How to Help a Loved One

If you know someone who is depressed, it affects you too. The most important thing you can do is help your friend or relative get a diagnosis and treatment. Talk with your guidance adjustment or counselor at your school. You may need to make an appointment and go with him or her to see a doctor or therapist. Encourage your loved one to stay in treatment, or to seek different treatment if no improvement occurs after 6 to 8 weeks.

 There is help and there is hope!

See the following clip discussing the first step to helping your loved one that is struggling - Asking the question - "Are you ok?"

Resources for Families

  • Ask your family or primary care doctor, pediatrician, or ob-gyn physician for a referral.
  • Students who are in school and their families can talk to a guidance counselor.
  • Contact your local community mental health center.
  • —Those in a college or university can contact the student Counseling Center or Health Center.
  • —Connect to a clinic or treatment facility associated with a local Medical School or graduate training program in psychology, counseling or social work.
  • Contact the Department of Psychiatry at your local hospital.
  • —If there is a university in your area, inquire whether they have a Depression Research Center or other mental health services.

Professional Organizations That Can Provide Information or a Referral

 National Grassroots Support Organizations

  • The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
  • National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI)

Resources for Young People

For teens please call (800)252-8336 or you can access online emotional support through Samaritans IM Hear Program, which is available on Monday through Thursday nights from 6pm to 9pm at

Another way to reach out to Samaritans is through Text via the Massachusetts Statewide Number: (877)870-HOPE(4673). Samaritans answers texts from people dealing with suicidal ideation, feelings of isolation and issues that can appear to be overwhelming.

Links for young people

Links for Black mental health

Links for LGBTQ young people


Resources for young people struggling with substance use

If you need help and want to talk to someone, call:

Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1-800-273-TALK (8255)

For the Crisis Text Line, text "Listen" to 741-741

For the Samaritans, Call or Text (877)870-4673

For immediate crisis evaluation call the Emergency Services Program / Mobile Crisis Intervention at 1-877-382-1609 & enter your zip code; you will get the phone number of the closest ESP/MCI that serves you.

If you are in immediate danger, please call 911