Hey! I'm not a mental health professional, but I am here to help ♡
how can I help?
things your friend with depression wants you to know
▪︎ We cant just snap out of it:
This can be frustrating to hear, and it shows that the person you're speaking doesnt understand how you feel. we can't snap out of depression, that's impossible. sometimes no matter how hard to try to fight back it overpowers you and theres nothing you can do about it. depression is a constant battle and its exhausting
▪︎ Depression isnt a choice:
We dont choose to be depressed. It affects various things in your life such as relationships, work and education. we dont choose to have a low mood all the time and find everything an effort. Depression is out of our control and we cant do anything for it to stop happening to us. we aren't weak because we have depression.
▪︎ We don't always have a reason:
As someone who has never experienced depression, it can be easy to assume that its caused by an event in someone's life. depression can be triggered by life events such as bereavement or losing your job. but there isnt always a reason to why someone is depressed. depression can affect anyone and it is an illness.
▪︎ Depression and sadness is not the same thing:
Depression and sadness mean two different things,
Sadness is a negative emotion and if something bad was to happen then you may feel sad. but that sadness will lift after days. depression is a persistent sadness, it can last for weeks, months or even years. it can affect you in various ways such as changing your personality, interests and the way you see the future, also your physical health.
▪︎ We sometimes feel like a burden:
Depression can cause us to feel like an inconvenience to others. leading us to become isolated and finding it difficult to talk to others, when feeling low we can avoid other people in order to hide how we feel from our family/friends. this is when you need to be more compassionate and reassure your loved ones that they arent a burden.
▪︎ depression doesn't have a face:
Just because someone seems happy, laughs, smiles, and jokes it doesnt mean they aren't suffering deep down. sometimes the saddest people put on a brave face and pretend they're okay. that doesnt mean what they're feeling has gone away. most of the times it's just an act.
▪︎ We dont want to hurt you:
For friends and family it can be hard to watch someone you love suffer from depression. and it can be difficult to understand how to help and what to do. there are feelings of guilt and fear of letting people down. we may take things personally or say something that's horrible but we dont mean it. it can be hard to love and care for someone who is depressed but standing with by someone and showing them unconditional love and care is one of the best things you can ever do.
▪︎ We are trying our best:
Depression is something that we have to work through. we cant let go and ignore depression, it can be treated appropriately by a medical professional. if we use therapy and/or medication as way of working through our depression please stand by us. there is no shame in asking for help. depression makes us feel isolated and lonely and having someone by our side makes us feel less alone and comforted. helps a lot.
Sending so much love! you can do this ♡
What you can do on your part:
▪︎ give them the most reassurance, they need it
▪︎ tell them you'll always be by their side
▪︎ tell them you care
▪︎ dont get annoyed when they keep asking the same questions because overthinking is really hard.
▪︎ don't pressure them to reach out for help but do remind them that it's an option
▪︎ only give them advice if you have experience
▪︎ tell them you understand them and that you're proud of them.
▪︎ dont force them to open up to you or tell you their feelings, just offer to help
▪︎ don't try to "fix" them
▪︎ listen to their problems, ask them to tell you about thier problems
▪︎ ask them about their triggers and respect them
Things you should avoid saying:
other people have it worse"
"just think positive, dont be so negative"
"this is just a phase"
"it's not that big of a deal"
"how would you feel if I was depressed"
"how would you feel if I hurt myself"
"if you hurt yourself I'll do it too"
"you're not doing your best try harder"
"its probably not that serious it's normal"
"it could be worse"
just remember you dont know how they feel so you cant speak for them or minimize how they feel.
▪︎ someone's mental health is not your responsibility
▪︎ only listen to someone's problems if you have the strength/capacity to do so.
▪︎ Dont let anyone blame you for their mental health.
▪︎ Dont let anyone use you or manipulate you with their mental health.
▪︎ Make sure you're okay too, your friend wants to hear you out too.
SENDING SO MUCH LOVE, YOU CAN DO THIS ♡
things your friend with anxiety wants you to know:
▪︎ its not just a nervous feeling,
most people get worried from time to time, whether that is over money or school or relationship, etc. but for those with anxiety, our brain never switches off and even the smallest of things can cause the most anxiety
▪︎ We are not overreacting:
different situations can cause different levels of anxiety, even if the two situations are very similar. that doesnt mean we'll have the same reactions to both. we could be perfectly fine going out to dinner with someone but have a really hard time going to the grocery store. this doesnt mean we're being dramatic, our brain literally stops us from doing some things.
▪︎ We know our fears arent always rational.
We may not always be able to explain the reason we feel the way we do. ask us to be rationalize our fear in a non confronting way. The idea is not to shame us out of anxiety. but to help us come to terms with it.
▪︎ Its not always a mental thing but can be physical too.
Anxiety can come with physical symptoms too such as nausea, headaches, trembling, breathing difficulties, insomnia, restlessness, etc. these symptoms cannot always be helped and can be very hard to live with day by day.
▪︎ We can't turn our anxiety off.
Having anxiety is hard enough. no one would choose to live with it. telling us to "stop worrying" or "calm down" is not helpful. because if it was that easy we wouldn't be suffering with anxiety.
▪︎ Anxiety can come in waves,
There will be some days we are feeling fine and may not be worrying, but even on the fine days, we still worry about it coming back or how long the fine days will last. out of the blue anxiety can come out of nowhere and hit us like a ton of bricks.
▪︎ Triggers are an actual thing:
triggers can be as simple as someone saying something completely harmless. something that happens on the TV, or what feels like deja vu. Be sensitive towards those triggers, because we might not even know we have them until they happen. we aren't frail people we just have frail moments.
