Some people with a mental health problem may experience disordered thoughts or hallucinations. You might have noticed a friend having difficulty thinking, expressing unusual beliefs, or perceiving that things have changed around them. These could be early signs of psychosis, which sounds scary - but you can help them, by listening and helping them seek professional support should they need it.

Tips:

  • Try not to dismiss what they’re saying or doing: it feels real for your friend, so don’t make them feel stupid or lesser.
  • At the same time, don’t encourage delusions, or agree that you also see or hear something that isn’t there.
  • This might be a bit unsettling for you, so reach out to talk to someone if you need to.

You can be the difference to someone experiencing psychosis. No matter how daunting it may seem, it’s scarier for them - listen, and don’t shy away from it.

“I was a newly qualified teacher and experienced acute depression followed by a psychotic episode. I couldn’t have got through the experience without family and friends” – Jen