Reaching out to friends
Feeling depressed or anxious can be a very difficult time, and for many reasons we can end up drifting from our friends. This can make us feel isolated from the world, which does not make dealing with everything easier.
Dealing with mental health issues can stop us from thinking straight and that’s ok – so I am here to share some tips, so you can realise things are nowhere near as bad as you think.
1. Tell the people you love how you feel
Now I know this list is off to a typical start about how you should talk to people about your problems, but coming from a fellow struggler, its true.
You probably think that people won’t understand or people might not care but, they do. If you don’t want to tell your friends all the ins and outs that’s okay, but let them know what is going on. Your friends are people that love you and care about you and this way you won’t feel so distant like you have to hide something from them. If they are not getting it there are lots of articles and stories on ReachOut that can help them understand what you are going through and how to help.
2. People don’t think about you as much as you think
THIS. IS. A. GOOD. THING. You might think at first well, how is that? But take my word for it. I know you might overthink everything, and think everyone is thinking about you and how you are weird for having these issues and not wanting to go outside when your friends ask, or not wanting to go to the party – but they aren’t. People are so busy with their own lives and worrying about their own problems so don’t put yourself under so much pressure.
3. Pick up the phone – and contact them
Maybe you have been having a rough few days, weeks or months, and you are feeling lonely. It can definitely be hard to stay as close to your friends when you’re struggling with mental health problems because it is like all of your time is taken up by overthinking and trying to figure out your issues.
You might not think so now, but your friends are just a phone call or text away, if you’re thinking – they hate me, no they do not. People don’t just hate people for no reason, if you’ve done Tip 1 above, then they know you are having a rough time and they will be delighted when they get to hang out with you, because they love you.
4. Look At The Facts
Lastly, if in doubt of everything I said, just look at the facts -this will do wonders. If you’re thinking “They hate me we haven’t spoken in weeks” – have they ACTUALLY done anything to indicate this? When you’re in doubt just think, what would you do if a friend was having a hard time? You wouldn’t hate them or stop loving them? People have their own issues too and they can relate. You are not alone in this. This article on self-talk can help you identify common thinking errors and tackle negative self-talk.
This blog was written for ReachOut.com by our Youth Editorial Board member Martyna Maselsky.