'm feeling unloveable - my partner.. but he's not the world's strongest swimmer either, and sometimes it's one hell of a long way to shore.
We're trying to find that rope now. With any luck, I'll be able to latch onto it, and we'll get a lot closer to shore. Failing that, there's some nice people from the local psychiatric service who provide a surf lifesaving service with a boat, and they'll give me a hand if I need it too.