How to be a mate

Top tips for helping a friend with depression, anxiety or other mental health problem.

Every year one in four of us will experience a mental health problem. 

We need to talk about it. It’s easier than you might think.

You don't need any special skills, you just need to be willing to do it. Here's what you can do if you think a friend is feeling crap: 

  • Ask: how's its going? Three words that can make a big difference.
  • Keep in touch more: text or email if you can’t meet up.
  • Doing stuff together is as good as a chat: let your mate see that you know he’s still the same person. 
  • Talk. Swap stories: don’t ignore the difficult stuff if it comes up - you don’t need to solve it, you just need ears.
  • Keep it real: don’t make a big deal of how your mate is feeling but don’t make light of it either.
  • Be there: ask if you can do anything. 

More on helping a mate with mental health challenges: