When should I seek help?

It is quite common to feel unsure about seeking help or support for your mental health.

Some reasons why you might choose to seek help or support can include: finding it difficult to cope with your feelings or thoughts, maybe thoughts or feelings impact your everyday life, or just curious to find out more about support.

It is okay for you to seek help, even if you are not sure if you are experiencing a mental health problem. 

What should I say to my Doctor or Therapist?

When it comes to your mental health, there is no wrong way to tell someone your feelings or thoughts.

Some things to keep in mind:

Be honest and open.

Focus on how you feel (especially over the last few months or weeks).

Speak in your own voice.  Use words that feel natural.

If it helps, write down thoughts or things you want to cover before hand.

Your problems are not too small or unimportant.  Everyone deserves help.

What if I am not happy with my Doctor or Therapist?

Sometimes this happens.  Sometimes we don’t “mesh” well or maybe we outgrow our provider.

Getting the right help doesn’t always happen the first time.  There are steps you can take to raise concerns for your health.  

You can change your Doctor or Therapist.  This relationship can make a difference in your care.  If you are not making progress, try moving to another provider, talk with friends or family about it, or even talk with your Doctor or Therapist about your concerns.  

Communication is very important. 

How can I support someone else who is seeking help?

As a friend or family member of someone who has a mental illness, it can feel like you don’t know what to say or do.  However, what you offer can be very valuable.  

Listen – Simply giving someone space to talk and listening to their words can be very helpful.  Remind them that you are there whenever they are ready to talk.  Listen nonjudgement free.  Listen to understand, not respond. 

Reassurance – Reassure someone by letting them know that they are not alone, and you’re there to help. 

Calm + Patient – It can be upsetting to hear someone’s thoughts or feelings when you may not feel the same.  Try to remain calm. This shows that they can speak with you without you getting upset.  Let them set the pace. 

What else can I do to support someone else?

Here is some practical advice if you are wanting to help more.  

Be informed.  Educate yourself.

Help them stay organized.  Keeping up with notes, prescriptions, and appointments can become very overwhelming. 

Go with them to the appointments.  If they ask you to join them, do so.  Even being in the waiting room can be reassuring.  

Practical tasks.  Ask them if they need help with anything.  Mental illnesses are not easy to deal with. 

I want to help someone who doesn't want help!

This can be very frustrating and distressing.  It is important to remember that there are always limits to what you can do.  They have to make a decision for themselves (if they are over the age of 18 and not currently in a crisis or psychosis).

If you have a friend or family member who is having delusions or seeing things that others cannot, they may be feeling paranoid or experience psychosis.  It is helpful to try not to either validate or challenge their perceptions, and try to acknowledge how their perceptions are making them feel.  

If someone is at serious risk (and won’t approach anyone for help), it is best to contact the local crisis line.  They can help arrange an assessment. 1-800-621-8504 

Have additional questions?  Fill out the form below! 

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