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Feb 7, 2022

Topic: How do I talk to someone I love who is struggling with their mental health?

Intro: Changing stigma towards mental health

Step 1 - changing our beliefs

Step 2 - changing our actions related to beliefs

2019 APA survey:


  1. What is my relationship with this person? (4:30)
  • Relationship = vulnerability + boundaries
  • Where are they at? Consider the person’s willingness to have the conversation
  • Can they see the concerns or are they mostly unaware?
  • Use the phrase – “I’ve noticed” or “Have you noticed…”
  • Start with culturally normative symptoms or what might be easiest from them to hear
  • Shift our own understanding about mental health as part of everyone’s everyday life


  1. Get some info for yourself

QPR training for suicide prevention:


  1. Consider your language and your relationship with your own mental health (18:00)
  • Do not make assumptions
  • Ask lots of questions
  • Use a tone of respect
  • People are more responsive when we are willing to deal with our own stuff
  • Be authentic in our own struggles
  • The struggle isn’t usually the same intensity forever


  1. Have some resources ready and check back in (23:30) for family and relationship violence

211 – basic resources local to you

  • look up some local therapists

therapist search on Heidi’s website:

  • Combat veteran resources and info around trauma

Normalizing combat trauma -

Find an EMDR therapist -

Get your own therapy if they are resistant (or if they aren’t)

  • books –

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone -

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone Workbook -

            Soul of Shame -

      Daring Greatly -

Fresh Hope Workbook -

Fresh Hope website -

Loving Someone Series –


Bipolar -



  1. Don’t forget boundaries for yourself with compassion


Mental health page at -

Relationship page at -



Short Answer: There is no perfect way to have the conversation - start somewhere, with a resource and a single awkward conversation.