Sometimes your feelings and thoughts can seem overwhelming, and you may feel as though you can’t cope. It might be that you are simply having a bad day, or it may be that you have an ongoing mental health problem that you need support for. The important thing is that you don’t try to cope on your own.

If you are feeling low and vulnerable it is not good for you to spend too much time on your own. It’s at times like these that you need to be able to talk to someone. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

You might not feel comfortable asking for help. You may feel that you are a burden on other people or would upset them. You might worry whether they may not believe you or about what they might think or that they could tell others.

You may even be afraid that people will laugh at you.

The truth is, people who care about you will want to help.

There are many people who you can ask for help:

  • your family – parents or carers, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles or cousins
  • trusted friends – your own friends, or friends of the family, neighbours
  • professionals – your GP, a doctor or nurse, a social worker, a teacher

Decide who you would feel most comfortable talking to. Many people feel more able to talk to their friends or family, however, you may choose to talk to professionals, support groups, helplines or online forums.

Choose a quiet time and a place that you feel comfortable in, so you can talk without interruption.

Try to think about what outcome you would like. Do you simply want someone to listen to you? Would you like strategies and resources to help you help yourself? Or would you like more face-to-face support and therapies?  Don’t be worried if you don’t know, but it can be useful to have an idea of what you would like to change or achieve.

Before you speak to anybody make some notes so you can be sure you don’t forget something you want to share.

Try to be open and clear in how you are feeling, this will give the person supporting you the information to make sure you get the right help.

It can be scary and difficult to talk about your feelings, but ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’ and you’ll probably feel better by simply opening up to someone and knowing that help is available.

You are not alone—there are many resources there to help you. The links on these webpages are for organisations and charities who work to support children, young people and their parents through episodes of mental health illness.