It is really important to talk to your friend if you’re concerned that they might be struggling with their mental health.

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Describe the changes you’ve noticed in them and tell them why you’re worried.

What do I say?

Starting the conversation may seem really daunting. That’s ok, we get it. But it’s actually way easier than you'd think. Just tell them what changes you’ve noticed and ask if they’re ok. Simple as that.
 

Stick to the facts. Don’t judge. Don’t make assumptions. Just say what you see.

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“I’ve missed you at soccer the past couple weeks. Is everything ok?”​

“You’ve seemed really down the past few days. Is there anything you want to talk about?”

“You’ve been so busy lately, are you taking time to eat? I miss having lunch with you.”

Erin & Gaya's Story

I had to ask her what was going on

Erin & Gaya

When do I say something?

A good rule of thumb is to reach out when you notice something is different. Maybe your friend isn’t laughing as much as they used to, or maybe they’re skipping class more than usual. If they just aren’t themselves lately, they might be having a hard time. Reach out and say something.

Everyone is unique so it definitely can be hard to tell whether someone is struggling with their mental health or just experiencing the regular ups and downs of life. But if you’re worried, there’s no harm in checking in.
 
If someone is really distressed and they pose a threat to themselves or others, this is a mental health crisis. This is not the right time to discuss the nuances of their mental health, it’s a time to take action. Think of it this way; if there's a fire, the first thing to do is call 9-1-1 and get out of danger rather than try to figure out what started the fire. If you witness or suspect a crisis situation, call a helpline, 9-1-1 or emergency services right away. If you think you should call 9-1-1, then you probably should. Gut feelings are underrated.

Jessie & Manvir's Story

You were continuously checking in

Jessie & Manvir

Facing Resistance

Questions from the community

What if I don't know the person that well? We already talked about it online, how do I bring it up in person? What if there's a language barrier or a different cultural understanding of mental health? We’re not really on good terms, but I recognize they are struggling. What should I do?

How to provide support

Well done, you broke the ice! Learn how to Show You Care to build trust and help them out.

Be There