Family and Friends

Those one considers close can be an overwhelming source of support, be a source of stability as constants in one's life, and, perhaps most notably, provide reminders to a person of what they have accomplished in the past, state their faith in them in the present, and express their belief in one's future success.

Sometimes conveying aspects of psychological conditions to the important individuals in one's life can be difficult, though.  In addition, they may worry and have confusion about how they can assist someone without making said person feel controlled or demeaned while trying to be there for them.  Another factor that may come up is that parents may blame themselves for an individual's psychological condition (information related to this may be found on the Causes page).

The following information has been selected to help individuals better relate to what someone in their life is, has been, and will be working with in their life in relation to their condition.  Material is also present that may help an individual better understand how those they share with might perceive the situation, and thus better prepare them to discuss the matter with them.

As a starting point, there should not be pressure, or an expectation, to share one's diagnosis, symptoms, or details about one's condition or past (however, imparting such with a mental health provider or others providing assistance, or during an emergency, is important); such are very personal and private matters that can be very sensitive.  

Should this happen, replies such as "I do not wish to share that," "please respect my privacy," and variants of such are valid responses; should these responses not be respected, ending the dialog, leaving the individual, changing the topic, or otherwise removing one's self from a situation is perfectly fine, regardless of how an individual may respond.


Disclosing to Others (NAMI)

Learning To Help Your Child And Your Family (NAMI)

How to cope when a loved one has a serious mental illness (American Psychological Association)

Maintaining a Health Relationship

Patients and Family (a presentation of the accurate definitions of various mental health terms)

Sharing Your Diagnosis (Alzheimer's Association)

Supporting Recovery

Talking about mental illness with your child (Children of Parents with a Mental Illness)

Time To Talk: Talking To Your Parents (Mental Health America)

Understanding Self-Harm

At one point in time, identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ) was considered a psychological condition; these concepts have been abandoned by the American Psychiatric Association (which composes the DSM series) and the American Psychological Association