There are people who are close to us who suffer from mental health issues, and we can have no idea. Some may be quiet, sad, paranoid or jumpy and we may not always pick up on it. We may jump to conclusions and think we’re the problem when really it’s people struggling and trying to deal with their problems.
There are a few people that are close to me that suffer from mental health issues. They can have good and bad days. They can be happy one minute, then sad the next. They may be finding it difficult to get out of bed or to eat or keep on top of everything. It’s really important that we all keep an open mind and an open ear on the people around us. If we see someone upset or distracted, ask how they are and if they need a chat. They might not be open with you but don’t take that personally, keep reassuring them that you’re there to listen and eventually they might speak up.
I think one person’s presence can be enough sometimes. If you text someone or check in on them, they know you are there for guidance and support if they need you. I don’t like to be too pushy and instead just send people a quick message checking in, or popping my head in the door and seeing how they are today. There are lots of things you can do to remind someone they are loved and looked after, and certainly not alone.
I like to be warm and welcoming and smiley, so that they may find it easier to talk to me and confide in me. When I’ve bottled things up it gets all built up inside of me. So when I’ve let it out and been honest, it can make such a big difference. This may not always be the case and people may want to just keep it to themselves, but asking how they are and maybe giving them a smile or a hug can help them more than you think.
At the end of the day, be there for people because you’d would want them to do the same for you. We all probably know what it’s like to feel like you have nobody. Everyone has someone, and there will be people there with you, holding your hand and guiding you through, always.
When you’re next around your friends, family or people you know, give them a smile and ask how they’re doing. See what they’re up to at the moment and maybe even give them a cuddle before you leave. It can make all the difference to know someone is there.