Tips to Help a Friend

If you think that a friend or family member is struggling with depression, anxiety or another mental disorder, speak up. Mental illness can be lonely, isolating and frightening, so let the person know that they are not alone. Let them know that their situation is not unusual; in fact, one in five adult San Diegans suffers from mental health challenges, and half of all mental illnesses begin at age 14, three-quarters by age 24.

Once you’ve started the conversation about mental illness, listen up and ask questions. Listen to what the person is sharing with you. Ask questions, to let them know you hear them and respect what they’re going through. Above all, don’t minimize their symptoms or expect them to simply snap out of it. Mental disorders are just as important to address as physical health. Use the resources available here to read up about the particular illness they might be facing.

Encourage your friend or loved one to talk to a parent, school nurse or seek professional treatment. Support your friend by helping them find the appropriate resources together. Don’t underestimate the importance of your support, time and help.

Videos:

Tyler (TV Spot)

Face Time

This video shows a young adult reaching out to a friend and staying persistent, after she notices some sad and depressing statuses from her friend on Facebook