We all come across various stages in life where we might require some kind of help. It might be an incoming exam, the breakup of a relationship, or the loss of a loved one. Help can be emotional, social, informational, or material in nature.
Having a mental health condition like anxiety or depression is not the only valid reason for seeking help. You might simply seek someone to deal with a stressful situation, or even to make an informed career choice.
Either way, asking for help can be overwhelming and it might take a little courage from your end. Telling your loved ones that you are suffering from a mental or health-related illness can be a challenging task. This is especially difficult when they might have a bias or pre-conceived notions against something, or they might themselves be vulnerable (old-age, sick, etc.)
Here are a few tips that might help you talk to your parents about getting help:
Talk to them only when you feel ready
You should consider talking to your parents only when you are mentally and physically prepared. Try to reveal your problem to them calmly and patiently. It is also possible that they ask you questions like what, why and how? So be prepared to answer them. You can read and get more informed about the same before discussing the issue with your parents. Tell them how the issue affects you and why you require help. Chances are they would understand and help you through it.
Pick a day and a time when you're feeling okay
Talking about an issue when you are not feeling like it can worsen the situation. Try talking to your parents when you are well-rested and can explain the entire scenario to them. Choose a time and day when you are feeling well.
Do not force yourself to do it
Sharing your problems can be a wonderful thing if done at the right time. If you share your concerns with your parents when you are feeling vulnerable or guilty, the feelings can amplify instead of decrease. Going against your gut can make you feel bad. Talk to your parents when the time is right and do not force yourself to do it just because you have to.
Be aware of their possible responses
Your parents might react in unexpected ways and there might be multiple reasons behind that. They might not be aware of the issue or they might tend to overreact, underdiagnose, or neglect. Know that it is possible for them to react in different ways and that does not make your problem invalid or insignificant.
Reveal as much or as little as you want
When it comes to self-disclosure, the choice is completely yours. You can give a detailed account of the problem or you can share as little as you want. Either way, you need to tell them that you are looking for help.
Lastly do not feel guilty or demotivated about it since anyone can require help at any given time in their lives. There are innumerable things that might be responsible for how you are feeling presently and it is not your fault. The earlier you inform them, the earlier they can help you seek the possible options that will help you.
If you find it difficult to confide in your parents, you can ask a trusted person to talk to them about the same.
A WORD FROM SOCIALLY SOULED
While telling someone about your mental illness, you can wait until you feel, you have a strong connection with them, and you feel comfortable talking to them about serious topics. Keep in mind, if it's the right person, you telling them should only make them appreciate your strength more (and not judge or look down upon you in any way). Whatever the response might be, know that your feelings and thoughts are valid and you have the right to seek help for them.