Depression, anxiety, stress and other mental health issues can make us feel isolated and unseen. And when you’re struggling to cope, reaching out to family and friends might be the last thing you want to do. You might feel like a burden, or that you’ll be judged for your struggles. But opening up to someone you trust is something you can do to help improve your mental health.
Six reasons why you should reach out to family and friends when struggling
1. They care more than you think
Your friends and family care about your wellbeing. They want to see you happy, fulfilled and thriving, and chances are they are willing to listen without judgment. Even if you’ve felt ignored or misunderstood, it could be because they don’t know what you are going through, or how much you need them.
It is very likely your friends and family want to know what you are going through and how they can help you. Think about someone in your life. If they were struggling and needed support, wouldn’t you want to know so that you could help them? Don’t underestimate your friends and family’s desire to support you through life’s challenges.
2. Sharing your burden can lighten the load
Mental health issues often create a sense of isolation. As you deal with your worries and anxieties on your own, the weight of it can become increasingly hard to bear. But when you share how you are feeling with someone you trust, the weight feels lighter, and you can breathe a little easier. You might also discover that others have faced similar struggles. And now that people in your life know what you are going through, they can help.
3. Gain a new perspective
Sometimes, when we’re deep in our struggles, we can lose sight of alternative perspectives or solutions. Talking to someone you trust can offer a fresh perspective, and help you gain new insights and consider different approaches.
4. Strengthen your relationships
Opening up to someone about your situation can deepen your connection with them. It demonstrates your trust and vulnerability, fostering a stronger bond and a closer relationship. By sharing what you are going through, they can better understand you. For instance, if you tend to withdraw when struggling, they may become more understanding the next time it happens.
5. It will help them to help you
By sharing your struggles, you empower your loved ones to offer support when you need it most. They can be more attuned to your emotional state, offering a helping hand or a listening ear.
Your loved ones may also be able to provide practical assistance, such as helping with household chores, running errands, or offering transportation. This can help reduce your burden and free up time and energy for self-care.
6. Raising awareness of mental health
The stigma surrounding mental health can be a significant barrier to seeking help. Talking about your mental health challenges can help to break down these barriers and create a more supportive environment. It normalises these experiences and encourages others to seek help when they need it.
When you reach out to family and friends, they can provide you with emotional support, practical help, and a safe space to share your feelings. They can help you to see things from a different perspective and remind you that you’re not alone.
If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed give our Suicide Call Back Service team a call anytime on 1300 659 467. For online counselling, click the chat button on the right. Our service is free and available 24/7.
If it is an emergency, dial 000.