▪︎ Even if we "look fine" we may not be.
Anxiety can present itself in many different ways. but one important thing to remember is sometimes it can be invisible. we may hide how we are feeling or suffer in silence. but look completely happy and content on the outside. dont always be fooled that we are perfectly okay.
Sending so much love! you can do this ♡
Thank you for educating yourself! here's some tools you can help them with:
if you or a friend are ever in need, there are many resources available to help you understand mental illnesses and help you if youre in need
please keep in mind that calling certain hotlines may end up in the police being sent to the callers house. this may put some people in more danger depending on the situation!! be safe please, and dont worry, there are many resources to help still! i recommend using tools listed in the other categories first to regulate yourself then coming back here if youre still in need of help. not every hotline will work for you, some hotlines are known to not be helpful & im not sure exactly which ones are like that so i tried to provide as many as i could.
with any questions you may have about borderline personality disorders contact the NAMI HelpLine at 800-950-6264
or their website
Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) provides information on prevention, treatment and symptoms of anxiety, depression and related conditions
their number is (240-485-1001)
Treatment and Research Advancements for Borderline Personality Disorder (TARA) offers a referral center for information, support, education and treatment options for BPD
their number is (888-482-7227)
Sidran Institute helps people understand, manage and treat trauma and dissociation; maintains a helpline for information and referrals
their number is (410-825-8888)
Samaritans is an international suicide hotline. when you call Samaritans, your number is not displayed to the volunteer.
UK Crisis Help, Anywhere in the UK or Ireland is 116 123
The Trevor Project provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning LGBTQ people under 25. Available 24/7/365.
The Trevor Project: 1-866-488-7386 or text “START” to 678678.
The national sexual assault hotline is a safe, confidential service. only the first six numbers of the phone number are used to route the call
Rape, Sexual Assault, Abuse, and Incest National Network is (800) 656-HOPE
International OCD Foundation provides information on OCD and treatment referrals
their number is (617-973-5801)
Crisis Text Line: Text REASON to 741741 (free, confidential and 24/7)
The National Eating Disorders Center Helpline is (800) 931-2237
open monday-friday 9-9pm
Get general information on mental health and locate treatment services in your area. Speak to a live person, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST. SAMHSA Treatment Referral Helpline, 1-877-SAMHSA7 (1-877-726-4727)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH): This organization has a variety of methods for you to communicate with knowledgeable people about mental health issues. In addition to the phone line, there is a live online chat option. available Monday–Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST.
their number is (866) 615-6464
National Hopeline Network: Available 365 days a year, volunteers who staff this toll-free hotline are specially trained in crisis intervention to provide support, information, and referrals to people in need.
their number is (800) 442-HOPE (4673).
PTSD Foundation of America, Veteran Line: Providing referrals, information, and helpful resources to veterans and their families, this toll-free hotline is available 24/7.
their number is (877) 717-PTSD (7873).
Youthspace Text Line (across Canada): Text 778-783-0177 from 6 p.m. to midnight daily.
National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Eating Disorders
10 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST, Monday to Friday
loveisrespect, National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline
Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week
(310) 855-HOPE (4673)
(800) TLC-TEEN (852-8336) (U.S. and Canada only)
Or text TEEN to 839863
6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Pacific Time, every night
Please dont tell them they have to stop immediately, don't force them to do anything, I know you're worried but it won't work If you pressure of force them.
DO NOT guilt trip them, dont make it about other people or yourself.
"how would you feel if I hurt myself"
"If you hurt yourself I'll do it too"
"Stop please it's really hurting me to see you like this"
"How would your family feel if they saw your scars"
"if you dont stop I'll report you to the authorities" please dont threaten them in any way they told you because they trust you.
Dont force them to hide their scars.
understand the reasons why they might be self harming because you can help you be more empathetic and not be insensitive.
Reasons why people self harm:
▪︎ They feel intense numbness and are doing something to try and break out of it
▪︎ it's a coping mechanism for depression/life problems
▪︎ to "Express" build up emotions
▪︎ They hate themselves
▪︎ it's an impulse in dark times
▪︎ To punish themselves
▪︎ It reminds them that they're alive
▪︎ To distract themselves from suicidal thoughts
▪︎ Physical pain is a distraction from emotional pain
▪︎ To feel an escape/ a sense of control
▪︎ To externalize inner turmoil
▪︎ A distract to avoid relieving trauma
▪︎ They feel worthless
▪︎ Its an addictive habit
offer them alternatives, dont force them to use but just stick to what you can do.
self harm alternatives:
1. Visit or Call a friend
2. Hold an ice cube in the crook of your arm or leg.
3. if your temptation involves seeing blood put red food coloring in water and freeze it like ice, let it melt on your wrist. I've seen many people say this works.
4. Chew something with a very strong taste like chillies, peppermint, etc.
5. Wrap yourself in a warm blanket.
6. Listen to calming music. It can also fit preferences. I go for music that expresses my feelings
7. Cuddle a pet (I do pillow because I don't have a pet and I'm lonely)
12. Browse Ebay or amazon
13. Let yourself cry
14. Play video games or play an instrument
13. Draw where you want to self harm
14. Snap a rubber band on your wrist. (this has personally helped me a lot and doesnt hurt my wrist so I'm including it but definitely be careful)
15. Hit a cushion against the hall or bed
16. Scrub the area where you usually cut with soap
17. Throw ice cubes in bathtubs
18. Meditation or yoga
19. Warm or Cold Showers and baths definitely help for me
20. Chew on ice cubes
21. Scream into a pillow
I know it's hard for you to see your friend like this. you're support means so much to them.
Sending so much love! you can do this ♡