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Talking to someone about what's troubling you

Talking to someone helps you to look at things in a different way and find solutions. Have a cup of tea with someone who cares for you or give them a call. Let them know you are not okay.

Talking things through can help reduce worry. It can reassure you that there is a better or different way forward.

You do not have to appear to be strong, or to try and struggle through things by yourself.

Ask for help

Sometimes, you might feel that friends or family should notice what you're going through. But they may not have noticed or they might be waiting for you to ask. They might not want to interfere.

If you talk to them about how you feel, people are often willing to help. Your friends or family will often be glad you asked. Some may feel privileged that you asked them in the first place.

Making time for family and friends

How to get started

Talking about your feelings is a sign of personal strength. It shows that you are able to take control of your life. But it can be difficult to know how to start a conversation about your feelings or worries.

Find the right moment for the conversation. You want to have time to talk and not be interrupted.

You might find it easier to start the conversation when you are doing something else. For example, going for a walk or doing the dishes together.

What to say

It's okay to begin by saying that you've been going through a tough time. Describe what you've been thinking and feeling.

It's normal to feel nervous. You might find it hard to talk to others about your feelings and experiences.

You may worry about how people will react. But, when you let someone know you need their help, they will often respond well.

Do not give up

If you've tried to talk to someone and things did not improve for you, do not give up.

Write it down

You can also write down how you feel. This can help in the following ways:

  • it can make the words clearer in your mind
  • the act of writing things down can feel good
  • seeing your thoughts and feelings on paper helps you confront your worries and find ways to deal with them

It can also be easier to put some perspective on your feelings when they're written down.

Who to talk to

Talk to someone you trust. For example, your partner, a family member, a friend or neighbour. Some people are good listeners and can give you support if you let them know how you're feeling.

It might also help the people you care about. If you open up about your feelings, they might do the same. Even being in other people's company can help.

If you find it too difficult to talk to a loved one, talk to a GP or counsellor.

You can also talk to Samaritans:


Freephone 116 123

Samaritans provide 24-hour confidential, non-judgemental support to anyone struggling to cope.

Getting more support

Talking therapies

Organisations that provide mental health services

Page last reviewed: 1 September 2022
Next review due: 1 September 2025