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How to talk about mental health

Do you need help starting a conversation with your child about mental health? Vivamus at enim leo. Donec quis tincidunt eros, at scelerisque enim. Sed et sodales tortor, non pellentesque odio. Praesent bibendum purus id nulla fermentum varius. Nam sit amet nunc sit amet turpis tempor sagittis. Donec iaculis felis at quam porttitor convallis. Maecenas ut nulla vitae est eleifend efficitur et sit amet dolor. Suspendisse libero augue, congue eget diam non, volutpat pharetra tortor.

Try leading with these questions. Make sure you actively listen to your child’s response.

  • Can you tell me more about what is happening? How you are feeling?
  • Have you had feelings like this in the past?
  • Sometimes you need to talk to an adult about your feelings. I’m here to listen. How can I help you feel better?
  • Do you feel like you want to talk to someone else about your problem?
  • I’m worried about your safety. Can you tell me if you have thoughts about harming yourself or others?

When talking about mental health problems with your child you should:

  • Communicate in a straightforward manner
  • Speak at a level that is appropriate to a child or adolescent’s age and development level (preschool children need fewer details than teenagers)
  • Discuss the topic when your child feels safe and comfortable
  • Watch for reactions during the discussion and slow down or back up if your child becomes confused or looks upset
  • Listen openly and let your child tell you about his or her feelings and worries