BE PATIENT--Under Construction

Carmen Pineiro, LMHC

  Better Pathways


Speaking Out About Mental Health

Posted by on January 2, 2017 at 2:40 PM

"Asking for help when you're struggling is a sign of strength. Find the strength and speak up. Using my voice has always been a part of my professional life, but that wasn’t always the case when it came to bipolar disorder. Despite the setbacks, I finally found the strength to speak up " Demi Lovato


In Florida, approximately:


- 525,000 adults and 181,000 children live with serious mental illness, bipolar disorder, severe depression or schizophrenia *

- 1,021,000 adults were dependent on or abused alcohol*

- 422,000 adults and 124,000 adolescents were dependent on or abused illicit drugs*

- 120,000 adolescents had at least one major depression episode*


We all know someone who is struggling with a mental health condition. It can be anyone from a family member, friend or even a co-worker. Although the best person to talk with is a psychiatrist or counselor, initial support from a family member or friend can make a huge difference in the process of getting help and feeling better. A simple as a phone call, text message, even a private Facebook message can help someone with a mental health condition know they are not alone.


Discussing a mental health condition can be a difficult conversation to have. What can you do? What can you say? Here are some suggestions:


- Be accommodating, choose a time and place that is calm to have the conversation

- Let them know that you are concerned

- Use "I" statements, for example, "I am worried..."

- Listen without judgment, assumptions, or interruptions

- Be sensitive in the wording you use, don't use stigmatizing words, "crazy"

- Acknowledge their feelings

- Ask how you can help them

- Suggest to seek help or make appointment with a professional


Don’t hesitate or be afraid. Let the person know how you feel. If they aren't prepared to talk or seek help immediately, follow up with them in a few days to see how they are doing. Remember, be patient. If you show acceptance and concern, then that may lead to them opening up and speaking up.



If you know someone who is struggling with a mental health condition and need further help, feel free to contact 305-576-1599 ext. 3127. One of our experienced counselors will be glad to assist you with questions or concern. You can also find interesting article and posts if you visit our Facebook page @Stoppeprogram. Call or visit our Facebook page, we would love to hear from you.



** Estimates are annual averages based on combined 2009–2013 National Survey of Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) survey data

Categories: Mental Health, Stigma, Awareness & Prevention

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