You don’t have to be an expert to talk about mental health.
Like our bodies, our minds can become unwell, so starting a conversation about mental health is important. It helps people to recover. It can strengthen a relationship between friends, family and colleagues. And it starts to take the taboo out of something that affects us all.
We give you some tips to starting your conversation. You could also pass on the message that it’s #TimetoTalk by downloading materials and sharing them online, or by adding your name to our pledge wall.
Starting the conversation
If your friend had a broken leg, or he or she had just come out of hospital after an operation, you probably wouldn’t think twice about asking how they were.
Sometimes that’s all it takes – asking someone how they are.
"My friend understood depression is very different from being unhappy… It made a huge difference to me just knowing that she was there. I knew I could call on her, day or night, and it was comforting to know that I could reach her if I felt overwhelmed at times. She never lectured me, she just listened." (Mandy)
There are lots of simple, everyday ways you can support someone who has a mental health problem. Why not read our tips for talking?
You could also start your conversation today by adding your name to our pledge wall.
How to help someone with mental health problems
If someone you know is experiencing mental health problems or needs urgent support, there are lots of services that you can go to for help.
You can also find out more about:
- particular mental health diagnoses from Mind, Rethink Mental Illness and the NHS
- the simple, everyday ways you can support someone who has a mental health problem
- how stigma and discrimination can affect people living with mental health problems like depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, anxiety, personality disorders or schizophrenia.
You don't have to be an expert
Hear more from our media volunteers on how support has helped them.
Paul and Rob
Paul: “It’s the small things that Rob does that really help. When I’m having a rough day, he will text me more often to check how I’m feeling.”
Nina and Diana
Ross and Peter
Peter: “It’s good to talk about things that have nothing to do with depression or psychological states or mental health. Anything. Just normal stuff – on a walk, down the pub. Just relaxing, enjoying the company of my son.”
Denise and Ben
Denise: “When you’re in your darkest days, and there’s someone there that loves you, then you can get through. Talking is the way forward.”