Talking to Loved Ones About Mental Health

As the cases in America rise so does the need to reach out to loved ones about mental illness.

As the cases in America rise so does the need to reach out to loved ones about mental illness.

Sabrina McCranels, Staff Writer

Mental health is a scary topic to talk about. In the midst of the pandemic, there has been a large rise in anxiety, depression, alcoholism, and drug abuse amongst all Americans. Even so, there has been a 0.5% rise in youth that have severe major depression according to Mental Health America. Here are some things you can do either if you need to reach out to someone because you’re struggling or you want to reach out because you see them struggling.


  1. After noticing that a loved one or friend is struggling the first step is communication. Simply start a normal conversation.
  2.  Send a text message or make a date to go get lunch just to get the ball rolling. 
  3. Then explain why you wanted to reach out. Maybe you’ve noticed that they haven’t been talking as much or they haven’t been posting as much on their spam account. 
  4. Encourage them to talk if they need to but don’t demand that they need to talk to you. This mostly includes active listening. If they truly don’t want to talk, urge them to contact different means of help like a helpline or trusted adult. 
  5. Ask if you can help in any way. 
  6. Answer with affirmation and validity rather than reassurance, ‘Thank you for telling me’.
  7. Most importantly don’t let the conversation be a one-time thing even if it seems that they have gotten better. Make a schedule where you call every other night after work and talk. It doesn’t even have to be about their struggles. 


If you are struggling and need to reach out a great way to start is a ‘hello’ with someone you trust. However, here are some different hotlines and informational articles if you don’t feel comfortable talking to someone just yet. 

Top Hotline Resources

Information for teens

About Mental Illness