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Topic: Talking to parents about depression

5 posts, 0 answered
  1. hedobesadtho
    hedobesadtho avatar
    1 posts
    7 July 2020

    Hello, I've never posted here before and don't really know how to start but I'm a 20yo male and have been experiencing depressive symptoms for years. I've been to headspace a couple of times but it ended up falling through (psych quit), but finally went to a GP referred psychologist on Monday.

    I just feel really weak and stupid at this point, I have a couple of friends I've talked to about mental health but not in person due to the coronavirus lockdown. I want to tell my mum (live with mother and stepdad) that I think I'm depressed, but I have no clue how to go about it. I've always been quite successful academically, am in 3rd year uni, but for ages have had psych said I had a lot of depressive symptoms. Unfortunately I'm really good at hiding my emotions, and I love my mum but haven't really had any conversations relating to deep important stuff in recent years, so I have no idea how to start. I've also been abusing drugs which makes it a lot harder to talk to my parents as it's not something im proud of but I don't want my mum to be disappointed in me. I just don't want to feel like I'm alone even though I live in my house with my family, does anyone have any tips for how to talk to her about it? It's also hard because I have a little brother and wouldn't want to talk to her about it in front of him, and he's awake until about 8pm everyday.

    Thanks, I hope anyone who reads this has a great day : )

  2. Sophie_M
    Sophie_M avatar
    3423 posts
    7 July 2020 in reply to hedobesadtho
    Hey Hedobesadtho, a warm welcome to the Beyond Blue forums, it's great to have you join us. We are grateful that you have reached out here today as we know it can be tough to do this for the first time. We are so sorry to hear that you are feeling low. We understand that this feeling must be overwhelming, especially if you struggle to open up to others and reach out. Please know that you do not have to do this alone. Many in our community have had similar feelings and understand. Hopefully, a few of them will pop by and offer you some words of kindness and advice. We recognise that this must be an overwhelming situation for you, so we just wanted to let you know that if you find yourself feeling particularly overwhelmed before receiving further mental health support, please know that there is help available to you. 

    The Beyond Blue Support Service on 1300 22 4636 or our friends at Lifeline on 13 11 14 are available to provide support and advice 24/7. Kids Helpline counsellors can also be contacted 24/7 by young people 25 and under via telephone and also via webchat. Please do feel free to use these services to talk through what's on your mind when it's feeling like too much to cope with.

    Please check in and let us know how you are going whenever you feel up to it.
  3. White Rose
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    White Rose avatar
    6313 posts
    8 July 2020 in reply to hedobesadtho

    Dear hedobesadtho

    Hello and welcome to the forum. I am very glad you came here to chat. Everyone has their own story but we can relate to each other because we know how difficult it can be to open up to anyone.

    Please know you are not a weak person because you are depressed. It takes strength to say you have these feelings and not struggle on by yourself. One suggestion I have to start the ball rolling is to download and print some information about depression and give it to your mom to read. Tell mom you want to talk about it when she has read the fact sheet. Go to The Facts above and navigate to the information you need or go to Get Support and navigate to the information pages. Read them yourself. It's always good to have solid information about your mental health.

    Why not suggest to mom that you both go out for coffee or shopping or anything else that gets you both out of the house without your brother. Say you want to talk privately.

    How did your meeting with the psychologist go on Monday? Do you feel he/she understood you? We are all good at hiding our feelings because it can be scary out there. Community attitudes towards mental illness are getting better but it's still hard to talk to someone about it. If you think it would be helpful write some dot points listing how you feel, how you went to Headspace and that you are going to a psychologist.

    It will be a lot for your mom to take in I imagine so do not be concerned if she does not ask many questions or talk much about it. Mom may want to think about what you have told her before going much further with the discussion. You can ask her not to talk about it in front of your brother. Organise another time to catch up with her.

    I see Sophie has suggested you contact the Kids Helpline. Their web address is www.kidshelpline.com.au and their 24/7 phone number is 1800 55 1800. And of course you can contact Beyond Blue or Lifeline. All good services where you can talk about your concerns.

    Please come and chat here as much as you want. It's a good place and of course is anonymous.


  4. P0L0
    blueVoices member
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    P0L0 avatar
    74 posts
    8 July 2020 in reply to hedobesadtho

    Hello hedobesadtho,

    You are very strong for reaching out and asking for help, that is a big step.

    I am able to relate to you to some degree. I am a 19yo male in the LGBTQIA+ community. I understand what it means to hide my feelings, emotions and who I really am for a significant portion of my life. I have found talking about the mental health issues I have had to be difficult, but nowhere near impossible. I see that you have reached out to your friends about what you may be going through, and that is very important to do, as they are some of the people who know you best and care for you unconditionally. I would like to also state that your parents also care for you unconditionally. They will support you no matter what. You may know that already, but sometimes we can misconstrue the truth in our own heads.

    As for actually telling your parents, I found it easiest to talk to them slowly. Slowly build up to the issue at hand. Do not race to your conclusion as that can be very frightening and your parents will need time to think and understand what you are saying.

    And do not worry, you will not disappoint them if you say you are going through something; they will not think any different of you because they love you.

    You are not alone,


  5. Lily20
    Lily20 avatar
    2 posts
    9 July 2020

    I always find it easier to write things down, if it's tough to say in person - you can take the time to sort through everything you want to express, so you know what you want to say and how. I've told people I care about some really difficult things by email because that was how I felt safest, and how I could express myself most clearly, without getting upset and saying things the wrong way. You might try writing your mom a letter, and either giving it to her or reading it aloud to her - if nothing else, it could be good practice and help you prepare to talk to her.

    I also think that parents in general want to help - if you give her ways that she can help you (even if that just means links to articles on this site), it may make the news easier on her, by empowering her to be proactive.

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