Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.
It sounds like you are doing everything you can to help your son. I understand you may feel frustrated and upset but you are making a good effort. Much of what you are doing would be exactly what a professional would suggest. But your son is making it hard for you to help. With chronic depression, it is often very difficult to help the person because they don't want to try anything. Their mood is so down that efforts to get them to do things that would make us feel better fall flat with them.
Although your son is not willing to accept the help, that does not mean that you don't want to try. There are some additional things you can do. Here are some suggestions:
Educate yourself- the more you can learn about depression, the better your choices in helping your son. Here are some resources to help you get started:
The Mindful Way through Depression: Freeing Yourself from Chronic Unhappiness by XXXXX XXXXX, XXXXX Teasdale, Zindel Segal and Jon Kabat-Zinn
Undoing Depression: What Therapy Doesn't Teach You and Medication Can't Give You by Richard O'Connor
Talking to Depression: Simple Ways To Connect When Someone In Your LifeIs Depressed: Simple Ways To Connect When Someone In Your Life Is Depressed by Claudia J. Strauss and Martha Manning
You can find these books on Amazon.com or your local library may have them for you.
You can also just sit with your son and listen. Let him know that he can talk with you anytime he needs to. Resist giving him advice. People sometimes will just need to let out their feelings and that is what helps them the most.
Don't forget to help yourself. You need a break and a time to recharge and you cannot help your son if you feel stressed.
Do give your son some space. Let a few days go by in between visits or calls. He does need time to work out things on his own.
Suggest group therapy if you feel it would help him. He can find a group on line or in person. Here is a link to help:
He can also try therapy at the local community mental health center. Contact your local United Way for information and contact numbers. Community mental health centers will see anyone who needs help. Payment will be on a sliding fee scale. They also have psychiatrists to help with medication. And they are a great place to contact with questions about community resources for your son.
Let me know if I can help in any other way,Kate