I'm worried about my friend

girl with an umbrella with a heart above it

If you’re worried about a friend, you might feel concerned and scared – luckily, there are lots of ways you can help them and be a good friend. But if their problem is serious they need help from other people too – and you can help them get it.

 

When should I ask for help?

Red circle with white 'tell an adult' text over the top


Your friend’s mental health problems are really affecting their day-to-day life. If they have attempted suicide, are being abused, are really struggling and can’t see a way out, or are spending lots of time alone and not doing things that they used to enjoy, they need some help.

Tell an adult you trust - this could be serious. Or call Childline on 0800 1111 anytime.

Orange circle with white 'keep listening' text inside

 

Your friend has some down days but is OK most of the time and is taking time to do things they enjoy. Sometimes things go wrong but your friend is trying out ways of getting through the tough times and looking forward to the future.

Keep listening and be there for your friend, but if you are worried talk to an adult.

Green circle with white 'you're a good friend' text inside

 

You have good times with your friend and chat about any problems you both have to work out the best things to do.

You’re a good friend - carry on with what you are doing.

How can I help?

  • Listen to your friend’s problems - just talking may help them feel better.
  • Don’t tell your other friends what your friend has told you - keep it to yourself.
  • Encourage your friend to talk to an adult who can help, or speak to Childline – they will know how best to help your friend
  • If you think your friend isn't safe, you may need to explain to them that someone else needs to be told even if they don’t want to say anything. If you are worried about your friend being abused check the signs of abuse.
  • Epic friends has loads of useful information on how to support your friend with different issues such as depression, anxiety and self harm.
  • Childline also has advice on helping others.
  • Look after yourself; it can be very difficult listening to your friend’s problems. If you feel it is getting too much then speak to someone. This could be an adult you trust or you could phone ChildLine on 0800 1111 any time for free.